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Lubbock Lake Landmark Honored by Smithsonian Magazine

The publication names it as one of the top five destinations to see evidence of first Americans.

Written by John Davis

Lubbock Lake Landmark is an archaeological and natural history preserve at the northern edge of the city of Lubbock.

Lubbock Lake Landmark is an archaeological and natural history preserve at the northern edge of the city of Lubbock.

Smithsonian.com recently named Lubbock Lake National Historic Landmark as one of the top five destinations to see evidence of first Americans.

The story covers different locations across the U.S. where visitors can see the cultural remnants and animal remains left by the original settlers of this continent. It mentions the exhibits at Lubbock Lake Landmark, such as the hiking trails and the interpretive center that displays the evolution of the site from a fast-moving streambed to a marsh and documents the peoples who lived at the site.

“National recognition of our public programs at the landmark in a publication that is global in extent greatly serves to build on the international research reputation of the Landmark,” said Eileen Johnson, executive director for the Museum of Texas Tech University and director of the landmark. “The designation acknowledges that we are doing good things at the landmark to engage the public in the early cultural heritage of the region that is significant on the national level. Increase in public awareness is always a good thing and generally leads to greater numbers of visitors and more outreach opportunities.”

Other sites listed included Meadowcroft Rock Shelter in Avella, Penn.; Blackwater Draw National Historic Landmark in New Mexico; Mastadon State Historic Site in Imperial, Mo.;  and Murray Spring Paleo-Indian Site in Sierra Vista, Ariz.

A unit of the Museum of Texas Tech University, the Lubbock Lake Landmark is an archaeological and natural history preserve at the northern edge of the city of Lubbock. The Landmark contains evidence of almost 12,000 years of occupation by ancient people on the Southern High Plains.

The first explorations of the site were conducted in 1939 by the West Texas Museum (now the Museum of Texas Tech University). By the late 1940s, several Folsom Period (10,800-10,300 years ago) bison kills were discovered. In a location of an ancient bison kill from a then-unidentified Paleoindian group, charred bison bones produced the first-ever radiocarbon date (currently the most accurate form of dating) for Paleoindian material (9,800 years old).

The Lubbock Lake Landmark serves as a field laboratory for geology, soils and radiocarbon dating studies, as well as being an active archaeological and natural history preserve.

See the Smithsonian Magazine story here.

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One Response to “Lubbock Lake Landmark Honored by Smithsonian Magazine”

  1. Jerry Sullivan Says:

    Congratulations Eileen — for finally getting the recognition the site has deserved for sol long.

    With fond memories,

    Jerry Sullivan

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Lubbock Lake Landmark
Lubbock Lake Landmark

The Lubbock Lake National Historic Landmark is a unit of the Museum of Texas Tech University, which has governed the preservation, research and interpretation of the Landmark since the accidental discovery of evidence of Paleoindian peoples in 1936.

Hunter-gatherers, from Clovis to Protohistoric age peoples, the Apache and Comanche nations, and the founding of a modern city are each a part of the history of the Landmark that is one of the premier archaeological and natural history site in North America.

The Landmark is located at 2401 Landmark Drive, just north of North Loop 289 at Clovis Highway (US 84). Landmark hours are Tuesday – Saturday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Sunday, 1 – 5 p.m. The Landmark is closed on Monday.

Connect with the Landmark on .