Dig Historia: A Public Archaeology Project

Join us for  Dig Historia: A Public Archaeology Project, our first virtual lecture of the year!

Mesa Talks is brought to you in partnership by Los Luceros Historic Site and Mesa Prieta Petroglyph Project.
The talk will be presented live with an interactive question and answer session at the end.
Dig Historia: A Public Archaeology Project at Coronado Historic Site
By Carlyn Stewart
As archaeologists, it is our responsibility to engage and educate the public about archaeology while demonstrating its relevance in the world today.
Archaeological projects that include the public in a hands-on approach can be a successful means of doing this. However, some may be concerned that archaeological standards or data might be negatively affected by this approach.
Dig Historia!, a public archaeological project located at Coronado Historic Site in Bernalillo, NM, sought to prove that immersive public archaeological projects provide a means of education that is engaging for the public and can safely contribute high-quality data.
Dig Historia! occurred during the Fall semester of 2019 in which over 30 volunteers and graduate students worked together to try and answer the question, “does the rumored 17th-century Spanish hacienda lie buried beneath the railroad bed?”
In this paper, I examine the effectiveness of a public archaeology format in answering this archaeological question.
Wednesday, April 28, 2021 at 6 PM MDT – 7:30 PM MDT
Price: Free · Duration: 1 hr 30 min
PublicAnyone on or off Facebook
About us and visit for more information Please Visit:   nmhistoricsites.org


The New Mexico Historic Site system was established on March 14, 1931 by an Act for the Preservation of the Scientific Resources of New Mexico, H.B. No. 124. Section 2 of the Act authorized the Commissioner of the State Land Office, on the recommendation of the Science Commission and with the approval of the Commissioner of Public Lands to “declare by public proclamation that historic and prehistoric structures and other objects of scientific interest that are situated upon the lands owned or controlled by the State of New Mexico, shall be state monuments, and may reserve as a part thereof such parcels of land as may be necessary to the proper care and management of the objects to be protected.”

In the ensuing years, sixteen historic sites were so proclaimed and designated. The first were designated in 1935 and included Pecos, Gran Quivira, Jemez, Coronado, and Quarai. Lincoln was proclaimed in 1937. Paako and Abo were proclaimed in 1938. In 1940, Glorieta Battlefield was designated. Folsom and La Mesilla Plaza followed in the 1950s. Fort Sumner was proclaimed in 1968, followed by Fort Selden, Mimbres and the Dorsey Mansion in the 1970s.

Over the years, five of the historic sites were transferred to the National Park Service. These included Pecos, Gran Quivira, Abo, Quarai and Glorieta Battlefield. The Dorsey Mansion was sold to a private party. Five of the historic sites have remained inactive for a variety of reasons. These include Folsom, Paako, Mimbres, La Mesilla Plaza, and the Palace of the Governors. The Palace of the Governors has functioned as the state history museum.

Seven sites are active and open to the public. These include Fort Sumner Historic Site/Bosque Redondo Memorial, Coronado, Los Luceros, Fort Selden, Jemez, Fort Stanton and Lincoln.

In 2004, the historic Barela-Reynolds House and Property in Mesilla, was designated a state historic site upon its donation to the state by the John Paul Taylor family.

Mr.& Mrs. Taylor will retain a life estate on the property that will not be open to the public until their death.