Grant: Debra Martin

Debra L. Martin (Anthropology) was awarded NSF support ($300,611) for three years to preserve and conserve a historic mission church and cemetery in Belen, New Mexico (circa 1850). The project, "Biological Impacts of Colonial Practices: Bioarchaeological Reconstruction of Health and Demography" will use three field seasons to excavate, analyze, and rebury the human remains in the current Catholic church cemetery. The mission and burials are on private land in an unprotected and frequently vandalized spot, so this project not only will conserve the mission and human remains, but also will be an opportunity to learn about the effects of colonialism on indigenous groups. The project was initiated by the land owners and other community members who want the site preserved as an historic monument to the early indigenous groups living in the area. Graduate students and community members will work together to excavate and conserve the remains. 

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