Pilar Luna, Pioneer of Mexican Underwater Archeology

Divers exploring submerged cultural heritage 
Photo Subdirección de Arqueología Subacuatica


From Art Daily


As an acknowledgement to her 30-year trajectory, devoted to research and preservation of the submerged cultural heritage, archaeologist Pilar Luna Erreguerena, pioneer of Underwater Archaeology in Mexico, was awarded with the J.C. Harrington Award by the Society for Historical Archaeology (SHA), becoming the first Latin American researcher -and the 4th woman- to receive this prize.

The award given every year by the American society that gathers the greatest number of academics in the subject recognizes as well the labor conducted in Mexico regarding research and safeguarding of cultural and historical goods that lay in the depths, headed since 1980 by the expert from the National Institute of Anthropology and History (INAH).

The award named after the father of American historical archaeology, J.C. Harrington, is the most important honor conceded to those who had contributed to research and preservation of the world cultural heritage.

This is the second time that the award is presented to a researcher of the Underwater Archeology field; the first was given in 1999 to George F. Bass, Ph.D., considered the “father of underwater archaeology in the world”.

“When I was informed in 2010 that the Society for Historical Archaeology had decided to give me the J.C. Harrington Award, I did not know what it was about and I needed a few minutes to understand the importance of this acknowledgement”, recalled the head of the INAH Sub Direction of Underwater Archaeology (INAH-SAS).

“I consider myself a privileged being, I am convinced that there are more persons that deserve acknowledgment for their achievements and do not receive it. To be given it in life, in company of my dear ones, is truly a gift from God”, she commented.


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Mexico Pilar Luna Erreguerena Underwater Archaeology INAH J.C. Harrington Award Society for Historical Archaeology