Below are the names and obituaries of colleagues closely tied to Southwestern Archaeology and the Pecos Conference.
Adams, Aliets, Beckett, Bohrer, Boone, Brown, Bulletts, Cooper, Craig, Eidenbach, Felger, Finn, Fletcher, Frisbie, Frison, Gaines, Graham, Henderson, Howell, Hungerford, Ice, C. Johnson, K. Johnson, Kreibal, Matheny, Metz, Mishler, Naber, Pino, Vivian, Robinson, Rockhill, Stewart, Thompson, Warren, Williams, York
If you would like to add someone to the list, please contact:
Adams, William Y.
(1927–2019 August 22): Age 92
William Y. Adams wearing his medal as a recipient of the Sudanese government’s Order of the Two Niles.
With his family and community, SAR mourns the passing of William Y. Adams, who died on August 22, 2019, in Lexington, Kentucky, at the age of ninety-two.
Dr. Adams spent much of his childhood in Window Rock, Arizona, before entering Stanford University and later the US Navy. He married Nettie Alice Kesseler in 1955 and earned his PhD from the University of Arizona in 1957 with a dissertation on the role of the trader in Navajo society. In 1959 he and Nettie moved to Sudan, where he worked for many years. The Sudanese government in 2005 recognized his great contribution to knowledge about the country by awarding him its highest civilian honor: the Order of the Two Niles.
In 1966 Dr. Adams became a professor of anthropology at the University of Kentucky, and in 2009 the university recognized his passion for teaching by making him the first faculty member inducted into the College of Arts & Sciences Hall of Fame. He wrote prolifically, publishing twenty-six books in his lifetime—for which he drew his own illustrations of archaeological sites—with even more currently in production. His dissertation was published by the Smithsonian Institution in 1963 as Shonto: A Study of the Role of the Trader in a Modern Navaho Community and has since been reprinted. More recently, the University of New Mexico Press published his autobiography, The Road from Frijoles Canyon: Anthropological Adventures of Four Continents.
Dr. Adams amassed a large professional library, much of which he donated to SAR in his later years. In 1987–88, he was one of six judges for the J. I. Staley Prize, given by SAR to a book that exemplifies outstanding scholarship and writing in anthropology. With his wife, Dr. Adams established the William Y. and Nettie K. Adams Fund at SAR to support short seminars or summer research projects focused on the history of anthropology and the theoretical implications of the culture concept. “A world without Bill Adams feels like a world without the pyramids, or without Stonehenge,” colleagues have said. “A terrible quiet has opened.”
(1950 – 2020, June 28): Age 70
Michael passed away June 28, 2020 in Aztec, NM. He was born in Alton, IL, to Fritz and Verline Aljets on April 4, 1950. He was a respiratory therapist for 40 years and taught respiratory therapy in Chicago, IL and Pueblo, CO. He worked at both Mercy Hospital and San Juan Regional Medical Center. He met his soulmate and wife of 47 years at Eastern Illinois University where he majored in philosophy. Michael was a profound thinker, curious explorer and engaging conversationalist. He loved to fish, hunt and could dance like Fred Astaire. His real passion was archaeology, specifically archaeoastronomy. Michael loved hiking in the canyons and gazing at the night skies. He looked forward to the solstices and equinoxes and took many photographs of pictographs and petroglyphs. Michael was the head of the San Juan Archaeological Society until it was disbanded. He also served on the Salmon Ruins Board of Directors for multiple terms. Michael is survived by his wife Diane, his parents Fritz and Verline, brothers Scott (Sue), Rocky (Bobbie) and James (Beth), sister Dawn, numerous nieces, nephews, dear friends and his beloved dog, Chaco. Cremation has taken place. Services for Michael are pending at this time. Michael was a gentle sweet giant on this earth.
Thanks to Roger Moore
Beckett, Patrick Herman
(1949 – 2020 Nov.20): Age 71
Pat was born in Glasgow, Montana, and grew up in several other states where his father’s work as a construction superintendent took the family. He enlisted in the Marine Corps right after graduating from high school in 1959 and served in Southeast Asia before being honorably discharged as a corporal in 1963. Pat met his future wife Rebecca (Becky) Hill in 1960 while stationed in San Diego, California. They were married in 1964 and moved to Las Cruces in 1965. Pat began studies the following year in New Mexico State University, majoring in geography but also taking anthropology classes. In 1969 he enrolled in the Master’s program in anthropology/archaeology at Eastern New Mexico University (MA 1973), where his academic advisor was Dr. Cynthia Irwin-Williams. He worked on the Anasazi Origins Project, the source of many of Pat’s stories of adventures and a couple of misadventures.
Pat was employed at NMSU Cultural Resources Management Division from 1969–1981, advancing from research archaeologist to acting director and finally director. After leaving the CRMD director position, Pat was a shovel bum on the selected archaeological projects that interested him. During that period, he served on the board of directors for Human Systems Research, Inc. In 1984, Pat opened his first COAS Bookstore in Las Cruces. He quickly developed a large inventory of archaeological books plus mass fiction paperbacks and non-fiction books. Pat specified that his book store have wide aisles, bright lights, and that the books shelved like library books; the result developed into the largest used and new book store in New Mexico, rivaling small town libraries.
Having joined ASNM in the late 1960s, Pat by 1971 was the newsletter editor, producing a mimeographed version of Awanyu, as the ASNM quarterly newsletter was then called. After he had established the Center of Anthropological Studies (COAS) in 1973, Pat published a print version of Awanyu through COAS from 1973 to 1978. He also served ASNM as a Trustee from 2001 and as President 2002–2005. Meanwhile, he had founded the Jornada Mogollon (1979) and Mogollon (1980) Conferences, which meet in alternate years. He was also a co-founder of the New Mexico Archeological Council, serving as Secretary-Treasurer (1977–1979), on the ethics committee (1978–80), and as President (1985). In 1979, Pat received a governor’s appointment to the Cultural Properties Review Committee, where he served as chair from 1980 to 1989. Other Governor’s appointments included the New Mexico Historical Records Advisory Board (1997–2002), the New Mexico Spaceport Authority (2010-2011), and he was active in the EL Camino Real de Tierra Adentro Trail Association where he served as vice-president (2003-2004) and president (2005-2009).
Pat received many awards in recognition of his archaeological and historical contributions, including the New Mexico Heritage Preservation Award (1990), honoree of ASNM Volume 25 of collected papers (1999), and the Arizona Archaeological and Historical Society’s Victor R. Stoner Award (2003). He was also recognized by the Mogollon Conference, the Doña Ana Historical Society, the City of Las Cruces, and NMAC. Besides these tributes, Pat was given an Honorary Tiwa Indian Award by the Los Indios de Nuestra Senora de Guadalupe of Tortugas Pueblo for his decades of involvement with the people of Totugas Pueblo.
Pat will be remembered as a dedicated archaeologist and historian. He gave willingly of his time and knowledge to everyone, especially to archaeologists just starting their careers.
By David T. Kirkpatrick and Karl W. Laumbach
Bohrer, Vorsila L.
(1931 - 2021 Jan.20): Age 90
Vorsila grew up in Chicago area and first came to New Mexico as a Girl Scout, participating in summer archaeological field camps led by Dr. Bertha Dutton and her “Dirty Diggers” (1947-1949), igniting her passion for southwestern archaeology. After considerable schooling in Anthropology, Botany, and Geochronology (BA at the University of Arizona 1953, MA at the University of Michigan 1954, PhD at the University of Arizona 1968), Dr. Bohrer took a job as the first representative of the Girl Scouts on the Navajo Reservation, then spent several decades in research examining human adaptation to the landscape over broad sweeps of time. She worked out of the Arizona State Museum, the Museum of New Mexico’s Laboratory of Anthropology, and finally Eastern New Mexico University in Portales, where she had been in assisted living for her last years.
Her library, papers, and reference specimens are housed separately at the Arizona State Museum and the Arizona State Herbarium. Her formal teaching, in botany, anthropology, and archaeology, was scattered across space and time (University of Arizona, Hanover College/ Indiana, University of Massachusetts, Eastern New Mexico University). Her real contribution to a subsequent generation of archaeobotanists largely took place in a mentoring role, as she led analytical efforts in several well-known projects (Arroyo Hondo, Fresnal Shelter, Salmon Ruins, Puerco Valley, La Ciudad) and many smaller ones. She was unusual in the breadth of skills and experience she brought to the practice of palynology, flotation, and macrobotanical remains.
She blazed new trails thinking about ways of human subsistence behavior, and mentored many students who became practicing ethnobotanists across the country.
Among her many works are:
1970 Ethnobotanical aspects of Snaketown, a Hohokam village in southern Arizona. American Antiquity 35(4):13-430.
1971 Paleoecology of Snaketown. Kiva.
1973 Ethnobotany of Point of Pines Ruin Arizona W:10:50. Society for Economic Botany (U.S.). New York Botanical Garden, NY.
1975 Ethnobotanical techniques and approaches at Salmon Ruin, New Mexico. Contributions in anthropology, Eastern New Mexico University, Portales.
1986 The ethnobotanical pollen record at Arroyo Hondo Pueblo. Arroyo Hondo Archaeological Series, School of American Research Press, Santa Fe.
1986 Guideposts in Ethnobotany. Journal of Ethnobiology. Flagstaff, AZ.
1991 Recently recognized cultivated and encouraged plants among the Hohokam. Kiva.
1998 Deciphering prehistoric plant use at the Mazatzal Rest Area in the Upper Tonto Basin of Eastern Arizona Desert Plants. Superior, Arizona.
Boone, Danny L.
(1944 – 2020 May 29): Age 75
After a five year battle with cancer, Danny passed at the Bee Hive in Portales, NM on May 29, 2020 while in Hospice care at the age of 75. He is survived by his wife Ann, daughter Kimberly Henning and son Darion Boone. Four grandchildren Stephen Robbins, Jennifer Praske, Tyler J Henning and Kayla Contreras, five great grandchildren Asher, Charlotte, Gage, Ethan and Dirk. Also part of his family includes his stepchildren, Sheila Owen (Billy) and Gary Pettus (Jill), five grandchildren and four great grandchildren.
Danny was born December 12, 1944 in Hollis, OK to his parents DC and Jennie Boone. He was raised in the Floyd community, and farmed with his dad and later had his own farm. In 1965 he joined the Army, then drove a truck for Welch’s trucking company and later for himself. He married Glyndal Ann in 1991. Danny went to ENMU and received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors in Anthropology in 1994. He worked for a company out of Carlsbad. In 1997, they moved to Carlsbad, NM and opened Boone Archaeology Services in 2002. For eight years they ran the business together, then retired and moved back to Portales. Danny enjoyed planting a garden every year, eating, planting, and canning tomatoes. He loved hot green chilies and the hotter the better. Making HOT HOT sauce that no one but himself could eat brought him so much joy! He loved flying in his Green Eagle paraglider, riding his Harley motorcycle, and traveling with Ann. They went on a number of tours and his favorites were Canada, New England and Mexico City. They also enjoyed traveling around the country in their motor home.
Danny was predeceased by his parents, one brother Terry Boone and one sister Gay Noble. Danny will be missed and never forgotten, he was a wonderful man who loved life and his family. Our love for him will live in our hearts forever.
Danny requested to be cremated with no service.
(August 6, 1962 – 2020 August 6): Age 58
Stanley was the fifth of eight Navaho children from Sawmill, AZ, and is survived by his mother, wife Shirley, two daughters Shirlene and Charlene, and numerous other siblings and family members.
Stanley started his archaeological career in 1991 as a UNM-OCA crew member on the ENRON pipeline project. Although he had little more than an 8th grade education and no previous archaeological experience, he went on to have a more than a 25-year career when health issues side-lined him. He became a sought-after crew member throughout the Four Corners/Southwest region, and he worked for many Cultural Resource firms. They can all attest to his reliability and excavation and survey skills. He was adept at reading soils and identifying features. His example also brought his eldest brother, Herman, and nephews, Tony and Rydell, into the field of archaeology. On his time off, he spent most of his time on the family ranch. When he wasn’t on the ranch he was a highly skilled jeweler and silversmith specializing in bracelets and necklaces. He will be dearly missed for his subtle sense of humor, always upbeat attitude, twinkling eyes, big black Stetson hat, and the flash of gold in his teeth. Thanks to Harding Polk.
(1974 – 2020 June 18): Age 46
Cultural Resources Director for the Kaibab Band of Paiute Indians (2020)
It pains me to write these words because in writing them there is a sense of finality that I have been struggling to accept: a loss that still feels like too much to bear. And I know I am not alone. There are so many people, organizations, and communities grappling with the recent death of Charley Bulletts, who served as the Kaibab Paiute Tribe’s Cultural Resources Director. Charley was truly an incredible, insightful, and compassionate person who worked to advance cultural awareness, understanding, and appreciation with an open heart and lots of humor. He was also a personal friend who helped me pay attention and become aware of my surroundings in a way that infused life with a new kind of meaning. Through his counsel, I developed a deeper understanding of his Tribe’s connection to the Grand Staircase region and, in the process, my world view was cracked open to let in new perceptions and beliefs. Charley taught me about the importance of “storied rock” as a record of family history and how his Tribe’s story has been altered through white perspectives and educational systems, with so many truths being lost along the way. He cautioned me against attributing a place to a single Tribe based solely on what might remain as visible to the human eye. For example, the Kaibab Paiute Tribe did not build their houses out of rocks, meaning there may not be physical evidence of their presence. That does not mean they were not – and are still not – deeply connected to the land. This lesson can be applied to so much in our lives. It is a valuable antidote to the habit of making assumptions based on what we think we can see using our own world view and limited perspectives to sum up (often inaccurately) places, people, and whole communities.
If there was one overwhelming thing that Charley taught me, it was humility. Humility, as a willingness to listen with an open heart and mind, and a respect for a kind of knowledge that I was never taught about growing up or in my many years of education. The rich histories and complex understandings of Indigenous knowledge are powerful for Charley’s Tribe and for all Native communities. That such knowledge has largely remained out of view for many Americans is not a mistake, but rather is one of many deleterious outcomes of a centuries-long effort to dispossess Native individuals and communities that has resulted in disproportionate inequity among Native communities. Like black people in America, Native people have suffered in ways that are undeniable when we force ourselves to face the full truth, to not look away, and to be willing to take responsibility. We cannot undo the past, but we can change our present and the future. We can listen with an open heart and an open mind. We can create a world that respects and reveres Indigenous knowledge, as we work to break down the disenfranchisement created by racism and prejudice.
I feel blessed for the person Charley was on this earth and for the gifts he shared with me and with our organization, and I hope that we can honor him through our work with GSEP. Before his passing, we were planning an outing from Escalante to Big Water, Utah. Charley was going to share some Tribal stories with us. It was going to be a small gathering, leaving before the sun came up to beat the heat and traveling over Smoky Mountain Road. Charley said many times that he felt most at home in the Grand Staircase region near Escalante. We were all so excited for the journey and for the anticipation of what we would discover together, with Charley in our company. One day soon we will make the journey in his honor. As requested, we will leave before sunrise and take along enough snacks to share. And we will listen more than we talk. We will listen for what the land has to share with us. And if we are lucky, we will learn its lessons.
With sadness and gratitude,
LeAnn Jake Shearer, Cultural Preservation Director, Kaibab Paiute Tribe, said this about Charley:
Charley Bulletts e-hype (e-hype is something our people use at the end of a deceased person's name every time we speak their name) was not only my colleague, he was my mentor, my relative, a Cultural Heritage Warrior and young elder in every sense of the word. Here at Kaibab we feel his great loss every day. Thank you for including him in your obituary. Charley e-hype was born on August 28, 1974 and lived in Red Hills Village on the Kaibab Paiute Reservation. He passed unexpectedly on June 18, 2020.
Cooper, Charles (Barry)
(1940 - 2021 June 15): Age 81
Barry Cooper, 80, beloved husband, father, brother, uncle and friend passed away June 15, 2021 in Aztec, NM. Barry’s family have been long time residents of the Four Corners area. He was born in his grandmother’s home in Cortez, Co. to Helen and Jack Cooper. Barry’s family include a brother Bob Cooper and sister Deb Kennedy and many nieces, nephews, and cousins. Barry married Martha Main in 1968. The couple met while working at Sequoia National Park and they were married in a grove of giant sequoia trees. They were blessed with two wonderful children, Chuck and Tami; and now a lovely granddaughter, Sydney.
Barry had a passion for the natural environment. After graduating from Colorado State University, then spending two years in the Peace Corps in Chile, he began his 34-year career with the National Park Service. He held positions at Mesa Verde, Petrified Forest, Sequoia and Kings Canyon, Platt-Arbuckle, Scotts Bluff, Haleakala National Park, Hubble Trading Post and retired as superintendent of Aztec Ruins N.M. in 2000.
He was always an active church member. Serving as an Elder, committee head, Sunday School teacher, choir member and was an all around “where ever you need help just call me” member.
In addition, no matter where he lived, Barry became involved in civic organizations and community service organizations. He was an active member of the Kiwanis, Lions Club, Masons, Toast Masters, and on the board of the Boys and Girls Club, Aztec Museum, Aztec Chamber of Commerce. One summer, he was chosen to be one of Aztec’s Six Ol’ Soreheads. He also sang and performed in the Aztec Museum’s “High Noon Shootout Production.”
In retirement, Barry enjoyed hiking with friends. Their treks included the Grand Canyon, the San Juan mountains, the La Plata mountains and a hike from Bloomfield to Cuba, NM. In 2003, he joined a team of advisors/consultants to assist in the implementation of a plan to preserve, protect and promote the UNESCO World Heritage Site, Petra in Petra, Jordan.
The family wishes to thank all those who have offered prayers, condolences and support. A memorial service will be held at Aztec Presbyterian Church July 24, 2021 at 2:30pm. Barry expressed that he did not want flowers and anyone wishing to make a contribution in his honor should give to the church or charity of his/her choice.
Thanks to Martha Cooper
Craig, Douglas B.
(1956 - 2020 May 14): Age 64.
Doug Craig received his B.A. in history from Harvard (1978) and his M.A. (1982) and Ph.D. (2004) in anthropology from the University of Arizona. Doug was staff archaeologist at Pima Community College’s Centre for Archaeological Field Training in the early 1980s and thereafter was project director for Desert Archaeology, Inc. on the Roosevelt Community Development Study. Joining Northland Research, Inc. in 1993, he served as project director and principal investigator for the rest of his notably productive career. He became one of the best-known Hohokam archaeologists, conducting exemplary research at many places in southern Arizona including the Grewe archaeological site adjacent to the Casa Grande Ruins. He was the author of numerous monographs and professional papers, focusing on Hohokam community organization, political economy, population dynamics, and the changing character of Hohokam households.
In January 2009 Doug was elected to Old Pueblo Archaeology Center’s Board of Directors and continued to serve on it through January 2015. He was Old Pueblo’s vice president nearly that whole time, and was editor of the June 2009-September 2011 issues of the Old Pueblo Archaeology bulletin. He had served as President of the Arizona Archaeological Council prior to joining Old Pueblo’s Board and afterward became President of the Friends of Casa Grande Ruins. Doug gave numerous public and professional presentations about Arizona archaeology (including for Old Pueblo Archaeology Center) and led many tours at the Casa Grande Ruins and other archaeological sites, always telling stories and sharing his love and knowledge of the desert, history, and people of Arizona.
His interests included the role of architectural visibility in population estimates, households and community development, duration of courtyard groups, Gila River streamflow in relation to population dynamics, agent-based modeling, and Hohokam applications of house society concepts. His creative inquiries into the rise of Hohokam inequality addressed labor estimates for public architecture, prominent courtyard groups’ sponsorship of feasting and ballcourt affairs, differential investments in domestic architecture, and the formation of corporate descent groups, property, and wealth.
In addition to his exemplary cultural resources management (CRM) publications, Doug was a prolific academic author and valued collaborator. His individual and co-authored contributions have appeared in Archaeology, American Antiquity, Journal of Field Archaeology, The Kiva, Journal of Arizona Archaeology, Archaeology Southwest, Oxford Handbook of Southwest Archaeology, and numerous chapters in thematic edited volumes from academic presses.
Doug generously supported archaeological organizations and public outreach. He served as preservation advocate and as President of Friends of Casa Grande Ruins National Monument, President of the Arizona Archaeological Council and co-guest editor of two initial issues of its Journal of Arizona Archaeology, on the Editorial Board of American Archaeology Magazine, in officer and editor positions for Old Pueblo Archaeology, and on the Marana Cultural Preservation Board. Audiences enthusiastically responded to Doug’s lively presentations in countless public talks, site visits, and tours.
Suzy Fish will remember her experience as Doug’s doctoral advisor when she gained a lasting colleague along with new perspectives on Hohokam archaeology. In a final collaboration at University Indian Ruin, we admiringly recall how field school students eagerly responded to Doug as pied piper, drawing them into the intellectual intricacies and adventure of investigating platform mounds.
Maren Hopkins will remember Doug as a loyal friend, mentor, and colleague who taught her how to be bold, stick to her guns, and own her ideas. Doug was a timeless person, full of energy, joy, and curiosity. His integrity, creativity, and intelligence will never be forgotten.
Eidenbach, Peter L.
(1943 – 2020 May 1): Age 77
I was sad to learn of Pete’s death—he had a brilliant, iunfettered intellect that gave all of us around him way more food for thought than we could digest and which required a lot of parsing to bring into our personal world views, but was well worth the effort. I got a hint of his innate teaching skills during a lecture he was giving in the Anthropology auditorium as a grad student at UNM back in the 60s. Professor Phrahovitch (a moniker he earned early in his career due to his chain smoking of Chesterfields) was pacing back and forth across the stage in Anthro 163, gesticulating to emphasize points he was making, while smoking another Chesterfield. There was a metal waste basket on the stage he was using as an ashtray, and at one point it started smoke, and then erupted in flames. The students started yelling “Fire! Fire!” and when Pete finally realized that they were NOT just commenting on his delivery, he saw the flaming wastebasket, walked over to it and stomped out the flames. However his boot got stuck, and after a couple of attempts to kick it off, he just shrugged his shoulders and continued on with the lecture, now clumping back and forth across the stage with the wastebasket firmly attached to one leg. I’m not sure if the students remembered much of the lecture content, but he certainly had their rapt attention for the rest of the class. Pete was one of a kind, a good friend, a thought provoking colleague, and cooked a pretty mean pie. I will miss him. By Dick Chapman
Story and photos by Joan E Price, JRI
Whether with students, professionals, or advocates of historic preservation and its future in the Tularosa Basin, Pete “Tio” Eidenbach brought years of curiosity and discovery, archaeological training, and state and federal paper work to get historic places and cultural landscapes in southcentral New Mexico into the public patrimony and protection. “Tio” died on May 1, 2020 leaving a uniquely rich legacy of service to this region.
Pete’s public outreach is almost legendary; the only limit was the general lack of interest in south-central New Mexico. He never was slowed by that. For almost 50 years, he initiated or contributed to uncounted campaigns to save archaeological sites, historic buildings and the cultural landscapes that went with them, authoring over 20 documents and contributing to many more to substantiate protection under federal and state antiquities laws. As a professor at New Mexico State University-Alamogordo for some 35 years, Pete interacted with students and
the public in his determined dress of moccasins, a stylish western sombrero style woven straw hat, hand rolled cigarettes and black scruffy stringy beard that slowly turned gray over the decades. Most students loved his course topics “into the unknown” that extended the usual curriculum of now famous archaeologists and sites from Mesoamerica to Chaco Canyon to issues of intellectual property rights and Native American cultural affiliation and repatriations rights.
He was a “true Renaissance Man,” interested in everything, an artist, a writer, a sharer of knowledge,” always ready to put down a book and talk to his caller in a discussion guided by a wealth of people he knew and infused with knowledge and kindness. Twenty-five scholarly papers that Pete authored are on file at the NMSU-A Townsend Library and his university page became a “go-to-source” for historic preservation, innovative classrooms and even the early promise of digital cultural analysis.
“Tio” was born in New York City and, as a youth, decided to become a doctor with a talent for statistics, according to his wife Sara. One of the remarkable intuitive events in his life was when he filled out numerous applications to medical schools only to “forget” to mail them. And impulsively turned to an application to the Anthropology Department of the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque where he was accepted.
In addition to the esteemed Florence Hawley Ellis, ethnologist and archaeologist, Pete became friends with Dr. Frank Hibben, director of the UNM Department and was one of those entrusted with house-sitting when Hibben was away. Hibben lectured on the Mesoamerican origins of influences being found at Pottery Mound, a theme that Pete backed by his own findings and in association with Dr. Kay Sutherland, a cultural anthropologist from El Paso, Texas, and her findings of Mesoamerican influence in the southern Tularosa Basin.
Pete became fast friends with a number of students at UNM. Their graduate sponsor Cynthia Irwin Williams, a teacher from Eastern New Mexico University, fascinated with the prehistoric sites known in the Basin, initiated a field school to apply new innovative ideas for research design, excavation, documentation and reports at a prehistoric site near Alamogordo where Petes’ closest partner, Mark Wimberly, had grown up and explored. Pete returned with Mark to his homeland to a site in Fresnal Canyon that fit all the descriptions of archaic shelters occupied by prehistoric hunter gatherers before the florescence of the ancestral Puebloan era.
The results of the excavations from 1969 through 1972 at Fresnal Shelter rocked the young archaeologists, resetting timelines and the skill sets of the early peoples. They found that their more exacting screening processes revealed far more seed species being eaten besides mesquite, acorn and pinon nuts. It was the identification of ancient
corn cobs among the layers of dirt floors dating to as early as 3650 BP, the earliest find of the time, that told them the staple food of the Western Hemisphere, the dawn of agriculture and a complete transformation of human organizations had arrived in the Tularosa Basin thousands of years ago from the south. But there was little notice in the wider archaeological community and other finds later advanced the corn dates further into antiquity.
Days in the dirt under the sizzling hot sun, campfire reveries and sleeping under the stars gave rise to the affinity to the eternal land they excavated for the vital clues of previous lifeways. In 1973, some 30 people then formed Human Systems Research, Inc. (HSR), a non-profit educational group to stay rooted in the Tularosa Basin and counter the more impersonal movement from site-to-site and lack of investment in the surrounding community practiced in conventional archaeology. They published almost 500 copies of a technical manual with 40 authors clearly demonstrating archaic and pre-Columbian occupation in the valley.
In 1975, Pete married Sara Hyde, a fiber artist from New Hampshire living in High Rolls who came west to find an exhilarating landscape of breathtaking open skies and a “more than rambunctious soul in Eidenbach” with his deep voice and laugh. Sara and Pete raised two daughters in High Rolls while his mother lived in the historic district of Tularosa near the HSR office. (Continued on page 17).
Deeply concerned with the destruction of so many historic buildings in Alamogordo, the couple turned their talents and attention to create a sense of historic preservation focused on Alamogordo and the surrounding communities of High Rolls, Cloudcroft, La Luz and Tularosa.
Recruiting volunteers, Pete directed public archaeological excavations of the Oliver Lee Ranch for New Mexico Parks and Recreation Division and wrote and produced the Park’s interpretive film.
They curated an exhibit of large black and white historic photograph murals for the Van Winkles (now Lowes) grocery store in downtown Alamogordo. Using the digital Photoshop of the times, Sara brought the photographs that Pete found and researched to the high resolution and sharpness needed for the 800-foot photographic mural project with an accompanying brochure and CD-ROM of local history lesson plans for use in regional public schools.
Eidenbach headed years of archaeo-astronomical investigation of a prehistoric observatory he found along a ridge near the very top of Sierra Blanca. A deceivingly simple cluster of cairns, a circle and a figure eight constructed of rough stones, demarked a solar clock with alignments on solstice key dates in every direction to distant shrines eventually reported in 1977 and registered as a New Mexico Cultural Property. This regional level of sophistication and timekeeping are the subject of two exhibits he curated--one for the New Mexico Museum of Space History in Alamogordo and the other at the National Solar Observatory at Sun Spot Visitor Center.
It was through two historic figures that Pete brought a special living flavor to this region and to his own talents and personality as well. Eugene Manlove Rhodes, a cowboy poet who thrilled readers of the Saturday Evening Post in the early 1900s and other East Coast publications with stories of life in the region, inspired Pete to read Rhodes work on a tour to his graveside on numerous occasions. In the 1930s, Roland Hazard III, a wealthy tourist turned developer of his own “little Mexico” in La Luz Canyon, created La Luz pottery production plant that employed many people and supplied signature Southwest Revival Style clay roof tiles and artistic household pottery. Both Pete and Sara discovered deeply personal family ties between the historic La Luz/Cloudcroft
resident, the Hyde family establishment of New Hampshire towns and economic ventures in textiles and the Hazard family influence in Connecticut.
Continuing decades of professional surveys, archival studies, and data recovery, he also served as a consultant in numerous Native American projects establishing cultural affiliation and protections of tribal landscape claims, and on lawsuits involving Native American land and water claims. When he was not writing up technical papers for his projects, Pete was always available to give lectures at fundraisers, facilitating and networking among the local historic community to build a sense of place in the Tularosa Basin.
Felger, Richard Stephen
(1934 – 2020 Oct. 31); Age 86
It is always difficult saying goodbye to someone we love and cherish. Family and friends must say goodbye to their beloved Richard Stephen Felger of Silver City, New Mexico, born in Los Angeles, California, who passed away at the age of 86, on October 31, 2020. Family and friends can light a candle as a loving gesture for their loved one. Leave a sympathy message to the family in the guestbook on this memorial page of Richard Stephen Felger to show support.
Richard Stephen Felger, ethnobotanist, worldwide desert researcher, poet, champion of sea turtles, and visionary proponent of dryland food crops, passed away peacefully at his home in Silver City with his wife by his side. Born in Los Angeles, he became fascinated with beach drift and tidepools in early childhood. A gift of cacti and succulents for his eighth birthday set his course as a botanist, and by high school Richard had found mentors who recognized his calling. A holiday field trip from L. A. through the Sonoran Desert into the tropical forest of Álamos, Sonora, Mexico, was the fulcrum on which his future life would turn.
Richard attended the University of Arizona because it was in the Sonoran Desert and near the Mexican state of Sonora, where he returned at every opportunity. By the time he finished his dissertation on the vegetation and flora of the islands and Gulf Coast of Sonora, he had formed a lasting connection with the region’s Native residents, the Comcaac (Seri) and Yoeme (Yaqui) people, as well as its plant life. After receiving his Ph.D. from the University of Arizona, Tucson, in 1966 he served on the faculty of the University of Colorado, Boulder, then as Senior Curator of Botany at the Los Angeles County Museum of Natural History. His political activism and involvement with population and environmental studies led to friendships with notable artists and scientists including John Brandi, Michael McClure, Allen Ginsberg, Gary Snyder, and Paul Ehrlich. His friends encouraged Richard to publish a limited-edition volume of poetry, Dark Horses and Little Turtles, in 1974.
Returning to Tucson, he worked at the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum from 1978-82, founding its research department. He was active in regional and international conservation, including pioneer conservation of Pacific Coast sea turtles. In 1988 Richard founded the Drylands Institute in Tucson and was Executive Director until 2007. He also served as Adjunct Senior Research Scientist at the UA Environmental Research Laboratory and Associate Researcher at the UA Herbarium.
Strongly interested in addressing world hunger through agricultural independence for arid regions, Richard advocated the use of perennials for no-till agriculture of food crops to fit to the land rather than changing the land to fit the crop. He pioneered development of mesquites as a global dryland food crop and worked with nipa, a rice-sized grain that thrives with pure seawater. Since moving to Silver City in 2006, Richard embraced the bioecology of the Chihuahuan Desert and recognized that native food plants used by the Apache people could contribute to food resiliency in a dry world. A popular fieldtrip guide and speaker for the Gila Native Plant Society and other environmental groups, he mentored young people and actively engaged area residents of all ages in planting and cultivating native grass crops and mesquite. A prolific writer, Richard authored or co-authored over 100 peer-review publications as well as books and popular writings in desert botany, ethnobiology, new food crops, and other fields. In 2020 alone, two major scientific books and a professional journal article co-authored by Richard were published and his poetry book was re-released after decades out of print. Another collaborative work, Trees of the Gila Forest, New Mexico, is slated for release by UNM Press next spring. More information can be found on Richard’s website, .
Richard Felger is survived by Silke Schneider, his wife, best friend, soulmate, and life partner of 26 years. He is also survived by his niece and husband, Drs. Tracy and Michael Rosberg; nephew Brad Felger; cousin Nancy Israel; and a host of friends and colleagues. He was predeceased by his parents, Dr. Louie Felger and Sadie Pincus Felger, and brother Danny Felger. Per Richard’s wishes, no services will be held. A celebration of his life will take place at a later time. Contributions can be made in his memory to the Gila Native Plant Society (PO Box 457, Silver City, NM 88062) or the Arizona Native Plant Society (PO Box 41206, Sun Station, Tucson, AZ 85717) University of Arizona Herbarium (1130 E. South Campus Dr. Herring Hall Tucson, AZ 85721).
Cremation has taken place at Terrazas Crematory. Arrangements are with Terrazas Funeral Chapels and Crematory “Trusted care for the ones you love” ~ 575-537-0777. To send condolences, visit .
He was predeceased by his parents, Dr. Louie Felger and Sadie Pincus Felger; and his brother Danny Felger. He is survived by his friends, Richard Dark Horses and Little Turtles; his wife Silke Schneider; his nephew Brad Felger; and his cousin Nancy Israel.
(1930 – 2020 Sept. 7): Age 90
Forrest was a controversial antiquities dealer on the Santa Fe Plaza who is best known for the quest started in 1988 to locate his million-dollar treasure chest located somewhere in the mountainous West, recently (2020) recovered in Wyoming by an Easterner but with lives lost by some of the searchers. According to Finn, some 350,000 treasure hunters took up the hunt for the gold nuggets and coins, antique jewelry with rubies and emeralds, and ancient Chinese jade carvings in the chest. A poem with clues to its location was published in his 2010 self-published memoir The Thrill of the Chase. A native of Temple, Texas, he was a US Air Force fighter pilot who flew over 300 missions in Viet Nam and was twice shot down.
Whether known as an antiquarian or just a pothunter, who believed that the most important information value was in the artifact itself rather than its context, Finn was either scorned or beloved by those who knew him, depending on one’s background. In 2009, federal agents raided his home during a crackdown on the illegal Native American art trade. Though agents took three artifacts from Finn’s home for further investigation, he was never charged with a crime and denied any wrongdoing. Finn owned pueblo ruins on his property in the Galisteo Basin in the 1980s and started excavations there at the large P IV site of San Lazaro. While he excavated the site, he also hosted expeditions there for youth who were either interested in archaeology or who were looking for purpose. Some archaeologists praised Finn’s willingness to open the site to others. Others said they wished he had worked more closely with experts to dig at the site, worried that excavating San Lazaro was primarily for commercial purposes, although he said he would never sell any of its artifacts. Local archaeologists were able to study some of the finds recovered, including a number of spectacular masks. He and his daughter 20 years ago sponsored the big peopling of the Americas conference. His Galisteo property was later sold and is now owned by a Texan holding company.
Fletcher, Milford R.
(19 ? – 2021)
Farewell to Dr. Milford Fletcher, a dear amigo since the late 1970s. No published obituary has been found. We met when a client I'd encountered through Mensa sent me to a cave management symposium at Carlsbad, followed by a Mensa gathering at Ruidoso. He had a doctorate in biology and taught for some years before joining the National Park Service in Santa Fe, where he became Chief of Natural Resources for the Southwest Region. He was Chief Scientist and responsible for all research programs, and he participated in those that interested him, notably sea turtles in Texas and bats in Carlsbad Caverns. As others tell it, he was an amusing educator and story teller, who regaled folks with such fun facts as "more people died of rabies from cow bites than bat bites last year."
He was a font of info on local flora & fauna, geology and Southwestern U.S. history and archaeology. After his retirement, he did some intriguing volunteer work at the Albuquerque Zoo and traveled around the globe exploring his lifelong interest in spelunking and ancient cave art. In the mid-2000s he was part of a team of former National Park Service personnel sent to Petra to offer advice to the Jordanian government on the management of their World Heritage Site, and he reported on the trip in an Albuq. Archaeological Society (AAS) presentation.
Soon after his retirement, he volunteered with other AAS members in a long-term project to record the rock art of Petroglyph National Monument. Because of his Park Service connections, he was able to obtain high tech Global Positioning System devices for the use of the project. In those days, actual GPS locations were blocked by the military, but Fletch knew the accepted means of getting around the blocking. He also understood Geographic Information System 8 mapping and developed an elaborate digital program locating all the petroglyphs in the Monument by types of images, etc. He also volunteered with the AAS team that recorded the Diamond Tail Ranch in the years before the AAS/BLM team was organized. He later became a docent with the Albuquerque Zoo. As a long-time friend of his from Las Cruces posted on Facebook, “Fletch was an amusing educator and story teller…[and] a font of information on local flora and fauna, geology, and Southwestern US history and archaeology." There was never a dull moment when you were assigned to a recording team with Fletch at Petroglyph National Monument, Albuquerque.
Thanks to Helen Crotty
Frisbie, Theodore Robert (“Ted”)
(1937 – 2020 Feb. 24): Age 83.
Ted was born in New York City and grew up mostly in Newtown, Connecticut, graduating from Newton High School in 1955. Failing at the University of Connecticut as a business major—the major that his family had insisted he follow so that he could join the family construction business—he was determined to become an archaeologist. When he turned 21, he drove to Albuquerque to enroll in the Department of Anthropology at the University of New Mexico, first having to overcome the dismal grades from his previous college experience. He received his BA in 1963 from UNM, where one of his many student jobs was as an artist recording the Pottery Mound murals in 1960 and 1961. His graduate work was partially supported by ASNM scholarships in 1962-63 and 1963-64 and by serving as a field assistant for Florence Hawley Ellis at her field schools at Yunque-Ouinge (San Juan) and Sapawe. His Master’s thesis in 1967 dealt with the unforgettably named BM III Artificial Leg Site in Corrales, NM. But he always had an interest in the possibility of the pochteca intervention into Chaco Canyon and wrote many articles related to the subject.
After a confrontation with Frank Hibben, Ted was forced to pursue his PhD elsewhere and settled on Southern Illinois University–Carbondale, where the founding members of the anthropology department all had connections to UNM. He received his doctorate in 1971 and had a distinguished career as Professor of Anthropology at Southern Illinois University–Edwardsville from 1972 until his retirement in 1997. Ted never forgot what the ASNM scholarships had meant for him as a graduate student, and he maintained his ties with the organization to the end of his life. He donated generously each year to the scholarship fund and had wanted to see it established as a permanent endowment fund. Every year he drove from Illinois to attend the Annual Meetings, where he presented a paper (often running overtime as he warmed to his subject) and sold jewelry and fetishes produced by his adopted Zuni family at a discount to members, then donating a portion of the proceeds to the scholarship fund. In 2006, Ted and his wife Charlotte, who also taught in the Department of Anthropology at SIUE, were the Honorees in ASNM’S 32nd annual volume, Southwestern Interludes: Papers in Honor of Charlotte J. and Theodore R. Frisbie. More details of his life can be found in the autobiographies included in the publication and in the official obituary available online. It is hard to think of an Annual Meeting without Ted’s warm and engaging presence. To say he will be missed is a sad understatement.
Thanks to Helen Crotty
(1924 – 2020 Sept 20): Age 95
Born in Worland, Wyo. And grew up on his grandparent’s ranch near Ten Sheep, spending his early years working sheep and cattle spending his time looking for arrowheads and exploring caves. He was a University of Wyoming graduate who achieved international acclaim as an archaeologist during a lengthy career as a UW faculty member. Frison.
“George was a huge figure in archaeology, most known for his pioneering Paleoindian archaeology in Wyoming as well as for his research into human hunting, shaped by growing up hunting in Wyoming,” Interim Provost Anne Alexander says. “Well into his 90s, George came into his lab every day up until last spring -- and, then, only deterred because of the pandemic. His legacy is profound, and he put Wyoming on the map for archaeology.”
He enrolled in UW in 1942, but his education was cut short when he enlisted in the U.S. Navy, serving in the amphibious forces of the South Pacific during World War II. After being honorably discharged in 1946, he returned to the family ranch.
While operating the ranch, Frison joined the Wyoming Archaeological Society and was an avocational archaeologist, discovering numerous artifacts including atlatl and dart fragments. His interactions with UW Professor William Mulloy prompted Frison to enroll at UW in 1962 at the age of 37 to finish his undergraduate work. After earning his MA and PhD at the University of Michigan, he returned to UW in 1967 to head the new Department of Anthropology and serve as the first state archaeologist, a position he held until 1984.
During his decades of work at UW, Frison made major contributions to our understanding of the prehistory of the northwestern Great Plains in the areas of chipped stone technology, bison bone beds, Paleoindian systematics and Plains chronology. His many books and papers, which include “Prehistoric Hunters of the High Plains,” made him an internationally recognized figure in archaeology.
More than 70 students graduated with the Master of Arts degree in anthropology during his tenure at UW, and many more students attended his classes and graduated with undergraduate degrees from the Department of Anthropology.
“Our department would be a shadow of its current self if not for his efforts. He easily ranks among the greatest field archaeologists in the history of American archaeology, having excavated several major sites in Wyoming, Colorado and Montana,” says Professor Todd Surovell, head of UW’s Department of Anthropology. “Dr. Frison’s contributions to the field of archaeology, the Department of Anthropology, the University of Wyoming and the state of Wyoming cannot be overstated. George was a giant while maintaining a persona that was quiet, humble and approachable.”
His many awards include the lifetime achievement award from the Society for American Archaeology; a Regents’ Fellowship Award from the Smithsonian Institution; UW’s George Duke Humphrey Distinguished Faculty Award; UW’s Medallion Service Award; and the College of Arts and Sciences Outstanding Alumni Award. He was named to the National Academy of Sciences in 1997.
Among his legacies is the George C. Frison Institute of Archaeology and Anthropology at UW, which funds archaeological research in the Rocky Mountains; supports student and faculty participation in international research and education opportunities; sponsors an annual lecture and public talks; and provides for volunteer participation in field and lab programs.
Gaines, Sylvia W.
(1928 - 2020 Sept.18): Age 92
photo by Shereen Lerner 2020
Sylvia Gaines was best known for her pioneering advocacy of computer applications in archaeological research. She was born in Buffalo, NY, but grew up in Shreveport, LA, and attended the Univ. of Texas 1945-1947, receiving her anthropology BA (1961), MA (1966), and then her PhD from Arizona State University, joining the faculty in 1970 until retiring in 1990. Her dissertation title aptly describes the field she chose for her life’s work: “Computer Aided Decision-Making for Archaeological Field Problems”. By the 1960s she quickly foresaw the many applications that computer-aided research could apply to anthropology. Her interests ranged from field to laboratory, from classification, data-base management, decision trees, statistical analyses of ceramics, and, with her husband Warren, simulation studies of small-scale societies. She edited books, was the editor for American Antiquity (1981-1983), corresponding editor for Computers and Humanities (1975-1985), and the founding editor of Newsletter (later Advances in) Computer Archaeology (1971-1979), unique for its time.
She was a key member of the Southwestern Anthropological Research Group (SARG) announced in the 1972 publication of Prescott College with authors Bill Lipe, RG Matson, Fred Plog, James N. Hill, Robert Euler, George Gumerman, W. James Judge, 5. John J. Wood, R. Roy Johnson, William A. Longacre, J. Jefferson Reid, Alexander J. Lindsay, Jr., Jeffrey S. Dean, and Ray Matheny, who also recently died. This was a novel and early experiment in collaboration and data-sharing that set the format for the later large, cooperative inter-disciplinary projects such as at Black Mesa, Chaco Canyon, Arroyo Hondo and many others that are still found today. According to Bill Lipe, Sylvia was SARG’s biggest booster and probably its hardest worker, at least for what it took to get the data standardized, organized, and compiled. These were the days of big decks of key-punched cards that were used to input the data on a main frame computer. For SARG, there were five cards for each site, which were used to record 220 variables, with multiple value options for most of the variables. In 1973 and 1974, after several trial starts by the group, Sylvia developed the data format used in the 1976 Conference that was reported in the 1978 Museum of Northern Arizona Bulletin, No. 50.
Sylvia mentored and chaired many PhDs and MAs to completion. Her exemplary work as a teacher and mentor was rewarded with the prestigious Faculty Woman’s Association and Graduate College’s Women’s Mentor of the Year (2002).
(1954 – 2021 April 8): Age 67
Archaeologist Patrick Graham, passed away in his sleep on April 28, 2021 after a long illness.
Pat was well known in the archaeological community of southern New Mexico. He grew up in Las Cruces in the Graham family which had owned and operated Graham’s Funeral Home since 1912. Pat was involved in the business with his father until he decided to go back to school at New Mexico State University (NMSU) and got his B.A. degree in Anthropology in 1999. He focused on Archaeology and Cultural Resource Management. Pat went on to get his M.A. Anthropology (NMSU) in 2005 resulting from his internship completed at the U.S Air Force Pinyon Canyon Maneuver Area at Fort Carson in Colorado Springs. In 2003-2004 he worked there with Field Director Mark Owens, surveying hundreds of sites and archaeologically testing 16 prehistoric sites. They collaborated on writing up the results of the work.
During his time at NMSU there he attended William Walker’s and Jim Skibo’s field school at Joyce Well, in the Boot Heel of New Mexico, who left the project for some emergency and never returned, but Pat worked hard all day in the field doing yeoman work and then got up early every morning to police the camp and start the coffee. His efforts that summer made the excavation possible recalls Walker, who shouldered the burden of having been left in charge with 24 students. Pat also attended Dr. Lisa Lucero’s Valley of Peace Arch. Project field school in Belize.
Patrick was a wonderful caring individual and always lent a hand to other students in the NMSU program and was always willing to help out a fellow archaeologist. He was a member of the Society for American Archaeology and was a Registered Professional Archaeologist. Pat could always be seen at the Jornada Mogollon meetings.
Pat found his life’s work in the field. He loved fieldwork and completed many archaeological surveys in the state. He drove a lot of miles in his truck and loved the adventure of being an archaeologist. He worked as a contractor for Archaeological Research Consultants on the Chihuahuan Desert Research Center (aka College Ranch) at NMSU and for Aspen CRM Solutions. He participated in many rock art archaeological projects and archaeological surveys too numerous to mention over the last twenty years.
Pat was also an independent Principal Investigator and private consultant, working primarily for the New Mexico Association of Conservation Districts on projects for the Natural Resources Conservation Service. He always made a friend of his clients, had a great sense of humor, and was at home talking with ranchers and people in the remote areas where he worked. Pat worked many years together with fellow archaeologist Mark Sechrist. They were a good duo and had a long friendship. As Mark Sechrist so eloquently wrote, “Pat was like a character out of old western lore or several of the characters in the film ‘Little Big Man.’ He was a ‘big’ man, a tough man, not silent but still undaunted by pain and suffering and injustice, and unrelentingly generous to any who called upon him. I have pictures of Pat, they are not great but emblematic of our partnership, walking together, but always 50 feet apart. So long partner, things will not be the same out here without you.
(1950 - 2020 March 31): Age 70
Eric Bruce Henderson passed away after a brief battle with cancer in Tucson, Arizona, on March 31, 2020.
A dedicated scholar of his beloved Southwest, where he began his ethnographic fieldwork in 1972 working with the Navajo on the trailblazing environmental impact study, the Lake Powell Project, he was most recently a professor of anthropology at Northland Pioneer College in Holbrook, Arizona. Between 2004 and 2016, he served, among other roles, as vice president for learning and dean of arts and sciences. One of the aspects of his tenure as an administrator he most appreciated was the opportunity to enlarge opportunities and mentor students from Navajo and Apache counties.
Henderson was born on July 23, 1950, in Los Angeles, California, and studied at Reed College in Portland Oregon before graduating from Portland State College with a double major in anthropology and history and a minor in geology. Under the supervision of Jerrold Levy at the University of Arizona, he obtained a PhD in anthropology in 1985. His dissertation titled, “Wealth, Status and Change among the Kaibeto Plateau Navajo,” examined transformations of Navajo social structures and lifeways on the reservation from the 1920s through the devastating stock reduction programs of the 1930s and into the 1970s.
After completing his fieldwork, Henderson completed a JD at the University of Arizona in 1982. While writing his dissertation he served as a legal clerk for the White Mountain Apache. He subsequently clerked for Justice Stanley G. Feldman of the Arizona Supreme Court and for Judge Joseph Livermore of the Arizona Court of Appeals.
After receiving his PhD, Henderson served as legal counsel to the Minority Leader in the Arizona House of Representatives until 1991. This period was marked by the impeachment of Governor Evan Mecham in 1987, the first time a governor had been impeached in the United States since 1929. Henderson was instrumental in establishing the procedures for the impeachment proceedings and trial, which resulted in the conviction of Mecham by the State Senate.
Following his public service in the Arizona legislature, Henderson returned to his true passion, the discipline of anthropology, the study of humanity, which included all four fields of anthropology. He was an assistant professor of anthropology at the University of Northern Iowa in Cedar Falls Waterloo between 1991 and 1998, where he worked on the United Faculty Alliance Contract Bargaining Team in negotiations that led to a new compensation package. In 1998 he returned to the west where he taught at Great Basin College (GBC) in Elko, Nevada, for six years. At GBC he also served as lead faculty for integrative studies overseeing the creation and inauguration of the BA degree program. He also co-directed a widely popular archaeological field school with his wife, the anthropologist Amy Henderson.
His major research contributions were centered on the Navajo Nation. In the 1970s Henderson was a contributor to the Lake Powell Project; in the 1980s he worked with Jerrold Levy and Stephen Kunitz on the Navajo Aging Project, and again in the 1990s, when he was co-investigator for the Case Control Studies of Alcohol Abuse on the Navajo Reservation. Henderson was an outstanding lecturer and teacher who was devoted to his students and relished following their professional and personal successes after their graduations. He blended intellectual rigor, political passion, empathy, good humor, and brutally honest and practical feedback.
Henderson was an extraordinarily generous mentor and colleague with boundless intellectual curiosity and a deep passion for scholarly argument as well as collaboration. He is profoundly missed by all those who ever had the privilege to spend time with him. He is survived by his wife and collaborator, the anthropologist and illustrator Amy Henderson. He is also survived by daughters Tanya and Elinor and sons Xander, Kai, and Colin.
Cite as: Rudnyckyj, Daromir. 2020. “Eric Henderson.” Anthropology News website.
Howell, Anthony Jay
(1953 – 2019, Sept. 27): Age 66
The Grant County Beat
Anthony Jay Howell — Mr. Mom, artist, educator, a man who saw beauty in the landscape and whose approach to life was “live immediately”— died Wednesday afternoon, September 18, 2019, in Tucson but a resident of Silver City.
Born in Oklahoma City to Fernon Nichols Howell and AJ Howell. Anthony studied architecture and art at the University of Oklahoma where he graduated with a BFA. He loved Sooner football. Anthony’s drawings and paintings exhibit an exploration of the marks material make and it was his love of mark making that lead him to graduate from Pratt Institute, New York City, with a MFA. At Pratt, he studied under minimalist Kent Floeter, who became mentor, friend and his daughter’s godfather.
Moving to Silver City in 1989, Anthony started his teaching career at Western New Mexico University. With Rick Miller, Anthony hosted the annual Cielo Encantado, a kite festival that honored Silver City’s Robert Ingraham, American Kitefliers Association founder and Anthony’s friend. He often traveled with his children and his large handmade kites to go “Fishing for Angels.” Hiking to remote vistas and exploring the places less visited was Anthony’s happy place. Photographing the vast grandeur of the American Southwest deserts lead him to explore the prehistoric Mimbreño culture, especially the Archaic, Jornada and Mogollon petroglyphs. Anthony grew to be a resource and acted as a volunteer for Bureau of Land Management site assessment teams. He helped document sites with anthropologists and archaeologists like Dr. Jane Kelly of the Three Rivers sites, Dr. Kay Sutherland of the Hueco Tanks site, and rock art researcher Dr. J.J. Brody who authored Mimbres Painted Pottery which sports one of Anthony’s photos on its cover. With WNMU Museum director and archaeologist, Dr. Cynthia Bettison, he photographed the NAN Ranch and Eisele Collections. Anthony’s work lives on in many collections around the world, and two pieces hang in the New Mexico Capitol Art Collection.
Anthony served his community as an Aldo Leopold Charter School founder, Guadalupe Montessori board member, Catholic Diocese of Las Cruces board member, Community Access Television of Silver (CATS TV) board member and St. Vincent de Paul Roman Catholic Church member.
(1961 – 2020 Jan 23): Age 58
An anthropology graduate of the UNM, Mark worked for the NPS, the USFS, and for the Bureau of Reclamation for the past 16 years. He was responsible for the proud repatriation of the bodies of the Buffalo soldiers from Ft. Craig to the Santa Fe National Cemetery. He was a friend and colleague to all who knew him. Mark had other interests, including wood working, carpentry, mountain-biking, martial arts, hiking, gaming, skiing, and collecting, but music was a lifetime passion. He was a professional musician and an outstanding guitar player. Mark played guitar and sang in more than six bands, including Marshall Law, Bonecracker, and The Regulators (along with Jeff Hanson).
(1932 – 2021 Feb. 1): Age 89
Ron was a long-time archaeologist for the National Park Service in the Santa Fe Regional Office, who passed on, 1 February 2021. A former Regional Archeologist for the NPS Southwest Region, Ron was born on November 5, 1932, and grew up on a farm near Wiley, Colorado. He graduated from high school in 1950 and enlisted in the U.S. Navy, serving as a radar man. Through the early 1960s, he earned his BA and MA in archeology at the University of New Mexico and conducted archeological work for the New Mexico State Highway Department.
In 1964, Ice began his NPS career as a seasonal ranger at Gran Quivera NM (now part of Salinas Pueblo Missions Nat’l Mon. [NM]). In 1966, he accepted a permanent position at Petrified Forest NM, and moved to Tonto NM in 1967. He moved again in 1969 to Alibates Flint Quarries NM. While there, he was certified as an NPS scuba diver. Ice made his last career move to Santa Fe and the Southwest Cultural Resources Center in 1972 as a staff archeologist, later the Regional Archeologist. His career as a diver continued into the 1990s, working at Gulf Islands NS, Fort Jefferson NM, Biscayne NP, and Point Reyes NS among others.
People he supervised say that Ice was a good person to work for – he was low key but effective, and set a good example of how to run a regional program.
Ice was an avid photographer and traveler and took his wife and two children through much of North America, Europe, and a few Pacific islands. In 1990, he and his wife bought a farm in Alcalde, New Mexico and, after retirement in 1993, established a successful farm there. They were popular at farmer’s markets in Santa Fe and Los Alamos and were voted Alcalde Organic Farmers of the Year in 2020.
(1946 - 2021 Jan.28): Age 75
CJ Johnson was beloved member of the Taos community when she died at her home in Rancho de Taos. CJ moved to Taos almost 2 decades ago bringing her computer skills and her artistry with her. Having retired at age 55 from a career in information technology at both Pacific Bell/AT&T and Charles Schwab in San Francisco, CA, CJ threw herself into multiple volunteer endeavors in Taos and greater New Mexico. CJ is remembered fondly by the Millicent Rogers Museum where she offered free computer assistance along with her brilliant smile. She was a dedicated volunteer for the Taos Archeological Society and the Archeological Society of New Mexico.
She served both organizations as an elected officer. Her work included serving as a Site Watcher at the Mesa Prieta Petroglyph Project. She is remembered by the Taos Archeological Society for “her brilliance, multiple talents and spirit of service.” She is remembered with great love by the members and friends of Taos United Community Church which she attended and where she volunteered her computer skills. CJ was a donor and “close friend” of the Taos Community Foundation. In California, CJ served as a volunteer as well as a board member for the Women’s Cancer Resource Center in Berkley and donated much of her beautiful pottery for its fundraising.
CJ was a remarkable artist who worked in multiple mediums from pottery to jewelry and sculpture. Her latest passion was making art of whimsy and beauty from the components of old computers and cell phones which she named her “Electronic Rock Art.” CJ’s brilliant smile and laugh are well known in the circles in which she traveled. Anyone who knew her experienced her kindness and generous nature. She believed that if you cannot be kind and say something nice, you should not say anything at all.
Johnson, Bernhard "Boma"
(1939 - 2019 August 23): Age 80
Dixie Archaeology Society
Boma Johnson, Archaeologist, Passes
Archaeologist Bernhart “Boma” Earl Johnson passed away unexpectedly but peacefully in his sleep at midnight on August 23, 2019, at his new home in the Kanab Creek Ranchos, Kanab, Utah, with his wife of 25 years, Kathleen “Kat” Johnson at his side.
Boma was born in Denmark, Wisconsin November 4, 1939 to Bessie and Bernhart “Bert” Johnson, and developed an intense interest in Indian culture as a child. He served a mission for the LDS Church in the Los Angeles area. He later met and married his beloved first wife Alberta in the same area, and worked as a truck driver to support his growing family. Full credit should be given to Alberta for her support and encouragement for Boma to go back to school.
Boma’s childhood interest in Archaeology, and Native American culture later intensified after taking a class that linked both archaeology and anthropology, and he often maintained that he was an anthropologist, much more interested in the study of people than pots! He earned a double Masters degree in Archaeology & Ethnology in 1973, and completed a Cultural Management Resources Program in 1975. Boma then began his career with the Bureau of Land Management as an Archaeologist/Cultural Resources Management Specialist, working along the Lower Colorado River. His focus was on learning the origin, meaning and purpose of the many petroglyphs and geoglyphs found in that area, by coordinating his research with information from the Native American people in the region.
Boma worked for the Bureau of Land Management in Yuma, Arizona, raising six children with his beloved 1st wife Alberta, who passed away in April, 1993. Boma took an early retirement from the BLM, (but certainly not from archaeology) and moved to the red rock country of St George, Utah in 1999. He continued doing what he loved best: giving public presentations, leading volunteers on rock art tours, and teaching Archaeology & Earth Science classes at Dixie State University Community Education with his second wife Kat as his assistant. He emphasized “real archaeology” and the history of Native American people in the Southwest.
Boma had a lifelong love of animals, and rescued many feral cats, who often then became his beloved pets. Boma & Kat actually met in Kanab, at a rock art conference, and so they completed the full circle in November 2018 when they moved to their final home in Kanab, Utah. Boma enjoyed continued archaeological research and working on an update to his geoglyph book, working in his new home and garden, and the company of his 3 “fur babies”, Missy, Jagger & Jackson.
Bernhart “Boma” Johnson leaves behind his many devoted students and his large wonderful family-some of whom were actually willing to go on archaeological hikes with him! All who knew him will miss him.Top of Form
Matheny, Ray Thomas
(1925 – 2020, July 1): Age 95
Ray was born on February 15, 1925 in Los Angeles, California, to Raymond Thomas and Edna Ryan Matheny. From the time of his first airplane ride at age 5, Ray had a love of aviation that lasted throughout his life. He was curious about the world and immersed himself in the pursuit of life-long learning. Ray was a loving and devoted husband, father, grandfather, mentor, and friend. He dedicated his life to seeking truth and serving his country, family, and friends.
He was a veteran of World War II, enlisting in the Army Air Corps in 1942 at 17 and volunteered for combat flying in Europe. After surviving being shot down in January 1944 in a B-17 bomber over Germany, a harrowing experience as one of only two survivors, he survived 16 months as a prisoner of war in Stalag XVII-B in Krems, Austria, and from the Nazi prisoner death marches to avoid the approaching Soviet army. His experiences are chronicled in Rite of Passage (2009). After the war, Ray developed a career in aviation and spent further time serving in the military during the Korean War inspecting damaged aircraft in Japan.
Ray attended Brigham Young University where he received B.A. and M.A. degrees in archaeology. He completed a Ph.D. in anthropology at the University of Oregon. In 1948, Ray married Patricia Smith and they were the parents of six children. They later divorced and he married Deanne Gurr in 1979, and they had two children. They were married for forty years at the time of his death.
For many years, Ray was a professor of anthropology at Brigham Young University where he led numerous archaeological projects, including various areas in the U.S. and several in Mexico and Guatemala. In Utah, he directed field schools and other field projects in Montezuma Canyon in San Juan County and Nine Mile Canyon in Carbon County. He directed a project at the ancient city of El Mirador in Guatemala, which helped reveal that Maya civilization began much earlier than previously suspected. He took innovative approaches to his study of the past and often had a wider grasp of what ancient peoples were able to accomplish. He used aerial photography to better understand ancient site planning and land use. As one of Ray’s major achievements he mentored many students who went on to productive archaeological careers. Ray generously provided them with research for theses and dissertations, as well as being willing to share his data freely with colleagues. Ray had a strong publishing record with articles and monographs reporting on his research. He was still engaged in research and writing up to the time of his death. Without doubt, Ray was a man of the Greatest Generation.
Ray is survived by his wife Deanne, children: Michael (DiAnne) Matheny, Kathleen (Jessie) Anderson, Lucinda (Terry) Walker, Daniel (Shari) Matheny, Lisa (Justin) Holmes, Nicole (Scott) Huddleston, and Julia (David) Halverson. He is also survived by 23 grandchildren, as well as numerous great and great-great grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his parents, son Jon, granddaughter Emily, and great-granddaughter Juniper. Condolences may be shared with the family at
To Plant Memorial Trees in memory, please visit our Sympathy Store.
Published in The Salt Lake Tribune on Jul. 5, 2020.
(1930-2020): Age 90
1991, Leon Metz at Blazer’s Mill. (courtesy Bob Boze Bell)
Remembering our friend and UTEP’s first archivist Leon Claire Metz (1930-2020). In this image, Leon is working on sorting the R.E. Thomason papers in UTEP Special Collections.
Another good one gone; another classic author, historian and one who loved to ramble over the hills, valleys and canyons telling the story; sharing the history and the archaeological sites as well of New Mexico and Texas
Originally from West Virginia, he was born in 1930, but soon moved to El Paso where he ended up dealing with political situations, worked in and improved UTEP archives; and then decided to head out on his own as author and lecturer. Crowds of interested folks could be counted on when he spoke. His wife, Cheryl, was always encouraging and welcoming of his friends and those who just wanted to learn more about our fascinating heritage along the borderlands.
His honors were many, his friends are/were too. Below are some of his works that will leave a lasting legacy:
John Selman: Texas Gunman
Dallas Stoudenmire: El Paso Marshal
Pat Garrett: Story of a Western Lawman
Fort Bliss: An Illustrated History
Desert Army: Fort Bliss on the Texas Border
El Paso: City at the Pass
Turning Points of El Paso, Texas
Southern New Mexico Empire
Border: The U.S.-Mexico Line
El Paso Chronicles
Roadside History of Texas
John Wesley Hardin: Dark Angel of Texas
400 Years in El Paso
R. E. McKee: Master Builder
In 2010, he won a lifetime achievement award from the Texas Historical Commission for his efforts in historic preservation.
Metz also appeared on television networks, including the BBC and the History Channel. He received the WWA (Western Writers of America) Saddleman award and others too numerous to mention. He served his nation in the U. S. Air Force.
(1937 - 1920 May 24): Age 83
The first of two sons, Bob was born at home April 28, 1937. He spent his youth in rural northern Indiana, near Goshen and Elkhart. Bob completed his undergraduate work at Manchester College in Manchester, Indiana, and in 1962 to Boulder for his Masters at the Univ. of Colorado, where he met his wife, Ann.
Bob was a long-time faculty member and community leader at the Highland University’s anthropology department in Las Vegas, NM, greatly beloved by his many students and all who worked with him. He joined Highlands in 1969 as the university’s first full-time anthropology faculty member, the beginning of a distinguished 38-year career with the university. He established the university’s first anthropology laboratory in 1970 and directed it until his retirement in 2007.
In a 2016 interview, Mishler said his interest in anthropology was sparked when he was a young college graduate teaching at an adult trade school in Nigeria from 1960-1961. After returning to the U.S. he taught social studies before returning to graduate school. He and his wife Ann returned to the Mission in Nigeria for a year in 1968 with their new son, David.
During his tenure at Highlands, Mishler conducted 35 annual field archeological investigations with his students, collecting many of the artifacts that are still part of the university’s anthropology laboratory. The archeological field schools were centered primarily at the Tecolote Pueblo and the Tinsley Site, a small pueblo. Both are within 20 minutes of Highlands and reveal the interplay between the pueblo worlds to the west and the High Plains dwellers to the east. A major focus of Mishler’s research was cultural resource surveys used to identify and protect cultural history. He secured approximately $1 million in archaeological grants for Highlands during his tenure.
His service on the City of Las Vegas Design Review Board began in 1974. Mishler was a co-founder of both the Friends of the City of Las Vegas Rough Rider Museum in 1997 and the Las Vegas Citizens Committee for Historic Preservation in 1977. More recently, Mishler took a leadership role with the Las Vegas New Mexico Community Foundation, which formed in 2017 with him as the founding chair of the board of directors. At the time of his death, Mishler also chaired the board of directors. Mishler was always been deeply rooted in historic preservation and planning in Las Vegas, culminating with receiving a Lifetime Achievement Award from the New Mexico Historic Preservation Division in 2010.
“Bob had a noble heart and embodied the spirit and ethic of community service better than anyone I knew,” Baca, a friend, said. “I believe that Bob saw that creating a community foundation for Las Vegas with an endowment was perhaps his crowning achievement and legacy to the community.”
Baca said Mishler was a mentor to two generations of community leaders in Las Vegas.
Mishler is survived by his wife, Ann, and son, David. Another son, Thomas, died early in life. Ann Mishler asks that in lieu of flowers, donations be made to the Bob Mishler Memorial Fund at the Las Vegas New Mexico Community Foundation, P.O. Box 1002, Las Vegas, NM 87701.
(1956 - 2021 June 6): Age 65
Kara was born in Healdsburg, CA, and passed away in Spokane, WA, at Sacred Heart Hospital. Her sister Mary Naber saw Kara as a loving, devoted wife, the best sister ever, humanitarian, archeologist, ESL teacher, newspaper reporter, published writer, talented seamstress, avid fighter of women’s rights especially in Mexico and Latin America—a wonderful epitaph for such an usual and caring person.
Kara was a valued member of Mesa Verde's Cultural Resource program from ~1997 through 2007; her husband, Mark Andrews, worked in the Interpretive program. Kara had great enthusiasm for and dedication to Mesa Verde Nat’l Park and its resources. She helped shed new interest on the Schulman Grove of Douglas-fir trees at MVNP, while introducing a new t-shirt with “stumpy’ on the front, an altered wood piece in the MVNP collections. She worked at the Gila Cliff Ruins as an interpreter and pushed for a new dendro-study at the Gila Cliff Ruins, carried out by Tom Windes in 1997. She was a wonderful partner with those in cultural resources.
While living in Columbus, NM, she wrote about the Pancho Villa raid in for the local newspaper for the 100th anniversary of the raid of 1916.
From Mary Naber: Hers was a long fight with lung cancer that she just couldn’t win. She won the hearts of everyone she met and sent laughter and good humor to all - and stayed bonded to them throughout her lovely life. Kara was involved with Border Partners working alongside the women of Puerto Palomas, in Chihuahua, Mexico, helping border residents achieve their goals. One of her passions was The Palomas Oilcloth Design which are crafted by a group of women who design and sew on Mexican oilcloth to earn a stable income.
Kara is survived by her husband, Mark Andrews; her sister, Mary Naber; brother, John Naber; mother, Dolores Naber; uncle and aunt, Ed Sbragia & Jane Carr; aunt, Fern Naber; niece, Jessica Coppola; and many cousins and friends. Suggested donations in Kara’s memory can be sent to: or your favorite charity.
( - 2020)
The passing of a Pueblo elder: Remembering Peter Pino.
He deepened the understanding of Mesa Verde’s past
By Andrew Gulliford Saturday, Sep. 12, 2020 8:03 Durango Herald
Zia Pueblo elder Peter Pino always wore a customized tribal baseball cap outdoors, and he impressed National Park Service staff members and guests alike with his vast knowledge of Pueblo Indian culture and history. When I learned that my friend Peter Pino had passed on from complications of coronavirus I was devastated. I took a long walk at twilight remembering Peter’s quiet way of speaking and his connection to the natural world. We both made hiking sticks, and I was honored to receive one from him smoothed and hand-rubbed from an ocotillo cactus spine. For three fall sessions, Peter and I worked together on an exclusive Mesa Verde National Park tour that brought visitors to the park from across the United States. We teamed up for this successful fundraiser for the Mesa Verde Foundation where both of us were board members.
Our guests came to tour the park during the off season to listen to Peter’s stories, to glean from his knowledge and to share his smiles and laughter. Peter, who was born at Zia Pueblo and died at the age of 71, gave to all of us from his heart and from his deep knowledge of the Pueblo past.
With a BA in industrial education from New Mexico Highlands University and a MA in Administration from the University of New Mexico, Peter was for decades a vital part of the Zia Pueblo government, having been elected governor and serving on the Tribal Council since 1967. He also worked as tribal administrator and treasurer.
In addition to his business skills, which helped Zia Pueblo purchase additional acreage, Peter also possessed knowledge of ancient Pueblo crafts, including how to create specially shaped sticks for hunting rabbits, bone tools, digging sticks for planting crops and bows and arrows. He tanned hides, made moccasins and successfully represented the Ancestral Puebloan world to Mesa Verde visitors brimming with questions.
Courtesy of Mesa Verde National Park
Peter helped Mesa Verde visitors by spending long hours in consultation with Mesa Verde staff members and working on projects, including implementation of the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (1990) and interpretation of archaeological sites along Ruins Road. He assisted with planning the Visitor and Research Center to incorporate Native art and the kiva-like rotunda. Peter also had an impact at Crow Canyon Archaeological Center, where he encouraged ties to living tribal communities.
“It sounds cliché to say Peter was a man of few words, but that was true. Whenever he spoke in his quiet voice, the room fell silent. His carefully chosen words had impact,” said Mesa Verde Superintendent Cliff Spencer. “That impact extended to improving the relationship between Mesa Verde and its affiliated tribes, and in the design of the visitor center. We will miss him dearly.”
Courtesy of Andrew Gulliford
“He had that way about him. With his mere presence he could get people back on track,” said Assistant Superintendent Bill Nelligan, who worked extensively with Peter. Nelligan remembers that Peter was “generous with his time. He loved sharing and telling stories. Being in his presence was like a gift. He was calming like a grandfather.”
As an elder statesman, Peter offered insight into the world of Pueblo thought. He felt a deep responsibility to respect the ancients, but he also wanted to work with living Native artists. He encouraged the park to sponsor more Native arts and crafts festivals. For the park, Peter built relationships. When first lady Hillary Clinton visited Mesa Verde, Peter was her guide. One of his favorite assignments involved the U.S. Navy. Colorado Congressman Scott Tipton had arranged for one of a new class of Navy ships – sleek, fast, totally computerized and able to deliver U.S. Marines quickly around the world – to be named the USS Mesa Verde. U.S. Sen. Ben Nighthorse Campbell and his wife, Linda, were to attend the dedication ceremony, and Peter had been asked to represent the park and his ancestors. He gathered sacred water from a spring in the park and took it to the naval shipyard in Alabama where he used eagle feathers, prayers and the special spring water to bless and dedicate the ship. For Navy crew members, it was a profound and moving spiritual ceremony. Since then, various crews from the vessel have visited Mesa Verde to continue to connect the ship’s mission with the ancient Pueblo past.
Along with crew members of the USS Mesa Verde, Peter Pino (in colored vest) stands with U.S. Sen. Ben Nighthorse Campbell and his wife, Linda, on Pino’s left and with Mesa Verde National Park Superintendent Cliff Spencer on his right.
Courtesy of Mesa Verde National Park
“He was always the first to volunteer to tell the story of Ancestral Puebloan peoples from the perspective of descendant community members,” said Kristy Sholly, chief of interpretation at the park.
Peter’s voice is on an audio tape speaking in Zia to welcome visitors. He recruited his grandson to be a model for a life-size mannequin in one of the entrance displays. The dioramas intrigue visitors and place Ancestral Puebloans central in the park’s interpretation.
Robinson, William J.
(1929 – 2021 April 26): Age 92
On a warm and breezy night, under a full moon, our dad and grandpa passed away peacefully at home, April 26, 2021. His last days were full of love and family. William J. Robinson was born in Erie, PA on February 19, 1929. He served in the US Army from 1951 to 1953. Bill's love of the desert and for archaeology brought him to the University of Arizona where he received a PhD in Anthropology. Over 30 years as a professor and, ultimately, Director of the Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research, Bill helped advance the use of dendrochronology to study archaeological sites throughout the Southwest and the United States. After retirement, Bill loved to travel, bird, and spend countless hours researching our family's genealogy. Bill was preceded in death by Priscilla, in 2013, after 56 years of marriage. He is survived by Peter Robinson (Deb Gardener), Betsey Robinson and his four beloved grandchildren, Ben, Graham, Rachel and Ethan. A celebration of life for both Bill and Priscilla will be held at a later date. Contact Betsey at for more information.
Rockhill, John David III
(1952 – 2021 April 18): Age 69
John David Rockhill III, a truly independent and rugged American, passed away on April 18, 2021 and will be deeply missed by many family members and friends. Born in Safford, Arizona on May 27, 1952 to John D. Rockhill II and Marie Lucille Roper Rockhill, John was one of eight littermates. They are Shirley Donahue, Roxanne Rockhill, Charles Rockhill, Riley Rockhill, Tammy Hughes, Rochelle Rockhill (dec.) and Mabel Marie Rockhill (dec.). John enlisted in the US Air Force, serving four years and was honorably discharged in 1975. He spent more than 20 years in various branches of law enforcement.
Since 1997, John worked as an archaeologist in the Greater Southwest, Egypt, and Sudan. His interests, abilities, and skills were boundless, yet his greatest pride has been his son, John D. Rockhill IV (Julie), grandsons RK (Kelsey) and Justin, and most recently, great-grandchildren Roone Roper and Rozzlynn Karoline. For the last 24 years, his life was spent with Korri Turner in Tempe, Arizona. They were happiest traveling, doing projects, learning new things, and photographing the beauty in nature. John showed amazing strength and endurance after a diagnosis of a rare leukemia in mid-2018. He will be cremated and taken to some of his favorite places in Arizona. All who knew John’s private and humble nature will understand his request that there be no memorial service and nothing more needs to be done. He wanted his obituary to be modest and end with this message: “Thank you for everything.”
Stewart, Joe David
(1943 - 2021 March 9): Age 78
Joe David Stewart of Thunder Bay, Ontario, formerly of San Antonio, Texas, passed away peacefully at St. Joseph's Hospital on March 9, 2021 with his loving wife, Debra Babcock at his side. He is lovingly remembered by his wife Debra, father-in-law John Clark of Thunder Bay, Ontario, brother Larry Stewart, sister-in-law Marianne Stewart of San Antonio, Texas and niece Emma Stewart of Austin, Texas, his son, Sean Stewart, wife Chris, two granddaughters Kaitlyn and Rosie all in California. He is also survived by numerous cousins in Texas. He is also survived by two stepsons in Thunder Bay, Ben Babcock and Bradley Babcock and a stepdaughter in Slate River, On, Tara Tesolin. Joe was a professor of Anthropology and Archaeology. Joe retired in 2003. He was an avid baseball fan, football, antique cars, cycling and enjoyed travelling. Joe was predeceased by his parents Vivian Stewart in 2019 and his father Joe Stewart in 1988. He will be lovingly remembered by his wife Debra, his family and many friends also by colleagues from Thunder Bay and Lakehead University.
Joe received his anthropology BA (1965) from Texas Tech University and his PhD (1974) from the University of Calgary. He taught at Lakehead University in Thunder Bay, Ontario, until 2003 when he retired. Between 1984 and 1986, he was a co-PI with Jane Kelley to the Capitan North Archaeological Project investigation into the archaeology of the Sierra Blanca region, south-central New Mexico. A primary focus was on the excavation of Robinson Pueblo (LA 46326), a 150-room community. Joe Stewart presented a paper at the First Jornada Conference: The Formal Definition of Decorative Traditions in the Jornada Area: A Case Study of the Lincoln Black-on-red designs. Also preliminary papers were given at the fifth Biennial Mogollon Conference in 1988, and artifacts from the project are housed at the Maxwell Museum at UNM. More recently, Thatcher Rogers, a grad student at UNM, has used the site for his research. Joe managed the Mobile Crew, which also surveyed and tested sites in the Sierra Blanca region. Afterwards, Joe followed the lead PI of that project, Jane Holden Kelley, down to south-central Chihuahua, where they investigated Viejo and Medio period components there. Joe specialized primarily in archaeometry (especially elemental characterization and microanalysis of archaeological materials) and chronometric (mostly radiocarbon) dating of sites. Over the years Joe had done archaeological field work in (more or less in chronological order): Texas, Wyoming, Oregon, Alaska, Guatemala, British Columbia, Alberta, the Northwest Territories (high Canadian Arctic), New Mexico, Ontario, Chihuahua, and Baja California Sur.
A few examples of Joe’s published works
Stewart, Joe, Jane Kelley, A. MacWilliams, and Paula Reimer
2005 The Viejo Period of Chihuahua Culture in Northwestern Mexico. Latin American Antiquity16(2):169-192.
Kelley, Jane H., Joe D. Stewart, A.C. MacWilliams, and Karen R. Adams
2004 Recent Research in West-Central Chihuahua. In Identity, Feasting, and the Archaeology of the Greater Southwest, edited by Barbara J. Mills, pp. 295-310.
Stewart, Joe, A. MacWilliams, Jane Kelley, and Paula Reimer
2004 Archaeological Chronology in West Central Chihuahua. In Surveying the Archaeology of Northwest Mexico: Proceedings of the 2002 Southwest Symposium, edited by Gillian Newell and Emiliano Gallaga, pp. 205-245. University of Utah Press, Salt Lake City.
Stewart, Joe D., J.E. Molto, and Paula J. Reimer
2003 The Chronology of Kellis 2: The Interpretative Significance of Radiocarbon Dating of Human Remains. In Oasis Papers 3: Proceedings of the Dakhleh Oasis Project, edited by Gillian E. Bowen and Colin A. Hope, pp. 373-378. Oxbow Press, U.K.
Adams, Karen, Joe Stewart, and Stuart Baldwin
2002 Pottery Paint and Other Uses of Rocky Mountain Beeweed (Cleome serrulata pursh) in the American Southwest: Ethnographic Data, Archaeological Record, and Elemental Composition. KIVA 67(4):339-362.
MacWilliams, A., Joe Stewart, and Jane Kelley
2002 Past Boundaries and Frontiers in Chihuahua. In Boundaries and Territories: Prehistory of the U.S. Southwest and Northern Mexico, edited by Elisa Villalpando, pp. 117-128. Anthropological Research Papers No. 54. Arizona State University, Tempe.
Stewart, Joe, Karen Adams, Graham Borradaile, and Allen Mackenzie
2002 Investigations of Paints on Ancestral Puebloan Black-on-white Pottery Using Magnetic and Microanalytic Methods. Journal of Archaeological Science 29(11):1309-1316.
Kelley, Jane, Joe Stewart, A. MacWilliams, Loy Neff, David Phillips, and Karen Adams
2001 West Central Chihuahua. In The Archaeology of Ancient Mexico and Central America: An Encyclopedia, edited by S. Evens and D. Wester, pp. 133-135. Garland Publishing, New York.
Fralick, Philip, Eric Blinman, Stephen Kissin, Joe Stewart, and Neal Weir
2000 Paint Composition and Internal Layering of Ritual Objects from San Lázaro Pueblo (LA92), New Mexico. Journal of Archaeological Science 27:1039-1053.
Stewart, Joe, El Molto, and Paula Reimer
2000 The Chronology of Las Palmas Culture: New Radiocarbon Dates on Non-human Terrestrial Materials from William Massey’s Cave Burial Sites. Pacific Coast Archaeological Quarterly 34(4):1-19.
Kelley, Jane, Joe Stewart, A. MacWilliams, and Loy Neff
1999 A West-Central Perspective on Chihuahuan Culture. In The Casas Grandes World, edited by Curtis S. Schaafsma and Carroll Riley, pp. 63-77. The University of Utah Press, Salt Lake City.
Stewart, Joe D., and Karen R. Adams
1999 Evaluation of Visual Criteria for Identifying Carbon and Iron Based Pottery Paints from the Four Corners Region Using SEM-EDS. American Antiquity 64(4):675-696.
Vivian, Patricia Bryan
(8 Aug. 1935 – 2020 16 Aug): Age 85.
Pat was born in Washington D.C. but spent her early life moving further West, initially for a degree in Art at Ohio Wesleyan University, and then an MFA in Printmaking at the University of Iowa in Iowa City. Her summers took her into the Southwest where she was employed as a cook at a “Dude Ranch” in southern Colorado and later a waitress at a visitor “restaurant” in Mesa Verde National Park. This experience led to an interest in Southwestern prehistory and a summer field school led by Florence Hawley Ellis at Yunque in northern New Mexico. Her work there and her background in art, in turn made her a perfect choice for detailed recording of kiva murals at Pottery Mound, Frank Hibben’s long-term field school location south-southwest of Albuquerque. Pat’s art advisor at the University of Iowa in turn agreed to Pat’s documentation and interpretation of the Pottery Mound Murals as her MFA Thesis subject.
While collecting data on the murals she met Gwinn Vivian who was a student Director at Pottery Mound prior to her work there. They subsequently married and shared multiple experiences including a summer living in Ladakh, India and building their home, a straw-bale house in northern Arizona near the Zuni Reservation. Throughout this time Pat continued producing art, including prints, with varying subjects, though primarily natural landscapes. Pat is survived by her husband, archaeologist Gwinn Vivian. Thanks to Gwinn Vivian
Thompson, Raymond Harris
(1924 – 2020 Jan. 29): Age 96
Raymond Harris Thompson Jr., who was born May 10, 1924, in Woodford, Maine, died January 29, 2020, in Tucson, Arizona. Most of his 50-year career was devoted to guiding the growth of archaeology, anthropology, and museology nationally and at the Arizona State Museum (ASM) and the Department of Anthropology at the University of Arizona (UA).
In 1942, Thompson enrolled in Tufts University, on a full scholarship, to study geology. Drafted in 1944, he was assigned to a Seabee construction battalion detachment and sent to Iwo Jima to help build airstrips and other facilities after the island was secured. Returning to Tufts after the war, he fulfilled a field school requirement by attending the UA Point of Pines Field School in archaeology, under the direction of Emil W. Haury.
Thompson began graduate studies at Harvard University in February 1948 with G. I. Bill benefits. While completing his dissertation in 1952, he accepted a job at the University of Kentucky as the curator of the Museum of Anthropology and an assistant professor of anthropology, where he worked for four years.
He accepted a position at UA in 1956 to teach introductory anthropology and various archaeology courses. After Haury’s 1964 retirement, Thompson served for 16 years as the third director of the ASM and the third head of the Department of Anthropology, following in the footsteps of Byron Cummings and Haury. From 1980 until his retirement in 1997, Thompson was the director of the ASM and the Fred A. Riecker Distinguished Professor of Anthropology.
Thompson made important legislative contributions to current archaeological practice both nationally and in Arizona. In 1978, he and a small number of colleagues drafted and successfully lobbied for the Archaeological Resources Protection Act. Thompson delivered the final consensus draft of the legislation to Representative Morris Udall, who introduced it in the US House of Representatives. He later testified for the act in front of the relevant House and Senate subcommittees in 1979. Importantly for the practice of archaeology in the state of Arizona, in 1983 he obtained major revisions to the State Antiquities Act that allowed the creation of private contract archaeological firms, thus supporting development of the industry through which most Arizona archaeology is done today.
In 1990, Thompson supported another amendment to the State Antiquities Act, requested by Arizona’s tribal community, to promote state repatriation and reburial of human remains. Later that same year he went before the Interior Committee of the US House of Representatives to address the contents of the bill that would later become the landmark legislation known as the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act.
Thompson received numerous awards and honors during his illustrious career, including the American Anthropological Association Distinguished Service Award in 1980, the Society for American Archaeology Fiftieth Anniversary Service Award in 1985, and the Arizona Archaeological and Historical Society Byron Cummings Award in 1993. In recognition of its 90th anniversary, the UA Department of Anthropology established the Raymond H. Thompson Award in his honor. In 2019, UA named the ASM’s main building the Raymond H. Thompson Building in honor of his legacy. Thompson was a noted doggerelist, creating, seemingly on the spur of the moment, rhyming verse in English, Spanish, or German, right up to the last month of his life.
Thompson’s beloved wife, Molly Kendall Thompson, died in 2014. She and Ray Thompson are survived by two daughters, Margaret Luchetta of Danjoutin, France, and Mary Thompson of Tigard, Oregon; Margaret’s husband, Georges Luchetta; two granddaughters; and two great-grandchildren. One of our Greatest Generation.
(Beth Grindell) Cite as: Grindell, Beth. 2020. “Raymond Harris Thompson .” Anthropology News website, August 14, 2020. DOI: 10.14506/AN.1473
Warren, Richard L.
(1931 – 2020 Dec. 12): Age 89
Richard Lee (Dick) Warren, resident of Green Valley, Arizona, passed away at his home Dec. 12, 2020, following a battle with COVID-19. Although family was unable to be with him due to the pandemic, Southern Arizona Home Care employees, who had provided loving and competent home care, were with him as he passed.
Richard Warren was the eldest son of Dr. Aubrey W. and Zetha M. (Hendrickson) Warren of Sutherland, Nebraska. After graduating from Sutherland High School, he attended Nebraska Wesleyan University, worked as a signal electrician for the railroad, and then enlisted and spent several years in the Air Force, with assignments in Germany and the USA
He then attended the University of Tennessee but graduated from the University of Arizona with a degree in anthropology. He was a specialist in dendrochronology (tree-ring dating). During his 50-year career at the University of Arizona Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research (LTRR), Dick substantially added to the knowledge of the weather chronology and thus to our historical and environmental knowledge of the American Southwest. He was a patient and always willingly helpful to others interested in dendrochronology.
To quote from the staff biographies from LTRR:
“Warren is the most experienced and accomplished dendrochronological technician in the world, maintaining unmatched high rates of analytical speed, accuracy, and reliability. He developed and honed his tree-ring skills as a principal analytical contributor to the Dendrochronology of Southwestern United States Project, an NSF-sponsored reanalysis of the LTRR’s archaeological tree-ring sample holdings that extended from 1963 through 1975.” The practitioners he trained continue to use his techniques in other countries, as well as in the United States.
Dick was an expert fisherman. He loved fly fishing in the lakes and streams of the western U.S. It often seemed as if he could catch a trout from an empty washtub. He and Jeff Dean, a fellow dendrochronologist, often went fishing together. He also loved and highly respected the Native American cultures of the Southwest.
All remember his quiet attentiveness, patience, kindness, gentleness, and love. Dick blessed everyone with whom he came into contact with his warmth, generosity, and humble openness. Family gatherings were never complete unless Uncle Dick was present. The wives and children of his peers also considered “Uncle” Dick to be part of their families. Kathy King of Seattle, WA, the daughter of Dick’s longtime friend Rosemary Anderson, considers him to be a father figure and dear friend. Kathy was blessed to be able to visit Dick during his final illness.
In accordance with Richard’s request there is no funeral service planned, and his cremains will be scattered in a favorite fishing location somewhere in Colorado, Arizona or Wyoming. He will be sorely missed.
Williams, Paul (“Pablo”)
(1949 – 2021 April 10): Age 72
Passed away Saturday, April 10, 2021 at his home in Albuquerque. Born May 24, 1949, Paul was a native son of Longmont, CO where he was raised on Bowen Street along with his brother, Les, by his parents Leslie Johnson and Joyce Bee Williams. After graduating from Longmont High School in 1967, Paul attended the University of the South in Sewanee, TN. Upon earning his undergraduate degree in 1972, Paul returned to Longmont where he would meet his wife Judith Cheryl Daggett.
Paul’s travels in Europe inspired a passion for anthropology, which encouraged him to continue his education. His passion was further inspired by Prof. Dave Breternitz, who oversaw an excavation at Mesa Verde National Park, in which Paul participated while pursuing his graduate degree at the University of Colorado. Paul and Judy were wed April 23, 1977, and soon thereafter moved to Flagstaff, AZ, where Paul would continue to work on his graduate degree at Northern Arizona University.
After earning his Masters’ Degree in Anthropology, they moved to Glenwood Springs, CO, where two of their children were born - Benjamin James in 1981 and Sarah Elizabeth in 1983 - and where Paul would begin his career with the Bureau of Land Management. The family moved to Taos, NM in 1984 and the Williams clan was completed two years later with the birth of Andrew Leslie. Pablo would work as an archaeologist for the BLM in Taos until his retirement in 2012. Paul’s passion and hard work contributed to the preservation of many historical sites around the Southwest, including Mesa Prieta, The Galisteo Basin, Wild Rivers, and many more. Pablo was a proud member of the Taos Archaeological Society and a long-time supporter of the Archeological Conservancy. In 2014, Paul and Judy moved to Albuquerque to be closer to their children and eight grandchildren. Paul loved camping, traveling, bird watching, cooking, and attending concerts and sporting events. There will be a celebration of his life on April 24 in Taos, NM. If you are interested in attending, please email . In lieu of flowers, Paul’s family is asking for memorial gifts to be made to Taos Community Foundation, noted for the Paul Williams Memorial Fund. These gifts will be directed to causes that were important to Paul in the northern region of New Mexico.
(1946-2020 Jan 31): Age 74
Fred York, an anthropologist, helped reform federal relationships with Native American communities across the American West. In a career spanning some five decades, York was an energetic presence, applying anthropological methods in support of Native American cultural interests in national parks and beyond.
Fred was born in Germany to Fay W. York, a U.S. serviceman and driver for General Lucius Clay during the Berlin Air Lift crises in 1948, and Waltraud Erika York (nee Radau) of Berlin. Raised in Southington, CT, Fred attended the University of Connecticut with a BA in Anthropology, emphasizing the cultures of the American Southwest. Politically engaged, he was also a member of Students for a Democratic Society (SDS) and married a fellow anti-war activist, Fran York, with whom he had a daughter, Jessica, in 1970. York moved to the Four Corners region of the Southwest in 1975, launching an ambitious 16-year program of applied anthropological research. He collaborated with Native American tribes to document enduring threats to their culture --working for the Navajo Nation Historic Preservation Department, the Jicarilla Apache Tribe, and the University of New Mexico’s Office of Contract Archeology. He developed especially close working relationships with the Navajo, helping protect the tribe's graves and key cultural sites from the deleterious effects of resource development. Aided by Navajo translators, York recorded the recollections of elders - providing groundbreaking insights into places previously recorded archaeologically, and producing a rich corpus of short ethnographies and technical reports.
He also oversaw ethnographic studies of tribal ties to National Park Service (NPS) units, such as Wupatki and Chaco Culture National Historical Park. Concurrently, York completed both an M.A. (1988) and a Ph.D. (1990) in Anthropology at The State University of New York in Binghamton. This work culminated in a 1990 Ph.D. dissertation, Capitalist Development and Land in Northeastern Navajo Country, 1880s to 1990s - documenting, through a Marxist lens, federal appropriation of tribal lands for commercial interests in the "checkerboard" region of the reservation. The timing of his work on NPS lands was fortuitous. By 1990, the National Park Service was recruiting Regional Anthropologists to address a rapidly growing list of laws and responsibilities relating to Native American cultural interests, the American Indian Religious Freedom Act (1978), the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (NAGPRA, 1990), federal guidance on documenting "Traditional Cultural Properties" for the National Register of Historic Places (1990), and others.
Acknowledging the magnitude of these obligations, the George H.W. Bush administration and Secretary of the Interior Manuel Lujan, Jr. advised the NPS to begin recruiting some of the top applied anthropologists in the field. York received offers to become Regional Anthropologist from the regional NPS offices in Seattle and Santa Fe, but Seattle asked first and he accepted - moving to that city in 1991. His responsibilities soon encompassed the entire Pacific West region, California, Oregon, Washington, Idaho, Nevada, Hawaii, and U.S. Pacific Island territories - including roughly sixty park units in total. In his new role, York worked with well over 100 tribes and Native organizations across the American West. In many parks, he initiated regular NPS consultation with tribes for the first time - focusing on dispute resolution, and engaging tribal members through the park planning process. Critical of the uneven research of "applied anthropologists" working for governments and contracting firms, York became a passionate advocate for the professionalization of anthropology within federal agencies. He denounced certain agency contrivances - such as maintaining simple lists of archaeological sites or "ethnographic resources" needing protection on public lands. Instead, York advocated using social science methods to address longstanding grievances, to understand tribal interests in their deeper historical context, and to meaningfully "build long-term relationships" between park managers and Native peoples. Working at the NPS- managed Bear River Massacre Site in Idaho, for example, he collaborated with Shoshone descendants of survivors to guide future site management and the unique public interpretation challenges of sharing this place with the American public. In other settings, such as southern California parks, York sought the input of tribes on the appropriate protection and public interpretation of culturally sensitive burials and petroglyph sites.
York also worked with non-Native communities, addressing issues of enduring concern. He worked closely with Japanese-Americans incarcerated during World War II and their families, for example, helping develop plans for NPS management of Minidoka National Historic Site in Idaho and the interpretation of its painful history to the American public.
He oversaw similar efforts, systematically engaging former patients and their descendants from the leper colony commemorated by at Kalaupapa National Historical Park in Hawaii. Tribes frequently approached York, expressing concerns regarding prohibitions on plant gathering within traditional harvest sites incorporated into national parks. In response, he initiated ethnobotanical studies of parks such as Yosemite, and in 2000 co-chaired a nationwide forum of NPS managers addressing Native American plant gathering interests on NPS lands. Working through the agency's American Indian Liaison Office in Washington, DC, York co-authored regulations allowing tribes to develop plant gathering agreements with park units, and sought tribal and agency input on these regulatory changes throughout the nation.
Though the final language of the new regulation (36 CFR 2.6) departed somewhat from his original and was only finalized after York's retirement, they decriminalized traditional plant gathering on national park lands through agreements still being developed today. An animated proponent of protecting Native American burials, he also directed legal efforts by parks and museums to return curated human remains and sacred objects to tribes across the West.
So too, he advised tribes developing Tribal Historic Preservation Offices to document and protect culturally significant places on tribal lands. A voracious reader of the literatures of anthropology and history, York collaborated on writing projects throughout his career. He served as co-editor of a 2009 issue of the George Wright Forum addressing Traditional Cultural Properties and founded the NPS Pacific West Region Social Science Series, a venue for research on related themes. York advised ethnographic researchers within parks, and mentored younger anthropologists in both agency and academic settings.
After his 2014 retirement York remained in Seattle, but traveled nationally and internationally with family and friends. Still mentoring younger anthropologists, he also tinkered on classic cars and enjoying the company of friends close to home. At the time of his death, Fred was collaborating on several publications, and independently authoring a book-length treatment of the relationship between Yosemite National Park and American Indian communities. He is survived by his daughter, Jessica York-Perez, her husband Ron, and his grandchildren Ramon and Chelsea; his sister Elizabeth York and her husband Gary Carter, "brother" Richard Savage and a circle of close friends and colleagues.
By Doug Deur, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Dept. of Anthropology, Portland State University