Carolyn O’Bagy Davis speaks at archeology event

WNMU hosts Grant County Archaeological Society


On Wednesday, March 20, the Grant County Archaeological Society transforms its regular monthly meeting into a special special hybrid in-person and online Zoom event to be held at the Western New Mexico University Museum at Fleming Hall in support of its curation of the Museum's historic documents and photo archives.

The Featured Speaker is historian, award-winning author, and GCAS member Carolyn O’Bagy Davis. Davis, a fourth-generation descendant of Utah pioneers, has written 16 books on topics ranging from the history of archaeology to Southwestern history to quilting. Her book "Hopi Summer"  was selected as OneBookArizona for 2011, and "Desert Trader: The Life and Quilts of Goldie Tracy Richmond," was named one of the Best Books of the Southwest 2012. She  is an inducted member of the Arizona Quilters Hall of Fame and the Society of Women Geographers; she was the founding president of the Tucson Quilters Guild and Old Pueblo Archaeology Center.

An accomplished public speaker, Davis has appeared on HGTV, PBS, and Lifetime programs, and has curated many traveling museum exhibits including the current show. For this event Davis introduces  "Hopi Quilts and Textiles as Cultural Artforms."

The ancient communities of Hopi have a rich textile tradition. Their daily tools, made by hand, have both beauty and utility. For centuries Hopi men have woven blankets and ceremonial garments. The craft of quilting was introduced to the Hopi in the latter half of the nineteenth century. From its initial adoption by the Hopi, quilting became an important craft, providing warmth and comfort. Today kachina and clan designs are painted and stitched into Hopi quilts, and as generations have passed, quilts have been incorporated into Hopi ceremony and important life passages. Quilts have become an indispensable part of Hopi life.

The event begins at 5 p.m. with a requested $5 donation payable to the museum at their front desk. Online participants will also register with a $5 minimum donation to the Museum payable via the GCAS's secure Paypal portal. The Museum welcomes and appreciates additional donations in any other amounts to support their curation project. All such proceeds go to the WNMU Museum.

The GCAS will provide light refreshments and bottled water. Davis will immediately follow her presentation with a classic quilter's trunk show offering several original quilted wall hangings designed and created by Hopi artist Bonnie Nampeyo Chapella. Each of Bonnie's original designs measures about 25" x 30" and will be sold on her behalf at our event for $150 each. The proceeds from one quilt - the Butterfly Maiden shown here on the right and signed by Bonnie Nampeyo Chapella - will be donated to the WNMU Museum.