Skip to content

Latest News

Heritage Resource Looting and Vandalism in Arizona: How Serious is the Problem?

Who We Are We are professional archaeologists and resource managers with career and organizational commitments to the protection and appropriate uses of heritage sites and objects—places and things inherited from the past and still valued today. The Arizona State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO) and Archaeology Southwest are dedicated to the proposition that archaeological and historical…

Read More »

How to Visit Cultural Sites with Respect

Archaeological sites are fragile and non-renewable. The impacts of our visits to sites can add up to significant damage. But there are ways to appreciate these special places and preserve them for future generations.   “I always stress respect. Everything is a sacred, living entity. Everything has a spirit… Every place you go should be…

Read More »

How Respect and Cultural Awareness Protect Archaeological Sites

  “Archaeological sites being ‘abandoned’ doesn’t mean that they’re abandoned in the spiritual world. They are still a part of this culture. Tangible aspects were left there so that people don’t forget.” Kenny Bowekaty, as told to Stacy Ryan   Kenny Bowekaty is from the Pueblo of Zuni and has worked as an archaeologist for…

Read More »

Repatriating Ancestors From a Missionary’s Basement

  “Native people have been dealing with desecration of not only our homelands but our burials and our sacred places for ages and ages and ages. It’s nothing new to us.” Pete Coffey, as told to the Art Bust podcast   In 2014, Pete Coffey–One Feather received gruesome news about human remains recovered from an…

Read More »


Archaeological Resource Crime is a Wicked Problem

Archaeological Resource Crime is a Wicked Problem John R. Welch, Landscape and Site Preservation Program Director People around the world agree that taking stuff that’s not theirs and digging up graves is wrong. So why do these wrongs keep happening? Why are they common, almost universal? Why have several generations of community leaders and law…

Read More »


What Does a Crime Against History Look Like?

What Does a Crime Against History Look Like? Stacy Ryan, Preservation Archaeologist A crime against history, or an archaeological resource crime, refers to violations of the Archaeological Resources Protection Act. Prohibited acts include the theft, vandalism, and trafficking of cultural items and human remains that are at least 100 years of age. These acts are…

Read More »