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What Is Next for Cañada de la Virgen?

By Jesús Aguado

With 80 years having passed since the opening of the Cañada de la Virgen archaeological site, a newly formed group in San Miguel de Allende is planning a program of academic expositions, talks, and roundtable discussions in the hopes of bringing audiences a wider knowledge of the region’s archeological zones.

Sanmiguelenses United for Culture, the organization behind the planned program, has three years of activities in mind.

The 2019 the program will focus on archeologist Gabriela Zepeda García Moreno, who did research before and after the archaeological site’s opening in 2011. Zepeda’s work, the group says, even before and after Cañada, is worth paying tribute to “while she is still alive.” In 2020, the group’s activities will shift focus to the Instituto de Hisotria e Antropología (Institute for History and Anthropology) archeologist Luis Felipe Nieto Gamiño. In 2021, the group will highlight the work of archaeologist Miguel Malo Zozaya. This year’s program will bring several archeology experts to town to give talks on archeology and linguistics, to share their research findings. There will be an exhibit of old drawings from children who visited Cañada when the site was still being unearthed, as well as a photo exhibit of Cañada before and after its discovery, showing some of the 19 discovered burial sites.

Zepeda will also give a talk on what is next for Cañada regarding plans to research the DNA of skeletons discovered on site.

Check the Festivals and Events program of Que Pasa for more information.


Cañada de la Virgen, situated on the road to Guanajuato, is a 16-hectare pre-Hispanic archaeological site made up of five complexes. The most important of the complexes is labeled as complex A, known as “House of the 13 Skies.” The area is surrounded by ravines.

It has been estimated that the site was occupied between 540 and 1050 AD, with a golden age between 600 and 900.


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