All Episodes of Mesa Verde Voices




SEASON 1 Episode 5: Esther

And a law called NAGPRA.

From the 1940s until the 1970s, one of the most well-known exhibits in Mesa Verde's museum contained a human body - the mummified remains of a young woman known as Esther. 

Even today, people have vivid memories of Esther. Visitors to the park often ask why she was removed from display, and where she went.

SEASON 1 Episode 4: Ancient Corn, Modern Questions

Plus some Evolution 101.

Corn or "maize" has been a significant part of life for the Hopi and Pueblo people for ... well, for as long as any of them can remember. Across the Southwest, it can be found in petroglyphs, pottery, in song and dances. What you might not know is that almost all of us have benefited from the efforts of ancient Southwestern farmers.


Season 1 Episode 3: Loving the Past to Death

What do you mean hiking shoes are the enemy?

Cally visits Ballroom Cave, a site impacted by hikers and in need of restoration in an archaeologically rich part of southeast Utah. The area is managed by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and has seen a spike in visitation in recent years.

SEASON 1 Episode 2: What's an Anasazi?

Didn't they disappear or something?

There isn't a tribe in the Southwest today called the Anasazi -- and there never was. So where did the word come from? What does it mean? And why do a lot of people in the Southwest not want to use it anymore?

SEASON 1 Episode 1: The Preservation Paradox

To act or not to act.

In this episode, we explore the approach to preservation at two different sites: a park managed by the National Park Service, and an ancestral site managed by the people of Santa Clara Pueblo in New Mexico.


PILOT Episode 3: Moving On

Why did people leave the Mesa Verde region? It wasn't just the drought.

Archaeologist Donna Glowacki on the social, religious, and political factors that influenced the decision to leave the Mesa Verde region.

PILOT Episode 2: Corn = Life

Archaeologists replicate ancient corn harvests.

Using experimental gardens and historic climate data, archaeologists are able to predict the size of past corn harvests, providing new insights into how big droughts affected ancient people's food security.

PILOT Episode 1: Revealed by Fire

Wildfires present both threats and opportunities to archaeological research.

Large wildfires in recent decades threatened to destroy important archaeological sites in Mesa Verde National Park, but also revealed previously hidden treasures.