Arizona Archaeological Society




The San Tan Chapter formed in May 2008 and was formally chartered as a member of The Arizona Archaeological Society on October 4, 2008. The Arizona Archaeological Society is an independent nonprofit corporation. Members are eligible to participate in field trips, excavations, surveys, lab work, and other areas of archaeological interest. Each member also receives a copy of the annual publication of the Society, The Arizona Archaeologist, together with the monthly newsletter, The Petroglyph. The San Tan Chapter meets at 7 PM, the second Wednesday of each month September through May, at the San Tan Historical Museum located at 20425 S Old Ellsworth Rd, Queen Creek 85142.  Monthly meetings are free and open to the public. 




Join one of our meetings for a closer look at:

San Tan Chapter of the

Arizona Archaeological Society

Learn about Arizona Prehistory!

Meet Professional Archaeologists! Participate in field trips and classes

Meetings are free and open to the public

The Second Wednesday of each month

September through May, meetings start at 7 p.m.

We meet at the San Tan Historical Society Museum

(The Historic Rittenhouse School)

Southeast Corner of Ellsworth and Queen Creek Roads




Chapter News

San Tan Chapter 2016


May 11th – Movie Time: “The Power's War" The Power's War provides a detailed look into one man's silent protest against America's entry into the First World War that led to the deadliest shootout in Arizona's history. Contemporary interviews, archival material, and original artwork come together to tell the story of the first World War that pitted the rights of individuals against the growing power of the federal government. 

Check out the trailer from YouTube:

September 14th  - Doug Wolf, Director; White Mountain Dinosaur Exploration Ctr “Geography of the Zuni Plateau: Road to Zunceritop”


Last Month: April 13th – John Hall, Statistical Research

The Luke Solar Project: Middle and Late Archaic Period Subsistence and Settlement in the Western Phoenix Basin

In 2009, Luke Air Force Base initiated a plan to build a 107-acre solar-power-array that would provide about 50 percent of the base’s power needs. The location of the solar-power-array on Luke Air Force Base contained several previously recorded archaeological sites. In 2010, Statistical Research, Inc. began testing and data recovery for the Luke Solar Project. The largest archaeological site excavated during this project became known as Falcon Landing. Excavations at Falcon Landing continued through April 2013, uncovering one of the largest Archaic sites known in southern Arizona. Falcon Landing includes over 3,000 features. The intensive Archaic occupation of Falcon Landing began around 3300 B.C. and was focused on a nearby seasonal marsh, or mesquite bosque. Archaic people visited this area during the summer months to gather and process mesquite and other wild seed-bearing plants. Although the intensity of occupation at Falcon Landing significantly declined beginning with the Hohokam pre-Classic period, the technology and methods for processing mesquite persisted over 5,000 years.

 John D. Hall is a Senior Project Director at Statistical Research, Inc., in Tucson. He has 20 years of experience as an archaeologist in the U.S. Southwest, with particular experience in prehistoric stone artifact technologies, landscape archaeology, settlement and subsistence systems and Archaic and Ceramic Period economic adaptations and material culture, as well as the transition to agriculture in the prehistoric U.S. Southwest.


Chapter Officers
 Office  Office Holder Contact Information
President Marie Britton

Sylvia Lesko
Treasurer Earla Cochran
Secretary Cindy Kristopeit
Director1/Archivist Keith Johanson
Director2 Carlos Acuna
Director3/Program Director Jerri Freeman 480-802-8214 
Membership Marie Britton

Archaeological Advisor Gina Gage

Chapter Meetings

The San Tan Chapter meetings are held at the San Tan Historical Society Museum at 20425 S Old Ellsworth Rd in Queen Creek on the corners of Queen Creek Rd and Ellsworth Loop Rd. Use the access road just south of the Queen Creek Rd (it goes east) then turn north on to Old Ellsworth Road.  Monthly meetings are held the second Wednesday of each month from September to May.  The presentation begins at 7 PM.  For more information on our chapter, contact Marie Britton at 480-827-8070  Park on Old Ellsworth in front of the museum.  Monthly meetings are free and open to the public. 

Please Note: ONLY Members of AAS can participant in Workshops and Field Trips. Field Trip participants will be required to sign an AAS Liability Release Form.

Memberships run on the calendar year.

Upcoming events

Events  ( must be a current AAS member)


 PINAL CITY FIELD TRIP     WHEN: Saturday February 27,2016



The San Tan Chapter of the Arizona Archaeological Society participated on March 05 at the Casa Grande Ruins National Monument EXPO.  Visitors to the STC table enjoyed pottery puzzles and a prehistoric hand drill.  Also on display was a pit=house diorama.


Verde Valley Archaeology Center (VVAC) & Tuzigoot FIELD TRIP     WHEN: Sunday May 15,2016 




Chapter Projects

  • Desert Wells Stage Stop - stabilization and repair of rock walls.

The Arizona Stage Company, operating after 1868, is believed to have used this old Andrada homestead as a respite from the Arizona Territory heat until approximately 1916.      

The early settlers described it as a simple one room building about ten foot square, constructed of rock with a mud and thatched roof.  There was a trough running around three of the sides, which was used for watering the horses, a porch on the south side and a well with windmill close by to keep the trough filled.  It had one four-foot door on the south side, and small gun ports instead of windows.

The site was a rest area and watering stop for the horses and mules used by freight wagons and the stage line that came from Florence via Olberg, and continued through the gap in the San Tan Mountains to Mesa, Arizona.

Even though this was a small spur stop, it holds a significant role in Queen Creek’s history and folklore, and is treasured by the community. If your interested in volunteering for this project please email us at

  • Stabilization of the San Tan Historical Museum. 

The historic Rittenhouse Elementary School, home to the San Tan Historical Society & Museum, was placed on the Arizona Historical Registry in 1990 and accepted by the National Registry of Historic Places in 1998. To donate your time or services to this ongoing restoration project, or to volunteer as museum interpreters please contact us:  The Museum is open every Saturday from 9am to 1pm and is open to the public, free of charge.  

The three-room, U-shaped building was named after Charles Rittenhouse and was used for classes from 1925 to 1982. The school is constructed of Arizona red brick with white trimmed transommed windows. Two roll-down dividers separated the three rooms, and a small stage was equipped with an abbreviated fly loft. Over time, changes were made to accommodate the needs of the growing community.

Some of the original playground equipment is still available for viewing. Antique farm equipment rests in the school yard north of the schoolhouse, reflecting a time when the local economy was based on agriculture. There are many new displays, pictures and historical information inside the classrooms. Please visit the historic Rittenhouse School now called the San Tan Historical Museum For more information visit our webpage at

Other: Cultural Sites Nearby





Informative Web Sites 




© Arizona Archaeological Society
Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software