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TAS Presentations and Speakers


Doug Boyd, Historic Archeology of a 180 year-old Working Class Houston Neighborhood

Douglas K. Boyd, senior archeologist with Cox|McLain Environmental Consultants, presented the Public Forum program at the 2021 TAS Annual Meeting. Boyd’s presentation featured a preliminary report on recent excavations in Frost Town, a 140 year old working class Houston Neighborhood.

Throughout its lifespan, Frost Town was a working-class community. Like many similar urban neighborhoods across the United States, the ethnic makeup of Frost Town changed over time.

More information on Frost Town excavations can be found on the Houston Archeological Society webpage.

Special thanks to the Houston Museum of Natural Science for hosting this talk. 


Carolyn Boyd , Origins and Tenacity of Myth in Archaic Period Rock Art

Scholars long have maintained that concepts at the core of Mesoamerican religious traditions persisted across time and across cultural, linguistic, and geographical boundaries. Alfredo López Austin suggests that these concepts emerged from an earlier, almost unchangeable, Archaic core of beliefs, perhaps as old as the earliest migrations into North America. However, the idea that the complex cosmologies of Mesoamerican civilizations are an outgrowth of the worldview of Archaic period hunter-gatherers has met with resistance. The traditionally held assumption has been that hunter-gatherer groups were too "simple" to have a complex belief system or to produce elaborate compositions of narrative mural art. Over the past twenty-five years, Dr. Carolyn Boyd of Texas State University has chipped away at that assumption.

In her visually driven presentation, Boyd will describe the field and laboratory methods she and her team of archaeologists have developed to study not just the art, but the artists that produced it. She will show how these Archaic period foragers used color, shape, and context to infuse the murals with meaning, sound, and life. Boyd is the author of Rock Art of the Lower Pecos and The White Shaman Mural: An Enduring Creation Narrative which received the 2017 Scholarly Book Award from the Society for American Archaeology.

Special thanks to the Houston Museum of Natural Science for hosting this talk. 


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