Media Contact:
Cathy Guerra
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Free Lecture at the Deering Estate

MIAMI (May 03, 2016)

In partnership with the Archaeological Society of Southern Florida, the Deering Estate presents a free lecture on the 2nd Thursday of each month at 7:00 pm. Lectures are held in the Visitor Center Theatre at the Deering Estate located at 16701 SW 72 Avenue. Lectures are free and open to the public.

Thursday, May 12, 2016 at 7:00 pm
Topic: "Digging for Truth:  Uncovering a One Hundred Year Old Mystery at the Isla San Lucas Penal Colony"

Presenter: Monica Faraldo, Instructor at University of Miami Department of Anthropology

A group of University of Miami (UM) anthropology students have made some important discoveries at a graveyard in Costa Rica.  It was Costa Rica’s version of Devil’s Island.

Isla San Lucas, a penal colony off the coast of Costa Rica that closed in 1991, housed some of the country’s most violent criminals, and many of the convicts who were sent there knew they would never make it out alive. The ones who died were buried in a nearby cemetery.

Today, trees, tall grass and shrubs cover the graveyard, which had never been marked by headstones.  Historians at Costa Rica’s national museum wanted to uncover the story of what actually happened at Isla San Lucas, and to get at the truth, they enlisted the help of a group of UM anthropology students who excavated the cemetery, where bones lie in wait, ready to reveal a wealth of dark secrets and untold tales.

"The truth doesn’t stay buried forever," says Monica Faraldo, the UM anthropology instructor who led a group of students on an archaeological excavation of the site in January 2009 and Summer of 2010 as part of the UM Ibis Archaeological Field School for Isla San Lucas.

Monica Faraldo is a lecturer in the Department of Anthropology at the University of Miami. Her research agenda focuses on the peopling of the New World through osteological analyses of ancient skeletal material from sites in Costa Rica and Florida. 

About the Archaeological Society of Southern Florida
The Archaeological Society of Southern Florida (ASSF) was established in 1949. The ASSF operates as a non-profit, volunteer organization which acts as a support mechanism for the office of the Miami-Dade County Archaeologist, serves as a focal point for local archaeology enthusiasts and professionals in the field, and helps to promote knowledge and appreciation of native archaeological and historical sites in the South Florida area.

About the Deering Estate
The 450+ acre Deering Estate is an environmental, archaeological and historical preserve. From canoe tours to bird walks and guided nature hikes, the Deering Estate has diverse activities for the whole family to enjoy. The Estate is part of the Miami-Dade County Parks, Recreation and Open Space Department, which manages the Estate on behalf of the State of Florida.

This year, the Deering Estate celebrates 30 years of being on the National Register of Historic Places! #DiscoverMore history, art, culture, science, preservation, conservation and ecology at the Deering Estate!