Roughly 90 years ago, archaeologists sponsored by universities in the US Midwestern and Eastern states excavated numerous sites throughout the Mimbres-Mogollon cultural region. As was the custom, they shipped the human remains and artifacts they uncovered to the universities and museums that had underwritten their projects. Their activities and research in our area inspired in large part the formation of our own Grant County Archaeological Society in 1928.
Indigenous tribes throughout the country, including those in New Mexico, have diligently worked for decades to bring their people's remains and funerary objects back home. They have had some success. Now, the University of Minnesota is working to repatriate to New Mexico their collection of some 2000 artifacts that had been removed from the Cameron Creek, Galaz, Hot Springs, and Warm Springs archaeological sites in the Mimbres Valley. Eight or more tribes and Pueblo communities claim the Mimbreños as their ancestors, so the logistical details of repatriation to New Mexico - and where the items will be located - remain to be determined. Nevertheless, sacred objects are returning once again to the land that had been their resting place.