NEXT MEETING: Wednesday, August 19, 2020, 7:00 PM: General Meeting goes online via Zoom! Al Dart of Old Pueblo Archaeology presents “Old-Time Religion? The Salado Phenomenon in the Greater Southwest.” No business meeting, this will be a Zoom presentation only. Watch for an upcoming Special Bulletin with details on how to join in on this fascinating lecture.

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

US Southwest

Online via Zoom: Our August 19, 2020, Featured Speaker: Allen Dart

Wednesday, August 19, 2020, 7:00 PM, online via Zoom: the GCAS welcomes our Featured Speaker, Allen Dart, archaeologist with the US Natural Resources Conservation Service in Phoenix and founder/Executive Director of Old Pueblo Archaeology Center in Tucson. His  evening's topic: "Old Time Religion? The Salado Phenomenon in the U.S. Southwest." Join us to hear about how:

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Hanging Canals of Southeastern Arizona

Hangcan1Ancient hydrological engineering in what is now the US Southwest was not confined to Arizona's Salt River basin. Archaeologists have studied a complex network of prehistoric bajada canals, aka hanging canals, located around the Upper Gila River in southeastern Arizona's Safford Basin. They estimate that Native inhabitants developed this water management system during the period from about 1250 CE - 1450 CE. [Photo of hanging canal, via Don Lancaster, tinaja.com.]

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Ancient Irrigation Techniques in the US Southwest

Hohokam canal mapMonsoon season has arrived in the US Southwest, a good time to ponder the logistical achievements of Native tribes of the past. During the period from 600 CE - 1450 CE the Hohokam established a complex canal system that reliably harnessed scarce water sources, enabling their communities to thrive for centuries. It encompassed an area of roughly 100,000 acres within the Salt River basin in what is now the greater metropolitan area of Phoenix, Arizona. It is North America's largest prehistoric irrigation canal system.

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Interactive Fun with the Mesa Prieta Petroglyph Project

Kwells and friendThe Mesa Prieta Petroglyph Project in Velarde, New Mexico, has produced a virtual tour of their extensive site that anyone can enjoy. You may have to navigate through one or two screens on this link, or perhaps this link, but it is worth a few minutes of your time to see glimpses of this very unique and important site. If you have never visited the site you will enjoy this brief introduction to it. If you have already visited in person you will be thrilled to see some of its highlights again.

Please also consider sending a donation to the MPPP to support their preservation efforts. Once it becomes feasible for public health you may consider visiting the site yourself. Plan a few days, as there are 6 different trails among the petroglyphs to sign up with a docent to see!

/s/ webmaster


An Announcement from the Southwest Kiln Conference for 2020

SWKCof logoThe Southwest Kiln Conference, established in 2003, is devoted to the art, science and technology of recreating the prehistoric pottery of the American Southwest. Due to the current COVID-19 pandemic they are adapting their annual conference to the circumstances. From Southwest Kiln:

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Plan to Attend the 2020 Mogollon Conference

IMG_1648This year's Mogollon Conference is set for Friday, October 23, 2020 thru Saturday, October 24, 2020, in the Student Union building on the University of Arizona campus in Tucson, Arizona. The organizers announce that "This year features some changes, including a no-charge conference dinner hosted by Archaeology Southwest on the evening of October 23 (Friday). We felt that a broadly welcoming approach would allow students a better opportunity to attend the dinner and mix with faculty and the rest of the professional community."

All potential presenters please note that Saturday, August 1, 2020, is the last day to submit an abstract of a paper to the conference coordinators. Click here for submission details, registration info, and more, and consult the announcement and Call for Papers itself: Download 2020 MogCof Call for Papers. Finally, please re-check the Conference website for periodic updates. We'll see you in Tucson!

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Today's Guest Blogger/Photographer: Kyle Meredith

Canador Peak over the GilaThe GCAS's very own President, Kyle Meredith, shared some photos of the Springtime Southwestern desert in our May 2020 GCAS newsletter. His photos of his and his companions' trip to the Gila Box in Arizona - at all times mindful of proper pandemic protocols -  are reprised here in case anyone missed them or would enjoy seeing them again. Looking at Kyle's photos, we can smell the exquisite floral scent that we locals know only happens for a few short days when the desert is in full bloom.

Cache in the cliff Lower Gila Box-1The Natives who built that cache in the small overhang in Kyle's photo (far left) must have enjoyed the desert's fleeting Springtime bloom too. We have experiences in common with those who have come before.

Thank you, Kyle, for leading all of the GCAS along on your field trip!

Mariposa lilies

/s/ webmaster [all photos, Kyle Meredith]


Breaking: GCAS Submits Comment on the Gila River Diversion Proposal

GCAS_logo convertOn June 3, 2020, the GCAS Board of Trustees submitted a formal comment in opposition to the US Bureau of Reclamation's Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS), which proposes a diversion of the Gila River in the general area of Virden, New Mexico. All of the Bureau of Reclamation's proposed alternatives for river diversion and construction appear certain to damage or destroy a large number of historic and archaeological sites throughout the proposed project area which spans both New Mexico and Arizona.

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A Brief History of Water Rights in Tularosa Canyon

Our May 2020 GCAS newsletter included a report submitted by one of our friends in the archaeological community, Dave Greenwald, President of the Jornada Research Institute in Tularosa, New Mexico. For those who may have missed it, we re-post it here as a PDF:

Download Tularosa Canyon update 4-2020.

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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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