Upcoming Lectures

Until further notice, all meetings will be held virtually.


When: Thursday, November 11, 2021 at 7:00 pm
Where: Google Meet (meet.google.com/jta-cmzn-tgn)
Cost: Free & Open to the Public


Archaeology for a Changing Colorado


In October, History Colorado released Archaeology for a Changing Colorado, an archaeology-focused study on how archaeology impacts the Colorado economy. Join Dr. Holly K. Norton on Thursday night for a discussion of this study and what it means for the future of Colorado archaeology. 


When: Thursday, December 9, 2021 at 7:00 pm
Where: Google Meet (meet.google.com/jta-cmzn-tgn)
Cost: Free & Open to the Public


Lessons from Realistic Experiments with Archaeological Weapons

Devin Pettigrew, PhD

Archaeological weapons experiments yield significant insights into the performance of ancient hunting tools and their impacts on ancient livelihoods. However, experiments follow different protocols dependent on the goals of the experimenter and the questions being tested. Controlled experiments isolate phenomena of interest in laboratory-like environments to ensure that specific causal mechanisms leading to an outcome can be accurately observed, but laboratory conditions can be substantially different from the ancient conditions of tool application, and as a result can produce misleading results. Realistic experiments produce conditions that are closer to ancient tool use, but the causal variables leading to an outcome are more challenging to observe. In other sciences, exploratory methods are now being implemented that maintain more of the complex variability in the “real world,” while “wide-instrumentation” is used to observe causal mechanisms and isolate them in post processing. I present insights from my own archaeological weapons experiments using both controlled and realistic approaches, highlighting advantages and disadvantages of each. Exploratory experiments with the atlatl and dart and knapped stone armatures reveal features of ancient hunting weapon performance that have been overlooked in controlled experiments.

From a young age Devin Pettigrew, PhD has replicated and practiced with old hunting tools like the atlatl and dart (spear-thrower). As an archaeologist, Devin tests the ballistics of ancient weapon systems through realistic and laboratory experiments. These experiments produce data on weapon efficacy along with samples of damaged stone armatures and animal bone with known histories of impact for comparison with the archaeological record. Using experimental and ethnographic evidence, Devin seeks to understand the decisions made by ancient hunters, how they articulated with their prey and their environment, and how they achieved success.

When: Thursday, January 13, 2021 at 7:00 pm
Where: Google Meet (meet.google.com/jta-cmzn-tgn)
Cost: Free & Open to the Public


Stewardship of Colorado Springs’ Archaeological Resources

Anna Cordova
City of Colorado Springs

Cordova (right) with representatives from the Southern Ute Tribe. Image courtesy of Cordova

The City of Colorado Springs is rich in archaeology.  Over the course of the last five years, Lead Archaeologist, Anna Cordova has handled a variety of projects involving the City’s rich cultural and archaeological resources.  Some of her recent endeavors have included overseeing multiple projects in Garden of the Gods Park, conducting survey and test excavation at Corral Bluffs, assisting with full surveys of Austin Bluffs Open Space and Cheyenne Canon Park, further exploring the findings from the excavation of General Palmer’s middens, recent and on-going excavation of the Fatty Rice curio shop site at Garden of the Gods, and many more.  The projects have involved public engagement, tribal consultation, field work, lab work, collaboration with the Colorado Springs Pioneers Museum, and partnerships with various agencies.  This presentation will explore the challenges, successes, and rewards of the efforts that go into the stewardship of Colorado Springs’ archaeological assets.

Anna Cordova is a municipal archaeologist for the City of Colorado Springs. Cordova has nearly 20 years of experience in professional archaeology and ethnography. Her experience includes a variety of field work, laboratory work, and extensive collaboration with various government agencies, contractors, tribal representatives, and indigenous communities. Cordova has archaeological experience in several states, with most of her work taking place in Hawaii and in Colorado. She grounds her work in maintaining relationships with Native American tribes and communities, and strives to bring indigenous voices for the forefront in order to guide the stewardship of the many natural and cultural resources of Colorado Springs. Cordova has focused on the ethics of archaeology and ethnography throughout her career, and works to shine a light on these issues in the greater archaeology community.  Her work as the City of Colorado Springs Lead Archaeologist involves frequent tribal consultation, public education, mitigation, and general stewardship of the archaeological resources of City of Colorado Springs’ parks and open spaces.




May 2021: Claire Novotny, PhD: Games of Change and Fate: Patolli at the Ancient Maya Site of Gallon Jug

April 2021: Vicki Twinde-Javner: Excavation of the Lessard Site, Prairie du Chien, Wisconsin

March 2021: Ray Sumner: The Days After Colorado’s Darkest Day: Initial Work at an Early Indian Wars Battlefield in Colorado, USA

February 2021: Jayson P. Gill: The Transcaucasian Expedition: Exploring the Archaeological Record of the Armenian Pleistocene

January 2021: Dr. Christopher J. Kerns: Archaeological Inquiries and the Orcadian Neolithic — Did Orcadian Archaeologists Change Archaeology

December 2020: Mark Willis: Archaeology in 3D

November 2020: Reid Farmer: Desert Training Center: World War II Military Archaeology in the California Desert

October 2020: Bonnie J. Clark, PhD: Finding Solace in the Soil: The Archaeology of Gardens and Gardeners at Colorado’s Japanese American Internment Camp

August 2020: Dr. Mark Mitchell: Warfare on the Northern Plains: Quantifying the Construction of Community Fortification at the Molander Site

July 2020: Carlton Shield Chief Gover: Dating Apps in Archaeology



Is there a particular speaker that you would like to see? Email the IPCAS Vice President to suggest a speaker.