April 9, 2014

Society Spotlight: Santa Fe Archaeological Society

New Mexico is well known as an area of archaeological importance, filled with unique sites, monuments and museums. It is no surprise, therefore, that the Santa Fe Archaeological Society has been around for over 100 years. The Society became a chapter of the Archaeological Institute of America in 1916, and has long been known for its active, dedicated members and exciting fieldtrips.

New Mexico’s history plays a large role in attracting new members and ensuring high turn outs at events: with national monuments and archaeological sites all around, “everyone is interested!” Paula Lozar, an AIA member since 1999, is happy to state: “I’m fortunate to live in an area where the past is still very much present, both as archeological remains and in the person of today’s descendants.  AIA offers local members the opportunity to place our past in a worldwide context and better appreciate what makes New Mexico unique.” Over sixty people attended the Society’s April 8, 2014 meeting, to hear Dr. Heather McKillop discuss the Payne’s Creek Project. The other big news of the night was the May/June 2014 issue of Archaeology Magazine, which features the article “Searching for the Comanche Empire,” in New Mexico.

As the Santa Fe Society is the only AIA society in New Mexico, members come from all over, and society officers note the “nice variety” of people, from professors to metal-workers. Members are gearing up for the annual four day field trip from April 25-28, this year featuring a bus tour with stops in Cimmaron, Clovis, Fort Sumner and other sites of archaeological interest. For those considering joining, next year’s trip may feature an out-of-this-world visit to Roswell.

Thanks to hardworking society officers past and present, there is always something to do in Santa Fe for those with a passion for archaeology. For more information about any upcoming Santa Fe Archaeological Society lectures or trips, please visit

If you have any questions about Archaeological Institute of America or local society memberships, please contact Deanna Baker at 617-353-8705 or

If you are a society president and would like to see your society featured by the AIA, please contact Emily Maskas at 617-353-8703 or

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The AIA is North America's largest and oldest nonprofit organization dedicated to archaeology. The Institute advances awareness, education, fieldwork, preservation, publication, and research of archaeological sites and cultural heritage throughout the world. Your contribution makes a difference.