JUNE 2017
A Note from the Director

After over two and a half years of effort, last week, the Lower Pecos National Historic Landmark Nomination team submitted the final nomination to the NPS Heritage Partnerships team to be added to the fall docket of the Landmarks Committee's considerations. This is an exciting milestone and an important step in the continued protection of the unique cultural heritage of our country. 

Panther Cave
The nomination document itself is impressive with 82 pages of single-spaced content plus another 50+ pages of maps, figures and images. It nominates 37 outstanding archaeological sites in the Lower Pecos region for designation within the Lower Pecos Canyonlands Archaeological District. 

Twenty nine sites have beautiful Pecos River Style rock art and the rest are well-preserved archaeological deposits or outstanding excavated collections. Twenty one of the nominated sites are on National Park Service or Texas Parks and Wildlife property, like Panther Cave, shown here. Sixteen are owned by private landowners who elected to participate including Texas Tech University, The Nature Conservancy and ranching families. 

Nancy Kenmotsu
This was a collaborative effort between agencies and landowners across the region. We are so grateful to all. A very special thanks must go to our incredibly knowledgeable, talented and hard-working author, Dr. Nancy Kenmotsu. No one could have created a more thorough nomination that will almost certainly succeed in achieving a designation. We could never have managed this long, arduous process or produced such a fine product without her. 

The next step is...to wait. If we are indeed considered at the fall Landmarks Committee meeting, we may know the result by the end of this year. If we are not included in that docket, we will have to wait until spring 2018. We will keep you posted!

Successfully achieving a designation will, frankly, not change much in our everyday lives. There won't be star-studded fanfare or throngs of visitors. What it will do is raise the credibility and recognition of the ancient heritage of this region to allow those of us who care for it to more easily garner funds for it's preservation, protection and study. And that's what we care about. We all love this land. We love it's heritage. We are here to learn from it and preserve it. This designation will help us to do just that.

Please join me in thanking all who traveled this long nomination road with Shumla. Fingers crossed!

All the very best,
Jessica Lee

P.S. If you have any questions about the nomination, feel free to reach out to me at [email protected].
June was another whirlwind month for us at Shumla! 
Here are a few pictures of what's been going on. 

Our 2016-2017 Shumla Scholars completed their term with flying colors! 

Carolyn and Jessica attended (and Carolyn presented at) the Marfa Agave Festival hosted in part by Meredith Dreiss and David Brown, shown here at the Crowley Theater taking questions after the screening of their film Agave Is Life.
Karen and Vicky presented at the 44th Annual ARARA Conference in Redmond, Oregon ( American Rock Art Research Association). Here they are with Shumla supporter and friend, Mary Doak.

Karen traveled down under to Australia to gather rock art paint samples for plasma oxidation preparation and radiocarbon dating.

Shumla's Harrington Campus got some much-needed new paint. 
All spruced up to welcome visitors in the fall!

We welcomed a new intern, Francesca Vega, from Texas Tech University.

The Texas State Ancient Southwest Texas Project team finished the incredible feat of back-filling all excavation trenches in Eagle Cave. Above they are showing their bobcat pride. Below you can see what dusty grueling work it is to preserve the site and archaeological deposits for future generations. Learn more about their work and why it's important to back fill at their website.

We had a fun get-together after the June Shumla Board meeting with Board members, staff, friends and family (and Red, the Shumla mascot).

Photo credit: Daniel Rodriguez
Jessica presented at the Perot Museum's Social Science Night in Dallas.

We're a busy bunch! We wouldn't have it any other way!
Alexandria Project Pre-Season Draft

On August 1, 2017 we will launch the three-year intensive field work portion of the Alexandria Project. 

Research Team Roster for the 2017-2018 Field Season
(left to right in picture below)
Position # Years with Shumla Years
Jerod Roberts Archaeologist 3 2014-2017
Amanda Castañeda Archaeologist 3 2010-2013
Karen Steelman Principal Investigator 6 mos. 2017
Charles Koenig Project Archaeologist 2 2012-2013
Vicky Roberts Archaeologist 4 2013-2017

More info on your Alexandria Team coming next month!
Have you gotten your pendant yet?? 
We still have a few left.
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Spotlight on Victoria Roberts
Shumla Staff Archaeologist and Database Czar

Vicky joined Shumla as an intern in July of 2013. She was hired on full-time the following June.  Happy Three Year Anniversary to Vicky! 

What a gift this amazing woman has been to Shumla. Apart from her excellent archaeological skills, she manages Shumla's ever-growing and increasingly complex database demands. She says she just "fell into it," but anyone else, having fallen into it, would have fallen right back out. 

A selection of Vicky's reading material
Instead, Vicky dove into the abyss. She started reading books about database design and data management theory. She lived, spoke and dreamed data. She taught herself Access and began to perfect a way to structure, categorize, visualize, store and analyze our immense data set. 

As Shumla continues to grow, so does the demand on the database. Vicky is currently writing a migration plan for the database to move to a SQL server back end. This move will allow the database to be bigger, more powerful, and more efficient than ever before.

Thank you, Vicky! Thank you for your humor, your smile, your hard work and for making sure our many terabytes of priceless image and text data are organized and secure. 
Vicky also makes the perfect base to our Shumla Girls Human Pyramid.
Have you ever sent mail to Shumla and not heard back from us?  Occasionally, we don't receive our mail and often packages from our Amazon Wishlist come with no information about the giver, even if they left us a note. If you sent a letter or a gift and expected to hear from us, please call us.  We want to communicate with you and thank you!  Our  mailing address is P.O. Box 627, Comstock, TX 78837.  If ever in doubt, call us at 432-292-4848.  Thank you!

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Shumla Archaeological Research & Education Center 
PO Box 627 / 148 Sanderson / Comstock, TX 78837 USA
[email protected]    432-292-4848       www.shumla.org 
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