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  • August 1, 2016
  • 12:50 AM
  • 252 views

Dating the Macaws

by teofilo in Gambler's House

One of the most exciting recent developments in the study of Chaco Canyon is the increasing use of scientific analysis of artifacts and other material remains to test and challenge previous theories based more narrowly on traditional archaeology. This includes the use of radiocarbon dating, which is widely used as a basis for developing chronologies […]... Read more »

Watson, A., Plog, S., Culleton, B., Gilman, P., LeBlanc, S., Whiteley, P., Claramunt, S., & Kennett, D. (2015) Early procurement of scarlet macaws and the emergence of social complexity in Chaco Canyon, NM. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 112(27), 8238-8243. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1509825112  

  • June 20, 2016
  • 11:50 PM
  • 241 views

The “Sun” Temple

by teofilo in Gambler's House

Today is the summer solstice, on which I like to do posts about archaeoastronomy. Today I’d like to discuss a well-known site, Sun Temple at Mesa Verde, which as its name suggests has long been associated with astronomical observations. As we’ll see, however, it appears that some of the early interpretations of the site’s architecture […]... Read more »

Reyman JE. (1977) Solstice Misalignment at Sun Temple: Correcting Fewkes. The Kiva, 281-284. info:/

  • December 22, 2015
  • 02:06 AM
  • 589 views

Watching the Sun

by teofilo in Gambler's House

Today is the winter solstice, and the seventh anniversary of this blog. I’ve traditionally posted about archaeoastronomy on these anniversaries, so I’m going to briefly interrupt my series on Crucible of Pueblos to discuss an interesting article on the evidence for astronomical observations at Chaco Canyon. There turns out to be some overlap, actually, which […]... Read more »

Munro AM, & Malville JM. (2010) Calendrical Stations in Chaco Canyon. Archaeoastronomy, 91-106. info:/

  • June 21, 2015
  • 09:49 PM
  • 594 views

Hohokam Astronomy

by teofilo in Gambler's House

Today is the summer solstice, so I figured I would take a break from my (slowly) ongoing series of posts on the Pueblo I period in the northern Southwest to take a look at evidence for ancient astronomical knowledge in a different part of the Southwest. This is in part an outgrowth of my recent […]... Read more »

Bostwick TW. (2010) Exploring the Frontiers of Hohokam Astronomy: Tracking Seasons and Orienting Ritual Space in the Sonoran Desert. Archaeoastronomy, 166-189. info:/

  • January 31, 2015
  • 11:37 PM
  • 648 views

Drones!

by teofilo in Gambler's House

Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), popularly known as “drones,” have become increasingly common in recent years as the technology behind them has developed. Some uses are controversial, such as military applications and uses that might violate privacy expectations or be dangerous to other aircraft, but other uses are more benign and can potentially open up new […]... Read more »

  • December 22, 2014
  • 01:11 AM
  • 671 views

Orientation and Identity

by teofilo in Gambler's House

Today is the winter solstice, which means it’s also the sixth anniversary of this  blog. On these anniversaries I like to write about archaeoastronomy, which is a very interesting topic and an important one for understanding Chaco and Southwestern prehistory in general. Last year I wrote about some research indicating that in the Rio Grande valley, […]... Read more »

Malville JM, & Munro AM. (2010) Cultural Identity, Continuity, and Astronomy in Chaco Canyon. Archaeoastronomy, 62-81. info:/

  • December 1, 2014
  • 02:37 AM
  • 733 views

The Evidence from DNA in the Southwest

by teofilo in Gambler's House

Having introduced the basics of archaeological use of DNA evidence, and discussed some other applications of DNA studies in archaeology, let’s take a look at the data relevant to the Southwest specifically. For modern populations in North America overall, there are some broad trends that have been identified in mitochondrial haplogroup distribution by region, as […]... Read more »

Carlyle SW, Parr RL, Hayes MG, & O'Rourke DH. (2000) Context of maternal lineages in the Greater Southwest. American journal of physical anthropology, 113(1), 85-101. PMID: 10954622  

Smith DG, Malhi RS, Eshleman J, Lorenz JG, & Kaestle FA. (1999) Distribution of mtDNA haplogroup X among Native North Americans. American journal of physical anthropology, 110(3), 271-84. PMID: 10516561  

Snow, M., Durand, K., & Smith, D. (2010) Ancestral Puebloan mtDNA in context of the greater southwest. Journal of Archaeological Science, 37(7), 1635-1645. DOI: 10.1016/j.jas.2010.01.024  

  • September 30, 2014
  • 05:23 AM
  • 683 views

The Evidence from DNA

by teofilo in Gambler's House

To wrap up my series on tracing the connections between ancient Pueblo sites like Chaco Canyon and the modern Pueblos, I’d like to discuss a type of evidence I haven’t discussed much but that people often ask about: DNA evidence. This is the most direct way to tie one population to another, at least in theory, […]... Read more »

Raghavan, M., DeGiorgio, M., Albrechtsen, A., Moltke, I., Skoglund, P., Korneliussen, T., Gronnow, B., Appelt, M., Gullov, H., Friesen, T.... (2014) The genetic prehistory of the New World Arctic. Science, 345(6200), 1255832-1255832. DOI: 10.1126/science.1255832  

  • August 1, 2014
  • 01:18 AM
  • 845 views

The Evidence from Skull Measurements

by teofilo in Gambler's House

So far in this series of posts on “tracing the connections” between ancient Pueblo sites like Chaco Canyon and modern Pueblos, I’ve discussed evidence from linguistics and folklore, but of course if the issue is determining which modern groups are physically descended from which ancient ones it’s hard to beat evidence from actual physical remains. […]... Read more »

Schillaci, M., & Stojanowski, C. (2002) A Reassessment of Matrilocality in Chacoan Culture. American Antiquity, 67(2), 343. DOI: 10.2307/2694571  

  • June 21, 2014
  • 07:00 AM
  • 747 views

The Rise of the Skywatchers

by teofilo in Gambler's House

Today is the summer solstice, on which I typically make posts about archaeoastronomy, so I’m going to take a break from my very gradual series of posts on tracing the connections between ancient and modern Pueblos to speculate a bit about the role of astronomy at Chaco. Briefly, what I’m proposing is that the rise of […]... Read more »

  • June 1, 2014
  • 02:09 AM
  • 982 views

The Evidence from Oral Traditions

by teofilo in Gambler's House

Given the obvious continuity in material culture between ancient and modern Pueblos, one potential source of information on the connections between prehistory and history in the region is the traditions of the modern Pueblos themselves. The florescence of Chaco was about 1000 years ago, so the events since then that led to the modern distribution […]... Read more »

Pradt, G. (1902) Shakok and Miochin: Origin of Summer and Winter. The Journal of American Folklore, 15(57), 88. DOI: 10.2307/533476  

  • April 29, 2014
  • 01:08 AM
  • 1,033 views

The Evidence from Linguistic Contact

by teofilo in Gambler's House

As I mentioned in the last post, I don’t think the linguistic relationships among the modern Pueblo languages shed much light on the details of the relationships between ancient and modern Pueblo groups. However, that’s not to say that linguistics is totally useless in addressing this issue. There’s another type of linguistic evidence which has […]... Read more »

  • February 1, 2014
  • 02:47 AM
  • 1,320 views

Prehistoric Southwestern Cultures More Mysterious than the “Vanishing Anasazi”

by teofilo in Gambler's House

As I’ve mentioned before in reference to the Fremont culture of what is now Utah, while the Anasazi of the Four Corners region are by far the most famous of the prehistoric southwestern societies, and particularly famous for their allegedly mysterious disappearance, there’s actually very little mystery about what happened to them. They very obviously […]... Read more »

  • December 21, 2013
  • 05:52 PM
  • 910 views

Facing the Winter Sun

by teofilo in Gambler's House

Today is the winter solstice, which also makes it the fifth anniversary of this blog. I tend to like to post about archaeoastronomy on these occasions, and as I mentioned in the previous post I’m currently in Albuquerque and have been reading up on the archaeology of the Rio Grande Valley. Luckily, a recent article […]... Read more »

Lakatos, SA. (2007) Cultural Continuity and the Development of Integrative Architecture in the Northern Rio Grande Valley of New Mexico, A.D. 600-1200. Kiva, 73(1), 31-66. info:/

  • October 31, 2013
  • 03:32 AM
  • 821 views

Watching the Skywatchers

by teofilo in Gambler's House

I recently finished reading Living the Sky: The Cosmos of the American Indian by Ray Williamson. This is a classic work on the archaeoastronomy of North America, and it’s the best introduction to the subject I’ve found. (Granted, there aren’t many out there.) Although it was written in the 1980s, the research it discusses is […]... Read more »

Aveni AF. (2003) Archaeoastronomy in the Ancient Americas. Journal of Archaeological Research, 11(2), 149-191. DOI: 10.1023/A:1022971730558  

  • September 30, 2013
  • 01:57 AM
  • 871 views

This Chocolate Stuff Is Getting Weird

by teofilo in Gambler's House

The initial discovery of chemical markers for chocolate on potsherds from Chaco Canyon in 2009 was a hugely significant development in understanding Chaco. The evidence for the presence of chocolate, a Mesoamerican product that couldn’t possibly have been locally grown and is very unlikely to have been gradually traded northward through a series of intermediaries, […]... Read more »

  • August 12, 2013
  • 01:56 AM
  • 1,022 views

So Apparently That’s Not Paint

by teofilo in Gambler's House

“Never read the comments” is generally sage advice, so it’s likely that many of my readers have missed the interesting comment thread in response to my previous post. I won’t try to summarize it all here, but the gist is that a potter showed up and took issue with my use of the word “paint” […]... Read more »

  • July 16, 2013
  • 03:06 AM
  • 1,041 views

The Paint on the Pots

by teofilo in Gambler's House

When I was working at Chaco, people would ask me a lot of questions. I usually knew the answers, but when I didn’t I was quite upfront about saying so. I would often try to find out the answers to questions that had stumped me, but I didn’t always succeed, and many of those questions […]... Read more »

  • July 7, 2013
  • 07:18 PM
  • 713 views

Lessons from Bolivia

by teofilo in Gambler's House

I often read articles on the archaeology of other parts of the world to gain a better understanding of the context for Chaco. The areas I focus on for this are primarily those that had interesting things going on contemporaneous with the Chacoan era, but I also look to some extent on archaeological phenomena in […]... Read more »

  • April 28, 2013
  • 03:21 AM
  • 831 views

About Those Toltecs

by teofilo in Gambler's House

With increasing evidence for Mesoamerican influence at Chaco in recent years, it’s worth taking a close look at what was going on in Mesoamerica itself during the Chacoan era. As I’ve mentioned before, there is some reason to believe that the most likely area to look to for direct influence in the Southwest is West Mexico, [...]... Read more »

Healan, D. (2012) The Archaeology of Tula, Hidalgo, Mexico. Journal of Archaeological Research, 20(1), 53-115. DOI: 10.1007/s10814-011-9052-3  

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