Noah H. Thomas
- Doctoral Candidate
- University of Arizona
Seventeenth-Century Metallurgy on the Spanish Colonial Frontier: Transformations of Technology, Value, and Identity
The dissertation analyzes archaeological features and materials related to metal production recovered from the historic component (1598-1680 AD) of the Pueblo of Paa-ko, New Mexico. Originating in a pueblo occupied during the establishment of the Spanish colony, this assemblage offers a unique opportunity to study technology transfer under early Spanish colonialism. The dissertation characterizes the metallurgical technology at Paa-ko through the integration of archaeological, technological, and ethnohistorical data in order to develop an understanding of the technology in terms of its material and social aspects. By integrating many scales of analysis, the project investigates how economic, technical, and social knowledge is communicated and transformed across social and cultural boundaries.
Finding Value at the Edge of Empire: Seventeenth- through Nineteeth-Century Mining Communities and Mineral Use in the San Pedro Valley, Bernalillo, and Santa Fe Counties, New Mexico
Although the larger mining centers of New Spain have received ample treatment in the historical literature, smaller mining communities have not been adequately researched. These latter communities were often the sites of intense cultural interactions. This project will research the archaeological, historical, and ethnohistorical material available concerning the exploitation of mineral resources among such communities in the San Pedro Valley, New Mexico. The research investigate how these communities were established and maintained; how they persisted or perished within the social and cultural tensions present at the margins of Spanish colonial society; and how social and cultural exchange influenced the development of the knowledge of landscape resources.