Arizona Archaeological Society



What's New:

September 8, 7PM:  Dr. Vance T. Holliday, School of Anthropology & Department of Geosciences, University of Arizona, will present In Search of the First Americans Across the Greater Southwest.  His research specialty has been the Paleoindian people of the Southwest and Southern Plains.  He is author of the book Paleoindian Geoarchaeology of the Southern High Plains.

“Paleoindians” were the earliest hunters and gatherers to settle in the southwestern U.S.  The climate was generally cooler and wetter back then about 13,000 years ago.  Large mammals such as mammoth, mastodon, horse, camel, dire wolf, and several big cats and bears were common. The best-known characteristics of the Paleoindian foragers is their stone tools.   Chance discoveries revealed Clovis kill sites with the remains of mammoth and other extinct large animals.  Later Folsom forager sites are particularly common in the Rio Grande basin.  Folsom bison kills are well documented on the Great Plains.  Still younger “Late Paleoindian” sites seem to be fewer than Folsom. The climate was significantly warmer and drier than Clovis or Folsom times and human adaptive behavior was likely shifting toward more sedentary “Archaic” lifestyles with increased focus on plant gathering after 11,000 years ago.

San Tan Chapter will send an email containing the link for the Zoom meeting and it will be forwarded to Rim Country Chapter Members.

September 18 & 19 Springerville Field Trip:  Saturday morning visit Casa Malpais Archaeological Park, including an astronomical calendar, a great kiva, ancient stairways and rock art. Saturday afternoon visit the Sipe White Mountain Wildlife Area to view petroglyphs and wildlife.  Sunday morning tour of Archeological Conservancy site the sixty-room Amity Pueblo, guided by a local AAS Little Colorado Chapter member.  You must be a current member to attend.

October 2 RCC Outdoor Member Meet & Greet:  RCC members gather at 9:30 AM at Ramada 4 Rumsey Park, Payson, to renew acquaintances, snack, and decide where we go from here. Come and make your opinions and ideas known.

Hieroglyphic Canyon

Fun Things to Do:

Geology, Archaeology, and History Guide to Badger Springs Trail

A group of geologists, archaeologists, and AAS members created the below guide for people who would like to enjoy the outdoors on Agua Fria  National Monument during this pandemic.  It's a 12 page, illustrated guide to a incredible area with a river at the end.

Geology, Archaeology, and History Guide to Badger Springs Trail

More on Agua Fria National Monument

Ruins to Work at:  Goat Camp Ruin

Archaeological Sites to Visit (hours may vary due to Covid):

Shoofly Ruin  Tonto National Monument (big file)

Agua Fria National Monument  Sears-Kay Ruin 

Besh ba Gowah Ruin  Verde Valley Sites  Arizona Archaeological Sites

Youtubes: Drone Videos of Ruins in Tonto Basin  Rim County Museum  Archaeological Institute of America (AIA)   

Heard Museum  Sharlot Hall Museum  SAR  Pueblo Grande Museum  Verde Valley Archaeology Center  

Arizona State Museum  AAHS  Archaeology Southwest  Amerind  Crow Canyon  Grand Canyon NPS  Museum of Northern Arizona

Archaeology Zoom Presentations:  Lectures by AIA chapters from all over the world


About our Chapter:

The Rim Country Chapter of AAS is located in Payson, AZ, at the base of

the Mogollon Rim.  Meetings generally include a guest speaker presenting

an archaeological related subject. Refreshments are served. An outing to an archaeology site is normally scheduled for the afternoon following the general meeting. The RCC, under the guidance of Archaeologist Scott Wood, is participating in the excavation of the local Goat Camp Prehistoric Ruins Site. The completion of the excavation project will likely take several years, (Note: participation in the excavation, after meeting outings, and field trips is open only to current members of the Arizona Archaeological Society.) 

Meeting Time and Place:

The Payson Senior Center is currently closed due to the pandemic.  Meetings are normally held the third Saturday of each month, (except June, July, & August.) We meet at 10 a.m. in the Payson Senior Center at 514 W Main Street Guests are always welcome.  Meeting Location Map


You can join the Rim Country chapter of AAS with a "Single" or "Family" membership.  If you are already a member of AAS through a different chapter, you can add the Rim Country chapter to your membership by selecting "Single" or "Family" after "Dual Chapter".
2021 Membership Form

2021 Speakers:

Date  Speaker Topic
TBD due to Covid


2021 Chapter Officers:

Sharon DuBose
Vice President Barbara Markley

Dennis DuBose

Secretary Kim Gilles

Brent Reed

Director Marianne Connors
Director Chuck Howell
Chapter Advisor/Goat Camp Excavation Scott Wood
Chapter/Goat Camp Webmaster
 JJ Golio

Dixie Mine

Past Activities:

June 3 & 4, 2021:  Homolovi and Rock Art Ranch Field Trip  Archaeologist Rich Lange led this Field Trip near Winslow, Arizona.  The tour of Homolovi State park began with a brief survey of the pithouse village near the Visitor Center, then over to Homol’ovi III.  This was followed by visits to Homol’ovi II and Homol’ovi I.  The tour continued to the hilltop site Homol’ovi IV and some rock art on the west side of the river.  The tour of Rock Art Ranch visited some of the sites there including a visit to the deep canyon rock art panels.

May 21, 2021:  Risser Ruin, Rim Country Museum, and Zane Grey Cabin Field Trip  Jim Britton guided a tour of Risser Ruin in Payson.  Jim participated in the excavation and stabilization of this site.  Risser Ruin artifacts are on display in the Rim Country Museum, which owns the site., as are many local historical artifacts.  The adjacent Zane Grey Cabin is a faithful replica of the original cabin furnished with actual Zane Grey artifacts, equivalent contemporary items, or replicas, all set up to match historic photographs.

April 23, 2021:  Rim country Chapter and San Tan Chapter sponsored a field trip to Several historic and prehistoric sites in Globe and Miami, Arizona.  Here is a field trip summary.

April 14, 2021:  Summary of San Tan Chapter Zoom Presentation by Dr  Niccole Cerveny Mesa Community College on the topic "Rock Art Conservation: Lessons from the American Southwest and the Jordanian Holy Lands."  It was an interesting account of how Rock Art degrades due to weathering and other causes along with a cost effective method to evaluate the current status and likely future path of individual panels.  Dr Cerveny illustrated her talk with a variety of photographs of Arizona and also Middle East panels.

February 10, 2021:  Zoom presentation by Dr Michelle Turner about the findings of some excavations at the Aztec North Ruin in northwest New Mexico.

San Tans

February 5, 2021:  Rim Country Chapter and San Tan Chapter jointly sponsored a Field Trip Day Hike to San Tan Regional Park.  Here is a photo summary of the hike that includes some supplementary information about what we saw there.

January 16, 2021:  Rim Country Chapter joined with San Tan Chapter for a field trip to Hieroglyphic Canyon.

December 19, 2020:  Rim had a field trip to Dixie Mine near Fountain Hills.  Besides the mine, there were numerous petroglyphs in the area and some remains of former ranching operations.  A second Field Trip was held to accommodate more members who wanted to go.

Verde Valley Arch Center

November 21, 2020 The Rim Country Chapter and San Tan Chapter jointly sponsored a field trip to Tuzigoot National Monument with National Park Service Archaeologist Matt Gruebard as Guide and Speaker.  The Field Trip continued with a visit to the Verde Valley Archaeology Center Museum in Camp Verde.  Here are additional photos and a text summary of the outing.

October 17, 2020:  Field trip held at Montezuma Castle National Monument led by Matt Guebard, National Park Service Archeologist.  Matt Guebard gave a presentation and short walking tour highlighting recent research at Montezuma Castle National Monument. This included the discovery of colored wall decorations indicating rooms with special community functions as well as the use of cutting edge scientific techniques to evaluate the age of rooms at Montezuma Castle and the nearby Castle A site.

Two papers by Matt Guebard:

Two to Four Inches of Lime Dirt:  Public Archaeology and the Development of Old and New Interpretations at the Castle Site, Montezuma Castle National Monument

During the Migration Time:  Oral History, Violence, and Identity in the Prehistoric Verde Valley

On March 7, 2020, Janine Hernbrode presented  Patterns in Petroglyphs: Hints of the Hohokam Cosmology on the Landscape. Fifteen years of rock art recording on four major petroglyph sites in Southern Arizona has enabled the assembly of motif details, drawings and photographs of more than 16,000 glyphs located in landscapes with similar characteristics. This collection of images records the belief systems of its creators. There were no scenes of everyday life, of grinding corn, or plans for constructing pit houses. The images recording their belief system are interwoven into lines and circles and more complex images carefully placed on the landscape. By applying the scientific method to the patterns observed, by working with ethnographic accounts and linguistic analysis by others, and by consulting with indigenous people, we have gained some understanding of, and identified threads of continuity between, Native American belief systems and rock art motifs.

The Rim Chapter's February 1, 2020 speaker was Ralph Burrillo.  His presentation was titled, The Anthropology of Paleontology: A Quick Look at Native American Depictions of the North American Fossil Record.  The study of how Indigenous people articulate with the fossil record can offer researchers a tremendous wealth of insights about those cultures and their relationships with the land, as well as offer opportunities for further scientific and cross-cultural collaboration.  Yet this topic remains woefully overlooked by anthropologists.  A quick look at the archaeology of Native American depictions and interpretations of the North American fossil record reveals just how intricate, exciting, and sophisticated Indigenous paleontology can be. 

The Rim Chapter's January 4, 2020 speaker was Jim Krehbiel, Chair and Professor of Fine Arts at Ohio Wesleyan University.  His presentation, Site Lines and Sight Lines, Recent Discoveries in Southeast Utah, was about astronomical research at Ancestral Pueblo sites in southeast Utah.  It was a lesson in astronomy and a tour of remarkable sites in the Bears Ears Cedar Mesa area.  Photos of structures including intact kiva roofs were amazing.  When we see a ruin around here, well, it is a ruin.  Jim described a different approach to Archaeology, looking out rather than looking in, looking at the landscape instead of at the mortar, looking at the horizon instead of at the petroglyph.  Much Archaeoastronomy is indirect, looking at where sunlight slivers or shadows fall on rocks, glyphs, and niches.  Direct Archaeoastronomy involves viewing from such markers outward to the celestial bodies themselves.  Jim Krehbiel illustrated this approach with photos of horizons viewed from isolated structures, kivas, and petroglyph panels towards peaks, notches, prominent boulders, and cliff faces on the horizon.  Then he overlaid sight lines showing the points of rising and setting sun, moon, and certain stars and constellations at the times of various astronomical events such as solstices, equinoxes, cross quarters, lunistices, and major & minor lunar standstills.  Especially impressive were time lapse photo sequences of sunsets on these points at the times of solstices, leaving no doubt that the viewing point was chosen for this reason.X-rayFlourescenceObsidianArtifacts6.pdf

Visit Shoofly

Shoofly Excavation Reports:

Volume 1National Register Nomination    1984 Perimeter Survey    1984 Excavation Summaries

Volume 2:  1985 Excavation Summaries    1986 Excavation Summaries

Volume 3:  1987 Field Season    1987 Excavation Summaries    Archaeomagnetic Report    Magnetometer Survey

Volume 4:  Cranial Deformation    Crystals, Minerals, Shell, Ornaments    Decorated Ceramics    Surface Subsurface Ceramic Ratios

                   Plain Ware Ceramics    Ceramic Hardness Testing    Ceramic Figurine Fragments

Volume 5:  Archaeobotany    Plant Food Occurance Using Floatation   Faunal Analysis     Faunal Remains   

                   Appendix Body Part Codes and Bone Element Frequencies

Volume 6:  Use-Ware Lithics    Intra-Site Lithic Analysis    Groundstone Distribution    Groundstone   

                   X-ray Flourescence Analysis of Obsidian Artifacts    Projectile Point Analysis    Morphological Study of Projectile Points

Volume 7:  Masonry Walls    Surface Subsurface Correlation    Wall Materials    Room Function    Room Function and Social Behavior

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