McElmo Canyon Research Institute, Cortez, CO

Service Learning at McElmo Canyon Research Institute

Service Learning  pottery inventory group

The McElmo Canyon Research Institute's Artifact and Curation Program takes place at the Anasazi Heritage Center in Dolores, Colorado. After an intensive workshop in pottery identification from archaeologist, Jim Colleran, participants help inventory pot sherds collected during the Dolores Archaeological Program (1978-1983). In addition to compiling valuable information that is used to update the program's research database, participants update packaging materials, rehousing pottery sherds in modern, curatorial-grade polyethylene bags. To date, each group has inventoried over 5,000 artifacts during their fascinating service learning experience!

Road Scholar and McElmo Canyon Research Institute,
Present the 2017 Programs


Click here to visit Road Scholar website to view or sign up for our programs.


Service: Archaeological Preservation in the Four Corners.

April 16-22

In this program, we will delve into understanding how simple pieces of pottery and flakes from making stone tools can write a story about the past. We will use this information to locate and record archaeological sites on private land, areas where little is known about the archaeology but have big stories to tell.

We will conduct what is known as a "pedestrian survey" in which we will walk (moderate pace) the beautiful landscape in an organized manner to locate artifact concentrations and architectural features. You are guaranteed to see some incredible things that the public does not see; It's a good walk gone better! Our information is shared with the archaeological community to assist other archaeologists in creating "big data" to understand population on the Greater Southwest landscape over thousands of years.

Fresh air, good walks, and archaeology! What could be better? Please consider joining us in April, 2017!

Click here to visit Road Scholar website to view or sign up for our programs.