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Anasazi Heritage Center Will Be Renamed

Austin Cope

The Anasazi Heritage Center near Dolores will soon have a new name. The museum, which houses some 3 million archaeological artifacts from Native cultures, also serves as visitor center for Canyons of the Ancients National Monument. It has been in operation since 1988, but since then, the word “Anasazi” has fallen out of favor to describe the ancestral Puebloan peoples who inhabited the Four Corners area. “Anasazi” is a Navajo word for ancient enemies or foreigners, and the Navajo are not descendants of the ancestral Puebloans. On Monday, Canyons of the Ancients Manager Marietta Eaton told the Montezuma County commissioners the new name will be Canyons  of the Ancients Visitor Center and Museum, and tribes are pleased with the new moniker. A renaming ceremony is planned for Saturday at 11 a.m. at the center.

Gail Binkly is a career journalist who has worked for the Colorado Springs Gazette and Cortez Journal. She is currently a freelance writer as well as the editor of the Four Corners Free Press, based in Cortez.
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