High Tide in the Lower Pecos: Digital Documentation of the Threatened Rattlesnake Canyon Mural


Rockshelters of the Lower Pecos Canyonlands display visually striking and compositionally complex Pecos River style murals painted by hunter-gatherers during the Late Archaic. The Rattlesnake Canyon mural (41VV180) is regarded as one of the six finest surviving examples of this world-renowned pictograph style. However, the site is severely threatened by repeated flooding episodes along the Rio Grande, exacerbated in recent years by siltation of Amistad Reservoir. Three known flooding episodes have impacted the paintings since 2008. Building upon the recording project conducted by the TAS Rock Art Recording Task Force during the 1990s, Shumla is collaborating with the National Park Service and Texas Tech University to record the Rattlesnake Canyon mural using state-of-the-art, digital documentation techniques before it is damaged further and eventually lost. Fieldwork sessions in June and September 2014 collected comprehensive baseline data facilitating current and future research, conservation, and public education for this threatened cultural legacy.

SAA 2015 abstracts made available in tDAR courtesy of the Society for American Archaeology and Center for Digital Antiquity Collaborative Program to improve digital data in archaeology. If you are the author of this presentation you may upload your paper, poster, presentation, or associated data (up to 3 files/30MB) for free. Please visit http://www.tdar.org/SAA2015 for instructions and more information.

Cite this Record

High Tide in the Lower Pecos: Digital Documentation of the Threatened Rattlesnake Canyon Mural. Audrey Lindsay, Victoria L. Muñoz, Jeremy B. Freeman, Carolyn E. Boyd. Presented at The 80th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, San Francisco, California. 2015 ( tDAR id: 397636)

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Spatial Coverage

min long: -113.95; min lat: 30.751 ; max long: -97.163; max lat: 48.865 ;