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Chipeta Chapter

Colorado Archaeological Society

Montrose, CO


The Chipeta Chapter, established in Montrose, CO in 1935, is the oldest continuously active chapter of the Colorado Archaeological Society (CAS). Our objectives are to foster interest in archaeology and to discourage the exploitation of archaeological resources.

CAS is a non-profit organization with chapters located throughout the state. Members include professional and avocational archaeologists as well as individuals interested in learning more about the practices and discoveries of archaeology.

Chipeta Chapter benefits include:


Join us on the third Wednesday of each month (except in December, June, July, and August) for an entertaining and educational archaeological presentation. Meetings are free and open to the public. In addition, we hold special events for members, including a summer picnic and a winter holiday party.

Next Meeting

Carol Patterson, PhD: Rock Art Specialist
Athapaskan Social Imagery of the Uinta Basin, Interpreted Through Ethnographic Analogy
Wednesday, May 18, 7:00 p.m.
Baldridge Hall, Montrose United Methodist Church
(at the corner of S. 1st Street and Park Avenue)

This presentation demonstrates the continuity of Athapaskan culture through time by comparing the iconography depicted in the petroglyphs of the Uintah Basin and the ethnographic literature. Archaeologists have debated the Avonlea II projectiles (A.D.0-750), Promontory Cave moccasins, Fremont grey ware pottery, and pit house design as supporting evidence of Athapaskan presence but have never compared the rock art with Athabaskan ethnography. Karl Schlesier, ed. 1994. Plains Indians, A.D. 500-1500, postulated the Uinta Fremont were antecedent to the Jicarilla Apache. So, following up on his suggestion I have spent two years studying Apache ethnography and the petroglyphs of the Uinta Basin. Indeed, the images are diagnostic of the Apache, ruling out non-Athabaskan language groups. This I know for a fact, from my studies of Plains, Pueblo, and Uto/Aztecan (Numic) rock art and ethnography for over 40 years.

This presentation is in three parts: (1) The Creation Beings (Hactcin) and spirit dancers (Gaans), and Ancestral Man and Woman. (2) The Hero Twins with Killer-of-Enemies and Child-of-the-Water. (3) The Warriors with specific war-cap headdresses compared with historic photographs of the Jicarilla, Mescalero, and the Chiricahua.

Carol Patterson is a Colorado native, born and raised in Denver. She received her BA from the University of New Mexico, her MA from Columbia Pacific University, and her PhD in rock art studies from James Cook University in Queensland, Australia. She taught Cultural Anthropology and Southwest Archaeology at Metropolitan State College for four years, and at Mesa State University for two years. She started her own company, Urraca Archaeology and worked as a contractor for cultural resources management and as the archaeologist for the BLM in Montrose, CO. She moved to Bluff Utah in 2015, to retire and continue her studies of Basketmaker II – Pueblo IV rock art and associated mythology. After publishing these findings, she has begun studies of Apache mythology and the Athabaskan migrations through eastern Utah and western Colorado as it is represented in the rock art.

Field Trips

The western slope of Colorado offers many opportunities for field trips to archaeological sites. Our chapter has been leading field trips for over eighty years. We even have original field notebooks from the 1960's!

If you would like to attend a field trip...
Full details are e-mailed to all members, including information about how to sign up and where and when to meet. Field trips are restricted to members, their guests, and members of other chapters if space permits. Due to the sensitive nature of archaeological sites, we do not post complete information about field trips on this web site.
If you would like to lead a field trip...

Program for Avocational Archaeological Certification

Established in 1978 by the Colorado Archaeological Society and the Office of the State Archaeologist of Colorado, PAAC allows individuals to obtain formally recognized levels of expertise outside of an academic degree program. PAAC facilitates avocational public service and the protection of archaeological resources in Colorado.

See the History Colorado - PAAC website for statewide information.

Contact the PAAC Coordinator to make suggestions or find more information about local classes.

Site Stewards

In the site stewardship program, volunteers from our chapter (and other organizations) monitor historical, archaeological, and paleontological sites on public lands. Site stewards provide a valuable service by reporting changes—both natural and human-caused damage—to sites on public lands.

Site stewards must...

To become a site steward, or for more information about the program, contact the Site Steward Coordinator.


Consider joining over 100 chapter members who participate in numerous educational, recreational, and service activities. Membership is open to anyone interested in archaeology who is in agreement with the CAS Code of Ethics.

To join
To donate

For more information contact the Membership Chair.


The Uncompahgre Journal
Recent Issues
Past Issues

Other publications can be found at the Colorado Archaeological Society.


The Squint and Juanita Moore Scholarship Fund awards an annual scholarship to a deserving college student who majors in anthropology or archaeology.

Students can apply for the scholarship online at CollegeXpress .

Squint Moore

In the late 1920's, a 13-year old boy named Carlyle “Squint” Moore wandered the canyons and mesas of western Colorado in search of archaeological sites. During those early years he and his younger sister Ruth explored for days in the canyons, telling their mother not to be concerned unless they were gone more than three days. Squint’s knowledge, keen eye, powers of observation, and dry, quiet wit endeared him to several generations of avocational and professional archaeologists.

In 1935, Squint was a founding member of the Chipeta Chapter of the Colorado Archaeological Society‐the first chapter in the state. In 2006, Squint Moore died at the age of 91. Up until a relatively short time before his death he was out banging around in the hills much of the time, revisiting sites he had found decades before and making sure the locations of the sites were properly noted and recorded. His uncanny memory was an inspiration to many who were decades younger than him.

Soon after Squint's death, the Chipeta Chapter put together a scholarship fund in honor of him and his wife, Juanita.

To donate
  • 2022: Savanah Piquette, Colorado State University
  • 2021: Zach Vincent, St. Andrews University
  • 2020: Ty Carey, University of Oxford
  • 2019: Jessica Weinmeister, Western Colorado University
  • 2018: Colin Patrick McCollough, Western State University
  • 2017: Amanda Campbell, Western State University
  • 2016: Veronique Torres, Colorado Mesa University
  • 2015: Victoria Riggs, Eastern Washington University
  • 2014: Guy Hepp, University of Colorado
  • 2012: Hannah Watts, Fort Lewis College
  • 2011: Kelsey Fife, University of Colorado
  • 2010: Amelia Haney, Tufts University
  • 2009: Ian Anderson, Western State College
  • 2008: Jessica Dunham, Universty of Minnesota
  • 2006: Rachel Jankowski, American University
  • 2005: Rachel Jankowski, American University


Board Members
Sally Johnson
Vice President and Professional Advisor
Leigh Ann Hunt
Susan Henderson
Jim Douras
CAS Representative
Nick Ard
Standing Committees
Membership Chair
Sally Johnson
Newsletter Editor
Dave Batten
Site Steward Coordinator
Leigh Ann Hunt
Library Chair
Linda Manske
Other Committees and Posts
PAAC Coordinator
Dave Upchurch
Scholarship Committee
Bill Harris
Fred Henderson
Jon Horn
Field Trip Committee
Leigh Ann Hunt
Joe Oglesby
George Decker