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Dialogue: Walking a Dark Pathway with Jan Simek

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1st Unnamed Cave was discovered in East Tennessee in 1994. The location is kept secret because what is there is sacred and vulnerable: Glyphs that are carved into the mud of the cave’s walls and ceiling. WUOT's Chrissy Keuper will speak with University of Tennessee Anthropology professor and archaeologist Dr. Jan Simek of the University of Tennessee Department of Anthropology about his book, A Dark Pathway: Precontact Native American Mud Glyphs from 1st Unnamed Cave, Tennessee, published by University of Tennessee Press.

Figure 34 Area 2 RS800.jpg
Alan Cressler
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Figure 34. Area 2 looking out towards cave entrance showing constriction that eliminates exterior light from the cave interior beginning at this point. Glyph 9 on ceiling.
Figure 35 Area 5 RS800.jpg
Alan Cressler
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Figure 35. Paul Aughey standing below mud glyphs in Area 5 (right wall) that were first ones seen in 1st Unnamed Cave.
Figure 97 Glyph 65 RS800.jpg
Alan Cressler
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Figure 97. Glyph 65

Chrissy is WUOT's News Director, as well as host of All Things Considered. Her first job with the station was as a weekend student announcer while earning her bachelor's in Anthropology from the University of Tennessee. From 2004 to 2015, she served as the station's local host for Morning Edition. In 2019, she returned to the station as the local host for All Things Considered.