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OUR MISSION is to preserve archaeological sites and collections, to curate the collections locally, and to make them available for research and education; to develop partnerships with American Indians, cultural groups and the communities it serves; and to foster a deeper understanding of prehistory and American Indian history in the Verde Valley through the science of archaeology. 


Three Grants Awarded to the Center for Verde Valley Site Watch Program

The Center has been concerned with the increase in vandalism to prehistoric sites in the Verde Valley.  This includes site destruction and graffiti.  In response, the Center created a program called Verde Valley Site Watch to support and enhance the efforts of the Site Steward program of the Arizona State Historic Preservation Office.  The Center has received grants of over $3,000 from the Arizona Community Foundation of Yavapai County, the Arizona Community Foundation of Sedona and the Boynton Canyon Preservation Fund to support the program. Read more >>

Center Closes on the Acquisition of the Simonton Ranch Property

After over one year of negotiations, the Center can announce that it has acquired the 15.28 acre parcel of land in the Simonton Ranch along Homestead Parkway.  The property will be the future home of a new repository, museum, auditorium and conference center.  The two parcels have been appraised at $1.37 million.  The larger parcel of 9.28 acres was donated by Mr. Simonton to the Center.  The other parcel of 6.0 acres was partially donated with the Center agreeing to pay $250,000.  Mr. Simonton will carry the note for five years.  More on this acquisition and our plans can be found by going to Our Future.

Center Receives Grey Fox Ridge Collection

During the late summer and fall of 2008 EnviroSystems, a cultural resource and biological consulting firm in Flagstaff, had been contracted by the developer to investigate the Grey Fox Ridge development area along the Verde River. The archaeological investigations of Grey Fox Ridge revealed a complex occupational history of what was primarily a Southern Sinagua pit house farmstead or small hamlet. A total of over 11,000 artifacts from the site were slated to eventually be curated at the Sharlot Hall Museum in Prescott. It was hearing about this collection and its eventual transfer out of the area that was the impetus that started the Center. The site excavations led to the discovery and study of 21 sets of human remains (14 inhumations and 7 cremations), 18 pit structures, and 30 other types of features.

With the "qualified" review of the Center by the Arizona State Museum, the Center is now in a position to receive such a collection. As a result, on May 26, EnviroSystems delivered thirteen archival boxes of artifacts and one box of reports and field notes to the Center. The collection is now being evaluated by Center staff to develop an eventual exhibit. “This is a rather emotional moment for many of us who have struggled to get the Center established and recognized as a qualified institution,” said Executive Director Ken Zoll. “This is the collection that started it all and now it is ‘home’.”


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