NEXT MEETING: Watch this space to learn when conditions permit our GCAS meetings to resume. Meanwhile, please stay well, practice basic precautions, and we will all get together soon.

NEXT FIELD TRIP = WATCH THIS SPACE FOR UPDATES AS TO WHEN FIELD TRIPS WILL RESUME.

US Southwest

Our Latest Acquisition

Vidal coverA few months ago in the pre-COVID-19 days when the world was young, a majority of the GCAS general membership approved the pre-publication purchase of a special volume for the GCAS Library. We are thrilled to now add to our research library, The Vidal Site: An Isolated Great Kiva in Heaton Canyon Near Gallup, New Mexico.

Published by the Archaeological Society of New Mexico and edited by Frances Joan Mathien, this compelling book (ASNM Special Publication Series No. 7) comprises reports of the surveys, excavations, and materials analyses directed by Richard A. Bice and Phyllis S. Davis at the Vidal Site from 1979 through 1993.

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Welcome Today's Guest Blogger, Kyle Meredith!

Our very own GCAS President, Kyle Meredith, has dropped by this part of the blogosphere to take us all on a virtual trip that he and two other hardy GCAS members (plus one mascot) recently took to a petroglyph site near Deming. All text and photos are courtesy of Kyle Meredith. Away we go!

Petroglyph hill - K. MeredithBack in April, Josh and I and Greg went for an overnighter down south of Deming to look for a hill with petroglyphs we had been told about. I located our probable destination on a map and set up a route on my GPS.

Continue reading "Welcome Today's Guest Blogger, Kyle Meredith!" »


Petroglyphs as Celestial Markers

Venus 1218 pmImages depicted in Southwestern petroglyphs are open to interpretation due to the absence of a written record explaining the ancient artist's intentions. However, certain petroglyphs found at various sites throughout the region appear similar to one another and so have led many researchers to propose that they depict heavenly bodies (see also photo on left) or a specific astronomical event like a coronal mass ejection or a supernova. Other petroglyphs have been found to track recurring events like solstices and equinoxes; these markers are typically spirals across which rock shadows or daggers of light trace the sun's path across the sky (photo on right). The Mesa Prieta Petroglyph Project (MPPP) has something a bit different...

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The 9th Annual Buffalo Fundraiser Is Tomorrow!

HSR BR PosterUPDATE 3:19PM, March 13, 2020: THIS EVENT HAS BEEN CANCELLED AND MAY BE RESCHEDULED AT A LATER DATE. Check with the New Mexico Farm and Ranch Heritage Museum's website for more info as it comes available.

On Saturday, March 14, 2020, it's the 9th Annual Buffalo Roast Fundraiser at the New Mexico Farm and Ranch Heritage Museum in Las Cruces! Human Systems Research Inc. proudly presents the keynote speaker, Mark Santiago, discussing "Labyrinth of Blood: Apaches and the Spanish Empire." This is an Advance-Ticket-Only event with tickets going for $50/person. For time of presentation, tickets, and other information please telephone the NMFRHM at 575-524-9456. Meanwhile, enjoy the presentation summary:

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Potential Field Trip Out Tularosa Way

DSC00831Saturday, March 21, 2020 through Sunday, March 22, 2020: David Greenwald, President and Board member of the Jornada Research Institute, plans a field session at Creekside Village and the Twin Kivas sites north of Tularosa, New Mexico, just after the vernal equinox (March 19). If enough participants join in there will be excavating at both sites.

Mr. Greenwald has focused the past 18 years of his work upon the history and archaeology of the entire Tularosa Basin. He is eager to share his knowledge with all who wish to participate and it is bound to be a worthwhile experience.

If interested, please follow the Jornada Research Institute's Events page as things develop, or contact them directly for details.

/s/ webmaster [photo via Jornada Research Institute]


Tumacácori National Historical Park Guided Tour - Last Call! Reserve Now!

Guevavi-npsThe Tumacácori National Historical Park in Tumacácori AZ is located about 47 miles south of Tucson on I-19. On March 21, 2020, ONLY, from 9:00 AM to 1:00 PM, the Tumacácori National Historical Park provides its final special guided tour of the season to the ruins of the Calabazas and Guevavi Missions. The tour starts at Tumacácori National Historical Park, 1891 E. Frontage Rd., Tumacácori, Arizona for $25/person. RESERVATIONS REQUIRED. To make reservations go to https://www.recreation.gov/ or https://www.nps.gov/tuma/index.htm or telephone the Tumacácori visitor center at 520-377-5060.

The fragile historic mission ruin sites of Guevavi and Calabazas are protected within the national park but normally closed to the public. Each guided tour begins at Tumacácori National Historical Park Visitor Center, then participants ride in a 15-passenger van to Guevavi and Calabazas. At each location participants walk on unshaded, moderately improved trails to reach the mission ruins, including one short section of steep, uphill trail at Calabazas. The tours are not wheelchair accessible and require walking on uneven terrain. Participants need to bring water and wear comfortable walking shoes and clothing appropriate for the weather. After the tour returns to Tumacácori, participants are invited to visit the Tumacácori Mission church and grounds, visitor center, and museum on their own or go on the next guided tour of Tumacácori (starting at 2 p.m.) at no additional charge.

Last chance to take a trip to Southeastern Arizona before the weather heats up! Reserve now and we'll see you out there!

/s/ webmaster [Photo of Guevavi ruins via Tumacacori NHP]


Plan Now for THREE Special Events in March!

HSR BR PosterOn Saturday, March 14, 2020, it's Event Number One, the 9th Annual Buffalo Roast Fundraiser at the New Mexico Farm and Ranch Heritage Museum in Las Cruces! Human Systems Research Inc. proudly presents the keynote speaker, Mark Santiago, discussing "Labyrinth of Blood: Apaches and the Spanish Empire." This is an Advance-Ticket-Only event with tickets going for $50/person. For time of presentation, tickets, and other information please telephone the NMFRHM at 575-524-9456. Meanwhile, enjoy the presentation summary:

Continue reading "Plan Now for THREE Special Events in March!" »


Site Steward Opportunity Up North - Plan Now!

The Santa Fe National Forest is looking for Archaeological Site Stewards for their area. Their training day is Saturday, March 21, 2020, so if the date and location fit your schedule, get busy now and sign up. They explain in their press release:

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Please Spare Some Time to Help

M.Markel and Hurley 5th graders. Learning about flintknapping Drilling with a pump drill Three groups of fourth-grade students from Deming and their teachers have scheduled a day of multi-station outdoor museum classrooms at the Mimbres Culture Heritage Site on Friday, March 6, 2020. The GCAS provides volunteer guides for these field trips, coordinated by our very own Marilyn Markel. This is the first time we will be welcoming students and teachers from Deming to our area, so we are asking GCAS members to help Marilyn in showing these young students some of their region's rich heritage.

The very next week, on Friday, March 16, 2020, it's the fourth graders from Stout Elementary School who need your help for their day of multi-station outdoor museum classrooms at the Mimbres Culture Heritage Site.

Please pitch in with Marilyn to show these students the rich cultural heritage and history in their own back yard. No experience is necessary for any of these classroom stations. These workshops begin at 9:00 AM and continue through about 2:30 PM. For specific hours and other details please contact Marilyn ASAP by telephone at 575-536-9337, or via email.Thank you in advance for your help!

/s/ webmaster