Stars at archaeology site

History Colorado Lecture Series

Ancient Light

Lecture by Dr. Erica Ellingson, University of Colorado

A thousand years ago, the Ancestral Puebloans built a great civilization in a landscape where even now the sky is a powerful presence. In this presentation, we’ll explore the deep understanding of the sky that’s expressed in Ancestral Puebloan art and architecture. We’ll examine the dance of light and shadow that trace the year at Mesa Verde and Chaco Canyon, and the subtle lunar cycles that were celebrated at Chimney Rock. Today, we see the same stars, sun and moon. By understanding them, we reach across the centuries to these ancient astronomers through our shared heritage of the sky.

The History Colorado Lecture Series is made possible through the generous support of Walter S. Rosenberry III Charitable Trust.