EVENT: Anza Borrego--Part 4: Desert Archaeology--FREE!

Posted by Adventure 16 | 02.17.2016


Dr. Joan S. Schneider, will talk about the vast Cultural Heritage represented within Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, from human activities at least 5000 years ago to more recent times.  Her overview will include both prehistoric and historic remnants of the past as well as describing some of the more interesting and complex projects that took place during the time she served as Associate State Archaeologist in Anza Borrego.

Schneider is a strong supporter of Citizen Education as a means to both protect and preserve our collective Cultural Heritage.  She will describe the eight Cultural Preserves incorporated within Anza-Borrego, why they have been set aside as Preserves, and how the visiting public (hikers, campers, horseback riders, mountain bikers, as well as casual visitors) should treat archaeological sites when and if they come across them while enjoying Anza-Borrego.  Come and hear an “Insiders View.”  Find out where you can go to experience some of the things Schneider will speak about.  Learn how you can help preserve Cultural Heritage and participate in Park volunteer organizations. 

Thursday, March 3:  A16 San Diego Store





Schneider received her MS and PhD degrees in Anthropology from the University of California, Riverside, after a career change from the health sciences (She has Bachelor of Science and Master of Public Health degrees from Columbia University in New York City).  In 2011, she retired from her position as Associate State Archaeologist for the Colorado Desert District, of which Anza-Borrego Desert State Park is a major component. In retirement, Schneider continues to serve as a volunteer at Anza-Borrego as a member of the Colorado Desert Archaeology Society and has recently become a Trustee of the Anza Borrego Foundation.

Schneider has worked for over 30 years in arid regions of the world, including the Colorado, Mojave, Sonoran, Negev, and more recently, the Gobi.  As a Principal Investigator, she has conducted projects in Joshua Tree and Death Valley National Parks, as well being an Archaeological Field School Director for the University of Nevada, Las Vegas at Joshua Tree. A Fulbright Specialist award, a United States Ambassador’s Cultural Heritage grant, Trust for Mutual Understanding, and the Earthwatch Institute support her Mongolian research.  She works closely with Native American governments and individuals, government agencies, and private corporations on many projects.  

Her archaeological research focuses on the reasons why prehistoric peoples (particularly women) chose certain stones for tools and vessels and how the materials chosen related to the tasks performed or to the uses of the artifacts.  She has contributed articles to regional, national, and international professional publications.  Her co-written book: “The Purple Hummingbird: a biography of Elizabeth Warder Crozer Campbell,” an early southern California archaeologist and contemporary of Malcolm J. Rogers of the San Diego Museum of Man.  Campbell’s innovative ideas about Earlier Peoples of California and the Desert West were derided by Rogers and his colleagues, but are now accepted as valid.