Marco Gonzalez Exhibition showcases at Fido’s Courtyard

Friday, June 22nd, 2012

The Marco Gonzalez Maya Site Project is hosting a four-day exhibition upstairs of Fido’s Courtyard. The exhibition started on Wednesday June 20th and runs until Saturday June 23rd. The four-day exhibition is featuring Maya artifacts such as potteries, jewelry, tools and obsidians most of which were excavated from the Marco Gonzalez Maya Site. The exhibition is open to the entire public free from 10AM to 6PM and it gives a detail history of the 2000 year old island’s Maya site.

Speaking to The San Pedro Sun, Chairperson of the Board of Directors of the Marco Gonzalez Maya Site Project Janet Brown explained that the exhibition is part of the events for the Belize 2012 Maya Calendar of events.  “We are so excited that we are opening this exhibition for the public so that they can experience some of the wonders that we have at Marco Gonzalez Site. The artifacts depicts the lifestyle of how the Maya lived on this site,” said Brown.

One very interesting pieces of artifacts on display is a ring made of conch shell used as jewelry and found at Marco Gonzalez Maya site during excavation.  According to renowned archeologist and Co-Director of the University of North Carolina/Wilmington Dr Scott Simons, the piece of jewelry is an unusual find. “Such piece of jewelry is fairly unusual to find on any other Maya site. It is fairly difficult to create and in my so many years as archeology I haven’t come across such piece of ancient jewelry,” explained Simons. That piece of jewelry and those tools made of conch shells is indicative, says Dr Simons, that the Maya who occupied Marco Gonzalez knew how to work the shell. “I have been to a museum recently in Merida (Mexico) where I also saw some jewelries similar to those found at Marco Gonzalez, made from shells, which could suggest that perhaps they traded some of these jewelry as well,” detailed Dr. Simons.

But the Maya at Marco Gonzalez were not confined only to the island. According to Dr. Simons, from the pieces of artifacts on display at the exhibition, it is evident that they were a part of a larger coastal trading network. “Similar to the Maya on the island of Cozumel (Mexico) those at Marco Gonzalez traded with Maya on the Pacific coast in Mexico, in northern and inland Belize as well as Guatemala. This is evidence that it was a very important trading center,” added Dr. Simons.

Brown took the opportunity to invite everyone to the exhibition. On the night of Wednesday June 20, 2012, a short opening ceremony was held to officially open the exhibition. The ceremony was hosted by the San Pedro Cultural Committee under the chairmanship of Councilor Mito Paz. Invited guests included Mayor of San Pedro Town Daniel Guerrero and Minister of Tourism and Culture Hon. Manuel Heredia.

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