Santa Fe National Forest Site Stewards

Events & Lectures

Site Steward Lecture Series 2016 - 2017

All lectures will be held at the forest service office located at 11 Forest Lane, approximately 6 miles southwest of Santa Fe, off the intersection of NM 14 and NM 599, directly east of the Rail Runner Station. Doors open at 5:15. Lectures begin at 6:00 and go until 7:00. You are welcome to bring a brown bag supper to enjoy before or during the lecture.


March 1, 2017.  Ms Emily Brown and Rory Gautier.  "Genizaros Sites"

Genizaros were Native American slaves who once served as house servants, shepherds, and in other capacities throughout the Southwest United States.

Emily Brown holds a doctorate in archaeology from Columbia University.  Prior to founding her own cultural resource management company in 2005, she worked as an archaeologist for the National Park Service.  She specializes in the archaeology of the Southwest, but has a second interest in the form of ethnomusicology and combined the two to write a dissertation on prehistoric musical instruments of the region.  She lives and works in Santa Fe, where she also gardens and keeps bees. 

You can learn more about her company, Aspen CRM Solutions, at Aspen CRM.

Rory Gautier is retired after 30 years with the National Park Service, including stints at Bandelier, El Malpais, El Morro, Petrified Forest and Chaco.  He is now working for Emily Brown at  Aspen CRM, where they have collaborated on several studies including this Site Steward presentation.  Rory grew up in Los Alamos, Albuquerque, and Taos, and studied at UNM.  He has been involved with New Mexico archeology for over 40 years.  Although work took him to Arizona and California, he always considered New Mexico home.


April 5, 2017.  Larry L. Baker, M.A.  "Navajo Defensive Sites: Pueblitos and Preservation in Dinetah"

From 1993 to present, Larry L. Baker has served as the Executive Director of the San Juan County Archaeological Research Center and Library at Salmon Ruins in Bloomfield, NM. The Research Center and Library as well as the 11th century pueblo, pioneer homestead, and Heritage Park are owned by San Juan County, New Mexico, and managed under a lease agreement by the San Juan County Museum Association.

As a Southwestern archaeologist with over 37 years of professional experience, Mr. Baker has been involved in numerous archaeological endeavors including: research, cultural resource management, and ruins stabilization/historic preservation.

Mr. Baker has authored numerous agency reports, papers, and publications. Among these are:

2008 Salmon Ruins: Architecture and Development of a Chacoan Satellite on the San Juan River. In Chaco's Northern Prodigies, edited by P. F. Reed, pp. 29-41, University of Utah Press, Salt Lake City.

1984 The Stabilization of Guadalupe Ruin, Contributions in Anthropology, Vol.II, Eastern New Mexico University, Portales.




Previous Lectures

September 7, 2016.  Ed Ranney.  " "

Ed Ranney is an internationally known photographer who has photographed landscapes, both in their natural and human-adjusted forms, for over forty years.  Ed will speak about his photography and experiences relating to the Nazca Lines in South America and surveys of prehistoric sites along the Andean Desert Coast.

Ed's full-page photographs are a valuable asset to the book Down Country, written by Lucy Lippard about the Galisteo Basin

October 5, 2016.  John Pitts.  "When Lightning Strikes Twice:  Correlating Lightning Strikes and Rock Art Imagery"

Lightning strikes are one of the most visual elements found in nature.  Hence, it is not surprising that Native Americans have been captivated for eons by the power of lightning.  Evidence of that is seen in the frequent depictions of lightning in rock art images, pottery designs and textile patterns, as well as the role lightning plays in many of the stories of those ancient cultures.  Mr. Pitts has studied the phenomenon of lightning bolt tracks on rock/cliff surfaces, called rock fulgurites, for years.  His research has raised a number of questions pertaining to the frequency of those strikes, the dating of them, and the possible connection to the associated rock art. Since little has been established scientifically in relation to lightning bolt strikes to date, the field is wide open. Mr. Pitts will present certain theories concerning the relationship between the rock fulgurites and rock art imagery portraying nature and human survival.
Mr. Pitts was educated at Princeton University (BA, 1967) and Johns Hopkins University (MA, 1969) and served in the U.S. Foreign Service for 28 years before retiring to Santa Fe to pursue archaeological studies. His primary focus has been on the conservation and preservation of rock art sites throughout the Southwest. He has conducted major rock art recording projects in Arizona, Utah and New Mexico, including long-term recording/surveying with the Mesa Prieta Petroglyph Project (Leyden, NM) and the Sears Point BLM Recording Project (Arizona). Most recently he headed a team which recorded rock art in the expanded areas of the Petrified Forest National Park (Holbrook, AZ) as part of the Centennial Celebration of the Park System. Mr. Pitts is associated with the New Mexico Museum of Indian Art and Culture and serves as a Site Steward with the Bureau of Land Management, National Forest Service, Bandelier National Monument and the Los Alamos National Laboratory.

November 2, 2016.  Steven Moffson.  "Understanding the National Register in New Mexico"

Tonight you will not hear the dry stuff of statistics, but the living breathing stories of people and places of historic value to the people of New Mexico.

Mr Moffson is well prepared for his job as architectural historian and the State and National Register Coordinator for the New Mexico Historic Preservation Division. His degrees are from Delaware and Pennsylvania.  He was previously awarded the Paul E. Buchanan award for his Martin Luther King Jr National Historic Site historic resource study from 1996-2013.

Statewide he has investigated segments of the Camino Real and the various Snata Fe Trails.  Several historic districts as well as native and traditional cultural properties are also within his bailiwick.

February 1, 2017.  Jana Comstock.  "Rock Art on the Kaibab Plateau: Applying Legacy Data to Heritage Management"

This presentation will summarize Jana Comstock's Masters thesis which focuses on applying legacy data, existing documentation, to heritage resources management.  She outlines a preservation and analytic process applicable to all types of archaeological legacy data.  A case study of the rock art of the Kaibab Plateau, which lies on the north rim of the Grand Canyon in northern Arizona, demonstrates this methodology. This thesis examines the 261 known rock art sites of the North Kaibab Ranger District (NKRD), a management area of the Kaibab National Forest, through statistical and spatial analyses. 

Jana is an Assistant Zone Archaeologist on the Santa Fe National Forest where she has worked on the Española and Coyote Ranger Districts for four years.  She has a Bachelor's degree in Psychology with a minor in Anthropology from Texas State University-San Marcos and a Master's degree in Anthropology with a focus in Applied Archaeology from Northern Arizona University.  Jana has also worked on the Kaibab National Forest and at the Great Smoky Mountains National Park