Saturday, October 14, 2023, was an auspicious day. We experienced a total solar eclipse. The Mimbres Culture Heritage Site hosted National Archaeology Day with features and events that included tours of the Mattocks archaeological site, hands-on activities for all ages, storytelling about a historic local homicide, and the always-fabulous GCAS used-book sale. The day's special VIPs included two professional archaeologists, Karl and Toni Laumbach; and members of two Apache families, the Leybas and the Rogelios, who attended in traditional Apache regalia to commemorate the 143d anniversary on October 14 of the death of Victorio, chief of the Warm Springs band of the Tchihendeh Apache. About 40 attendees heard Karl Laumbach give the afternoon's featured presentation, Hembrillo: an Apache Battlefield of the Victorio War, April 5, 6, and 7, 1880.
The highlight of the day for the GCAS was our official dedication of the GCAS library to the memory of archaeologist, educator, and GCAS member Nancy Coinman PhD. Several members of Nancy's family and close family friends led by Nancy's big brother, Bill Arvidson, traveled from as far away as Delaware for the occasion. Nancy's former research table, refinished and in use as the library's work table, showcased an array of Nancy's published writings as well as volumes about and by Karl and Toni Laumbach. Marilyn Markel presented the dedication of the library and my goodness did it suddenly get dusty in there.
Nancy's portrait, quilted by Marilyn Markel's twin sister, Carilyn Alarid, now graces the library's wall above two Indigenous baskets Nancy had gifted to Marilyn [see the second photo in this post, up there on the right]. New signage on the windows will read, Welcome to the Grant County Archaeological Society's Nancy Coinman Library.