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Exciting speakers coming all this year!
February 9, 2021 at 5:30 pm MST
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Zoom ID 545 842 9500
Unraveling the Long Road to the Maize Diet
in the Neotropics of Mesoamerica
Keith M Prufer
Pollen and starch grain evidence indicates that domesticated maize (Zea mays subspecies mays) first appears in the Balsas region of Mexico by ~9,000 years ago, but few data exist on when corn became an integral part of the human diet in Mesoamerica. In this talk I present new data for a transect spanning 9,500-1,200 years ago of stable isotopes of carbon showing the adoption of maize was gradual, later than might be expected, and resulted in a maize dependent diet in the neotropics by 4000 B.P.
Keith M Prufer is a Professor of Anthropology and director of the Environmental Archaeology Laboratory at the University of New Mexico. For 25 years he has conducted excavations in the Maya Lowlands focusing on human-environmental relationships. His newest project is investigating the Paleoindian and Archaic origins of humans in the neotropics through studies of diet, technology, and genomics.
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Matt Barbour gave on December 8, 2020
Fascinating Finds: Seven Bizarre and Extraordinarily Informative Artifacts
Found Behind the Palace of the Governors
Between 2002 and 2004, the Office of Archaeological Studies performed excavations behind Santa Fe’s Palace of the Governors in preparation for the construction of the New Mexico History Museum. This project recovered over 700,000 artifacts, each with a story to tell. Yet, some of these items are - by their very nature - more fascinating than others.
Objects, such as an Aztec bowl with the power to cure acne and the slag-lined cupel from Battersea Works in England, have the potential to shed light on lesser known aspects of New Mexico’s often sordid and colorful past. This presentation will examine seven of the most bizarre artifacts found during the archaeological excavations and the history behind their use and disposal at the Palace of the Governors.
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