According to the Salt Lake Tribune vandals recently destroyed rock art dating back several thousand years:
“They engraved names and dates” across a rock art panel, said Blaine Phillips, a BLM archaeologist. “They pretty well destroyed it.”
The panel was one of four examples of the Barrier Canyon-style of rock art found in the Vernal area. Experts believe the rock art dates back several thousand years, though little is known about the early American Indians who created the images. The style includes ghostly-looking human-sized figures with no legs.
“It’s not unlike walking into an art gallery and painting your name across a Van Gogh,” said State Archaeologist Kevin Jones. “It defaces a piece of our cultural heritage that is irreplaceable.”
BLM officials are now trying to determine whether the rock art panel is on government or private property, which will dictate which agency investigates the vandalism. If it is on federal land, the vandalism is in violation of the Archaeological Resources Protection Act, or ARPA.
“If it is [on BLM land] we will aggressively pursue an ARPA investigation,” Phillips said.
Jones said the state has similar legislation that can be used in pursuing the vandals, if the rock art is determined to be on state land.
Let’s hope it is on federal or state land so the people that did this can be prosecuted…
You can see some of the vernal style rock art here
Filed under: Archaeology