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The Fremont Cultural Tradition at the Northern Edge of the Greater Southwest – Michael Searcy

July 17, 2023 @ 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm MST

This lecture is offered through Zoom. It will be recorded and posted after the lecture on the AAHS youtube channel.  Beginning September 2023, AAHS monthly lectures will be held at the U of Arizona, ENR2, Room 107 and simultaneously broadcast through Zoom. 

This lecture is free and open to the public but you must pre-register at:  

New excavations and other recent research have contributed to a much better understanding of what has been identified as the Fremont cultural tradition. This lecture reviews some of these new studies as well as reports the most recent discoveries at a current excavation at the Hinckley Mounds. This site is located on the eastern edge of Utah Lake, the largest natural freshwater lake in Utah, and the ancient ruins are only part of one of the largest Fremont villages occupied during the Late Fremont Period (AD 900-1300).

Michael Searcy is an associate professor of anthropology and archaeology in the Department of Anthropology at Brigham Young University. He is currently serving as the department chair and director of the New World Archaeological Foundation. For over fifteen years, he has worked in northern Mexico researching Casas Grandes cultural traditions with a focus on the Viejo Period (A.D. 700-1200) as well as the Late Fremont cultural tradition, practiced by people who occupied much of northern Utah between A.D. 900-1300. Michael recently co-authored the book Hinterlands to Cities: The Archaeology of Northwest Mexico with Matthew Pailes, and his recent research includes an ancient DNA study as well as a reanalysis of the chronology in the Casas Grandes region. His most recent publication on the Fremont was published in the journal KIVA about smoking mixtures used in pipes found in Utah Valley.

Suggested readings:

Allison, James R.
2019 The Northern Frontier in the History of the Greater Southwest. In Interaction and Connectivity in the Greater Southwest, edited by Karen G. Harry and Barbara J. Roth, pp. 281-307. University Press of Colorado, Louisville.

Janetski, Joel C.
2008 The Enigmatic Fremont. In The Great Basin: People and Place in Ancient Times, edited by Catherine S. Fowler and Don D. Fowler, pp. 104-115. School for Advanced Research Press, Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Janetski, Joel C., and Richard Talbot
2014 Fremont Social Organization: A Southwestern Perspective.  In Archaeology for All Times: Papers in Honor of Don. D. Fowler, edited by Nancy J. Parezo, Joel C. Janetski, and James Snead.  University of Utah Press, Salt Lake City.

Richards, Katie K., James R. Allison, Lindsay D. Johansson, Richard K. Talbot, and Scott M. Ure
2019 Houses, Public Architecture, and the Organization of Fremont Communities. In Communities and Households in the Greater American Southwest: New Perspectives and Case Studies, edited by Robert J. Stokes, pp. 201-228. University Press of Colorado, Louisville.

Searcy, Michael T., Hannah Steffensen, and Scott Ure
2022 Fremont Smoke Mixtures: Botanical Analyses of Pipes from Wolf Village, Goshen, Utah. KIVA 88(4):429-452.

Searcy, Michael T., and Richard Talbot
2016 Late Fremont Cultural Identities and Borderland Processes.  In Late Holocene Research on Foragers and Early Farmers in the Desert West, edited by Barbara Roth and Maxine McBrinn, pp. 234-264. University of Utah Press, Salt Lake City.

Simms, Steven R. and François Gohier
2010 Traces of Fremont: Society and Rock Art in Ancient Utah. University of Utah Press, Salt Lake City.

Talbot, Richard K.
2000 Fremont Farmers: The Search for Context.  In The Archaeology of Regional Interaction: Religion, Warfare, and Exchange Across the American Southwest and Beyond, pp. 275-293.  Edited by Michelle Hegmon.  University Press of Colorado, Boulder.

2011 Fremont Farming and Residential Mobility on the Colorado Plateau.  In An Archaeological Legacy: Essays in Honor of Ray T. Matheny.  Museum of Peoples and Cultures Occasional Papers, in preparation.  Brigham Young University, Provo.

2019 The Late Fremont Regional System. In Interaction and Connectivity in the Greater Southwest, edited by Karen G. Harry and Barbara J. Roth, pp. 378-405. University Press of Colorado, Louisville.


July 17, 2023
7:00 pm - 8:00 pm MST
Event Category:


Fran Maiuri