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Carolyn Boyd

Dr. Carolyn Boyd, Archaeology FacultyShumla Endowed Research Professor
Research Associate Professor and Founder of Shumla Archaeological Research and Education Center

Email: or
Phone: 512.245.0727
Office: ELA 255

Ph.D. – Texas A&M University, 1998
B.A. – Texas A&M University, 1994

Research Interests:
Prehistoric art, iconographic analysis, hunter-gatherer archaeology, applied anthropology, Native American myth, ritual, cosmovision, and iconography

Carolyn E. Boyd is an artist and an archaeologist specializing in iconographic analysis. Her primary interest is the documentation and interpretation of Pecos River Style rock art in southwest Texas and Coahuila, Mexico. Her research examines the role of hunter-gatherer artists as active participants in the social, economic, and ideological fabric of the community and the function of art as communication and a mechanism for social and environmental adaptation. In 1998, Boyd founded a nonprofit corporation, Shumla Archaeological Research and Education Center (, to preserve through documentation and education the prehistoric art of the Lower Pecos. She continues to serve as a research advisor to Shumla and to work with the organization in their documentation efforts.

In the News

Cave Paintings (Texas Country Reporter)

Select Publications:

Conkey, Meg and Carolyn E. Boyd
in press, Amérique de Nord. In L’art de la Préhistoire, edited by Carole Fritz, Michel Barbaza, Genevieve Pincon, and Gilles Tosello, pp. 239-273. Citadelles & Mazenod, Paris.

Carolyn Boyd - The White Shaman Mural, Texas State Applied AnthropologyBoyd, Carolyn E. and Kim Cox
2016, The White Shaman Mural: An Enduring Creation Narrative in the Rock Art of the Lower Pecos.  University of Texas Press, Austin.
- Recipient of the 2017 Society for American Archaeology Scholarly Book Award

Bates, Lennon, Amanda M. Castañeda, Carolyn E. Boyd, and Karen Steelman
2015, A Black Deer at Black Cave: New Pictograph Radiocarbon Date for the Lower Pecos, Texas. Journal of Texas Archeology and History. Online only journal, Volume 2, Article 3.

Boyd, Carolyn, Marvin Rowe, and Karen Steelman
2014, Revisiting the Stylistic Classification of a Charcoal Pictograph in the Lower Pecos. Bulletin of the Texas Archeological Society 85:235-241.

Koenig, Charles W., Amanda Castañeda, Carolyn E. Boyd and Karen Steelman
2014, Portable X-Ray Fluorescence Spectroscopy of Pictographs: A Case Study from the Lower Pecos Canyonlands, Texas. Archaeometry 56(1):168-186.

Boyd, Carolyn E., Amanda Castañeda, and Charles W. Koenig
2013, A Reassessment of Red Linear Style Pictographs in the Lower Pecos Canyonlands of Texas. American Antiquity 78(3):456-482.

Boyd, Carolyn E.
2013, Drawing from the Past: Rock Art of the Lower Pecos. In Painters in Prehistory: Archaeology and Art of the Lower Pecos Canyonlands, edited by Harry Shafer, pp. 171-221. Trinity University Press, San Antonio, TX.

Boyd, Carolyn E.
2012, Pictographs, Peyote, and Patterns in the Rock Art of the Lower Pecos Canyonlands of Texas.  In Companion to Rock Art, edited by Jo McDonald and Peter Veth, pp. 34-50. Wiley-Blackwell Publishing, Malden, MA.

Boyd, Carolyn E.
2010, El Arte Rupestre de Tejas: Análisis Contextual de Motivos Recurrentes en el Área de la Desembocadura del Río Pecos. Revista Iberoamericana de Lingüística 5:5-42.

Boyd, Carolyn E.
2003, Rock Art of the Lower Pecos.  Texas A&M University Press, College Station.