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Comparison of many bristlecone pine rings from small core samples obtained from over the entire region facilitates cross-referencing. Matching of wood samples from various archaeological sites provides a means for the absolute dating of the sample.
Seeking the Center Place is the most detailed view we have ever had of the last Pueblo communities in the Mesa Verde region and will provide a better understanding of the factors that precipitated the migration of thousands of people.The work at Sand Canyon Pueblo and more than sixty other large contemporary pueblos has examined reasons for population aggregation and why this strategy was ultimately forsaken in favor of a migration south of the San Juan River, leaving the area depopulated by 1290.Contributors to this volume, many of whom are distinguished southwestern researchers, draw from a common database derived from extensive investigations at the 530-room Sand Canyon Pueblo, intensive test excavations at thirteen small sites and four large villages, a twenty-five square kilometer full-coverage survey, and an inventory of all known villages in the region.The Ancient Bristlecone Pine lives to a great age and thrives in the relatively dry southwest.The latter factor permits analysis of annual growth in chronological terms since such growth results from naturally occurring patterned climatic conditionspatterning must remain dependent upon climatic conditions for cross-reference purposes.
What remains for the future is the determination of a scale that provides an accurate chronological framework.