Pioneering Archaeology in Nicaragua (1983)

Author(s): Frederick Lange

Year: 2016


Three years after the Triumph of the Sandinista Revolution in 1979, this author was invited by the Council of National Reconstruction to assist Nicaraguan cultural authorities in developing an archaeological research program for the Pacific side of the country. The revolutionary government had made a conscious decision to prioritize the protection and investigation of the cultural heritage. I had conducted extensive research in northwestern Costa Rica, known to be similar to southern Pacific Nicaragua. One of my colleagues at the University of Colorado-Boulder, where I had relocated, was Payson Sheets, who had researched extensively in El Salvador; I thought he would be able to compare northern Pacific Nicaragua with El Salvador. Payson also was a lithic specialist and was interested in volcanic landscapes; I raised funds from a private foundation to bring him along. We visited and recorded 26 sites and defined 4 lithic zones and 4 ceramics zones. In 1992 the University of New Mexico Press published The Archaeology of Pacific Nicaragua, written in collaboration with Suzanne Abel-Vidor and Anibal Martinez, which has remained the baseline for research on the Pacific coast of Nicaragua. Finally, we made the phrase “mucho gusto” the saying of the century.

Cite this Record

Pioneering Archaeology in Nicaragua (1983). Frederick Lange. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Orlando, Florida. 2016 ( tDAR id: 403575)


Geographic Keywords
Central America

Spatial Coverage

min long: -94.702; min lat: 6.665 ; max long: -76.685; max lat: 18.813 ;