NEXT MEETING: Wednesday, February 16, 2022, online via Zoom at 7PM: the GCAS general meeting features Cody Dalpra M.A., R.P.A., District Archaeologist for the Las Cruces District Office of the Bureau of Land Management. Cody will discuss Landscapes of the Past American Southwest: Cultural Meaning from Ethnographic Viewshed Analysis. Cody will illustrate how visually prominent landforms throughout the US Southwest, including southern New Mexico, influenced cultural, settlement, and mobility patterns among Native American populations prior to the completion of the railroad in 1881. As usual, about a week beforehand watch your email inbox for the Zoom link to join us to hear about Cody's research and different ways of seeing the landscapes around us.

NEXT FIELD TRIP = TBA - watch this space for details as they develop.

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June 2021
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August 2021

July 2021

Human Migration Patterns, DNA, and Vikings

Human genomeReaders of this here blog know that our basic policy is to focus upon archaeological developments in our own region because there's certainly plenty of it. However, readers also know that our policy includes an exception whenever news of advancements in DNA research is involved. Behold:

A 10-year DNA study of human remains from Viking-Age burials across Europe and beyond (generally, 750 CE - 1050 CE) is leading anthropologists, archaeologists, and historians to redefine who Vikings were. The DNA results revealed many cases of individual and group mobility, such as four brothers buried together in one Viking grave in Estonia, and a pair of cousins buried hundreds of miles apart from each other - one in Oxford, UK, and the other in Denmark. Additionally, the DNA results revealed that Vikings from certain areas preferred specific destinations for raiding and trading - refuting the traditional assumption that Vikings conducted their sailing expeditions wherever the winds of fortune carried them.

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Obsidian and Human Travel Patterns

Obsidian core  flakesObsidian was valued by ancient cultures for its sharpness and durability. Archaeologists commonly find obsidian nodules or worked obsidian in the form of points, knife blades, etc., in archaeological sites throughout the Western Hemisphere and beyond. Because of the particular way obsidian is formed, each source of obsidian has a unique geochemical signature. Thus researchers can identify where the obsidian that was used to make a particular artifact originally came from. The source provides clues about how the humans who made the artifacts interacted with other groups, either via trade or migration. In our own region, artifacts and raw material originating from the obsidian deposits at Mule Creek, New Mexico, have been found at archaeological sites up to 120 miles away.

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Meet Our MAREC Donor Family

ThxWe of the GCAS cannot say "thank you" often enough to all the supporters of our MAREC rehabilitation project. Please join these wonderful people as we move into the final stretch of construction - and if you have contributed but do not see your name on the list below, please contact us so we can correct our error and thank you properly!

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2021's First GCAS Field Trip!

2021 Arch Fair 1 2021 Arch Fair 5It's been a long time coming - 16 months to be exact - but the GCAS field trip program is gradually reemerging from its Pandemic Pause. Our group jumped at the chance to inaugurate our New Normal by visiting the Gila River Farm archaeological site near Cliff, New Mexico, on June 26, 2021. Our group's friend, Dr. Karen Schollmeyer of Archaeology Southwest, and her field school crew shared with us the latest results of their work at their annual Archaeology Fair.

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