Skip to main content

Pictured, from left to right: Members of Ute Mountain Ute Tribe Rita Pensoneau and Mark Wing, Conservancy Board Member Jim Walker, President of Colorado Mountain College Carrie Hauser, Conservancy President Mark Michel, President and CEO of Crow Canyon Archaeological Center Elizabeth Perry, Executive Vice President of the Crow Canyon Research Institute Susan Ryan, Conservancy Southwest Regional Director April M. Brown.

Colorado Mountain College (CMC) donated 35 acres of land known as Shields Pueblo in Montezuma County near Cortez, Colorado, to The Archaeological Conservancy to ensure its preservation in the years to come. It was transferred to the Conservancy with a ceremonial blessing on June 27, led by Ute Mountain Tribal Leader Mark Wing. The ceremony, which took place on the preserve, was attended by representatives from Ute Mountain Tribe, CMC, Crow Canyon Archaeological Center, the U.S. Bureau of Land Management, Great Outdoors Colorado, and the Conservancy. 

The land was home to Ancestral Puebloans centuries ago and was acquired by the college in 1974 for research purposes. According to an article in southwestern Colorado’s The Journal, CMC found kivas and a partially exposed room home block in the 1970s and 1980s and Crow Canyon discovered in the 1990s that the land had been inhabited from about A.D. 700 to 1300 by approximately 26,000 Puebloans.