When Pots Walk: Reverse Archaeology at a Chaco Outlier Site in the Central Mesa Verde Region

Author(s): Rebecca L. Simon

Year: 2017


More often than not, cultural resources on private land experience development and/or intentional disturbance. Data from sites are often lost or compromised during these activities. Occasionally, landowners keep notes on material culture that may be passed on to archaeologists. Incorporation of these data is important to understanding the condition of the site and maximizing interpretations of the past. As Crow Canyon Archaeological Center embarks on a new multi-year research project, the Northern Chaco Outliers Project, consideration of what happened in the recent past is crucial. The focus of the project is the Haynie site, which experienced mechanical disturbance in the 1980s when the previous landowners sought out whole vessels to sell. Tracking down these artifacts using the landowners’ notes will contribute to our understanding of social networks, the Chaco regional system, and the role of great houses as community centers in the northern Southwest. Data collection will utilize a reverse archaeology approach by organizing the notes from previous landowners in a database, interviewing previous landowners and others with knowledge of the site, contacting individuals who purchased artifacts, and conducting artifact analyses and data collection with permission from the artifacts’ current owners.

Cite this Record

When Pots Walk: Reverse Archaeology at a Chaco Outlier Site in the Central Mesa Verde Region. Rebecca L. Simon. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Vancouver, British Columbia. 2017 ( tDAR id: 430430)

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Geographic Keywords
North America - Southwest

Spatial Coverage

min long: -115.532; min lat: 30.676 ; max long: -102.349; max lat: 42.033 ;

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 16485