NEXT MEETING: Wednesday, July 20, 2022, 6PM: The GCAS monthly in-person general meeting returns to the Roundup Lodge in San Lorenzo (Mimbres Valley) near the junction of Highways 152 and 35. Start at 6PM with your own plates/utensils/beverage & a dish for yourself or to share. Brief general meeting at 6:45 PM before introducing the evening's feature presentation by the GCAS's friend Dr. Bob Stokes, chair of ENMU's Archaeology Department, who will present his team's Preliminary Results from ENMU's 2021 Summer Field School at the Mares Rockshelter, a Jornada Mogollon Site along the Lower Rio Grande near Radium Springs. Watch this space and follow our blog for any adjustments of times, potluck procedures, etc. In order to offer our members a safe and comfortable experience the GCAS follows CDC and New Mexico Department of Health guidelines for indoor gatherings including masking, distancing, and vaccinations. We recommend all attendees follow the same.

NEXT FIELD TRIP: Saturday, June 25, 2022, 10:00AM-12:00PM noon, is the GCAS's traditional "July" field trip! Visit the 2022 Archaeology Fair hosted by Archaeology Southwest and the University of Arizona's Preservation Archaeology Field School at Gila River Farm in Cliff, New Mexico. The public is welcome and it's free of charge, so join GCAS members in learning about the project team's current archaeological investigations. Eye-catching informational exhibits will be on display, and the project team will offer hands-on activities to visitors of all ages. From the junction of Highways 180 and 211 in Cliff, drive 1 mile north, keep left (north) on Highway 293 and drive to Mile Marker 4. Just past MM 4, turn right into a driveway with a small sign that says, "Gila River Farm." Please use the parking area next to the large building down the driveway. Contact Archaeology Southwest with further questions. Safety measures will be in place, so please be prepared to wear a mask and keep a safe distance. See you at the Fair!

Pictographs

Volunteers Sought for Rock Art Recording

Ron Barber Stone_Calendar-RBRon 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 barbers6@aol.com . Here's more of Ron's background:

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Meet D-Stretch: the Archaeologist's Friend

Picto 3 - natural Picto 3 - StretchSome avocational archaeologists have already learned of the fascinating technology of D-Stretch, aka decorrelation stretch, a digital imaging tool that was originally developed to enhance (i.e., "stretch") the color differences in aerial photographs. Today, this technology has become more widely used and user-friendly to boot. It is now an essential tool to analyze rock art images, especially ones too faint for the naked eye to see.

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Online Via Zoom: Our February 17, 2021, Featured Speaker: Lawrence (Larry) Loendorf

Larry-loendorf Larry Loendorf excavating in front of Main rock art panel  Valley of the Shields  MontanaJoin us Wednesday, February 17, 2021, at 7:00 PM on Zoom to hear our Featured Speaker, Lawrence (Larry) Loendorf of Sacred Sites Research, Inc. explain the relationships he and other anthropologists, archaeologists, and ethnobotanists have studied between "Medicinal Plants and Rock Art Sites in Southern New Mexico."

Larry was born and raised in Montana. His BA and MA degrees are in anthropology and archaeology from the University of Montana and his PhD is from the University of Missouri-Columbia. After receiving his PhD, he taught at the University of North Dakota for 22 years and then moved to undertake research and teaching at the University of Arizona and New Mexico State University. He currently manages Sacred Sites Research, Inc., a non-profit company that is dedicated to protecting ancient pictograph and petroglyph sites.

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Sign Up Now for an Upcoming Rock Art Tour

OPAC HQFor those unfamiliar with Old Pueblo Archaeology Center [photo on right via OPAC], it is an organization headquartered in Tucson, Arizona, devoted to education and preservation of historic and archaeological sites and artifacts throughout the region of the US Southwest and Mexico Northwest. They serve as a clearinghouse for events, tours, educational programs, and volunteer opportunities for individuals including students of all ages, professionals, and interested nonprofessionals.

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Back to Back to Back Field Trip Reports - Part I: Spirit Canyon

The summer months find the GCAS all over the place partaking of events aplenty. Our field trips are no exception; by the close of the first week of July we will have enjoyed a total of three field trips in five weeks.

2019-06-02 CO Spirit Canyon field trip IMG_1067On June 2, 2019, the GCAS's very own Marilyn Markel led our monthly field trip to two sites located near each other. Our first stop was to Spirit Canyon in the upper Mimbres Valley area. Spirit Canyon is a unique rock art site monitored under the New Mexico SiteWatch Program. About a half-mile walk up the canyon trail and carefully avoiding the lush growth of poison ivy, our group encountered a series of red ochre pictographs that reportedly depict either Apache Mountain Spirits, or the Apache ceremonial dancers who represented the Mountain Spirits. [Photo on left by M.Smith; photo on right by Greg Conlin.]

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Registration Soon Closes for 2019 Rock Art Academy in El Paso, Texas

Badger vs. opossumThe Texas Archeological Society's two-day Rock Art Academy will be held in El Paso, Texas, on February 16-17, 2019. Registration will close at midnight on January 17, 2019.

The TAS Rock Art Academy "...explores regional rock art archeological sites, Mogollon archeological sites, and how investigators use this information to interpret the human and natural histories of an area. Classroom Bighorn sheep 1sessions for the Academy will be held at the El Paso Museum of Archaeology with field sessions at Hueco Tanks State Park..."

For registration and event details please go to this TAS page.

/s/ webmaster [Photos by Marianne Smith]


2019 Rock Art Academy, El Paso

Doe  maybe  between 2 male figuresRegistration is open and ongoing for the Texas Archeological Society's Rock Art Academy to be held in El Paso, Texas, on February 16-17, 2019.

FriendshipThe TAS describes the Rock Art Academy as "...a two-day Texas Archeology Academy that explores regional rock art archeological sites, Mogollon archeological sites, and how investigators use this information to interpret the human and natural histories of an area. Classroom sessions for the Academy will be held at the El Paso Museum of Archaeology with field sessions at Hueco Tanks State Park..."

The registration period for the 2019 Rock Art Academy continues through midnight on January 17, 2019. For details on this event, go to this TAS page.

/s/ webmaster [Photos by Marianne Smith]


Registration Soon Opens for 2019 Rock Art Academy in El Paso, Texas

Maybe deer and turkeyThe Texas Archeological Society has announced that registration will open on October 28, 2018, for their next Rock Art Academy to be held in El Paso, Texas, on February 16-17, 2019.

Cloud  possibly  with waterThe TAS explains that the Rock Art Academy "...is a two-day Texas Archeology Academy that explores regional rock art archeological sites, Mogollon archeological sites, and how investigators use this information to interpret the human and natural histories of an area. Classroom sessions for the Academy will be held at the El Paso Museum of Archaeology with field sessions at Hueco Tanks State Park..."

The registration period for the 2019 Rock Art Academy runs from noon on October 28, 2018, through midnight on January 17, 2019. For details on this event, go to this TAS page.

/s/ webmaster [Photos by Marianne Smith]


GCAS Field Trip to Paquimé, Part II

IMG_423125 - Olla - photographing the cliff face May 2, 2018, the first day of our GCAS international field trip to archaeological and 33 - Yep  Golondrina historic sites in Chihuahua, Mexico, was windy and action-packed. We hiked for about 1/3 mile from La Cueva de la Olla crossing a shallow stream and the valley floor, up a short, steep path to the cave and cliff dwellings of La Cueva de la Golondrina ("Cave of the Swallow"). Occupation of this site has been dated to roughly 1000-1050 CE; somewhat more recent and for a shorter duration than La Cueva de la Olla. (h/t Marcia Corl for far left image.)

One of the structures in La Cueva de la Golondrina (see photo over here on the right) was built in a unique 27 - Golondrina circular cliff dwellingcylindrical shape, yet it and the other more conventional, rectangular-shaped adobe rooms at this site used the same defensive techniques of small ventilation windows and narrow, low, T-shaped doorways that seem typical of cliff dwellings of this era throughout northwest Mexico and southwest US.

31 - Golondrina far L wall's carved steps 32 - Golondrina far L wall porthole detail with lintelsFacing the cave, the cliff dwellings on the far left appeared more intact than those at La Cueva de la Olla; their walls extended all the way to the cave's roof. Slim rows of latillas in the upper parts of small ventilation windows remained in place despite graffiti etched into the surrounding adobe. Steps carved into the sloping rock were still usable to climb up to the cave floor (see photo on far left). The fine sand of the cave floor itself appeared uniformly flat and smooth, even into the cave's furthermost recesses.

Facing the cave along its upper right side, a long panel of white-painted pictographs came into view.

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GCAS Field Trip to Paquimé, Part I

22 - Olla - LtoR= GB  Luis  site steward  Marcia  Anne  KM  Kevin  unk  JuliaThe three-day GCAS international field trip to Paquimé, Chihuahua, Mexico, May 2-4, 12 - Tour guide Luia Benavidez2018, was a great success. A total of 16 hardy souls participated: four from El Paso; one from Las Cruces; one from Santa Fe; and ten from assorted locales around Grant County, New Mexico. Our tour guide, Luis Benavidez, and his associate, Oscar, took very good care of us while introducing us to points of interest all over the place. That's Luis, over there in that photo on the right.

May 2 found our group in two vans, checking in with Mexican Immigration in Palomas and then riding for about three hours from there to the greater Nuevo Casas Grandes area. Our first archaeological destination of the trip was among the windswept mountains of 6 - Olla  valley floorthe Sierra Madre Occidental near the town of Ignacio Zaragoza. We visited cliff 26 - Trail from Olla to Golondrinas with Rio Piedras Verdesdwellings in two separate cliff-side caves along the valley of the Rio Piedras Verdes. Luis explained to us that millennia ago this region was somewhat similar to the Mimbres River in New Mexico, in that archaeological sites of small groups of dwellings have been found every few miles along the river and its fertile valley. Human occupation in certain parts of this valley has been dated to 5500 BCE.

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