Mary Pohl

Dr. Mary Pohl

Contact Information

Department of Anthropology
Office Location
Carraway Building
(850) 644-8153
Resume / CV
Office Hours
By Appointment

Academia Link



Summers spent on my grandparents farm in northern Minnesota introduced me to American Indian life and people. I volunteered examining archaeological artifacts at the Science Museum of Minnesota during high school, and I went on to participate in excavations near Saint Paul. I found Mesoamerican archaeology while a graduate student at Harvard University.

Field of Study: Archaeology with interests in:

  • Mesoamerica, Southern Mexico and Belize, archaeology
  • Ancient Olmec and Maya society
  • Urban Origins, San Andres, La Venta, Tabasco, Mexico
  • Cave murals of Oxtotitlan, Guerrero, Mexico

Videos of Belize Field Research  Pulltrouser Swamp  Douglas East  Belize  Vibracoring


Selected Publications:

2019   The Artistic Practice of Cave Painting at Oxtotitlán, Guerrero (third author Heather Hurst, Leonard Ashby, and Christopher von Nagy.  In Mural Art of the Americas, edited by Victoria I. Lyall, pp. 15-41. University of   Oklahoma Press, Norman, OK.

2017    Strategies for 14C Dating the Oxtotitlán Cave Paintings, Guerrero, Mexico (second author with Jon Russ, Christopher L. von Nagy, Karen L. Steelman, Heather Hurst, Leonard Ashby, Marvin W. Rowe, Eliseo F. Padilla Gutiérrez, and Paul Schmidt) Advances in Archaeological Practice 5 (2): 170-183.

2009    Determining Olmec Maize Use through Bulk Stable Carbon Isotope Analysis (third author with Daniel Seinfeld and Christopher von Nagy) Journal of Archaeological Science 36:2560-2565.

2008   Sunflower (Helianthus annuus L.) as a Pre-Columbian Domesticate in Mexico (second author with D. Lentz, J. L. Alvarado, S. Tarighat, and R. Bye.  Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences105:6232-6237.

2007    Microfossil Evidence for Pre-Columbian Maize Dispersals in the Neotropics from San Andrés, Tabasco, Mexico (first author with D Piperno, K Pope, J Jones). Proceedings of the National the Academy of Sciences 104: 6870-6875.

2002    Olmec Origins of Mesoamerican Writing (first author with Kevin Pope and Christopher von Nagy).  Science 298: 1984-1987.

2001    Origin and Environmental Setting of Ancient Agriculture in the Lowlands of Mesoamerica(second author with Kevin Pope, John Jones, David Lentz, Christopher von Nagy, Francisco Vega, and Irvy Quitmyer. Science 292: 1370-73.

1996    Early Agriculture in the Maya Lowlands (first author with Kevin O. Pope, John G. Jones, John S. Jacob, Dolores R. Piperno, Susan D. deFrance, David L. Lentz, John A. Gifford, Marie E. Danforth, and J. Kathryn Josserand) Latin American Antiquity 7 (4): 355-372.

1983    Ancient Maya Cave Rituals (first author with John Pohl) Archaeology 36: 28-32, 50-51.

1981    Ritual Continuity and Transformation in Mesoamerica: Reconstructing the Ancient Maya Cuch Ritual. American Antiquity 46 (3): 513-529.

Complete Publications List