In Search of Petroglyphs
Now that I am living in New Mexico, I have more time and opportunity to explore this amazing land. I'm usually thinking about the summer seminars Stevie Mack and I lead, looking for new (and accessible) places to take our participants.
None of Tsankawi has been excavated, though evidence of occupation is seen in the remains of foundations of small adobe structures.
"It is unlawful to excavate, remove, disturb, deface, or destroy and historic or prehistoric building structure, ruin, site, or in-place exhibit, artifact, or object, or to collect, appropriate, excavate, damage, disturb, or destroy artifacts, pictographs, petroglyphs, objects of antiquity, fossils, or scientific specimens."
I took this photo right beside the sign. On a rock were placed a number of ancient pot shards, probably returned by someone who had taken them from this or another ancestral pueblo site. It is bad karma to take things away from such a site and people have been known to return them.
This land was inhabited by the ancestors of Pueblo Indians who now live nearby in San Ildefonso Pueblo. These people didn't disappear, they just moved to better environments.