Ron Barber, creator of the Stone Calendar Project, has been studying rock art sites throughout the Southwest and Northern Mexico identifying glyphs that mark specific times of the year using unique light and shadow interactions. He has some survey predictions for glyphs along the Gila Narrows and other southern sites and is looking for volunteers to help in further research.
Anyone who is interested in spending time in the field recording/filming calendar sun light interactions in the region, please contact Ron directly at firstname.lastname@example.org . Here's more of Ron's background:
Ron Barber was born and raised in the oil fields of South America, out in the middle of the boondocks. His parents hauled their kids through the mountains, deserts and jungles; always in search of new adventures. Encountering indigenous cultures and ancient sites led to Ron's long-term interest and curiosity about lost civilizations. He is an explorer by nature, an engineer by profession.
Ron is a Mechanical Engineer with over 40 years at the national laboratories; Lawrence Livermore in California and Los Alamos in New Mexico. Over the last 10 years he has focused an effort to study rock art throughout the southwest, specifically looking for glyphs that might provide insights into early astronomical knowledge. He has applied his engineering background to develop a systematic approach to surveying and identifying glyphs for potential study.
There are hundreds of stone calendar sites around the southwest located near ancient inhabited areas that were used to mark the annual seasons and important dates. These calendars are made with specific glyphs that align with unique shadows used to mark the time of year, including winter and summer solstice, equinoxes, cross-quarters and many other important dates. The Stone Calendar research project, is attempting to identify the western regional extent of this type of calendar technology. Sites have been surveyed and studied in New Mexico, Arizona, Utah, Colorado, California, as far south as the Sierra Madres in Mexico, and as far north as the Columbia River Gorge in Washington. Sites are studied using surveying techniques, 3 dimensional predictive modeling, and final field observations including time-lapse photography. The study has helped to identify unique cultural variations in glyph design and revealed the technological evolution over time, leading to very complex and accurate stone calendars.
In the near future Ron hopes to chat with the Jornada Research Institute and Dave Greenwald (our GCAS January 19, 2022, speaker on "The Archaeoastronomy of the Great Kivas in Tularosa Canyon") regarding Dave's and John Groh's studies that show the great kivas in Tularosa Canyon were used as celestial observatories tied to landmarks and horizon features to monitor the annual cycle of the sun, lunar cycles and possibly cycles of other celestial objects. We look forward to learning more from Ron and the JRI about their discussions!