Category: Uncategorized

Sep 20

2,000 Years of Human History at Mission Garden

For the last ten years, visitors to the Mission Garden, located at the base of Sentinel Peak ("A" Mountain) have watched as fruit trees grow from saplings into tall trees, seen an acequia (canal) built and stocked with an endangered species, viewed crops being harvested and food preparation methods demonstrated.…

Sep 14

Archaeology Archive: What Lay Beneath Spruce Street

Homer Thiel discusses what we learned about the Chinese men who came to Tucson while working on the railroad in the late 1800s and stayed here to make lives for themselves. In the late 1980s and early 1990s, a housing development was constructed along the road leading to the summit…

Aug 19

New Insights on the Tucson Presidio from the Historic Pima County Courthouse

Homer Thiel discusses ancient and historical cultural resources encountered on the grounds of the Historic Pima County Courthouse in Tucson during renovations and the construction of the January 8 Memorial. Pima County has recently completed the renovation of the 1929 Pima County Courthouse, now the home of the Southern Arizona…

Oct 22

Women in the Presidio San Agustín del Tucson

Homer Thiel examines the lives of people who have often been rendered invisible in history: the women who lived in the Tucson Presidio in the 18th and 19th centuries. Tucson, Arizona was a Spanish and Mexican military fortress (the Presidio San Agustín del Tucson) between 1776 and 1856. During this…

Sep 17

This Old House Group: Residential Permanence During the Early Cienega Phase

“Old” may only be 30-50 years. That’s still pretty cool. 2,500 years is cooler. Erina Gruner discusses spatial patterns in Tucson Basin early agriculturalist pithouse settlements during the Cienega phase, and what the grouping of houses and burials into “house groups” tells us about mobility, social organization, and land ownership.…

Aug 26

The Historic Era at Fort Lowell

Homer Thiel describes the history of some of the military structures you will see when visiting Fort Lowell park in Tucson. In 1873 the soldiers stationed at Camp Lowell in downtown Tucson (now Armory Park) packed up their tents, weapons, and equipment and moved several miles to the northeast. Poor…

Aug 16

Mobility and Pottery Production

Dr. Mary Ownby, Desert’s resident ceramic petrographer, discusses her recent ceramic characterization study in northeastern Colorado, which was published this summer in the Plains Anthropologist journal. When we think of ancient pottery making, we often picture a person sitting quietly, enjoying their craft near their house in a small village.…