Remote-sensing Prospection of Recuay Architecture in the Jancu Region, Callejón de Huaylas, Peru

Author(s): Melissa Litschi; Alexia Moretti

Year: 2017


The Recuay tomb of Jancu has contributed significantly to our understanding of Recuay mortuary practices and ancestral veneration. This subterranean tomb, which housed the remains of several elite individuals and finely-crafted offerings, is typically discussed in isolation from its broader context. To date, no formal archaeological research has been conducted in the surrounding region, but recent preliminary surveys by the authors revealed numerous Recuay and Post-Recuay residential and funerary structures. Due to the relative inaccessibility of the region, remote-sensing technology offers a feasible alternative to pedestrian surveys as a method to characterize the distribution of pre-Hispanic architecture in the area. As a preliminary step in elucidating the sociopolitical context of the Jancu elite tomb, this study aims 1) to identify extant architecture near Jancu, and 2) to test the utility of widely accessible remote sensing options (low-resolution aerial photographs, Google Earth imagery, and Landsat IV satellite imagery) in an alpine environment. The results of this study will be tested during planned fieldwork in summer 2017, contributing both to refining the interpretations of mortuary practices and its ties to territoriality and ancestral veneration during the Recuay occupation of Jancu and to improving methodologies for archaeological survey in remote alpine environments.

Cite this Record

Remote-sensing Prospection of Recuay Architecture in the Jancu Region, Callejón de Huaylas, Peru. Melissa Litschi, Alexia Moretti. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Vancouver, British Columbia. 2017 ( tDAR id: 430112)

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Spatial Coverage

min long: -93.691; min lat: -56.945 ; max long: -31.113; max lat: 18.48 ;

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 17253