MAY 1, 2013

Desert Foothills Chapter, Arizona Archaeological Society

Keet Seel – The Julian Hayden Diary
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The Desert Foothills Chapter (DFC) of the Arizona Archaeological Sociey (AAS) is pleased to announce that Steve Hayden, son of famous archaeologist Julian Hayden, will be the guest speaker for the May 8 meeting, beginning at 7 p.m. at The Good Shepherd of the Hills Episcopal Church, 6502 E. Cave Creek Road, Cave Creek, Ariz.  The title of Steve's presentation is The 1934 Civil Works Administration (CWA) Excavation and Stabilization of Keet Seel – Julian Hayden's Diary.  There will be a dessert potluck to begin the meeting and the public is invited to attend. 

At the death of his father Julian in 1999, Steve returned to his family home in Tucson.  There he discovered Julian's personal diary, handwritten in pencil, which described all the events that occurred during the CWA project at Keel Seel, a large cliff dwelling located in Tsegi Canyon in the Navajo National Monument.  Steve traveled to the site to transcribe his father's words and discovered that he also had a love for this beautiful ruin.  He will share how 32 men, which included his father and grandfather, members of the Wetherill family and fiddle player Kenner Karchner, excavated and stabilized the ruins in the winter of 1934.  There will be a detailed account of camp life at Keet Seel, complete with character sketches and the problems and conflicts that occurred during their stay.  Contained in this diary is the answer to the question of why an official report of this project was never filed.  Throughout his presentation, Steve will share historical photos and play a selection of Karchner's fiddle music to, "bring the camp life to us in a rare and unforgettable way."

Steve Hayden himself has extensive archaeological experience.  He was a member of the Glen Canyon Salvage Archaeology Crew for four years.  He was the dig foreman for the U of A's Grasshopper Field School and has surveyed with William Wasley and Tomas Bowen in Sonora.
He has been a volunteer ranger for the Navajo National Monument since 2007.  He is currently retired from a business career in the Pacific Northwest and lives in Tucson.  Steve declares, "It is a rare visitor who makes the 8-1/2 mile hike to visit the site who doesn't leave with at least a bit of the feeling that they have been in a holy place.  The sense of awe that the setting and the village inspire today is the same as that expressed so passionately by the young Julian Hayden in his diary from 1934."   Today, visits to the site require a permit and are limited to ranger guided trips only.

The AAS in an independent, non-profit and statewide organization with chapters located all around the state.  It has over 500 professional and avocational members.  The DFC has been active in Cave Creek for over 35 years.  Members enjoy talks like the one described above,
hikes, classes and research projects.  For more information, please visit the AAS website, or contact DFC President Glenda Simmons, [email protected].