Larkin Chapman Awarded Grant from the Archaeological Society of New Mexico

Departmental News

Posted:  Apr 19, 2022 - 12:00pm

Doctoral student Larkin Chapman has received the Archaeological Society of New Mexico award for her project New Radiocarbon Dates on Late Pleistocene Horses from the San Pedro Valley, AZ, and Investigating Human-Megafaunal Overlap in the Southwest.


North American Pleistocene horses (genus Equus) have been featured in debates about the cause of megafaunal extinctions. However, Pleistocene Equus specimens are not as well dated as other key megafauna taxa, which has made advances in this research challenging. My research investigates the temporal overlap between Pleistocene horses and Paleoindian peoples in the Southwest United States. Sites Murray Springs and Ventana Cave in the San Pedro Valley, AZ, are candidates for human-horse interaction during the late Pleistocene. This research aims to analyze these sites in a way which is temporally focused, contextually motivated, and can be followed to a logical conclusion. I will assess the temporal association of Clovis and Pleistocene horses at Murray Springs and Ventana Cave using direct AMS radiocarbon dating on Equus specimens and by studying provenance reported in excavation notes. In this project, these questions will be studied using museum collections, a type of research which is under-represented in archaeology despite its utility.