The Yalahau Regional Human Ecology Project: An Introduction and Summary of Recent Research

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Contribution to Book

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The Yalahau Regional Human Ecology Project was initiated in 1993 to investigate ancient Maya settlement patterns, land use, and political organization within a unique wetland-dominated environmental region of northern Quintana Roo, Mexico (see fig. 2.1). Although the Yucatán Peninsula has seen a great deal of archaeological research over the last several decades, the northeastern corner has been one of the least examined areas of the northern Maya lowlands. Prior to the initiation of the Yalahau project, little archaeological investigation had been conducted in the region beyond brief visits and preliminary investigations by Alberto Escalona Ramos in 1937 (1946), William Sanders in 1954 (1955a, 1960), and Karl Taube and Tomás Gallareta in 1988 (Taube and Gallareta Negrón 1989). The project was begun under the co-direction of Scott Fedick and Karl Taube, both of the Department of Anthropology, University of California, Riverside (UCR). Following the first season in 1993, the project has been directed by Fedick and, since 1998, has also been under the co-direction of Jennifer Mathews of the Department of Sociology and Anthropology, Trinity University, San Antonio, Texas. Mathews has participated in the Yalahau project since its inception in 1993. This chapter will introduce the Yalahau region and summarize research activities and findings from 1998 through 2001, with some observations based on our 2002-2003 investigations, which are still under analysis (Fedick 2004; Mathews 2003a).


Justine M. Shaw, Jennifer P. Mathews


University of Arizona Press





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Quintana Roo Archaeology

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