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Title: Aboriginal Remains in Verde Valley, Arizona - Thirteenth Annual Report of the Bureau of Ethnology to the - Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution, 1891-92, - Government Printing Office, Washington, 1896, pages 179-262
Author: Mindeleff, Cosmos, 1863-
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.

*** Start of this LibraryBlog Digital Book "Aboriginal Remains in Verde Valley, Arizona - Thirteenth Annual Report of the Bureau of Ethnology to the - Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution, 1891-92, - Government Printing Office, Washington, 1896, pages 179-262" ***

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       *       *       *       *       *






  Introduction                                           185
   The region and its literature                         185
   Physical description of the country                   189
  Distribution and classification of ruins               192
  Plans and descriptions                                 195
   Stone villages                                        195
   Cavate lodges                                         217
   Bowlder-marked sites                                  235
   Irrigating ditches and horticultural works            238
  Structural characteristics                             248
   Masonry and other details                             248
   Door and window openings                              251
   Chimneys and fireplaces                               256
  Conclusions                                            257

PLATE X. Map showing distribution of ruins and
           location of area treated with reference
           to ancient pueblo region                      185
     XI. Map showing distribution of ruins in the
           basin of the Rio Verde                        187
    XII. Ground plan of ruin near mouth of
           Limestone creek                               189
   XIII. Main court, ruin near Limestone creek           191
    XIV. Ruin at mouth of the East Verde                 193
     XV. Main court, ruin at mouth of the East Verde     195
    XVI. Ruin at mouth of Fossil creek                   197
   XVII. Ground plan of ruins opposite Verde             199
  XVIII. General view of ruins opposite Verde            201
    XIX. Southern part of ruins opposite Verde           203
     XX. General view of ruin on southern side of
           Clear creek                                   205
    XXI. Detailed view of ruin on southern side of
           Clear creek                                   207
   XXII. General view of ruin 8 miles north of
           Fossil creek                                  209
  XXIII. General view of ruins on an eminence
           14 miles north of Fossil creek                211
   XXIV. General view of northern end of a group
           of cavate lodges                              213
    XXV. Map of group of cavate lodges                   215
   XXVI. Strata of northern canyon wall                  217
  XXVII. Ruin on northern point of cavate lodge canyon   219
 XXVIII. Cavate lodge with walled front                  221
   XXIX. Open front cavate lodges on the Rio San Juan    223
    XXX. Walled front cavate lodges on the Rio San Juan  224
   XXXI. Cavate lodges on the Rio Grande                 225
  XXXII. Interior view of cavate lodge, group _D_        227
 XXXIII. Bowlder-marked site                             229
  XXXIV. Irrigating ditch on the lower Verde             231
   XXXV. Old irrigating ditch, showing cut through
           low ridge                                     233
  XXXVI. Old ditch near Verde, looking westward          235
 XXXVII. Old ditch near Verde, looking eastward          237
XXXVIII. Bluff over ancient ditch, showing gravel
           stratum                                       239
  XXXIX. Ancient ditch and horticultural works on
           Clear creek                                   241
     XL. Ancient ditch around a knoll, Clear creek       243
    XLI. Ancient work on Clear creek                     245
   XLII. Gateway to ancient work, Clear creek            247
  XLIII. Single-room remains on Clear creek              249
   XLIV. Bowlder foundations near Limestone creek        251
    XLV. Masonry of ruin near Limestone creek            253
   XLVI. Masonry of ruin opposite Verde                  255
  XLVII. Standing walls opposite Verde                   257
 XLVIII. Masonry of ruin at mouth of the East Verde      259
   XLIX. Doorway to cavate lodge                         260
      L. Doorway to cavate lodge                         261

Fig. 279. Sketch map, site of small ruin 10 miles
            north of Fossil creek                        200
     280. Ground plan of ruin at mouth of the
            East Verde                                   201
     281. Ground plan of ruin near the mouth of
            Fossil creek                                 204
     282. Sketch map, site of ruin above Fossil creek    205
     283. Sketch map of ruin 9½ miles above
            Fossil creek                                 206
     284. Sketch map showing location of ruins
            opposite Verde                               207
     285. Ground plan of ruin on southern side of
            Clear creek                                  211
     286. Ground plan of ruin 8 miles north of
            Fossil creek                                 213
     287. Sketch map of ruins on pinnacle 7 miles
            north of Fossil creek                        216
     288. Remains of small rooms 7 miles north of
            Fossil creek                                 216
     289. Diagram showing strata of canyon wall          218
     290. Walled storage cist                            221
     291. Plan of cavate lodges, group _D_               226
     292. Sections of cavate lodges, group _D_           227
     293. Section of water pocket                        228
     294. Plan of cavate lodges, group _A_               229
     295. Sections of cavate lodges, group _A_           230
     296. Plan of cavate lodges, group _B_               231
     297. Plan of cavate lodges, group _E_               232
     298. Plan of cavate lodges, group _C_               233
     299. Map of an ancient irrigation ditch             239
     300. Part of old irrigating ditch                   241
     301. Walled front cavate lodges                     250
     302. Bowlders in footway, cavate lodges             252
     303. Framed doorway, cavate lodges                  253
     304. Notched doorway in Canyon de Chelly            254
     305. Notched doorway in Tusayan                     255

  [Illustration: Plate X.

       *       *       *       *       *


              By Cosmos Mindeleff

       *       *       *       *       *



The region described in the following pages comprises the valley of
the Rio Verde, in Arizona, from Verde, in eastern central Yavapai
county, to the confluence with Salt river, in Maricopa county.

The written history of the region treated extends back only a few years.
Since the aboriginal inhabitants abandoned it, or were driven from it,
the hostile Apache and Walapai roamed over it without hindrance or
opposition, and so late as twenty-five years ago, when the modern
settlement of the region commenced, ordinary pursuits were almost
impossible. Some of the pioneer settlers are still in possession, and
are occupying the ground they took up at the time when the rifle was
more necessary for successful agriculture than the plow.

The first notice of this region is derived from the report of Espejo,
who visited some “mines” north and east of the present site of Prescott
early in 1583; in 1598 Farfan and Quesada of Oñate’s expedition visited
probably the same locality from Tusayan, and in 1604 Oñate crossed the
country a little way north of the present Prescott, in one of his
journeys in search of mineral wealth. Nothing seems to have come of
these expeditions, however, and the remoteness of the region from the
highways of travel and its rough and forbidding character caused it to
remain unknown for over two centuries. It was not until the active
prospecting for gold and silver accompanying the American invasion and
conquest began that the country again became known. Valuable mines were
discovered east and south of the site of Prescott, some of them as early
as 1836; but it was not until after 1860 that any considerable amount of
work was done, and the mining development of this region, now one of the
best known in Arizona, may be said to date from about 1865. Camp Verde
was first established in 1861, at a point on the northern side of Beaver
creek, but was not regularly occupied until 1866. In 1871 it was removed
to its present location, about a mile south of the previous site. It was
abandoned as a military post in 1891, and gradually lost the military
element of the name.

Concerning the archeologic remains of the Rio Verde valley almost
nothing is known. In the early history of Arizona the Verde was known as
Rio San Francisco, and vague rumors of large and important ruins were
current among trappers and prospectors. The Pacific railway reports,
published in 1856, mention these ruins on the authority of the guide to
Lieut. Whipple’s party, Leroux by name. Other notices are found here and
there in various books of exploration and travel published during the
next two decades, but no systematic examination of the region was made
and the accounts are hardly more than a mention. In 1878 Dr. W. J.
Hoffman, at that time connected with the Hayden Survey, published
descriptions of the so-called Montezuma well and of a large cliff ruin
on Beaver creek, the latter accompanied by an illustration.[1] The
descriptions are slight and do not touch the region herein discussed.

  [Footnote 1: Tenth Ann. Rep. U.S. Geol. Survey for 1876 (Washington,
  1878), p. 477.]

The first publication of importance to the present inquiry is a short
paper by Dr. E. A. Mearns, U.S. Army, in the Popular Science Monthly for
October, 1890. Dr. Mearns was stationed for some years at Camp Verde,
and improved the opportunity afforded by numerous hunting expeditions
and tours of duty to acquaint himself with the aboriginal remains of the
Verde valley. He published a map showing the distribution of remains in
that region, described several ruins in detail, and illustrated some
pieces of pottery, etc., found by him. The article is unfortunately very
short, so short that it is hardly more than an introduction to the wide
field it covers; it is to be hoped that Dr. Mearns will utilize the
material he has and publish a more comprehensive report.

The remains in the valley of Rio Verde derive an additional interest
from their position in the ancient pueblo region. On the one hand they
are near the southwestern limit of that region, and on the other hand
they occupy an intermediate position between the ruins of the Gila and
Salt river valleys and those of the northern districts. The limits of
the ancient pueblo region have not yet been defined, and the
accompanying map (plate X) is only preliminary. It illustrates the
limited extent of our knowledge of the ancient pueblo region as well as
the distribution of ruins within that region, so far as they are known;
and the exceptional abundance of ruins noted on certain portions of the
map means only that those parts are better known than others.
Notwithstanding its incompleteness, it is the best available and is
published in the hope that it will serve as a nucleus to which further
data may be added until a complete map is produced.

  [Illustration: Plate XI.

The ruins in the Gila valley, including those along Salt river, are less
known than those farther northward, but we know that there is a marked
difference between the type exemplified by the well-known Casa Grande,
near Florence, Arizona, and that of which the best specimens (notably
the Chaco ruins) are found in the San Juan basin. This difference may be
due only to a different environment, necessitating a change in material
employed and consequent on this a change in methods, although it seems
to the writer that the difference is perhaps too great to be accounted
for in this way. Be the cause what it may, there is no doubt that there
is a difference; and it is reasonable to expect that in the regions
lying between the southern earth-constructed and the northern stone
structures, intermediate types might be found which would connect them.
The valley of Rio Verde occupies such an intermediate position
geographically, but the architectural remains found in it belong to the
northern type; so we must look elsewhere for connecting links. The most
important ruin in the lower Verde region occurs near its southern end,
and more distinctly resembles the northern ruins than the ruins in the
northern part of that region.

Although the examination of this region failed to connect the northern
and southern types of house structure, the peculiar conditions here are
exceptionally valuable to the study of the principles and methods of
pueblo building. Here remains of large villages with elaborate and
complex ground plan, indicating a long period of occupancy, are found,
and within a short distance there are ruins of small villages with very
simple ground plan, both produced under the same environment; and
comparative study of the two may indicate some of the principles which
govern the growth of villages and whose result can be seen in the ground
plans. Here also there is an exceptional development of cavate lodges,
and corresponding to this development an almost entire absence of cliff
dwellings. From the large amount of data here a fairly complete idea of
this phase of pueblo life may be obtained. This region is not equal to
the Gila valley in data for the study of horticultural methods practiced
among the ancient Pueblos, but there is enough to show that the
inhabitants relied principally and, perhaps, exclusively on horticulture
for means of subsistence, and that their knowledge of horticultural
methods was almost, if not quite, equal to that of their southern
neighbors. The environment here was not nearly so favorable to that
method of life as farther southward, not even so favorable as in some
northern districts, and in consequence more primitive appliances and
ruder methods prevailed. Added to these advantages for study there is
the further one that nowhere within this region are there any traces of
other than purely aboriginal work; no adobe walls, no chimneys, no
constructive expedients other than those which may be reasonably set
down as aboriginal; and, finally, the region is still so little occupied
by modern settlers that, with the exception of the vicinity of Verde,
the remains have been practically undisturbed. A complete picture of
aboriginal life during the occupancy of the lower Verde valley would be
a picture of pueblo life pursued in the face of great difficulties, and
with an environment so unfavorable that had the occupation extended over
an indefinite period of time it would still have been impossible to
develop the great structures which resulted from the settlements in
Chaco canyon.

It is not known what particular branch of the pueblo-building tribes
formerly made their home in the lower Verde valley, but the character
of the masonry, the rough methods employed, and the character of the
remains suggest the Tusayan. It has been already stated that the
archeologic affinities of this region are northern and do not conform
to any type now found in the south; and it is known that some of the
Tusayan gentes--the water people--came from the south. The following
tradition, which, though not very definite, is of interest in this
connection, was obtained by the late A. M. Stephen, for many years a
resident near the Tusayan villages in Arizona, who, aside from his
competence for that work, had every facility for obtaining data of this
kind. The tradition was dictated by Anawita, chief of the Pat-ki-nyûmû
(Water house gentes) and is as follows:

We did not come direct to this region (Tusayan)--we had no fixed
intention as to where we should go.

  We are the Pat-ki-nyû-mû, and we dwelt in the Pa-lát-kwa-bĭ (Red
  Land) where the kwá-ni (agave) grows high and plentiful; perhaps it
  was in the region the Americans call Gila valley, but of that I am
  not certain. It was far south of here, and a large river flowed
  past our village, which was large, and the houses were high, and
  a strange thing happened there.

  Our people were not living peaceably at that time; we were
  quarreling among ourselves, over huts and other things I have heard,
  but who can tell what caused their quarrels? There was a famous
  hunter of our people, and he cut off the tips from the antlers of
  the deer which he killed and [wore them for a necklace?] he always
  carried them. He lay down in a hollow in the court of the village,
  as if he had died, but our people doubted this; they thought he was
  only shamming death, yet they covered him up with earth. Next day
  his extended hand protruded, the four fingers erect, and the first
  day after that one finger disappeared [was doubled up?]; each day a
  finger disappeared, until on the fourth day his hand was no longer

  The old people thought that he dug down to the under world with the
  horn tips.

  On the fifth day water spouted up from the hole where his hand had
  been and it spread over everywhere. On the sixth day Pá-lü-lü-koña
  (the Serpent deity) protruded from this hole and lifted his head
  high above the water and looked around in every direction. All of
  the lower land was covered and many were drowned, but most of our
  people had fled to some knolls not far from the village and which
  were not yet submerged.

  When the old men saw Pá-lü-lü-koña they asked him what he wanted,
  because they knew he had caused this flood; and Pá-lü-lü-koña said,
  “I want you to give me a youth and a maiden.”

  The elders consulted, and then selected the handsomest youth and
  fairest maid and arrayed them in their finest apparel, the youth
  with a white kilt and paroquet plume, and the maid with a fine blue
  tunic and white mantle. These children wept and besought their
  parents not to send them to Pá-lü-lü-koña, but an old chief said,
  “You must go; do not be afraid; I will guide you.” And he led them
  toward the village court and stood at the edge of the water, but
  sent the children wading in toward Pá-lü-lü-koña, and when they
  reached the center of the court where Pá-lü-lü-koña was the deity
  and the children disappeared. The water then rushed down after them,
  through a great cavity, and the earth quaked and many houses tumbled
  down, and from this cavity a great mound of dark rock protruded.
  This rock mound was glossy and of all colors; it was beautiful, and,
  as I have been told, it still remains there.

  [Illustration: Plate XII.

  The White Mountain Apache have told me that they know a place in the
  south where old houses surround a great rock, and the land in the
  vicinity is wet and boggy.

  We traveled northward from Palat-kwabi and continued to travel just
  as long as any strength was left in the people--as long as they had
  breath. During these journeys we would halt only for one day at a
  time. Then our chief planted corn in the morning and the
  pá-to-la-tei (dragon fly) came and hovered over the stalks and by
  noon the corn was ripe; before sunset it was quite dry and the
  stalks fell over, and whichever way they pointed in that direction
  we traveled.

  When anyone became ill, or when children fretted and cried, or the
  young people became homesick, the Co-i-yal Katcina (a youth and a
  maiden) came and danced before them; then the sick got well,
  children laughed, and sad ones became cheerful.

  We would continue to travel until everyone was thoroughly worn out,
  then we would halt and build houses and plant, remaining perhaps
  many years.

  One of these places where we lived is not far from San Carlos, in a
  valley, and another is on a mesa near a spring called Coyote Water
  by the Apache. * * *

  When we came to the valley of the Little Colorado, south of where
  Winslow now is, we built houses and lived there; and then we crossed
  to the northern side of the valley and built houses at Homolobi.
  This was a good place for a time, but a plague of flies came and bit
  the suckling children, causing many of them to die, so we left there
  and traveled to Ci-pa (near Kuma spring).

  Finally we found the Hopi, some going to each of the villages except
  Awatobi; none went there.


The Rio Verde is throughout its length a mountain stream. Rising in the
mountains and plateaus bounding two great connected valleys northwest of
Prescott, known as Big Chino valley and Williamson valley, both over
4,000 feet above the sea, it discharges into Salt river about 10 miles
south of McDowell and about 25 miles east of Phoenix, at an elevation of
less than 1,800 feet above the sea. The fall from Verde to McDowell, a
distance of about 65 miles, is about 1,500 feet The whole course of the
river is but little over 150 miles. The small streams which form the
river unite on the eastern side of Big Chino valley and flow thence in a
southerly and easterly direction until some 12 miles north of Verde the
waterway approaches the edge of the volcanic formation known on the maps
as the Colorado plateau, or Black mesa, and locally as “the rim.” Here
the river is sharply deflected southward, and flows thence in a
direction almost due south to its mouth. This part of the river is
hemmed in on both sides by high mountain chains and broken every few
hundred yards by rapids and “riffles.”

Its rapid fall would make the river valuable for irrigation if there
were tillable land to irrigate; but on the west the river is hugged
closely by a mountain chain whose crest, rising over 6,000 feet above
the sea, is sometimes less than 2 miles from the river, and whose steep
and rugged sides descend in an almost unbroken slope to the river
bottom. The eastern side of the river is also closely confined, though
not so closely as the western, by a chain of mountains known as the
Mazatzal range. The crest of this chain is generally over 10 miles from
the river, and the intervening stretch, unlike the other side, which
comes down to the river in practically a single slope, is broken into
long promontories and foothills, and sometimes, where the larger
tributaries come in, into well-defined terraces. Except at its head the
principal tributaries of the Verde come from the east, those on the
west, which are almost as numerous, being generally small and

Most of the modern settlements of the Rio Verde are along the upper
portion of its course. Prescott is situated on Granite creek, one of the
sources of the river, and along other tributaries, as far down as the
southern end of the great valley in whose center Verde is located, there
are many scattered settlements; but from that point to McDowell there
are hardly a dozen houses all told. This region is most rugged and
forbidding. There are no roads and few trails, and the latter are feebly
marked and little used. The few permanent inhabitants of the region are
mostly “cow men,” and the settlements, except at one point, are shanties
known as “cow camps.” There are hundreds of square miles of territory
here which are never visited by white men, except by “cow-boys” during
the spring and autumn round-ups.

Scattered at irregular intervals along both sides of the river are many
benches and terraces of alluvium, varying in width from a few feet to
several miles, and comprising all the cultivable land in the valley of
the river. Since the Verde is a mountain stream with a great fall, its
power of erosion is very great, and its channel changes frequently;
in some places several times in a single winter season. Benches and
terraces are often formed or cut away within a few days, and no portion
of the river banks is free from these changes until continued erosion
has lowered the bed to such a degree that that portion is beyond the
reach of high water. When this occurs the bench or terrace, being formed
of rich alluvium, soon becomes covered with grass, and later with
mesquite and “cat-claw” bushes, interspersed with such cottonwood trees
as may have survived the period when the terrace was but little above
the river level. Cottonwoods, with an occasional willow, form the
arborescent growth of the valley of the Verde proper, although on some
of the principal tributaries and at a little distance from the river
groves of other kinds of trees are found. All these trees, however, are
confined to the immediate vicinity of the river and those of its
tributaries which carry water during most of the year; and as the
mountains which hem in the valley on the east and west are not high
enough to support great pines such as characterize the plateau country
on the north and east, the aspect of the country, even a short distance
away from the river bottom, is arid and forbidding in the extreme.

  [Illustration: Plate XIII.

Within the last few years the character of the river and of the country
adjacent to it has materially changed, and inferences drawn from present
conditions may be erroneous. This change is the direct result of the
recent stocking of the country with cattle. More cattle have been
brought into the country than in its natural state it will support. One
of the results of this overstocking is a very high death rate among the
cattle; another and more important result is that the grasses and other
vegetation have no chance to seed or mature, being cropped off close to
the ground almost as soon as they appear. As a result of this, many of
the river terraces and little valleys among the foothills, once
celebrated for luxuriant grass, are now bare, and would hardly afford
sustenance to a single cow for a week. In place of strong grasses these
places are now covered for a few weeks in spring with a growth of a
plant known as “filaree,” which, owing to the rapid maturing of its
seeds (in a month or less), seems to be the only plant not completely
destroyed by the cattle, although the latter are very fond of it and eat
it freely, both green and when dried on the ground. As a further effect
of the abundance of cattle and the scarcity of food for them, the young
willows, which, even so late as ten years ago, formed one of the
characteristic features of the river and its banks, growing thickly in
the bed of the stream, and often forming impenetrable jungles on its
banks, are now rarely seen.

Owing to the character of the country it drains, the Rio Verde always
must have been subject to freshets and overflows at the time of the
spring rains, but until quite recently the obstructions to the rapid
collection of water offered by thickly growing grass and bushes
prevented destructive floods, except, perhaps, on exceptional occasions.
Now, however, the flood of each year is more disastrous than that of the
preceding year, and in the flood of February, 1891, the culminating
point of intensity and destructiveness was reached. On this occasion the
water rose in some places over 20 feet, with a corresponding broadening
in other places, and flowed with such velocity that for several weeks it
was impossible to cross the river. As a result of these floods, the
grassy banks that once distinguished the river are now but little more
than a tradition, while the older terraces, which under normal
circumstances would now be safe, are being cut away more and more each
year. In several localities near Verde, where there are cavate lodges,
located originally with especial reference to an adjacent area of
tillable land, the terraces have been completely cut away, and the
cliffs in which the cavate lodges occur are washed by the river during
high water.


All the modern settlements of the lower portion of the Verde valley are
located on terraces or benches, and such localities were also regarded
favorably by the ancient builders, for almost invariably where a modern
settlement is observed traces of a former one will also be found. The
former inhabitants of this region were an agricultural people, and their
villages were always located either on or immediately adjacent to some
area of tillable soil. This is true even of the cavate lodges, which are
often supposed to have been located solely with reference to facility of
defense. Owing to the character of the country, most of the tillable
land is found on the eastern side of the river, and as a consequence
most of the remains of the former inhabitants are found there also,
though they are by no means confined to that side. These remains are
quite abundant in the vicinity of Verde, and less so between that point
and the mouth of the river. The causes which have induced American
settlement in the large area of bottom land about Verde doubtless also
induced the aboriginal settlement of the same region, although, owing to
the different systems of agriculture pursued by the two peoples, the
American settlements are always made on the bottom lands themselves,
while the aboriginal settlements are almost always located on high
ground overlooking the bottoms. Perched on the hills overlooking these
bottoms, and sometimes located on the lower levels, there was once a
number of large and important villages, while in the regions on the
south, where the tillable areas are as a rule very much smaller, the
settlements were, with one exception, small and generally insignificant.
The region treated in these pages is that portion of the valley of Rio
Verde comprised between its mouth and Verde, or Beaver creek, on the
north. It was entered by the writer from the south; it is not proposed,
however, to follow a strict geographic order of treatment, but, on the
contrary, so far as practicable, to follow an arrangement by types.

The domiciliary ruins of this region fall easily into three general
classes, to which may be added a fourth, comprising irrigating ditches
and works, the first class having two subclasses. They are as follows:

  Stone villages.
      _a_. Villages on bottom lands.
      _b_. Villages on defensive sites.
  Cavate lodges.
  Bowlder-marked sites.
  Irrigating ditches and works.

  [Illustration: Plate XIV.

The ruins of the first group, or stone villages located on bottom lands
without reference to defense, represent in size and in degree of skill
attained by the builders the highest type in this region, although they
are not so numerous as those of the other groups. They are of the same
type as, although sometimes smaller in size than, the great valley
pueblos of the regions on the north and south, wherein reliance for
defense was placed in massive and well-planned structures and not on
natural advantages of location. In the north this class of ruin has been
shown to be the last stage in along course of evolution, and there is a
suggestion that it occupies the same relation to the other ruins in the
Verde region; this question, however, will later be discussed at some
length. The best example of this type on the lower Verde is a large
ruin, located in a considerable bottom on the eastern side of the river,
about a mile above the mouth of Limestone creek. This is said to be the
largest ruin on the Verde; it is certainly the largest in the region
here treated, and it should be noted that it marks practically the
southern limit of the Rio Verde group.

The ruins of the second subclass, or stone villages located on defensive
sites, are found throughout the whole of this region, although the type
reaches its best development in the northern portion, in the vicinity of
Verde. The separation of this type from the preceding one is to a
certain extent arbitrary, as the location of a ruin is sometimes
determined solely by convenience, and convenience may dictate the
selection of a high and defensible site, when the tillable land on which
the village depends is of small area, or when it is divided into a
number of small and scattered areas; for it was a principle of the
ancient village-builders that the parent village should overlook as
large an extent as possible of the fields cultivated by its inhabitants.
A good illustration of this type of ruin is found a little way northeast
of Verde, on the opposite side of the river. Here a cluster of ruins
ranging from small groups of domiciles to medium-sized villages is found
located on knobs and hills, high up in the foothills and overlooking
large areas of the Verde bottom lands. These are illustrated later.
Another example, also illustrated later, occurs on the eastern side of
the river about 8 miles north of the mouth of Fossil creek. The village,
which is very small, occupies the whole summit of a large rock which
projects into the stream, and which is connected with the mainland by a
natural causeway or dike. This is one of the best sites for defense seen
by the writer in an experience of many years.

Cavate lodges are distributed generally over the whole northern portion
of the region here treated. At many points throughout this region there
are outcrops of a calcareous sandstone, very soft and strongly laminated
and therefore easily excavated. This formation often appears in the
cliffs and small canyons bordering on the streams, and in it are found
the cavate lodges. The best examples are found some 8 miles south of
Verde, in a small canyon on the eastern side of the river, and it is
noteworthy that in this case stone villages occur in conjunction with
and subordinate to the cavate lodges, while elsewhere within this region
and in other regions the cavate lodges are found either alone or in
conjunction with and subordinate to stone villages. To this latter type
belong a number of cavate lodges on the northern side of Clear creek,
about 4 miles above its mouth. The cavate lodges of the Verde differ in
some particulars from those found in other regions; they are not
excavated in tufa or volcanic ash, nor are the fronts of the chambers
generally walled up. Front walls are found here, but they are the
exception and not the rule.

Bowlder-marked sites are scattered over the whole region here treated
although they are more abundant in the southern part than in the
northern. They are so abundant that their locations could not be
indicated on the accompanying map (plate XI). These constitute a
peculiar type, not found elsewhere in the experience of the writer, and
present some points of interest. They vary in size from one room to
considerable settlements, but the average size is two or three rooms.
They are always located with reference to some area, generally a small
one, of tillable land which they overlook, and all the data now
available support the inference that they mark the sites of small
farming or temporary shelters, occupied only during the farming season
and abandoned each winter by the inhabitants, who then return to the
main pueblo--a custom prevalent today among the pueblos. These sites are
found on the flat bottom lands of the river, on the upper terraces
overlooking the bottoms, on points of the foothills, in fact everywhere
where there is an area of tillable land large enough to grow a few hills
of corn. They often occur in conjunction with irrigating ditches and
other horticultural works; sometimes they are located on small hillocks
in the beds of streams, locations which must be covered with water
during the annual floods; sometimes they are found at the bases of
promontories bordering on drainage channels and on the banks of arroyas,
where they might be washed away at any time. In short, these sites seem
to have been selected without any thought of their permanency.

Irrigating ditches and horticultural works were found in this region,
but not in great abundance; perhaps a more careful and detailed
examination would reveal a much larger number than are now known. Fine
examples of irrigating ditches were found at the extreme northern and
the extreme southern limits of the region here treated, and there is a
fair presumption that other examples occur in the intermediate country.
These works did not reach the magnitude of those found in the Gila and
Salt river valleys, perhaps partly for the reason that the great fall of
Verde river and its tributaries renders only short ditches necessary to
bring the water out over the terraces, and also partly because
irrigation is not here essential to successful horticulture. In good
years fair crops can be obtained without irrigation, and today this
method of farming is pursued to a limited extent.

  [Illustration: Plate XV.



Ruins of villages built of stone, either roughly dressed or merely
selected, represent the highest degree of art in architecture attained
by the aborigines of Verde valley, and the best example of this class of
ruin is found on the eastern side of the river, about a mile above the
mouth of Limestone creek. The site was selected without reference to
defense, and is overlooked by the hills which circumscribe a large
semicircular area of bottom land, on the northern end of which the
village was located. This is the largest ruin on the Verde; it covers an
area of about 450 feet square, or over 5 acres, and has some 225 rooms
on the ground plan. From the amount of debris we may infer that most of
the rooms were but one story in height; and a reasonable estimate of the
total number of rooms in the village when it was occupied would make the
number not greater than 300 rooms. The ratio of rooms to inhabitants in
the present pueblos would give a population for this village of about
450 persons. Zuñi, the largest inhabited pueblo, covering an area of
about 5 acres, has a population of 1,600.

It will thus be seen that, while the area covered by this village was
quite large, the population was comparatively small; in other words, the
dense clustering and so-called beehive structure which characterize Zuñi
and Taos, and are seen to a less extent in Oraibi, and which result from
long-continued pressure of hostile tribes upon a village occupying a
site not in itself easily defensible, has not been carried to such an
extent here as in the examples cited. But it is also apparent that this
village represents the beginning of the process which in time produces a
village like Zuñi or Taos.

Plate XII exhibits the ground plan of the village. It will be observed
that this plan is remarkably similar in general characters to the ground
plan of Zuñi.[2] A close inspection will reveal the presence of many
discrepancies in the plan, which suggest that the village received at
various times additions to its population in considerable numbers, and
was not the result of the gradual growth of one settlement nor the home
of a large group coming en masse to this locality. It has been shown[3]
that in the old provinces of Tusayan and Cibola (Moki and Zuñi) the
present villages are the result of the aggregation of many related
gentes and subgentes, who reached their present location at different
times and from different directions, and this seems to be the almost
universal rule for the larger pueblos and ruins. It should be noted in
this connection, however, that, the preceding statements being granted,
a general plan of this character indicates an essentially modern origin
or foundation.

  [Footnote 2: Eighth Ann. Rep. Bureau of Ethnology, 1886-’87, Wash.,
  1891, pl. lxxvi.]

  [Footnote 3: Ibid., pp. 1-228.]

The ground plan shows a number of courts or open spaces, which divided
the village into four well-defined clusters. The largest court was
nearly in the center of the village, and within it (as shown, on the
plan) there are traces of a small single-room structure that may have
been a kiva of sacred chamber. Attached to this main court and extending
eastward is another court of considerable size, and connected with this
second court at its eastern end there is another one almost square in
plan and of fair size. West of the main court may be seen a small court
opening into it, and north of this another square space separated from
the main court by a single stone wall and inclosed on the other three
sides by rooms. In addition to these there are two completely inclosed
small courts in the center of the southwestern cluster, and another one
of moderate size between the southwestern and southern clusters.

The arrangement of these courts is highly suggestive. The central space
was evidently the main court of the village at the time of its greatest
development, and it is equally evident that it was inclosed at a later
period than the small inclosed courts immediately adjacent to it, for
had the latter not preceded it they would not occupy the positions they
now do. Plate XIII represents a part of the main court, and beyond the
débris can be seen a small portion of the bottom upon which the village
is built. To the left, in the foreground of the illustration, are traces
of a small detached room, perhaps the main kiva[4] of the village; this
is also shown on the ground plan, plate XII.

  [Footnote 4: The kiva is the assembly chamber, termed estufa in
  some of the older writings, particularly those of the early Spanish
  explorers. A full description of these peculiar structures has
  already been published in an article on Pueblo architecture; Eighth
  Ann. Rep. Bureau of Ethnology, 1886-’87, Wash., 1891, pp. 1-228.]

The smaller courts are but little larger than the largest rooms, but it
will be noticed that while some of the rooms are quite large they are
always oblong. This requirement was dictated by the length of available
roofing timbers. The cottonwood groves on the river bank would provide
timber of fair size but of very poor quality, and, aside from this,
roofing timbers longer than 15 feet could be obtained only at points
many miles distant. In either case the hauling of these timbers to the
site of the village would be a work of great labor and considerable
difficulty. The width of the rooms was, therefore, limited to about 20
feet, most of them being under 15 feet; but this limitation did not
apply to the courts, which, though sometimes surrounded on all sides by
buildings, were always open to the sky.

  [Illustration: Plate XVI.

It is probable that the central and northern portion of the southwestern
cluster comprised the first rooms built in this village. This is the
portion which commands the best outlook over the bottom, and it is also
on the highest ground. Following this the southern cluster was probably
built; afterwards the northern cluster was added, and finally the
northwestern cluster. Subsequently rooms connecting these clusters and
the eastern end of the village were built up, and probably last of all
were added the rooms which occupied what was originally the eastern end
of the main court. This hypothetic order of building the clusters
composing the village is supported by the character of the site and the
peculiarities of the ground plan. Most of the rooms in the northwestern
cluster and in the eastern part of the village were but one story in
height, while the crowding in the interior of the village, direct
evidence of which is seen on the ground plan, could take place only
after the rooms surrounding that area had been located, and when hostile
pressure from outside made it undesirable to extend the bounds of the
village; in other words, at the latest stage in the growth of the

The arrangement and distribution of the rooms within the clusters
indicate an occupancy extending over a considerable period of time.
A reference to the ground plan will show that continuous wall lines are
the exception, and it is seldom that more than two or three rooms are
grouped together in regular order. In irregularity of arrangement the
inhabitants of this village followed a general habit, the result of
which can be seen today in all the inhabited villages and in most of the
large pueblo ruins. It indicates a steady growth of the village by the
addition of rooms, one or two at a time, as they were needed. The
division into clusters, however, indicates an aggregation of related
gentes or subgentes banded together for protection. Given these
conditions, (1) bands of related families living near one another; (2)
hostile pressure from outside; and (3) a site not in itself easily
defended, and a ground plan similar to the one under discussion must
result. Single detached rooms would not be built when the village might
be attacked at any time, but they might be added during periods of peace
and, the conditions being favorable, they might form the nuclei of other
clusters. It is possible that some of the clusters forming this village
had their origin in this manner, but this question can not be determined
from the ground plan, as a similar result would be produced by the
advent of a small band of related families.

Growth in number of rooms does not necessarily indicate growth in
population, and this qualification must not be lost sight of in the
discussion of pueblo ground plans. Among the Pueblos of today, descent,
in real property at least, is in the female line; when a man marries he
becomes a member of his wife’s family and leaves his own home to live
with his wife’s people. If the wife’s home is not large enough to
contain all the members of the household, additional rooms are built
adjoining and connected with those previously occupied. It may be
mentioned in this connection that the women build the houses, although
the men supply the material and do the heavy work. The result of this
custom may be readily seen: a family in which there are many daughters
must necessarily increase the space occupied by it, while a family
consisting of sons, no matter how many they may be, will become extinct,
so far as regards its home in the village. It is no uncommon thing to
see in the villages of today several rooms in course of erection while
there are a dozen or more rooms within a few steps abandoned and going
to decay. Long occupancy, therefore, produces much the same effect on a
ground plan of a village as a large population, or a rapidly growing
one, except that in the former case irregularity in the arrangement of
rooms will be more pronounced.

It will be noticed that the size of rooms is more varied in the
southwestern and southern clusters than in the remaining portions of the
village. In the southwestern cluster rooms measuring 8 feet by 18 or 20
are not uncommon. These occur principally in the central and
southwestern part of the cluster, while in the northern and northeastern
part the rooms are uncommonly large, one of them measuring about 40 feet
in length by nearly 15 feet in width and presenting a floor area of 600
square feet. Rooms approaching this size are more common, however, in
the northern and northwestern clusters. In these latter clusters long
narrow rooms are the exception and a number of almost square ones are
seen. The smallest room in the village is in the center of the southern
cluster, on the highest ground within the area covered by the ruin; it
measures 6 feet by 10, with a floor area of 60 square feet, as opposed
to the 600 square feet of the largest room. This small room was probably
at one time a small open space between two projecting rooms, such as are
often seen in the inhabited pueblos. Later the room on the south was
built and the front of the space was walled up in order to make a
rectangular area, thus forming the small room shown on the ground plan.
The maximum length of any room is about 40 feet, the maximum width
attained is about 20 feet, and in a general way it may be stated that
the average size of the rooms is considerably larger than that of the
rooms in the northern ruins.

From the regularity in distribution of the debris now on the ground,
it appears that the rooms of the northwestern and northern clusters,
including the eastern part of the village, were almost uniformly one
story in height, and most of the rooms in the other clusters were also
limited in height to a single story. The only places on the ground plan
where rooms of two stories might have existed are the northern and
central parts of the southwestern and southern clusters, and perhaps the
southern side of the northern cluster; the last, however, being very

  [Illustration: Plate XVII.

In the scarcity of detached rooms or small clusters the plan of this
village strongly resembles the ground plan of Zuñi. Only three detached
rooms are seen in the plan. One of these, situated in the main or
central court, has already been referred to as probably the remains of a
kiva or sacred chamber. Another single room occurs outside of the
village, near its southwestern corner. This was probably a dwelling
room, for a kiva would hardly be located in this place. The third room
is found also outside the village and at its southeastern corner. The
space inclosed within the walls of this room measured about 7 feet by 4
and the lines of wall are at an acute angle with the wall lines of the
village. This structure is anomalous, and its purpose is not clear.

The absence of clearly defined traces of passageways to the interior of
the village is noticeable. This absence can hardly be attributed to the
advanced state of decay in the ruin, for nearly all the wall lines can
still be easily traced. At one point only is there a suggestion of an
open passageway similar to those found in the inhabited pueblos. This
occurs in the southeastern corner of the ground plan, between the
southern cluster and the southern part of the northeastern cluster.
It was about 25 feet long and but 6 feet wide in the clear. There were
undoubtedly other passageways to the interior courts, but they were
probably roofed over and perhaps consisted of rooms abandoned for that
purpose. This, however, is anomalous.

There are several other anomalous features in the ground plan, the
purposes of which are not clear. Prominent among them is a heavy wall
extending about halfway across the southern, side of the village and at
some distance from it. The total length of this wall is 164 feet; it is
4 feet thick (nearly twice the thickness of the other walls), and is
pierced near its center by an opening or gateway 4 feet wide. The
nearest rooms of the village on the north are over 40 feet away. This
wall is now much broken down, but here and there, as shown on the plan,
portions of the original wall lines are left. It is probable that its
original height did not exceed 5 or 6 feet. The purpose of this
structure is obscure; it could not have been erected for defense, for it
has no defensive value whatever; it had no connection with the houses of
the village, for it is too far removed from them. The only possible use
of this wall that occurs to the writer is that it was a dam or retaining
wall for a shallow pool of water, fed by the surface drainage of a small
area on the east and northeast. There is at present a very slight
depression between the wall and the first houses of the village toward
the north--about a foot or a foot and a half--but there may have been a
depression of 2 or 3 feet here at one time and this depression may have
been subsequently filled up by sediment. This conjecture could be easily
tested by excavating a trench across the area between the wall and the
houses, but in the absence of such an excavation the suggestion is a
mere surmise.

Another anomalous feature is found in the center of the southwestern
cluster. Here, in two different rooms, are found walls of double the
usual thickness, occurring, however, on only one or two sides of the
rooms. These are clearly shown on the ground plan. The westernmost of
the two rooms which exhibit this feature has walls of normal thickness
on three of its sides, while the fourth or eastern side consists of two
walls of normal thickness, built side by side, perhaps the result of
some domestic quarrel. The eastern room, however, has thick walls on its
northern and eastern sides, and in this case the walls are built solidly
at one time, not consisting, as in the previous case, of two walls of
ordinary thickness built side by side. An inspection of the ground plan
will show that in both these cases this feature is anomalous and
probably unimportant.

A ruin of the same general type as that just described, but much smaller
in size, is found about 6 miles farther northward on the eastern side of
the river. It is located on the river edge of a large semicircular flat
or terrace, near its northern end, and is built of flat slabs of
limestone and river bowlders. It is rectangular in plan and of moderate
size. On the southern end of the same flat are two single-room rancher’s
houses and a large corral. The rooms in this ruin are oblong and similar
in size and arrangement to those just described.

  [Illustration: Figure 279.
  Sketch map, site of small ruin 10 miles north of Fossil creek.]

About 11 miles above the last-described ruin, or 17 miles above the
large ruin near Limestone creek, there is another small ruin of the same
general type as the last, located on a similar site, and in all
respects, except size, closely similar to it.

About 3 miles below the mouth of the East Verde there is still another
ruin of similar character, located on the edge of a mesa or bench
overlooking the river. It is built of bowlders and slabs of rock. Like
the others this ruin is rectangular in plan and of small size.

About 10 miles north of the mouth of Fossil creek, on the point of a
bench or terrace on the western side of the river, and perhaps 20 feet
above it, occurs a small ruin, similar in character to the preceding.
The river here makes a long turn eastward, then flows south again, and
in the angle a small bench or terrace is formed. At this point the
mountains rise abruptly from the river on both sides to a height of over
a thousand feet. Fig. 279 illustrates the location of this ruin. So far
as could be distinguished from the hills opposite, the rooms occur in
two broken lines at right angles to each other.

  [Illustration: Plate XVIII.

These four small ruins are all closely similar to the large ruin
described above in all respects except size, and peculiarities of ground
plan attendant on size. The rooms are always rectangular, generally
oblong, and arranged without regularity as regards their longer axis.
Except the one last described, the ruins consist of compact masses of
rooms, without evidences of interior courts, all of very small size, and
all located without reference to defense. The last-described ruin
differs from the others only in the arrangement of rooms. There is
practically no standing wall remaining in any of them, and even now they
can be seen for miles from the hills above. When the walls were standing
they must have been conspicuous landmarks. The masonry of all consists
of flat bowlders, selected doubtless from the river bed, or perhaps
sometimes quarried from the terraces, which themselves contain large
numbers of river bowlders. In general appearance and in plan these ruins
resemble the ruin next to be described, situated near the mouth of the
East Verde.

  [Illustration: Figure 280.
  Ground plan of ruin at mouth of the East Verde.]

On the southern side of the East Verde, half a mile above its mouth, a
small creek comes in from the south, probably dry throughout most of the
year; and on a promontory or point of land left by this creek a small
ruin occurs. It is similar in plan and in character of masonry to those
just described, and differs from them only in that its site is better
adapted for defense, being protected on two sides by steep hills or
cliffs. The ground plan of this ruin is shown in figure 280, and its
general appearance in plate XIV, which also shows the character of
masonry. The village overlooked a large area of low bottom land in the
angle between the Verde and the East Verde, and is itself overlooked by
the foothills rising behind it to the high mesas forming part of the
Mazatzal mountains.

The walls of this village were built of flat bowlders and slabs of
limestone, and there is now practically no standing wall remaining. The
ground plan shows a number of places where the walls are still visible,
but they extend only a few inches above the debris. There were about
forty rooms, and the plan is characterized by irregularities such as
have already been noticed in other plans. Although the village was of
considerable size it was built up solidly, and there is no trace of an
interior court. It will be noticed that the rooms vary much in size, and
that many of the smaller rooms are one half the size of the larger ones,
as though the larger rooms had been divided by partitions after they
were completed. It is probable that rooms extended partly down the slope
on the west and south of the village toward the little creek before
mentioned, but if this were the case all evidences have long since been

On the southern side of the village the ground plan shows a bit of
curved wall. It is doubtful whether this was an actual wall or merely a
terrace. If it was a wall it is the only example of curved wall found in
the region in ruins of this class. Between this wall or terrace and the
adjoining wall on the north, with which it was connected, the ground is
now filled in. Whether this filling occurred prior or subsequent to the
abandonment of the village does not appear. The northeastern corner of
the ruin is marked by a somewhat similar feature. Here there is a line
of wall now almost obliterated and but feebly marked by debris, and the
space between it and the village proper is partly filled in, forming a
low terrace. Analogous features are found in several other ruins in this
region, notably in the large ruin near Limestone creek. It should be
noted in this connection that Mr. E. W. Nelson has found that places
somewhat similar to these in the ruins about Springerville, New Mexico,
always well repaid the labor of excavation, and he adopted as a working
hypothesis the assumption that these were the burial places of the
village. Whether a similar condition would be found in this region can
only be determined by careful and systematic excavation.

The village did not occupy the whole of the mesa point on which it is
located; on the east the ground rises gently to the foothills of the
Mazatzal range, and on the south and west it slopes sharply down to the
little creek before mentioned; while on the north there is a terrace or
flat open space some 60 feet wide and almost parallel with the longer
axis of the village. This open space and the sharp fall which limits it
on the north is shown on the ground plan. The general view of the same
feature (plate XV) also shows the character of the valley of the East
Verde above the ruin; the stream is here confined within a low walled
canyon. This open space formed a part of the village and doubtless
occupied the same relation to it that interior courts do to other
villages. Its northern or outer edge is a trifle higher than the space
between it and the village proper and is marked by several large
bowlders and a small amount of debris. It is possible that at one time
there was a defensive wall here, although the ground falls so suddenly
that it is almost impossible to climb up to the edge from below without
artificial aid. Defensive walls such as this may have been are very rare
in pueblo architecture, only one instance having been encountered by the
writer in an experience of many years. The map seems to show more local
relief to this terrace than the general view indicates, but it should be
borne in mind that the contour interval is but 2½ feet.

  [Illustration: Plate XIX.

A comparison of the ground plan of this ruin and those previously
described, together with that of the ruin near the mouth of Fossil creek
(plate XVI), which is typical of this group, shows marked irregularity
in outline and plan. In the character of the debris also this ruin
differs from the Fossil creek ruin and others located near it. As in the
latter, bowlders were used in the wall, but unlike the latter rough
stone predominates. In the character of its masonry this ruin forms an
intermediate or connecting link between the ruins near Limestone creek
and opposite Verde and the class of which the ruin near the mouth of
Fossil creek is typical. In the character of its site it is of the same
class as the Fossil creek ruin, being intermediate between the valley
pueblos, such as that near Limestone creek, and pueblos located on
defensive sites, such as the group opposite Verde. The ground plan
indicates an occupancy extending over a considerable period of time and
terminating at or near the close of the period of aboriginal occupancy
of the valley of Rio Verde.

Another ruin, of a type closely similar, occurs on a bluff near the
mouth of Fossil creek. The plan of this ruin is shown in figure 281. The
village is located close to the edge of the bluff, as shown in the plan,
and has an outlook over a considerable area of bottom land adjoining the
bluff on the east. It is probable that the cavate lodges whose location
some 8 or 10 miles above the ruin, on Fossil creek, is shown on the
general map (plate XI) were appendages of this village.

The wall still standing extends but a few inches above the débris, but
enough remains to mark the principal wall lines, and these are farther
emphasized by the lines of débris. The débris here is remarkably clean
and stands out prominently from the ground surface, instead of being
merged into it as is usually the case. This is shown in the general view
of the ruin. There are twenty-five rooms on the ground plan, and there
is no evidence that any of these attained a greater height than one
story. The population, therefore, could not have been much, if any, in
excess of forty, and as the average family of the Pueblos consists of
five persons, this would make the number of families which found a home
in this village less than ten. Notwithstanding this small population the
ground plan of this village shows clearly a somewhat extended period of
occupancy and a gradual growth in size. The eastern half of the village,
which is located along the edge of the bluff, probably preceded the
western in point of time. It will be noticed that while the wall lines
are seldom continuous for more than three rooms, yet the rooms
themselves are arranged with a certain degree of regularity, in that the
longer axes are usually parallel.

  [Illustration: Figure 281.
  Ground plan of ruin near the month of Fossil creek.]

The masonry of this village is almost entirely of flat bowlders,
obtained probably from the bed of the creek immediately below. The
terrace on which the village was built, and in fact all the hills about
it are composed of gravel and bowlders, but it would be easier to carry
the bowlders up from the stream bed than to quarry them from the
hillside, and in the former case there would be a better opportunity for
selection. Plate XVI shows the character of the rock employed, and
illustrates the extent to which selection of rock has been carried.
Although the walls are built entirely of river bowlders the masonry
presents almost as good a face as some of the ruins previously described
as built of slabs of limestone, and this is due to careful selection of
the stone employed.

  [Illustration: Plate XX.

About half a mile above the mouth of Fossil creek, and on the eastern
side of the river, a deep ravine comes in from the north and east, and
on a low spur near its mouth there is a ruin very similar to the one
just described. It is also about the same size. The general character of
the site it occupies is shown in the sketch, figure 282. The masonry is
of the same general character as that of the ruin near the mouth of
Fossil creek, and the débris, which stands out sharply from the ground
surface, is distinguished by the same cleanness.

  [Illustration: Figure 282.
  Sketch map, site of ruin above Fossil creek.]

About 8½ miles north of Fossil creek, on the eastern side of the Verde,
occurs a small ruin, somewhat different in the arrangement of rooms from
those described. Here there is a bench or terrace, some 50 feet above
the river, cut through near its northern end by a small canyon. The ruin
is located on the southern side of this terrace, near the mouth of the
creek, and consists of about ten rooms arranged in +L+ shape. The lines
are very irregular, and there are seldom more than three rooms
connected. The débris marking the wall lines is clean, and the lines are
well defined, although no standing wall remains.

About a mile above the last-described ruin, or 9½ miles north of the
mouth of Fossil creek, a small group of ruins occurs. The sketch, figure
283, shows the relation of the parts of this group to one another. The
small cluster or rooms on the south is very similar in character,
location, and size to the ruin last described. The northern portion is
situated on the opposite side of a deep canyon or ravine, on the crown
of a hill composed of limestone, which outcrops everywhere about it, and
is considerably higher than the small cluster on the south. The northern
ruin is of considerable size and very compactly built, the rooms being
clustered about the summit of the hill. The central room, occupying the
crown of the hill, is 20 feet higher than the outside rooms. In a saddle
between the main cluster and a similar hill toward the southeast there
are a number of other rooms, not marked so prominently by débris as
those of the main cluster. There is no standing wall remaining, but the
débris of the main and adjoining clusters indicates that the masonry was
very rough, the walls being composed of slabs of limestone similar to
those found in the large ruin near the mouth of Limestone creek, and
obtained probably not 20 feet away from their present position.

  [Illustration: Figure 283.
  Sketch map of ruin 9½ miles above Fossil creek.]

The ruin described on page 200 and assigned to the first subclass occurs
about half a mile north of this limestone hill, on the opposite side of
the river. This small ruin, like all the smaller ruins described, was
built of river bowlders, or river bowlders with occasional slabs of
sandstone or limestone, while the ruin last described consists
exclusively of limestone slabs. This difference is explained, however,
by the character of the sites occupied by the several ruins. The
limestone hill upon which the ruin under discussion is situated is an
anomalous feature, and its occurrence here undoubtedly determined the
location of this village. It is difficult otherwise to understand the
location of this cluster of rooms, for they command no outlook over
tillable land, although the view up and down the river is extensive.
This cluster, which is the largest in size for many miles up and down
the river, may have been the parent pueblo, occupying somewhat the same
relation to the smaller villages that Zuñi occupies to the summer
farming settlements of Nutria, Pescado, and Ojo Caliente; and doubtless
the single-room remains, which occur above and below the cluster on mesa
benches and near tillable tracts, were connected with it. This ruin is
an example of the second subclass, or villages located on defensive
sites, which merges into ruins of the first subclass, or villages on
bottom lands, through villages like that located at the mouth of the
East Verde and at the mouth of Fossil creek.

  [Illustration: Plate XXI.

On the eastern side of the Verde, just below the mouth of Beaver creek,
opposite and a little above Verde, occurs one of the best examples to be
found in this region of a large village located on a defensive site.
Here there is a group of eight clusters extending half a mile up and
down the river, and some of the clusters have walls still standing to a
height of 8 and 10 feet. The relation of these clusters to each other is
shown in the sketch map, figure 284.

  [Illustration: Figure 284.
  Sketch map showing location of ruins opposite Verde.]

The principal ruin of the group is situated on the northern side of a
small valley running eastward from the river up to the foot of a
prominent mesa, which here bounds the eastern side of the river bottom.
The valley is perhaps half a mile long and about an eighth of a mile
wide. The ruin is located on a butte or knoll connected with the hills
back of it by a low saddle, forming a sort of promontory or tongue of
land rising from a flat space or bench, the whole some 200 feet above
the river bottom. One of the clusters of rooms is located in the saddle
mentioned and is connected with the main ruin. At the foot of the butte
on the western side there is a similar cluster, not connected, however,
with the main ruin; and south of the main ruin, on the extreme edge of
the little mesa or bench, there is another small cluster. The ruin shown
on the sketch map southwest of the main ruin consists of but two rooms,
with no wall now standing. All these clusters are shown in their proper
position on the ground plan, plate XVII. Plate XVIII, which is a general
view from the east, shows the main ruin on the butte, together with the
connected cluster east of it in the saddle. The modern settlement seen
in the middle distance is Verde.

About a quarter of a mile west of the main ruin there is another small
but well-preserved cluster of rooms. It occupies the narrow ridge of a
hill some 200 feet above the river. On the west and south, the hill
descends abruptly to the river; on the southeast and east it slopes
sharply down to a broad valley on the level of the mesa bench before
mentioned, but the valley is cut by a narrow and deep canyon marking the
east side of the hill. This cluster is shown on the ground plan, plate
XVII, though not in its proper position. Northeast of this cluster and
perhaps 200 yards distant there are traces of other rooms, but they are
so faint that no plan can be made out. As shown on the sketch map,
figure 284, the hill is a long narrow one, and its western side falls
rapidly to a large triangular area of flat bottom land lying between it
and Beaver creek, which it overlooks, as well as a large area of the
valley up the river and all the fine bottom lands north and east of
Verde and on the northwestern side of Beaver creek. As regards outlook,
and also as regards security and facility of defense, the site of the
small cluster is far superior to that of the main cluster of rooms.

About a quarter of a mile south and east of the main ruin, on the
opposite side of the little valley before mentioned, a mesa bench
similar to the one last described occurs; and on a point of this,
extending almost to the river bank, there are traces, now nearly
obliterated, of a small cluster of rooms. A short distance east of this
point there is a large rounded knoll, with a peculiar terrace-like bench
at about half its height. The entire summit of this knoll was occupied
by rooms, of which the walls are much broken and none remain standing.
This knoll, with the ruins on its summit, is shown in plate XIX, which
also gives a general view from the north of the small cluster southeast
of the main ruin. The character of the valley of the Verde at this point
is also shown. The sketch map, figure 284, shows the location of these
ruins in reference to others of the group.

The main cluster, that portion occupying the crown or summit of the
butte before described, exhibits at the present time some fifty rooms in
the ground plan, but there were at one time a larger number than this;
and there is no doubt that rooms extended down the slopes of the hill
southward and southwestward. The plan of this main cluster is peculiar;
it differs from all the smaller surrounding clusters. It tells the story
of a long occupancy by a people who increased largely in numbers, but
who, owing to their hostile environment, could not increase the space
occupied by them in proportion to their numbers. It will be noticed that
while the wall lines are remarkably irregular in arrangement they are
more often continuous than otherwise, more frequently continuous, in
fact, than the lines of some of the smaller villages before described.
The rooms are remarkably small, 10 feet square being a not unusual
measurement, and built so closely together as to leave no space for
interior courts. The typical rooms in the ruins of this region are
oblong, generally about twice as long as broad, measuring approximately
20 by 10 feet.

  [Illustration: Plate XXII.

In the ruin under discussion it seems that each of these oblong rooms
was divided by a transverse partition into two smaller rooms, although
the oblong form is also common. This is noticeable in the southwestern
corner and on the eastern side of the main cluster, in the southwestern
corner and on the northern end of the cluster adjoining on the north,
and in all the smaller clusters. It is probable that the western central
part of the main cluster was the first portion of the group of
structures built, and that subsequently as the demand for accommodation
increased, owing to increase of population, the rooms on the eastern and
southern sides of the main cluster were added, while the rooms of the
older portion were divided.

There is no evidence that any portion of this cluster attained a greater
height than two stories, and only a small number of rooms reached that
height. The small cluster adjoining on the north, and those on the
southeast, southwest, and west, were built later and belong to the last
period of the occupancy of the group. The builders exhibited a decided
predilection for a flat site, as an examination of the sites of the
various room clusters in the ground plan (plate XVII) will show, and
when the sight of the main cluster became so crowded that additional
rooms could be added only by building them on the sloping hillside,
recourse was had to other sites. This tendency is also exhibited in the
cluster adjoining the main cluster on the north, which was probably the
second in point of age. The northern end of this small group of rooms
terminates at the foot of the hill which rises northeastward, while a
series of wall lines extends eastward at an angle with the lines of the
cluster, but along the curve of the hillside.

The small northern cluster was in all probability inhabited by five or
six families only, as contrasted with the main cluster, which had
sixteen or seventeen, while the smaller clusters had each only two or
three families. The strong presumption of the later building and
occupancy of the smaller clusters, previously commented on, is supported
by three other facts of importance, viz, the amount and height of the
standing wall, the character of the sites occupied, and the
extraordinary size of the rooms.

Although as a rule external appearance is an unsatisfactory criterion of
age, still, other things equal, a large amount and good height of
standing wall may be taken to indicate in a general way a more recent
period of occupancy than wall lines much obliterated and merged into the
surrounding ground level. The character of the site occupied is,
however, a very good criterion of age. It was a rule of the ancient
pueblo builder, a rule still adhered to with a certain degree of
persistence, that enlargement of a village for the purpose of obtaining
more space must be by the addition of rooms to those already built, and
not by the construction of detached rooms. So well was this rule
observed that attached rooms were often built on sites not at all
adapted to them, when much better sites were available but a short
distance away; and, although detached rooms were built in certain cases,
there was always a strong reason for such exceptions to the general
rule. At a late period in the history of the Pueblos this rule was not
so much adhered to as before, and detached houses were often built at
such points as the fancy or convenience of the builder might dictate. As
the traditions are broken down the tendency to depart from the old rule
becomes more decided, and at the present day several of the older Pueblo
villages are being gradually abandoned for the more convenient detached
dwellings, while nearly all of them have suffered more or less from this

The tendency to cluster rooms in one large compact group was undoubtedly
due primarily to hostile pressure from outside, and as this pressure
decreased the inherent inconveniences of the plan would assert
themselves and the rule would be less and less closely adhered to. It
therefore follows that, in the absence of other sufficient cause, the
presence of detached rooms or small clusters may be taken in a general
way to indicate a more recent occupancy than a ground plan of a compact,
closely built village.

The size of rooms is closely connected with the character of the site
occupied. When, owing to hostile pressure, villages were built on sites
difficult of access, and when the rooms were crowded together into
clusters in order to produce an easily defended structure, the rooms
themselves were necessarily small; but when hostile pressure from
surrounding or outside tribes became less pronounced, the
pueblo-builders consulted convenience more, and larger rooms were built.
This has occurred in many of the pueblos and in the ruins, and in a
general way a ruin consisting of large rooms is apt to be more modern
than one consisting of small rooms; and where large and small rooms
occur together there is a fair presumption that the occupancy of the
village extended over a period when hostile pressure was pronounced and
when it became less strong. It has already been shown that, owing to the
social system of the pueblo-builders, there is almost always growth in a
village, although the population may remain stationary in numbers or
even decrease; so that, until a village is abandoned it will follow the
general rule of development sketched above.

Along the southern side of Clear creek, which discharges into the Rio
Verde from the east, about 4 miles below Verde, there is a flat terrace
from 30 to 40 feet above the creek and some 2 or 3 miles in length.
Scattered over almost the whole of this terrace are remains of houses
and horticultural works, which will be described later. Near the western
end of the terrace a low hill with flat top and rounded sides rises, and
on the top of this occurs the ruin whose ground plan is shown in figure

  [Illustration: Plate XXIII.

This ruin commands an outlook over the whole extent of the terrace and
seems to have been the home pueblo with which were connected the
numerous single houses whose remains cover the terrace. The ground plan
is peculiar. The rooms were arranged in four rows, each row consisting
of a line of single rooms, and the rows were placed approximately at
right angles to one another, forming the four sides of a hollow square.
The rooms are generally oblong, of the usual dimensions, and as a rule
placed with their longer axes in the direction of the row. Several rooms
occur, however, with their longer axes placed across the row.
Thirty-eight rooms can still be traced, and there is no likelihood that
there were ever more than forty, or that any of the rooms attained a
greater height than one story. The population, therefore, was probably
never much in excess of fifty persons, or ten to twelve families.

  [Illustration: Figure 285.
  Ground plan of ruin on southern side of Clear creek.]

It will be noticed that the wall lines are only approximately
rectangular. The outside dimensions of the village are as follows:
Northeastern side, 203 feet; southwestern, 207 feet; southeastern, 182
feet; and northwestern, 194 feet. The northeastern and southwestern
sides are nearly equal in length, but between the southeastern and the
northwestern sides there is a difference of 12 feet, and this
notwithstanding that the room at the western end of the southeastern row
has been set out 3 feet beyond the wall line of the southwestern side.
This difference is remarkable if, as the ground plan indicates, the
village or the greater part of it was laid out and built up at one time,
and was not the result of slow growth.

As already stated, long occupancy of a village, even without increase of
population, produces a certain effect on the ground plan. This effect,
so strongly marked in all the ruins already described, is conspicuous in
this ruin by its almost entire absence. The ground plan is just such as
would be produced if a small band of pueblo builders, consisting of ten
or twelve related families, should migrate en masse to a site like the
one under discussion and, after occupying that site for a few
years--less than five--should pass on to some other location. Such
migration and abandonment of villages were by no means anomalous; on the
contrary, they constitute one of the most marked and most persistent
phenomena in the history of the pueblo builders. If the general
principles, already laid down, affecting the development and growth of
ground plans of villages are applied to this example, the hypothesis
suggested above--an incoming of people en masse and a very short
occupancy--must be accepted, for no other hypothesis will explain the
regularity of wall lines, the uniformity in size of rooms, and the
absence of attached rooms which do not follow the general plan of the
village. The latter is perhaps the most remarkable feature in the ground
plan of this village. The addition of rooms attached irregularly at
various points of the main cluster, which is necessarily consequent on
long occupancy of a site, even without increase of population, was in
this example just commenced. The result of the same process, continued
over a long period of time, can be seen in the ground plan of any of the
inhabited villages of today and in most of the ruins, while a plan like
that of the ruin under discussion, while not unknown, is rare.

  [Illustration: Plate XXIV.

Plate XX, which is a general view of the ruin from the southwest, shows
the character of the site and the general appearance of the debris,
while plate XXI illustrates the character of the masonry. It will be
noticed that the level of the ground inside and outside of the row of
rooms is essentially the same; in other words, there has been no filling
in. It will also be noticed that the amount of debris is small, and that
it consists principally of rounded river bowlders. The masonry was
peculiar, the walls were comparatively thin, and the lower courses were
composed of river bowlders, not dressed or otherwise treated, while the
upper courses, and presumably also the coping stones, were composed of
slabs of sandstone and of a very friable limestone. The latter has
disintegrated very much under atmospheric influences. The white areas
seen in the illustrations are composed of this disintegrated limestone.
The general appearance of the ruin at the present time must not be
accepted as its normal condition. It is probable that the débris has
undergone a process of artificial selection, the flat slabs and most
available stones for building probably having been removed by
neighboring settlers and employed in the construction of stone fences,
which are much used in this region. Even with a fair allowance for such
removal, however, there is no evidence that the rooms were higher than
one story. The quantity of potsherds scattered about the ruins is
noticeably small.

  [Illustration: Figure 286.
  Ground plan of ruin 8 miles north of Fossil creek.]

About 8 miles north of the mouth of Fossil creek, on the eastern side
of the Verde, there is a ruin which, though very small, is interesting.
At this point there is a long narrow mass of rock, the remains of a
volcanic dike, some 80 or 90 feet long, which at the southern end
overhangs the stream, while the other end is merged into the ground
level. At its southern end the rock is some 50 feet above the water, but
150 feet northward the dike is no longer traceable. A general view of
this dike is given in plate XXII, while the ground plan, figure 286,
shows the character of the site. There were rooms on all that portion of
the dike that stands out prominently from the ground level, and traces
of other rooms can be seen on the ground level adjoining on the north
and in the causeway resulting from the breaking down and disintegration
of the dike. Remains of eight rooms in all can be traced, five of which
were on the summit of the rock. The wall lines on the summit are still
quite distinct and in places fragments of the original walls remain, as
shown on the ground plan. The plan shows typical pueblo rooms of average
size, and the masonry, though rough, is of the same character as that of
other ruins in the vicinity.

Facility of defense undoubtedly had something to do with the choice of
this location, but that it was not the only desideratum consulted is
evident from the occurrence of a large area of fertile bottom land or
flat river terrace immediately adjoining the ruin on the east and
overlooked by it; in fact, the volcanic dike on which the ruin occurs
occupies the western end of a large semicircular area of tillable land,
such as already described. Viewed, however, as a village located with
reference to defense it is the most perfect example--facility of
obtaining water being considered--in this region. It may be used,
therefore, to illustrate an important principle governing the location
of villages of this type.

A study of the ground plan (figure 286) and the general view (plate
XXII) will readily show that while the site and character of this
village are admirably adapted for defense, so well adapted, in fact, as
to suggest that we have here a fortress or purely defensive structure,
still this adaptation arises solely from the selection of a site fitted
by nature for the purpose, or, in other words, from an accident of
environment. There has not been the slightest artificial addition to the
natural advantages of the site.

The statement may seem broad, but it is none the less true, that, so far
as our knowledge extends at the present time, fortresses or other purely
defensive structures form a type which is entirely unknown in the pueblo
region. The reason is simple; military art, as a distinct art, was
developed in a stage of culture higher than that attained by the ancient
pueblo builders. It is true that within the limits of the pueblo region
structures are found which, from their character and the character of
their sites, have been loosely described as fortresses, their describers
losing sight of the fact that the adaptability of these structures to
defense is the result of nature and not of art. Numerous examples are
found where the building of a single short wall would double the
defensive value of a site, but in the experience of the writer the
ancient builders have seldom made even that slight addition to the
natural advantages of the site they occupied.

  [Illustration: Plate XXV.

The first desideratum in the minds of the old pueblo builders in
choosing the location of their habitations was nearness to some area of
tillable land. This land was generally adjacent to the site of the
village, and was almost invariably overlooked by it. In fact this
requirement was considered of far more importance than adaptability to
defense, for the latter was often sacrificed to the former. A good
example in which both requirements have been fully met is the ruin under
discussion. This, however, is the result of an exceptionally favorable
environment; as a rule the two requirements conflict with each other,
and it is always the latter requirement--adaptability to defense--which
suffers. These statements are true even of the so-called fortresses, of
the cavate lodges, of the cliff ruins, and of many of the large village
ruins scattered over the southwestern portion of the United States. In
the case of the large village ruins, however, there is another feature
of pueblo life which sometimes produces a different result, viz, the use
of outlying single houses or small clusters separated from the main
village and used for temporary abode during the farming season only.
This feature is well developed in some of the modern pueblos,
particularly in Zuñi and Acoma.

The principle illustrated by this ruin is an important one. Among the
ancient pueblo builders there was no military art, or rather the
military art was in its infancy; purely defensive structures, such as
fortresses, were unknown, and the idea of defense never reached any
greater development than the selection of an easily defended site for a
village, and seldom extended to the artificial improvement of the site.
There is another result of this lack of military knowledge not
heretofore alluded to, which will be discussed at length on some other
occasion and can only be mentioned here: this is the aggregation of a
number of small villages or clusters into the large many-storied pueblo
building, such as the modern Zuñi or Taos.

About 14 miles north of the mouth of Fossil creek, on the eastern side
of the river, there is another ruin somewhat resembling the last
described. A large red rock rises at the intersection of two washes,
about a mile back from the river, and on a bench near the summit are the
remains of walls. These are illustrated in plate XXIII. In general
appearance and in character of site this ruin strongly resembles a type
found in the San Juan region. There seem to have been only a few rooms
on the top of the rock, and the prominent wall seen in the illustration
was probably a retaining or filling wall in a cleft of the rock. Such
walls are now used among the Pueblos for the sides of trails, etc. It is
probable that at one time there were a considerable number of rooms on
the rock; the debris on the ground at the base of the rock on the
western side, shown in the illustration, is rather scanty; on the
opposite or eastern side there is more, and it is not improbable there
were rooms on the ground here. It is likely that access was from this

It should be noted that this ruin, which is of a type known as
“fortress” by some writers, is so placed as to command an extensive
outlook over the large valley below and over the two small valleys
above, as well as the considerable area of flat or bottom land formed by
the junction of the small valleys. It is a type of a subordinate
agricultural settlement, and had the defensive motive been entirely
absent from the minds of the builders of this village it would
undoubtedly have been located just where it now is, as this is the best
site for an agricultural settlement for some distance up and down the

  [Illustration: Figure 287.
  Sketch map of ruins on pinnacle 7 miles north of Fossil creek.]

  [Illustration: Figure 288.
  Remains of small rooms 7 miles north of Fossil creek.]

Remains of walls somewhat similar to these last described occur on a
butte or pinnacle on the eastern side of the river and about 7 miles
north of the mouth of Fossil creek. From the south this pinnacle is a
most conspicuous landmark, rising as it does some 2,500 feet above the
river within a distance of a quarter of a mile. The upper 50 feet of the
eminence consists of bare red rock split into sharp points and little
pinnacles, as shown in figure 287, which represents only the upper
portion of the butte. The heavy black lines on the sketch map are walls.
Some of these were doubtless mere retaining walls, but others are still
standing to a considerable height, and there is yet much débris on the
slope of the rock forming the eastern side of the butte near its top. It
is doubtful whether these rooms were ever used for habitations, and more
probable that they were used as a shrine or for some analogous purpose.

  [Illustration: Plate XXVI.

Perhaps a quarter of a mile northeastward, in the saddle connecting the
butte with the contiguous hills in that direction, there are remains of
three small rooms, located east of a low swell or ridge. Figure 288
shows the general character of the site, which seems to have been a
favorite type for temporary structures, single-room outlooks, etc. Among
the fragments of pottery picked up here were pieces of polished red ware
of the southern type, and part of the bottom of a large pot of so-called
corrugated ware.

Half a mile northwestward, in a saddle similar to that last described,
and east of the crown of a hill, are the remains of a single room,
nearly square and perhaps 10 feet long. These single rooms and small
cluster remains are unusual in this region, and seem to replace the
bowlder-marked ruins so common south of the East Verde (to be described
more fully later). Although the walls of this single-room structure were
built of river bowlders, they are well marked by débris and are of the
same type as those in the ruins at the mouths of the East Verde and
Fossil creek.


Cavate lodges comprise a type of structures closely related to cliff
houses and cave dwellings. The term is a comparatively new one, and the
structures themselves are not widely known. They differ from the cliff
houses and cave dwellings principally in the fact that the rooms are
hollowed out of cliffs and hills by human agency, being cut out of soft
rock, while the former habitations are simple, ordinary structures built
for various reasons within a cove or on a bench in the cliffs or within
a cave. The difference is principally if not wholly the result of a
different physical environment, i.e., cavate lodges and cave dwellings
are only different phases of the same thing; but for the present at
least the name will be used and the cavate lodges will be treated as a
separate class.

There are but three regions in the United States in which cavate lodges
are known to occur in considerable numbers, viz, on San Juan river, near
its mouth; on the western side of the Rio Grande near the pueblo of
Santa Clara; and on the eastern slope of San Francisco mountain, near
Flagstaff, Arizona. To these may now be added the middle Verde region,
from the East Verde to a point north of Verde, Arizona.

Within the middle Verde region there are thousands of cavate lodges,
sometimes in clusters of two or three, oftener in small groups, and
sometimes in large groups comprising several hundred rooms. One of these
large groups, located some 8 miles south of Verde on the eastern side of
the river, has been selected for illustration.

The bottom lands of the Rio Verde in the vicinity of Verde have been
already described, and the cavate lodges in question occur just below
the southern end of this large area of tillable land, and some of them
overlook it. The river at this point flows southward, and extending
toward the east are two little canyons which meet on its bank. North and
south of the mouth of the canyons the bank of the river is formed by an
inaccessible bluff 180 or 200 feet high. These bluffs are washed by the
Verde during high water, though there is evidence that up to a recent
time there was a considerable area of bottom land between the river and
the foot of the bluff. Plate XXIV shows the northern end of the group
from a low mesa on the opposite side of the river; the eastern bank of
the river can be seen in the foreground, while the sandy area extending
to the foot of the bluff is the present high-water channel of the Verde.
The map (plate XXV) shows the distribution of the cavate lodges
composing the group, and plate XXVI shows the character of the site. The
cavate lodges occur on two distinct levels--the first, which comprises
nearly all the cavate lodges, is at the top of the slopes of talus and
about 75 feet above the river; the second is set back from 80 to 150
feet from the first tier horizontally and 30 or 40 feet above it. The
cavate lodges occur only in the face of the bluff along the river and in
the lower parts of the two little canyons before mentioned. These
canyons run back into the mesa seen in the illustration, which in turn
forms part of the foothills rising into the range of mountains hemming
in the Rio Verde on the east.

  [Illustration: Figure 289.
  Diagram showing strata of canyon wall.]

The walls of the canyon in the cavate-lodge area are composed of three
distinct strata, clearly defined and well marked. The relations of the
strata, at points on the northern and western sides of the north canyon,
are shown in figure 289 and plate XXVI. The lowest stratum shown in the
figure is that in which almost all the cavate lodges occur. It is about
8 feet thick and composed of a soft, very friable, purple-gray
sandstone. Above it lies a greenish-white bed a few inches thick,
followed by a stratum of a pronounced white, about 12 feet thick. This
heavy stratum is composed of calcareous clay, and the green bed of a
calcareous clay with a mixture of sand. The white stratum is divided at
two-thirds its height by a thin belt of greenish-white rock, and above
it there is another belt of purple-gray sandstone about 12 feet thick.
The top of this sandstone forms the ground surface south of the point
shown in the diagram, while on the north and east it forms the floor of
the upper tier of cavate lodges.

  [Illustration: Plate XXVII.

On the southern side of the canyon the lower purple stratum shows three
distinct substrata; the upper is reddish purple and about 3½ feet thick,
the middle is purple gray, about 7 feet thick, and apparently softer
than the upper and lower strata. The lodges occur in the middle purple
substratum, their floors composed of the upper surface of the lower
stratum and their roofs of the under surface of the upper stratum. Those
on the north side are similarly placed, their roofs being about 3 feet
below the white, except that in several instances the upper part of the
purple up to the white has fallen, making the cavity larger. This has
occurred, however, since the abandonment of the caves, and the debris,
still fresh looking, is in situ.

The formation in which the lodges occur is not of volcanic origin,
although the beds composing it were perhaps deposited by hot springs
during the period of great volcanic activity which produced San
Francisco mountain in central Arizona and the great lava flows south of
it. In view of the uncertainty on this point and the further fact that
almost all the cavate lodges heretofore found were excavated in tufa,
ash, or other soft volcanic deposits, the report of Mr. Joseph S.
Diller, petrographer of the U.S. Geological Survey, will be of interest.
It is as follows:

  The coarse-grained specimen is sandstone, that of medium grain is
  argillaceous sandstone, and the fine-grained one is calcareous clay.
  The coarse-grained friable sandstone, in which the lodges have been
  excavated, consists chiefly of subangular and rounded grains of
  quartz and feldspar with a small proportion of black particles. Many
  of the latter are magnetite, while the others are hornblende and
  various ferromagnesian silicates. I did not detect any fragments of
  volcanic origin.

  The specimen of argillaceous sandstone is made up of thin layers of
  fine-grained sand of the same sort as the first, alternating with
  others containing considerable clay. In the clay layers, a trace of
  carbonate of lime was found here and there, forming a transition of
  the calcareous clay.

  The calcareous clay when placed in acid effervesces vigorously, but
  when allowed to stand the effervescence ceases in a few minutes and
  the insoluble white clay remains.

All the strata composing this formation are very soft; the purple-gray
material of the middle layer is so soft that its surface can be rubbed
off with the hand. They are also minutely stratified or laminated, and
the laminæ are not well cemented together, so that a blow on the roof of
a cavity with a stone or other implement will bring off slabs varying
from half an inch to an inch and a half in thickness. These thin strata
or laminæ are of unequal hardness, weathering in places several inches
into the face of the rock in thin streaks of a few inches or less. The
middle purple stratum exhibits this quality somewhat more decidedly than
the others, and this fact has doubtless determined the selection of this
stratum for the location of the lodges, as a room can be excavated in it
more easily than a room of a similar size could be built up with loose

The almost absolute dependence of the native builder on nature as he
found it is well illustrated by these cavate lodges. At a point in the
northern wall of the northernmost canyon, shown in the diagram (figure
289) and in plate XXVI, there is a small fault with a throw of about 2½
feet, and the floors of the lodges west of the fault are just that much
lower than the floors east of it. Furthermore, where the purple-gray
stratum in which the lodges occur is covered up by the rising ground
surface, the cavate lodges abruptly cease. In the northern and southern
ends of the group the talus encroaches on and partly covers the
purple-gray stratum, and in these places the talus has been removed from
the face of the rock to permit the excavation of lodges. In short, the
occurrence of the cavate lodges in this locality is determined
absolutely by the occurrence of one particular stratum, and when that
stratum disappears the lodges disappear. So far as can be ascertained
without actually excavating a room there is no apparent difference
between the stratum in which the lodges occur and the other purple
strata above and below it. That there is some difference is indicated by
the confinement of the lodges to that particular level, but that the
difference is very slight is shown by the occurrence in two places of
lodges just above the principal tier, a kind of second-story lodge, as
it were. It is such differences in environment as these, however, often
so slight as to be readily overlooked, which determine some of the
largest operations carried on by the native builders, even to the
building of some of the great many-storied pueblos, and, stranger still,
sometimes leading to their complete abandonment.

In the region under discussion cavate lodges usually occur in connection
with and subordinate to village ruins, and range in number from two or
three rooms to clusters of considerable size. Here, however, the cavate
lodge is the feature which has been most developed, and it is noteworthy
that the village ruins that occur in connection with them are small and
unimportant and occupy a subordinate position.

There are remains of two villages connected with the cavate lodges just
described, perched on the points of the promontories which form the
mouths of the two canyons before mentioned. The location of these ruins
is shown in plate XXV. The one on the southern promontory is of greater
extent than that on the northern point, and both are now much broken
down, no standing wall remaining. A general view of the ruin on the
northern promontory is given in plate XXVII, and the same illustration
shows the remains of the other village on the flat top of the promontory
in the farther part of the foreground.

  [Illustration: Plate XXVIII.

The cavate lodges are generally rudely circular in shape, sometimes
oblong, but never rectangular. The largest are 25 and even 30 feet in
diameter, and from this size range down to 5 or 6 feet and thence down
to little cubby-holes or storage cists. Owing to their similarity,
particularly in point of size, it is difficult to draw a line between
small rooms and large storage cists, but including the latter there are
two hundred rooms on the main level, divided into seventy-four distinct
and separate sets. These sets comprise from one to fourteen rooms each.
On the upper level there are fifty-six rooms, divided into twenty-four
sets, making a total of two hundred and fifty-six rooms. As nearly as
can be determined by the extent of these ruins the population of the
settlement was probably between one hundred and fifty and two hundred

  [Illustration: Figure 290.
  Walled storage cist.]

There is great variety in the rooms, both in size and arrangement. As a
rule each set or cluster of rooms consists of a large apartment, entered
by a narrow passageway from the face of the bluff, and a number of
smaller rooms connected with it by narrow doorways or short passages and
having no outlet except through the large apartment. As a rule two or
more of these smaller back rooms are attached to the main apartment, and
sometimes the back rooms have still smaller rooms attached to them. In
several cases there are three rooms in a series or row extending back
into the rock, and in one instance (at the point marked _E_ on the map,
plate XXV) there are four such rooms, all of good size.

Attached to the main apartment, and sometimes also to the back rooms,
there are usually a number of storage cists, differing from the smaller
rooms of the cluster only in size. These cists or cubby-holes range in
size from a foot to 5 feet in diameter, and are nearly always on a level
of the floor, although in some instances they extend below it. Storage
cists are also sometimes excavated in the exterior walls of the cliffs,
and occasionally they are partly excavated and partly inclosed by a
rough, semicircular wall. An example of the latter type is shown in
figure 290.

As a rule the cavate lodges are set back slightly from the face of the
bluff and connected with it by a narrow passageway. Another type,
however, and one not uncommon, has no connecting passageway, but instead
opens out to the air by a cove or nook in the bluff. This cove was used
as the main room and the back rooms opened into it in the usual way by
passageways. A number of lodges of this type can be seen in the eastern
side of the northern promontory or bluff. Possibly lodges of this type
were walled in front, although walled fronts are here exceptional, and
some of them at least have been produced by the falling off of the rock
above the doorway. The expedient of walling up the front of a shallow
cavity, commonly practiced in the San Juan region, while comparatively
rare in this vicinity, was known to the dwellers in these cavate lodges.
At several points remains of front walls can be seen, and in two
instances front walls remain in place. The masonry, however, is in all
cases very rough, of the same type as that shown in plate XXVIII.

In this connection a comparison with the cavate ledges found in other
regions will be of interest. In 1875 Mr. W. H. Holmes, then connected
with the Hayden survey, visited a number of cavate lodges on the Rio San
Juan and some of its tributaries. Several groups are illustrated in his
report.[5] Two of his illustrations, showing, respectively, the open
front and walled front lodges, are reproduced in plates XXIX and XXX.
The open front lodges are thus described:

  I observed, in approaching from above, that a ruined tower stood
  near the brink of the cliff, at a point where it curves outward
  toward the river, and in studying it with my glass detected a number
  of cave-like openings in the cliff face about halfway up. On
  examination, I found them to have been shaped by the hand of man,
  but so weathered out and changed by the slow process of atmospheric
  erosion that the evidences of art were almost obliterated.

  The openings are arched irregularly above, and generally quite
  shallow, being governed very much in contour and depth by the
  quality of the rock. The work of excavation has not been an
  extremely great one, even with the imperfect implements that must
  have been used, as the shale is for the most part soft and friable.

  A hard stratum served as a floor, and projecting in many places made
  a narrow platform by which the inhabitants were enabled to pass
  along from one house to another.

  Small fragments of mortar still adhered to the firmer parts of the
  walls, from which it is inferred that they were at one time
  plastered. It is also extremely probable that they were walled up in
  front and furnished with doors and windows, yet no fragment of wall
  has been preserved. Indeed, so great has been the erosion that many
  of the caves have been almost obliterated, and are now not deep
  enough to give shelter to a bird or bat.

  [Footnote 5: Tenth Ann Rep. U.S. Geol. Survey, 1876, pp. 288-391.]

  [Illustration: Plate XXIX.

Walled fronts, the author states, were observed frequently on the Rio
Mancos, where there are many well-preserved specimens. He described a
large group situated on that stream, about 10 miles above its mouth,
as follows:

  The walls were in many places quite well preserved and new looking,
  while all about, high and low, were others in all stages of decay.
  In one place in particular, a picturesque outstanding promontory has
  been full of dwellings, literally honeycombed by this
  earth-burrowing race, and as one from below views the ragged,
  window-pierced crags [see plate XXX] he is unconsciously led to
  wonder if they are not the ruins of some ancient castle, behind
  whose moldering walls are hidden the dread secrets of a
  long-forgotten people; but a nearer approach quickly dispels such
  fancies, for the windows prove to be only the doorways to shallow
  and irregular apartments, hardly sufficiently commodious for a race
  of pigmies. Neither the outer openings nor the apertures that
  communicate between the caves are large enough to allow a person of
  large stature to pass, and one is led to suspect that these nests
  were not the dwellings proper of these people, but occasional
  resorts for women and children, and that the somewhat extensive
  ruins in the valley below were their ordinary dwelling places.

It will be noticed that in both these cases there are associated ruins
on the mesa top above, and in both instances these associated ruins are
subordinate to the cavate lodges, in this respect resembling the lodges
on the Verde already described. This condition, however, is not the
usual one; in the great majority of cases the cavate lodges are
subordinate to the associated ruins, standing to them in the relation of
outlying agricultural shelters. Unless this fact is constantly borne in
mind it is easy to exaggerate the importance of the cavate lodges as
compared with the village ruins with which they are connected.

The cavate lodges near San Francisco mountain in Arizona were visited in
1883 by Col. James Stevenson, of the Bureau of Ethnology, and in 1885 by
Maj. J. W. Powell. Major Powell[6] describes a number of groups in the
vicinity of Flagstaff. Of one group, situated on a cinder cone about 12
miles east of San Francisco peak, he says:

  Here the cinders are soft and friable, and the cone is a prettily
  shaped dome. On the southern slope there are excavations into the
  indurated and coherent cinder mass, constituting chambers, often 10
  or 12 feet in diameter and 6 to 10 feet in height. The chambers are
  of irregular shape, and occasionally a larger central chamber forms
  a kind of vestibule to several smaller ones gathered about it. The
  smaller chambers are sometimes at the same altitude as the central
  or principal one, and sometimes at a lower altitude. About one
  hundred and fifty of these chambers have been excavated. Most of
  them are now partly filled by the caving in of the walls and
  ceilings, but some of them are yet in a good state of preservation.
  In these chambers, and about them on the summit and sides of the
  cinder cone, many stone implements were found, especially metates.
  Some bone implements also were discovered. At the very summit of the
  little cone there is a plaza, inclosed by a rude wall made of
  volcanic cinders, the floor of which was carefully leveled. The
  plaza is about 45 by 75 feet in area. Here the people lived in
  underground houses--chambers hewn from the friable volcanic cinders.
  Before them, to the south, west, and north, stretched beautiful
  valleys, beyond which volcanic cones are seen rising amid pine
  forests. The people probably cultivated patches of ground in the low

  About 18 miles still farther to the east of San Francisco mountain,
  another ruined village was discovered, built about the crater of a
  volcanic cone. This volcanic peak is of much greater magnitude. The
  crater opens to the eastward. On the south many stone dwellings have
  been built of the basaltic and cinder-like rooks. Between the ridge
  on the south and another on the northwest there is a low saddle in
  which other buildings have been erected, and in which a great plaza
  was found, much like the one previously described. But the most
  interesting part of this village was on the cliff which rose on the
  northwest side of the crater. In this cliff are many natural caves,
  and the caves themselves were utilized as dwellings by inclosing
  them in front with walls made of volcanic rocks and cinders. These
  cliff dwellings are placed tier above tier, in a very irregular way.
  In many cases natural caves were thus utilized; in other cases
  cavate chambers were made; that is, chambers have been excavated in
  the friable cinders. On the very summit of the ridge stone buildings
  were erected, so that this village was in part a cliff village,
  in part cavate, and in part the ordinary stone pueblo. The valley
  below, especially to the southward, was probably occupied by their
  gardens. In the chambers among the overhanging cliffs a great many
  interesting relics were found, of stone, bone, and wood, and many

  [Footnote 6: Seventh Ann. Rep. Bur. Eth., 1891, p. xix.]

It will be seen that the first group described bears a remarkably close
resemblance to the cavate lodges on the Rio Verde. The lodges themselves
are smaller, but the arrangement of main apartment and attached back
rooms is quite similar. It will be noticed also that in the second group
described village ruins are again associated on the summit of the cliff
or ridge. Major Powell ascertained that these cavate lodges were
occupied by the Havasupai Indians now living in Cataract canyon, who are
closely related to the Walapai, and who, it is said, were driven from
this region by the Spaniards.

The cavate lodges on the Rio Grande, in New Mexico, in the vicinity of
the modern pueblo of Santa Clara, were also visited in 1885 by Major
Powell and are thus described by him:[7]

  The cliffs themselves are built of volcanic sands and ashes, and
  many of the strata are exceedingly light and friable. The specific
  gravity of some of these rocks is so low that they will float on
  water. Into the faces of these cliffs, in the friable and easily
  worked rock, many chambers have been excavated; for mile after mile
  the cliffs are studded with them, so that altogether there are many
  thousands. Sometimes a chamber or series of chambers is entered from
  a terrace, but usually they were excavated many feet above any
  landing or terrace below, so that they could be reached only by
  ladders. In other places artificial terraces were built by
  constructing retaining walls and filling the interior next to the
  cliffs with loose rock and sand. Very often steps were cut into the
  face of a cliff and a rude stairway formed by which chambers could
  be reached. The chambers were very irregularly arranged and very
  irregular in size and structure. In many cases there is a central
  chamber, which seems to have been a general living room for the
  people, back of which two, three, or more chambers somewhat smaller
  are found. The chambers occupied by one family are sometimes
  connected with those occupied by another family, so that two or
  three or four sets of chambers have interior communication. Usually,
  however, the communication from one system of chambers to another
  was by the outside. Many of the chambers had evidently been occupied
  as dwellings. They still contained fireplaces and evidences of fire;
  there were little caverns or shelves in which various vessels were
  placed, and many evidences of the handicraft of the people were left
  in stone, bone, horn, and wood, and in the chambers and about the
  sides of the cliffs potsherds are abundant. On more careful survey
  it was found that many chambers had been used as stables for asses,
  goats, and sheep. Sometimes they had been filled a few inches, or
  even 2 or 3 feet, with the excrement of these animals. Ears of corn
  and corncobs were also found in many places. Some of the chambers
  were evidently constructed to be used as storehouses or caches for
  grain. Altogether it is very evident that the cliff houses have been
  used in comparatively modern times; at any rate, since the people
  owned asses, goats, and sheep. The rock is of such a friable nature
  that it will not stand atmospheric degradation very long, and there
  is abundant evidence of this character testifying to the recent
  occupancy of these cavate dwellings.

  [Illustration: Plate XXX.

  [Illustration: Plate XXXI.

  Above the cliffs, on the mesas, which have already been described,
  evidences of more ancient ruins were found. These were pueblos built
  of cut stone rudely dressed. Every mesa had at least one ancient
  pueblo up off it, evidently far more ancient than the cavate
  dwellings found in the face of the cliffs. It is, then, very plain
  that the cavate dwellings are not of great age; that they have been
  occupied since the advent of the white man, and that on the summit
  of the cliffs there are ruins of more ancient pueblos.

  [Footnote 7: Seventh Ann. Rep. Bur. Eth., op. cit., p. XXII.]

Major Powell obtained a tradition of the Santa Clara Indians, reciting
three successive periods of occupancy of the cavate lodges by them, the
last occurring after the Spanish conquest of New Mexico in the
seventeenth century.

It will be noticed that here again the cavate lodges and village ruins
are associated, although in this case the village ruins on the mesas
above are said to be more ancient than the cavate lodges. A general view
of a small section of cliff containing lodges is given in plate XXXI for
comparison with those on the Verde. The lodges on the Rio Grande seem to
have been more elaborate than those on the Verde, perhaps owing to
longer occupancy; but the same arrangement of a main front room and
attached back rooms, as in the cavate lodges on the Verde, was found.

As the cavate lodges of the San Francisco mountain region have been
assigned to the Havasupai Indians of the Yuman stock, and those of the
Rio Grande to the Santa Clara pueblo Indians of the Tanoan stock, it may
be of interest to state that there is a vague tradition extant among the
modern settlers of the Verde region that the cavate lodges of that
region were occupied within the last three generations. This tradition
was derived from an old Walapai Indian whose grandfather was alive when
the cavate lodges were occupied. It was impossible to follow this
tradition to its source, and it is introduced only as a suggestion.
Attention is called, however, to the tradition given in the introduction
to this paper with which it may be connected.

  [Illustration: Figure 291.
  Plan of cavate lodges, group _D_.]

  [Illustration: Plate XXXII.

Aside from the actual labor of excavation, there was but little work
expended on the Verde cavate lodges. The interiors were never plastered,
so far as the writer could determine. Figure 291 shows the plan of one
of the principal sets of rooms, which occurs at the point marked _D_ on
the map, plate XXV; and plate XXXII is an interior view of the principal
room, drawn from a flashlight photograph. This set of rooms was
excavated in a point of the cliff and extends completely through it as
shown on the general plan, plate XXV. The entrance was from the west by
a short passageway opening into a cove extending back some 10 feet from
the face of the cliff. The first room entered measures 16 feet in length
by 10 feet in width. On the floor of this room a structure resembling
the piki or paper bread oven of the Tusayan Indians, was found
constructed partly of fragments of old and broken metates. At the
southern end of the room there is a cubby-hole about a foot in diameter,
excavated at the floor level. At the eastern end of the room there is a
passageway about 2½ feet long leading into a smaller roughly circular
room, measuring 7½ feet in its longest diameter, and this in turn is
connected with another almost circular room of the same size. The floors
of all three of these rooms are on the same level, but the roofs of the
two smaller rooms are a foot lower than that of the entrance room. At
the northern end of the entrance room there is a passageway 3 feet long
and 2½ feet wide leading into the principal room of the set. This
passageway at its southern end has a framed doorway of the type
illustrated later.

  [Illustration: Figure 292.
  Sections of cavate lodges, group _D_.]

The main room is roughly circular in form, measuring 16 feet in its
north and south diameter and 15 feet from east to west. The roof is
about 7 feet above the floor. Figure 292 shows a section from northwest
to southwest (_a_, _b_, figure 291) through the small connected room
adjoining on the south, and also an east arid west section (_c_, _d_,
figure 291). The floor is plastered with clay wherever it was necessary
in order to bring it to a level, and the coating is consequently not of
uniform thickness. It is divided into sections by low ridges of clay as
shown in the plan and sections; the northern section is a few inches
higher than the other. Extending through the clay finish of the floor
and into the rock beneath there are four pits, indicated on the plan by
round spots. The largest of these, situated opposite the northern door,
was a fire hole or pit about 18 inches in diameter at the floor level,
of an inverted conical shape, about 10 inches in depth, and plastered
inside with clay inlaid with fragments of pottery placed as closely
together as their shape would permit. The other pits are smaller; one
located near the southeastern corner of the room is about 6 inches in
diameter and the same in depth, while the others are mere depressions in
the floor, in shape like the small paint mortars used by the Pueblos.

  [Illustration: Figure 293.
  Section of water pocket.]

The room, when opened, contained a deposit of bat dung and sand about
3 feet thick in the center and averaging about 2 feet thick throughout
the room. This deposit exhibited a series of well-defined strata,
varying from three-fourths to an inch and a half thick, caused by the
respective predominance of dung or sand. No evidence of disturbance of
these strata was found although careful examination was made. This
deposit was cleared out and a number of small articles were found, all
resting, however, directly on the floor. The articles consisted of
fragments of basketry, bundles of fibers and pieces of fabrics, pieces
of arrowshafts, fragments of grinding stones, three sandals of woven
yucca fiber, two of them new and nearly perfect, and a number of pieces
of cotton cloth, the latter scattered over the room and in several
instances gummed to the floor. Only a few fragments of pottery were
found in the main room, but outside in the northern passageway were the
fragments of two large pieces, one an olla, the other a bowl, both
buried in 3 or 4 inches of debris under a large slab fallen from the

Owing to its situation this room was one of the most desirable in the
whole group. The prevailing south wind blows through it at all times,
and this is doubtless the reason that it was so much filled up with
sand. In the center of the room the roof has fallen at a comparatively
recent date from an area about 10 by 7 feet, in slabs about an inch
thick, for the fragments were within 6 inches of the top of the debris.
The walls are smoke-blackened to a very slight extent compared with the
large room south of it.

At the northeastern and southwestern corners there are two small
pockets, opening on the floor level but sunk below it, which seem to
have been designed to contain water. That in the southwest corner is the
larger; it is illustrated in the section, figure 293. As shown in the
section and on the plan (figure 291), a low wall composed of adobe
mortar and broken rock was built across the opening on the edge of the
floor, perhaps to increase its capacity. This cavity would hold 15 to 20
gallons of water, a sufficient amount to supply the needs of an ordinary
Indian family for three weeks or a mouth. The pocket in the northeastern
corner of the room is not quite so large as the one described, and its
front is not walled.

  [Illustration: Plate XXXIII.

West of the main room there is a storage room, nearly circular in shape,
with a diameter of about 6 feet and with a floor raised about 2 feet
above that of the main room. Its roof is but 3 feet above the floor, and
across its western end is a low bench a couple of inches above the
floor. In the northeastern corner there is a shallow cove, also raised
slightly above the main floor and connecting by a narrow opening with
the outer vestibule-like rooms on the north. These northern rooms of the
lodge seem to be simply enlargements of the passageway. The northern
opening is a window rather than a door as it is about 10 feet above the
ground and therefore could be entered only by a ladder. The opening is
cut in the back of a cove in the cliff, and is 6 feet from the northern
end of the main room. At half its length it has been enlarged on both
sides by the excavation of niches or coves about 4 feet deep but only 2½
feet high. These coves could be used only for storage on a small scale.

  [Illustration: Figure 294.
  Plan of cavate lodges, group _A_.]

In the southeastern corner of the main room there is another opening
leading into a low-roofed storage cist, approximating 4 feet in
diameter, and this cist was in turn connected with the middle one of the
three rooms first described. This opening, at the time the room was
examined, was so carefully sealed and plastered that it was scarcely

A different arrangement of rooms is shown in plan in figure 294 and in
section in figure 295. This group occurs at the point marked A on the
map. The entrance to the main room was through a narrow passage, 3 feet
long, leading into the chamber from the face of the bluff, which at this
point is vertical. The main room is oblong, measuring 17 feet one way
and 10 the other. At the southern end there is a small cist and on the
western side near the entrance there is another hardly a foot in
diameter. North of the main room there is a small, roughly circular room
with a diameter of about 6 feet. It is connected with the main room by a
passage about 2 feet long. On the floor of the main room there are two
low ridges of clay, similar to those already described, which divide it
into three sections of nearly equal size.

  [Illustration: Figure 295.
  Sections of cavate lodges, group _A_.]

East of the main room there is another of considerable size in the form
of a bay or cove. It measures 13 feet by 6 feet, and its floor is 20
inches higher than that of the main room, as shown in the section
(figure 295). Attached to this bay, at its northern end, is a small cist
about 3 feet in diameter, and with its floor sunk to the level of the
floor of the main room. East of the cove there is another cist about 4½
feet in diameter and with its floor on the level of the cove. Adjoining
it on the south and leading out from the southeastern corner of the cove
or bay, there is a long passage leading into an almost circular room
9 feet in diameter. The back wall of this room is 33 feet from the face
of the cliff. The passage leading into it is 6 feet long, 2½ feet wide
at the doorways, bulging slightly in the center, and its floor is on the
same level as the rooms it connects; its eastern end is defined by a
ridge of clay about 6 inches high.

  [Illustration: Plate XXXIV.

In the eastern side of the circular room last described there is a
storage cist about 3 feet wide and 2 feet deep. No fire-pit was seen in
this cluster, although if the principal apartment were carefully cleaned
out it is not improbable that one might be found.

A cluster of rooms somewhat resembling the last described is shown in
plan in figure 296. This cluster occurs at the point marked _B_ on the
map. The main room is set back 5½ feet from the face of the bluff, which
is vertical at this point, and is oblong in shape, measuring 19½ by 11½
feet. Its roof is 7½ feet above the floor in the center of the room.
Attached to its southern end by a passage only a foot in length is a
small room or storage cist about 5 feet in diameter. At its northeastern
corner there is another room or cist similar in shape, about 7 feet in
diameter, and reached by a passage 2 feet long. This small room is also
connected with a long room east of the main apartment by a passage, the
southern end of which was carefully sealed up and plastered, making a
kind of niche of the northern end. At the southeastern corner of the
room there is a small niche about 2 feet in diameter on the level of the

  [Illustration: Figure 296.
  Plan of cavate lodges, group _B_.]

The eastern side of the main room is not closed, but opens directly into
an oblong chamber of irregular size with the roof nearly 2 feet lower
and the floor a foot higher than the main room. This step in the floor
is shown by the line between the rooms on the ground plan. The second
room is about 6 feet wide and 20 feet long, its southern end rounding
out slightly so as to form an almost circular chamber. Near the center
of its eastern side there is a passageway 2½ feet long leading into a
circular chamber 10½ feet in diameter and with its floor on the same
level as the room to which it is attached. The back wall of this room is
35½ feet from the face of the cliff.

A group occurring at the point marked _E_ on the map (plate XXV) is
shown in plan in figure 297. It is located in a projecting corner of the
bluff and marks the eastern limit of the cavate lodges at this end of
the canyon. The group consists of five rooms, and has the distinction of
extending four rooms deep into the rock. The main room is set back about
13 feet from the face of the bluff, about 7 feet of this distance being
occupied by a narrow passageway and the remainder by a cove. The depth
from the face of the bluff to the back of the innermost chamber is 47
feet. The main room measures 16 feet in length and 11 feet in width, and
its roof is less than 7 feet high in the center. Near its center and
opposite the long passageway mentioned there is a fire-pit nearly 3 feet
in diameter.

  [Illustration: Figure 297.
  Plan of cavate lodges, group _E_.]

At the northeastern corner of the main room there is a wide opening
leading into a room measuring 8 by 7 feet, with a floor raised 2 feet
above that of the principal apartment. The roof of this chamber is but
4½ feet above the floor. Almost the whole eastern side of this room is
occupied by a wide opening leading into another room of approximately
the same size and shape. The roof of this room is only 3 feet 10 inches
above the floor, and the floor is raised 6 inches above that on the
west. In the northeastern corner there is a short narrow passageway
leading into a small circular room, the fourth of the series, having a
diameter of 4 feet. The roof of this apartment is only 3 feet above the

  [Illustration: Plate XXXV.

In the southeastern corner of the main room there is a narrow passageway
leading into a circular chamber about 8 feet in diameter. This chamber
is connected with the second room of the series described by a
passageway about 2 feet long, which opens into the southeastern corner
of that room. This passageway, at its northern end, is 1½ feet below the
room into which it opens. One of the most noticeable features about this
group of rooms is the entire absence of the little nooks and pockets in
the wall which are characteristic of these lodges, and which are very
numerous in all the principal groups, noticeably in the group next

  [Illustration: Figure 298.
  Plan of cavate lodges, group _C_.]

At the point marked _C_ on the map there is an elaborate group of
chambers, consisting of two groups joined together and comprising
altogether eight rooms. This is shown in plan in figure 298. The rock
composing the front of the main room of the southern group has recently
fallen, making a pile of debris about 4 feet high. The room originally
measured about 12 by 22 feet. Its eastern side is occupied by a
passageway leading into an adjoining chamber and by two shallow, roughly
semicircular coves, apparently the remains of former small rooms. Along
the northern wall of the room there are two little nooks at the floor
level, and along the southern wall there are four, one of them (shown on
the plan) being dug out like a pit. The roof of the room was about
6 feet above the floor.

The passageway near the eastern side is 4½ feet long, and is 3½ feet
wide--an unusual width. It opens into a roughly circular room, 8 feet in
diameter, but with a roof only 3½ feet above the floor. Along the
northeastern side of this room, there are three small pockets opening on
the floor level. On the southern side of the room there is a wide
opening into a small attached room, roughly oblong in shape and
measuring about 6½ by 4½ feet. Along the southern wall of this little
room there are two small pockets, and at the southwestern corner the
rock has been cleared out to form a low cavity in the shape of a half
dome. In the northwestern corner of the room there is another wide
passage to a small room attached to the main room. This passage is now
carefully sealed on its southern side with a slab of stone, plastered
neatly so as to be hardly perceptible from the southern side. The room
into which this passage opens on the north is attached to the
northeastern corner of the main apartment by a narrow passage, 1½ feet
wide and a foot long. It is roughly circular in shape, about 6 feet in
diameter, and is the only chamber in the southern group which has no
pockets or cubby-holes. Of these pockets there are no fewer than twelve
in the southern group. Near the northern corner of the main room there
is a doorway leading into a cove, which in turn opens into the main room
of the northern group.

The main room of the northern group is setback about 9 feet from the
face of the bluff, but is entered by a passageway about 3 feet long, the
remainder of the distance consisting of a cove in the cliff. The room is
22 feet long and 13 feet wide and its roof is 6½ feet above the floor.
In the southwestern corner there is a small pocket in the wall, and in
the northwestern corner two others, all on the floor level. In the
eastern side, however, there is a cubby-hole nearly 2 feet in diameter
and about 2 feet above the floor. This is a rare feature. The southern
end of the room opens into a kind of cove, raised 2 feet above the floor
of the main room, and opening at its southern end into the main room of
the southern group. In the floor of this cove there is a circular pit
about 18 inches in diameter (marked in the plan, figure 298). Although
resembling the fire holes already described, the position of the pit
under consideration precludes use for that purpose; it was probably
designed to contain water. At the northeastern corner of the principal
apartment there is an oblong chamber or storage cist, measuring 6 feet
by 7 feet.

  [Illustration: Plate XXXVI.

Connected with the main room by a passageway 2 feet long cut in its
eastern wall, there is an almost circular chamber 7 feet in diameter,
and this in turn connects with another chamber beyond it by a passageway
2½ feet long and less than 2 feet wide. The roofs of the two chambers
last mentioned are but 4½ and 4 feet, respectively, above the floor, and
in none of the rooms of this group, except the main apartment, are
pockets or niches found. The whole group extends back about 45 feet into
the bluff.


Within the limits of the region here treated there are many hundreds of
sites of structures and groups of rooms now marked only by lines of
water-rounded bowlders. As a rule each site was occupied by only one or
two rooms, although sometimes the settlement rose to the dignity of a
village of considerable size. The rooms were nearly always oblong,
similar in size and ground plan to the rooms composing the village ruins
already described, but differing in two essential points, viz, character
of site and character of the masonry. As a rule these remains are found
on and generally near the edge of a low mesa or hill overlooking some
area of tillable land, but they are by no means confined to such
locations, being often found directly on the bottom land, still more
frequently on the banks of dry washes at the points where they emerge
from the hills, and sometimes on little islands or raised areas within
the wash where every spring they must have been threatened with overflow
or perhaps even overflowed. An examination of many sites leads to the
conclusion that permanency was not an element of much weight in their

Externally these bowlder-marked sites have every appearance of great
antiquity, but all the evidence obtainable in regard to them indicates
that they were connected with and inhabited at the same time as the
other ruins in the region in which they are found. They are so much
obliterated now, however, that a careful examination fails to determine
in some cases whether the site in question was or was not occupied by a
room or group of rooms, and there is a notable dearth of pottery
fragments such as are so abundant in the ruins already described.
Excavation in a large ruin of this type, however, conducted by some
ranchmen living just above Limestone creek, yielded a considerable lot
of pottery, not differing in kind from the fragments found in stone
ruins so far as can be judged from description alone.

In the southern part of the region here treated bowlder-marked sites are
more clearly marked and more easily distinguished than in the northern
part, partly perhaps because in that section the normal ground surface
is smoother than in the northern section and affords a greater contrast
with the site itself. Plate XXXIII shows one of these bowlder-marked
sites which occurs a little below Limestone creek, on the opposite or
eastern side of the river. It is typical of many in that district. It
will be noticed that the bowlders are but slightly sunk into the soil,
and that the surface of the ground has been so slightly disturbed that
it is practically level; there is not enough débris on the ground to
raise the walls 2 feet. The illustration shows, in the middle distance,
a considerable area of bottom land which the site overlooks. In plan
this site shows a number of oblong rectangular rooms, the longer axes of
which are not always parallel, the plan resembling very closely the
smaller stone village ruins already described. It is probable that the
lack of parallelism in the longer axes of the rooms is due to the same
cause as in the village ruins, i.e., to the fact that the site was not
all built up at one time.

The illustration represents only a part of an extensive series of wall
remains. The series commences at the northern end of a mesa forming the
eastern boundary of the Rio Verde and a little below a point opposite
the mouth of Limestone creek. The ruins occur along the western rim of
the mesa, overlooking the river and the bottom lands on the other side,
and are now marked only by bowlders and a slight rise in the ground. But
few lines of wall are visible, most of the ruins consisting only of a
few bowlders scattered without system. From the northern end of the
mesa, where the ruins commence, traces of walls can be seen extending
due southward and at an angle of about 10° with the mesa edge for a
distance of one-fourth of a mile. Beyond this, for half a mile or more
southward, remains of single houses and small clusters occur, and these
are found in less abundance to the southern edge of the mesa, where the
ruin illustrated occurs. The settlement extended some distance east of
the part illustrated, and also southward on the slope of the hill. Two
well-marked lines of wall occur at the foot of the hill, on the flat
bottom land, but the slopes of the hill are covered with bowlders and
show no well-defined lines. Scattered about on the surface of the ground
are some fragments of metates of coarse black basalt and some potsherds,
but the latter are not abundant.

The bowlders which now mark these sites were probably obtained in the
immediate vicinity of the points where they were used. The mesa on which
the ruin occurs is a river terrace, constructed partly of these
bowlders; they outcrop occasionally on its surface and show clearly in
its sloping sides, and the washes that carry off the water falling on
its surface are full of them.

  [Illustration: Plate XXXVII.

In the northern end of the settlement there are faint traces of what may
have been an irrigating ditch, but the topography is such that water
could not be brought on top of the mesa from the river itself. At the
southern end of the settlement, northeast of the point shown in the
illustration, there are traces of a structure that may have been a
storage reservoir. The surface of the mesa dips slightly southward, and
the reservoir-like structure is placed at a point just above the head of
a large wash, where a considerable part of the water that falls upon the
surface of the mesa could be caught. It is possible that, commencing at
the northern end of the settlement, a ditch extended completely through
it, terminating in the storage reservoir at the southern end, and that
this ditch was used to collect the surface water and was not connected
with the river. A method of irrigation similar to this is practiced
today by some of the Pueblo Indians, notably by the Hopi or Tusayan and
by the Zuni. In the bottom land immediately south of the mesa, now
occupied by several American families, there is a fine example of an
aboriginal ditch, described later.

In the vicinity of the large ruin just above Limestone creek, previously
described, the bowlder-marked sites are especially abundant. In the
immediate vicinity of that ruin there are ten or more of them, and they
are abundant all along the edge of the mesa forming the upper river
terrace; in fact, they are found in every valley and on every point of
mesa overlooking a valley containing tillable land.

It is probable that the bowlder-marked ruins are the sites of secondary
and temporary structures, erected for convenience in working fields near
to or overlooked by them and distant from the home pueblo. The character
of the sites occupied by them and the plan of the structures themselves
supports this hypothesis. That they were connected with the permanent
stone villages is evident from their comparative abundance about each of
the larger ones, and that they were constructed in a less substantial
manner than the home pueblo is shown by the character of the remains.

It seems quite likely that only the lower course or courses of the walls
of these dwellings were of bowlders, the superstructure being perhaps
sometimes of earth (not adobe) but more probably often of the type known
as “jacal”--upright slabs of wood plastered with mud. This method of
construction was known to the ancient pueblo peoples and is used today
to a considerable extent by the Mexican population of the southwest and
to a less extent in some of the pueblos. No traces of this construction
were found in the bowlder-marked sites, perhaps because no excavation
was carried on; but it is evident that the rooms were not built of
stone, and that not more than a small percentage could have been built
of rammed earth or grout, as the latter, in disintegrating leaves
well-defined mounds and lines of debris. It is improbable, moreover,
that the structures were of brush plastered with mud, such as the Navajo
hogan, as this method of construction is not well adapted to a
rectangular ground plan, and if persistently applied would soon modify
such a plan to a round or partially rounded one. Temporary brush
structures would not require stone foundations, but structures composed
of upright posts or slabs, filled in with brush and plastered with mud,
and designed to last more than one farming season, would probably be
placed on stone foundations, as the soil throughout most of the region
in which these remains occur is very light, and a wooden structure
placed directly on it would hardly survive a winter.

In the valley of the Rio Verde the profitable use of adobe at the
present time is approximately limited northward by the thirty-fourth
parallel, which crosses the valley a little below the mouth of Limestone
creek. North of this latitude adobe is used less and less and where used
requires more and more attention to keep in order, although on the high
tablelands some distance farther northward it is again a suitable
construction. South of the thirty-fourth parallel, however, adobe
construction is well suited to the climate and in the valleys of Salt
and Gila rivers it is the standard construction. Adobe construction (the
use of sun-dried molded brick) was unknown to the ancient pueblo
builders, but its aboriginal counterpart, rammed earth or pisé
construction, such as that of the well known Casa Grande ruin on Gila
river, acted in much the same way under climatic influences, and it is
probable that its lack of suitability precluded its use in the greater
part of the Verde valley. No walls of the type of those of the Casa
Grande ruin have been found in the valley of the Verde, although
abundant in the valleys of the Salt and Gila rivers, but it is possible
that this method of construction was used in the southern part of the
Verde region for temporary structures; in the northern part of that
region its use even for that purpose was not practicable.

In this connection it should be noted that all the ruins herein
described are of buildings of the northern type of aboriginal pueblo
architecture and seem to be connected with the north rather than the

  [Illustration: Plate XXXVIII.


One of the finest examples of an aboriginal irrigating ditch that has
come under the writer’s notice occurs about 2 miles below the mouth of
Limestone creek, on the opposite or eastern side of the river. At this
point there is a large area of fertile bottom land, now occupied by some
half dozen ranches, known locally as the Lower Verde settlement. The
ditch extends across the northern and western part of this area. Plate
XXXIV shows a portion of this ditch at a point about one eighth of a
mile east of the river. Here the ditch is marked by a very shallow
trough in the grass-covered bottom, bounded on either side by a low
ridge of earth and pebbles. Plate XXXV shows the same ditch at a point
about one-eighth of a mile above the last, where it was necessary to cut
through a low ridge. North of this point the ditch can not be traced,
but here it is about 40 feet above the river and about 10 feet above a
modern (American) ditch. It is probable that the water was taken out of
the river about 2 miles above this place, but the ditch was run on the
sloping side of the mesa which has been recently washed out. No traces
of the ditch were found east of the point shown in plate XXXIV, but as
the modern acequia, which enters the valley nearly 10 feet below the
ancient one, extends up the valley nearly to its head, there is no
reason to suppose that the ancient ditch did not irrigate nearly the
whole area of bottom land. The ancient ditch is well marked by two
clearly defined lines of pebbles and small bowlders, as shown in the
illustration. Probably these pebbles entered into its construction, as
the modern ditch, washed out at its head and abandoned more than a year
ago, shows no trace, of a similar marking.

  [Illustration: Figure 299.
  Map of an ancient irrigating ditch.]

A little west and south of the point shown in plate XXXIV the bottom
land drops off by a low bench of 3 or 4 feet to a lower level or
terrace, and this edge is marked for a distance of about a quarter of a
mile by the remains of a stone wall or other analogous structure. This
is located on the extreme edge of the upper bench and it is marked on
its higher side by a very small elevation. On the outer or lower side it
is more clearly visible, as the stones of which the wall was composed
are scattered over the slope marking the edge of the upper bench. At
irregular intervals along the wall there are distinct rectangular areas
about the size of an ordinary pueblo room, i.e., about 8 by 10 and 10 by
12 feet.

In February, 1891, there was an exceptional flood in Verde river due to
prolonged hard rain. The river in some places rose nearly 20 feet, and
at many points washed away its banks and changed the channel. The river
rose on two occasions; during its first rise it cut away a considerable
section of the bank near a point known as Spanish wash, about 3½ miles
below Verde, exposing an ancient ditch. During its second rise it cut
away still more of the bank and part of the ancient ditch exposed a few
days before. The river here makes a sharp bend and flows a little north
of east. The modern American ditch, which supplied all the bottom lands
of the Verde west of the river, was ruined in this vicinity by the flood
that uncovered the old ditch. Figure 299 is a map of the ancient ditch
drawn in the field, with contours a foot apart, and showing also a
section, on a somewhat larger scale, drawn through the points _A_, _B_
on the map. Plate XXXVI is a view of the ditch looking westward across
the point where it has been washed away, and plate XXXVII shows the
eastern portion, where the ditch disappears under the bluff.

The bank of the river at this point consists of a low sandy beach, from
10 to 50 feet wide, limited on the south by a vertical bluff 10 to 12
feet high and composed of sandy alluvial soil. This bluff is the edge of
the bottom land before referred to, and on top is almost flat and
covered with a growth of mesquite, some of the trees reaching a diameter
of more than 3 inches. The American ditch, which is shown on the map,
runs along the top of the bluff skirting its edge, and is about 14 feet
above the river at its ordinary stage. The edge of the bluff is shown on
the map by a heavy black line. It will be observed that the ancient
ditch occurs on the lower flat, about 3 feet above the river at its
ordinary stage, and its remains extend over nearly 500 feet. The line,
however, is not a straight one, but has several decided bends. One of
these occurs at a point just west of that shown in the section. About 80
feet east of that point the ditch makes another turn southward, and
about 40 feet beyond strikes the face of the bluff almost at right
angles and passes under it.

About 50 feet north of the main ditch, at the point where it passes
under the bluff, there are the remains of another ditch, as shown on the
map. This second ditch was about a foot higher than the main structure,
or about 4 feet above the river; it runs nearly parallel with it for 30
feet and then passes into the bluff with a slight turn toward the north.
It is about the same size as the main ditch, but its section is more
evenly rounded. Figure 300 shows this ditch in section.

  [Illustration: Plate XXXIX.

As already stated, the American ditch is about 14 feet above the river,
while the ancient ditch is less than 4 feet above the water. This
decided difference in level indicates a marked difference in the
character of the river. The destruction of the modern ditch by the flood
of 1891 is not the first mishap of that kind which has befallen the
settlers. The ditch immediately preceding the current one passed nearly
over the center of the ancient ditch, then covered by 10 feet or more of
alluvial soil, and if a ditch were placed today on the level of the
ancient structure it would certainly be destroyed every spring. The
water that flowed through the modern ditch was taken from the river at a
point about 3 miles farther northward, or just below Verde. The water
for the ancient ditch must have been taken out less than a mile above
the southern end of the section shown in the map.

  [Illustration: Figure 300.
  Part of old irrigating ditch.]

At first sight it would appear that the ancient ditch antedated the
deposit of alluvial soil forming the bottom land at this point, and this
hypothesis is supported by several facts of importance. It is said that
ten years ago the bottom land, whose edge now forms the bluff referred
to, extended some 25 or 30 feet farther out, and that the river then
flowed in a channel some 200 or 300 feet north of the present one.
Be this as it may, the bottom land now presents a fairly continuous
surface, from the banks of the river to the foothills that limit the
valley on the west and south, and it is certain that this bottom land
extended over the place occupied by the ancient ditch; nor is it to be
supposed that the ancient ditches ended abruptly at the point where they
now enter the bluff. The curves in the line of the ancient ditch might
indicate that it was constructed along the slope of a hill, or on an
uneven surface, as a deep excavation in fairly even ground would
naturally be made in a straight line.

The face of the bluff shows an even deposit of sand, without apparent
stratification, except here and there a thin layer or facing of mud
occurs, such as covers the bottom of the ancient ditch and also of the
modern ditch. Singularly enough, however, over the ancient ditch, about
5 feet above its bottom, there is a stratum of sand and gravel, and on
top, within a few inches of the surface of the ground, a thin stratum of
mud. This mud stratum extends only about 8 feet horizontally and is
slightly hollowed, with its lowest part over the center of the ditch.
The gravel stratum also was laid down over the ditch, is tilted slightly
southward and occurs in two layers, together about a foot thick. It
first appears a few feet south of the point where the main ditch enters
the bluff and over the ditch both layers are distinctly marked, as shown
in plate XXXVIII. Both layers are clearly marked to a distance of 4 feet
north of the northern side of the main ditch; here the lower layer thins
out, but the upper layer continues faintly marked almost to the edge of
the small ditch. At this point the gravel stratum becomes pronounced
again and continues over the small ditch, almost pure gravel in places,
with a decided dip westward. At a point just beyond the northern side of
the small ditch the gravel layer disappears entirely.

The occurrence of this gravel in the way described seems to indicate
that the ditch was built along the slope of a low hill forming the edge
of the bottom land at that time, and that subsequently detritus was
deposited above it and over the adjacent bottom land forming a smooth
ground surface. Against this hypothesis it must be stated that no
evidence whatever was found of more than a single deposit of sandy loam,
although the exposures are good; but perhaps were an examination made by
a competent geologist some such evidence might be developed.

  [Illustration: Plate XL.

There is one fact that should not be lost sight of in the discussion,
viz, the very low elevation of the ditch above the river. The Verde is,
as already stated, a typical mountain stream, with an exceptionally high
declivity, and consequently it is rapidly lowering its bed. If, as
already conjectured, the water for the ancient ditch was taken from the
river but a short distance above the point where remains of the ditch
are now found--and this assumption seems well supported by the character
of the adjacent topography--the slight elevation of the bed of the ditch
above the river would indicate that, in the first place, the ditch was
located, as already suggested, along the slope of a hill, and in the
second place, that the ditch was built at a period of no great
antiquity. The occurrence of the high bluff under which the ditch now
passes does not conflict with this suggestion, for the deposition of the
material composing it and its erosion into its present form and
condition may be the result of decades rather than of centuries of work
by a stream like the Verde, and certainly a hundred, or at most a
hundred and fifty years would suffice to accomplish it. At the present
time a few floods deposit an amount of material equal to that under
discussion, and if subsequently the river changed its channel, as it
does at a dozen different points every spring, a few decades only would
be required to cover the surface with grass and bushes, and in short, to
form a bottom land similar to that now existing over the ancient ditch.

In conclusion it should be noted, in support of the hypothesis that the
ditch was built before the material composing the bluff was laid down,
that immediately under the ditch there is a stratum of hard adobe-like
earth, quite different from the sand above it and from the material of
which the bluff is composed. This stratum is shown clearly in plate

The hypothesis which accords best with the evidence now in hand is that
which assumes that the ditch was taken out of the river but a short
distance above the point illustrated, and that it was built on the slope
of a low hill, or on a nearly flat undulating bottom land, before the
material composing the present bottom or river terrace was deposited,
and that the ditch, while it may be of considerable antiquity, is not
necessarily more than a hundred or a hundred and fifty years old; in
other words, we may reach a fairly definite determination of its minimum
but not of its maximum antiquity.

On the southern side of Clear creek, about a mile above its mouth, there
are extensive horticultural works covering a large area of the terrace
or river bench. These have already been alluded to in the description of
the village ruin overlooking them, but there are several features which
are worthy a more detailed description. For a distance of 2 miles east
and west along the creek, and perhaps half a mile north and south, there
are traces of former works pertaining to horticulture, including
irrigating ditches, “reservoirs,” farming outlooks, etc.

At the eastern end of these works, about 3 miles above the mouth of
Clear creek, the main ditch, after running along the slope of the hill
for some distance, comes out on top of the mesa or terrace nearly
opposite the Morris place. The water was taken from the creek but a
short distance above, hardly more than half a mile. West of the point
where the ditch comes out on the mesa top, all traces of it disappear,
but they are found again at various points on the terrace. Plate XXXIX
shows a portion of the terrace below and opposite the rectangular ruin
previously described. In the distant foreground the light line indicates
a part of the ancient ditch. Plate XL shows the same ditch at a point
half a mile below the last, where it rounds a knoll. In the distance is
the flat-topped hill or mesa on which the rectangular ruin previously
described is located. About a hundred yards southeast of this point
further traces of the ditch may be seen, and connected with it at that
point are a number of rectangular areas, which were cultivated patches
when the ditch was in use.

The whole surface of the terrace within the limits described is covered
by small water-worn bowlders scattered so thickly over it that travel is
seriously impeded. In many parts of it these bowlders are arranged so as
to inclose small rectangular areas, and these areas are connected with
the old ditch just described. Plate XXXIX shows something of this
surface character; and in the right hand portion of it may be seen some
of the rows of bowlders forming the rectangular areas. The rows which
occur at right angles to the ditch are much more clearly marked than
those parallel to it, and the longer axes of the rectangular areas are
usually also at right angles to the ditch line. On the ground these
traces of inclosures can hardly be made out, but from an elevated point,
such as the mesa on which, the rectangular ruin overlooking these works
is located, they show very clearly and have the appearance of windrows.
Traces of these horticultural works would be more numerous, and
doubtless more distinct, were it not that a considerable part of the
area formerly under cultivation has been picked over by the modern
settlers in this region, and immense quantities of stone have been
removed and used in the construction of fences. This has not been done,
however, in such a manner as to leave the ground entirely bare, yet bare
areas occur here and there over the surface, where doubtless once
existed a part of the general scheme of horticultural works.

One such bare area occurs close to the edge of the terrace about a mile
and a half above the mouth of the creek. In its center is a structure
called for convenience a reservoir, although it is by no means certain
that it was used as such. It occurs about 100 yards from the creek,
opposite the Wingfield place, and consists of a depression surrounded by
an elevated rim. It is oval, measuring 108 feet north and south and 72
feet east and west from rim to rim. The crown of the rim is 5 feet 8
inches above the bottom of the depression and about 3 feet above the
ground outside. The rim is fairly continuous, except at points on the
northern and southern sides, where there are slight depressions, and
these depressions are further marked by extra large bowlders. At its
lowest points, however, the rim is over 2 feet above the ground, which
slopes away from it for some distance in every direction. Plate XLI
shows the eastern side of the depression; the large tree in the middle
distance is on the bank of Clear creek and below the terrace. Plate XLII
shows the northern gateway or dip in the rim, looking southward across
the depression. The large bowlders previously referred to can be clearly
seen. A depression similar to this occurs on the opposite side of the
valley, about half a mile from the river. In this case it is not marked
by bowlders or stones of any description, but is smooth and rounded,
corresponding to the surface of the ground in its vicinity. In the
latter as in the former case, the depression occurs on a low knoll or
swell in the bottom land, and the surface of the ground slopes gently
away from it for some distance in every direction.

  [Illustration: Plate XLI.

The purpose of these depressions is not at all clear, and although
popularly known as reservoirs it is hardly possible that they were used
as such. The capacity of the Clear creek depression is about 160,000
gallons, or when two-thirds full, which would be the limit of its
working capacity, about 100,000 gallons. The minimum rate of evaporation
in this region in the winter months is over 3 inches per month, rising
in summer to 10 inches or more, so that in winter the loss of water
stored in this depression would be about 10,000 gallons a month, while
in summer it might be as high as 35,000 or even 40,000 gallons a month.
It follows, therefore, that even if the reservoir were filled to its
full working capacity in winter and early spring it would be impossible
to hold the water for more than two months and retain enough at the end
of that time to make storing worth while. It has been already stated,
however, that these depressions are situated on slight knolls and that
the land falls away from them in every direction. As no surface drainage
could be led into them, and as there is no trace on the ground of a
raised ditch discharging into them, they must have been filled, if used
as reservoirs, from the rain which fell within the line that
circumscribes them. The mean annual rainfall (for over seventeen years)
at Verde, a few miles farther northward in the same valley, is 11.44
inches, with a maximum annual fall of 27.27 inches and a minimum of 4.80
inches. The mean annual fall (for over twenty-one years) at Fort
McDowell, near the mouth of the Rio Verde, is 10-54 inches, with a
maximum of 20.0 inches and a minimum of 4.94 inches.[8]

  [Footnote 8: Report on Rainfall (Pacific coast and western states
  and territories), Signal Office U.S. War Dept., Senate Ex. Doc. 91,
  50th Cong., 1st Sess., Washington, 1889; pp. 70-73 (Errata, p. 4).]

If these depressions were used as reservoirs it is a fair presumption
that the bottoms were plastered with clay, so that there would be no
seepage and the only loss would be by evaporation. Yet this loss, in a
dry and windy climate such as that of the region here treated, would be
sufficient to render impracticable a storage reservoir of a cross
section and a site like the one under discussion. Most of the rainfall
is in the winter months, from December to March, and it would require a
fall of over 12 inches during those months to render the reservoir of
any use in June; it would certainly be of no use in July and August,
at the time when water is most needed, save in exceptional years with
rainfall much in excess of the mean.

On the other hand, there is the hypothesis that these depressions
represent house structures; but if so these structures are anomalous in
this region. The contour of the ground does not support the idea of a
cluster of rooms about a central court, nor does the débris bear it out.
Mr. F. H. Cushing has found depressions in the valleys of Salt and Gila
rivers somewhat resembling these in form and measurement, and situated
always on the outskirts of the sites of villages. Excavations were made,
and as the result of these he came to the conclusion that the
depressions were the remains of large council chambers, as the floors
were hard, plastered with mud, and dish-shaped, with a fire-hole in the
center of each; and no pottery or implements or remains of any kind were
found except a number of “sitting stones.” Mr. Cushing found traces of
upright logs which formed the outer wall of the structure; he inferred
from the absence of drainage channels that the structure was roofed, and
as the ordinary method of roofing is impracticable on the scale of these
structures, he supposed that a method similar to that used by the Pima
Indians in roofing their granaries was employed, the roof being of a
flattened dome shape and composed of grass or reeds, formed in a
continuous coil and covered with earth. If the depressions under
discussion, however, are the remains of structures such as these
described, they form a curious anomaly in this region, for, as has been
already stated, the affinities of the remains of this region are with
the northern architectural types, and not at all with those of the

There is a third hypothesis which, though not supported by direct
evidence, seems plausible. It is that the depression of Clear creek, and
perhaps also the one on the opposite side of the Verde, were thrashing
floors. This hypothesis accords well with the situation of these
depressions upon the tillable bottom lands, and with their relation to
the other remains in their vicinity; and their depth below the surface
of the ground would be accounted for, under the assumption here made of
their use, by the high and almost continuous winds of the summer in this
region. Perhaps the slight depressions at the northern and southern side
of the oval were the gateways through which the animals which trampled
the straw or the men who worked the flails passed in and out. Whether
used in this way or not, these depressions would be, under the
assumption that the bottom was plastered with mud, not only practicable,
but even desirable thrashing floors, as the grain would be subjected
during thrashing to a partial winnowing. This suggestion would also
account for the comparatively clean ground surface about the depressions
and for their location on slightly elevated knolls.

Scattered over the whole area formerly under cultivation along Clear
creek are the remains of small, single rooms, well marked on the ground,
but without any standing wall remaining. These remains are scattered
indiscriminately over the terrace without system or arrangement; they
are sometimes on the flat, sometimes on slight knolls. They number
altogether perhaps forty or fifty. Plate XLIII shows an example which
occurs on a low knoll, shown also in plate XL; it is typical of these
remains. It will be noticed that the masonry was composed of river
bowlders not dressed or prepared in any way, and that the débris on the
ground would raise the walls scarcely to the height of a single low

  [Illustration: Plate XLII.

The location of these remains, their relation to other remains in the
vicinity, and their character all support the conclusion that they were
small temporary shelters or farming outlooks, occupied only during the
season when the fields about them were cultivated and during the
gathering of the harvest, as is the case with analogous structures used
in the farming operations among the pueblos of to-day. Their number and
distribution do not necessarily signify that all the terrace was under
cultivation at one time, although there is a fair presumption that the
larger part of it was, and the occurrence of the ditch at both the upper
and the lower ends of the area strengthens this conclusion.

As it is impossible that an area so large as this should be cultivated
by the inhabitants of one village, it is probable that a number of
villages combined in the use of this terrace for their horticultural
operations; and, reasoning from what we know to have been the case in
other regions, it is further probable that this combination resulted in
endless contention, and strife, and perhaps finally to the abandonment
of these fields if not of this region. The rectangular ruin already
illustrated is situated on a hill south of the terrace and overlooks it
from that direction; on the opposite side of Clear creek, on the hill
bounding the valley on the north, there are the remains of a large stone
village which commanded an outlook over the terraces in question; and a
little farther up the creek, on the same side and similarly situated,
there was another village which also overlooked them. There were
doubtless other villages and small settlements whose remains are not now
clearly distinguishable, and it is quite probable that some of the
inhabitants of the large villages in the vicinity, like those near
Verde, hardly 3 miles northward, had a few farming houses and some land
under cultivation on this terrace.

Thus it will be seen that there was no lack of cultivators for all the
tillable land on the terrace, and there is no reason to suppose that the
period when the land was under cultivation, and the period when the
villages overlooking it were occupied, were not identical, and that the
single-house remains scattered over the terrace were not built and
occupied at the same period. The relation of the stone villages to the
area formerly cultivated, the relation of the single-room remains to the
area immediately about them, the character of the remains, and the known
methods of horticulture followed by the Pueblo Indians, all support the
conclusion that these remains were not only contemporaneous but also
related to one another.



The masonry of the stone villages throughout all the region here treated
is of the same type, although there are some variations. It does not
compare with the fine work found on the San Juan and its tributaries,
although belonging to that type--the walls being composed of two faces
with rubble filling, and the interstices of the large stones being
filled or chinked with spalls. This chinking is more pronounced and
better done in the northern part of the region than in the south.

The rock employed depended in all cases on the immediate environments of
the site of the village, the walls being composed in some cases of slabs
of limestone, in other cases of river bowlders only, and in still others
of both in combination. The walls of the large ruin near Limestone creek
were composed of rude slabs of limestone with an intermixture of
bowlders. The bowlders usually occur only in the lower part of the wall,
near the ground, and in several cases, where nothing exists of the wall
above the surface of the ground, the remains consist entirely of
bowlders. A good example of this peculiarity of construction is shown in
plate XLIV, and plate XLV shows the character of stone employed and also
a section of standing wall on the western side of the village. A section
of standing wall near the center of the ruin is illustrated in plate
XIII. It will be noticed that some of the walls shown in this
illustration are chinked, but to a very slight extent. The wall
represented in plate XLV has slabs of limestone set on edge. This
feature is found also in other ruins in this region, notably in those
opposite Verde, though it seems to be more used in the south than in the
north. An example occurring in the ruin opposite Verde is shown in plate
XLVI. In this case chinking is more pronounced; the walls are from 2 to
2½ feet thick, built in the ordinary way with two faces and an interior
filling, but the stones are large and the filling is almost wholly adobe
mortar. The two faces are tied together by extra long stones which
occasionally project into the back of one or the other face.

The western cluster of the ruin last mentioned, shown on the ground plan
(plate XVII), has almost all its walls still standing, and the masonry,
while of the same general character as that of the main cluster, is
better executed. The stones composing the walls are smaller than those
in the main cluster and more uniform in size, and the interstices are
carefully chinked. The chinking is distinctive in that spalls were not
used, but more or less flattened river pebbles. The different color and
texture of these pebbles make them stand out from the wall distinctly,
giving quite an ornamental effect.

  [Illustration: Plate XLIII.

That portion of the standing wall of the ruin opposite Verde, which
occurs in the saddle northeastward from the main cluster, shown on the
plan in plate XVII, represents the best masonry found in this region. As
elsewhere stated, this was probably the last part of the village to be
built. These walls are shown in plate XLVII. It will be noticed that the
stones are of very irregular shape, rendering a considerable amount of
chinking necessary to produce even a fair result, and that the stones
are exceptionally large. The masonry of this village is characterized by
the use of stones larger than common, many of them being larger than one
man can carry and some of them even larger than two men can handle.

All the larger and more important ruins of this region are constructed
of limestone slabs, sometimes with bowlders. The smaller ruins, on the
other hand, were built usually of river bowlders, sometimes with an
intermixture of slabs of limestone and sandstone but with a decided
preponderance of river bowlders. This would seem to suggest that this
region was gradually populated, and that the larger structures were the
last ones built. This suggestion has been already made in the discussion
of the ground plans, and it is, moreover, in accord with the history of
the pueblo-builders farther northward, notably that of the Hopi.

Plate XXI illustrates a type of bowlder masonry which occurs on Clear
creek; plate XLVIII shows the masonry of the ruin at the mouth of the
East Verde, and plate XVI shows that of a ruin at the month of Fossil
creek. In all these examples the stone composing the walls was derived
either from the bed of an adjacent stream or from the ground on which
they were built, and was used without any preparation whatever; yet in
the better examples of this type of masonry a fairly good result was
obtained by a careful selection of the stones. A still ruder type of
masonry sometimes found in connection with village ruins is shown in
figure 290. This, however, was used only as in the example illustrated,
for retaining walls to trails or terraces, or analogous structures.

In a general way it may be stated that the masonry of the village ruins
of this region is much inferior to that of the San Juan region, and in
its rough and unfinished surfaces, in the use of an inferior material
close at hand rather than a better material a short distance away, and
in the ignorance on the part of the builders of many constructive
devices and expedients employed in the best examples of pueblo masonry,
the work of this region may be ranked with that of the Tusayan--in other
words, at the lower end of the scale.

  [Illustration: Figure 301.
  Walled front cavate lodges.]

There is but little masonry about the cavate lodges, and that is rude in
character. As elsewhere stated, walled fronts are exceptional in this
region, and where they occur the work was done very roughly. Figure 301
shows an example that occurs in the group of cavate lodges already
described. It will be noticed that little selection has been exercised
in the stones employed, and that an excess of mortar has been used to
fill in the large interstices. Figure 290 (p. 221), which shows a
storage cist attached to the group of cavate lodges, marked _D_ on the
map (plate XXV), exhibits the same excessive use of adobe or mud
plastering. At several other points in the area shown on this map there
are short walls, sometimes inside the lodges, sometimes outside. In all
cases, however, they are rudely constructed and heavily plastered with
mud; in short, the masonry of the cavate lodges exhibits an ignorance
fully equal to that of the stone villages, while the execution is, if
anything, ruder. It is singular that, notwithstanding the excessive use
of mud mortar and mud plastering in the few walls that are found there,
such plastering was almost never used on the walls in the interiors of
the lodges, perhaps because no finer finish than the rough surface of
the rock was considered desirable.

  [Illustration: Plate XLIV.

The cavate lodges seem to have been excavated without the aid of other
tools than a rough maul or a piece of stone held in the hand, and such a
tool is well adapted to the work, since a blow on the surface of the
rock is sufficient to bring off large slabs. Notwithstanding the rude
tools and methods, however, some of the work is quite neat, especially
in the passageways (which are often 3 or 4 feet long and quite narrow)
and in the smaller chambers. In the excavation of these chambers benches
were left at convenient places along the wall and niches and cubby-holes
were cut, so that in the best examples of cavate lodges the occupants,
it would seem, were more comfortable, so far as regards their
habitation, than the ordinary Pueblo Indian of today, and better
supplied with the conveniences of that method of living. It should be
stated in this connection, however, that although the group of cavate
lodges gives an example of an extensive work well carried out, the
successful carrying out of that work does not imply either a large
population or a high degree of skill; the only thing necessary was time,
and the amount of time necessary for the work is not nearly so great,
in proportion to the population housed, as was required for the better
types of pueblo work in the San Juan country (the village ruins of the
Chaco canyon for example), and probably no more than would be required
for the construction of rooms of equal size and of the rather poor grade
of work found in this region.

Although no examples of interior wall-plastering were found in the group
of cavate lodges described, such work has been found in neighboring
lodges; and in this group plastered floors are quite common. The object
of plastering the floors was to secure a fairly even surface such as the
soft rock did not provide, and this was secured not by the application
of layers of clay but by the use of clay here and there wherever needed
to bring the surface up to a general level, and the whole surface was
subsequently finished. This final finishing was sometimes omitted, and
many floors are composed partly of the natural rock and partly of clay,
the latter frequently in spots and areas of small size.

The floors were often divided into a number of sections by low ridges of
clay, sometimes 8 inches broad. These ridges are shown on the ground
plans (figures 294 to 298, and in plate XXV). Their purpose is not
clear, although it can readily be seen that in such domestic operations
as sorting grain they would be useful.


The masonry of this region was so roughly and carelessly executed that
little evidence remains in the stone villages of such details of
construction as door and window openings. Destruction of the walls seems
to have commenced at these openings, and while there are numerous
standing walls, some with a height of over 10 feet, no perfect example
of a door or window opening was found. It is probable that the methods
employed were similar or analogous to those used today by the Hopi, and
that the wooden lintel and stone jamb was the standard type.

  [Illustration: Figure 302.
  Bowlders in footway, cavate lodges.]

  [Illustration: Plate XLV.

  [Illustration: Figure 303.
  Framed doorway, cavate lodges.]

In the cavate lodges window openings are not found; there is but one
opening, the doorway, and this is of a pronounced and peculiar type. As
a rule these doorways are wider at the top than at the bottom and there
are no corners, the opening roughly approximating the shape of a pear
with the smaller end downward. The upper part of the opening consists
always of the naked rock, but the lower part is generally framed with
slabs of sandstone. Plate XLIX shows an example that occurs in the upper
tier of lodges at its eastern end. The floor of this lodge is about
2 feet above the bench from which it was entered, and this specimen
fails to show a feature which is very common in this group--a line of
water-worn bowlders extending from the exterior to the interior of the
lodges through the doorway and arranged like stepping stones. This
feature is shown in figure 302, which represents the doorway of group
_E_, shown on the general map (plate XXV) and on the detailed plan,
figure 297. Figure 303 shows a type in which the framing is extended up
on one side nearly to the top, while on the other side it extends only
to half the height of the opening, which above the framing is hollowed
out to increase its width. This example occurs near that shown in plate
XLIX, and the floor of the chamber is raised about 2 feet above the
bench from which it is entered. The illustration gives a view from the
interior, looking out, and the large opening on the right was caused by
the comparatively recent breaking out of the wall. Figure 303 shows the
doorway to the group of chambers marked _E_ on the general map, an
interior view of which is shown in figure 302. In this example the
obvious object of the framing was to reduce the size of the opening, and
to accomplish this the slabs were set out 10 or 12 inches from the rock
forming the sides of the opening, and the intervening space was filled
in with rubble. Plate XXXII, which shows the interior of the main room
in group _D_, shows also the large doorway on the north.

  [Illustration: Figure 304.
  Notched doorway in Canyon de Chelly.]

  [Illustration: Plate XLVI.

It will be noticed that these doorways all conform to one general plan
and that this plan required an opening considerably larger in its upper
third than in the lower two-thirds of its height. This requirement seems
to be the counterpart or analogue of the notched doorway, which is the
standard type in the cliff ruins of Canyon de Chelly and other regions,
and still very common in Tusayan (Moki). Figure 304 shows a notched
doorway in Canyon de Chelly and figure 305 gives an example of the same
type of opening in Tusayan. The object of this peculiar shape in the
regions mentioned has been well established,[9] and there is no reason
to suppose that similar conditions and a similar object would not
produce a similar result here. This type of opening had its origin in
the time when the pueblo builders had no means, other than blankets,
of temporarily closing door openings and when all the supplies of the
village were brought in on the backs of the inhabitants. In order to
secure protection against cold and storm the opening was made of the
smallest possible size consistent with its use, and the upper part of
the opening was made larger in order to permit the introduction of back
loads of faggots and other necessaries. This purpose would be almost as
well served by the openings of the cavate lodges as by the notched
doorway, and at the same time the smallest possible opening was exposed
to the weather. The two types of openings seem simply to be two
different methods of accomplishing the same purpose--one in solid rock,
the other in masonry. That it was considered desirable to reduce the
openings as much as possible is evident from the employment of framing
slabs in the lower portions, reducing the width of that part generally
to less than a foot, while the upper portions are usually 3 feet and
more in width, and the absence of framing slabs in the upper part of the
openings was probably due to their use as suggested; no slabs could be
attached with sufficient firmness to resist the drag of a back load of
wood, for example, forced between them. The strict confinement of door
openings to one type suggests a short, rather than a long, occupancy of
the site under discussion, a suggestion which is borne out by other
details; and this unity of design renders it difficult to form a
conclusion as to the relative age of the two types of openings under
discussion. So far as the evidence goes, however, it supports the
conclusion that the doorways of the cavate lodges were derived from a
type previously developed, and that the idea has been modified and to
some extent adapted to a different environment; for if the idea had been
developed in the cavate lodges there would be a much greater number of
variations than we find in fact. There can be no doubt, however, that
the cavate lodge doorways represent an earlier type in development,
if not in time, than the notched doorways of Tusayan.

  [Footnote 9: A Study of Pueblo Architecture, by Victor Mindeleff:
  8th. Ann. Rep. Bur. Eth. for 1886-1887; Washington, 1891, pp. 1-228.]

    [Transcriber’s Note:
    This article is available from LibraryBlog as e-text #19856.]

  [Illustration: Figure 305.
  Notched doorway in Tusayan.]


Nowhere in the village ruins or in the cavate lodges of the lower Verde
were any traces of chimneys or other artificial smoke exits found. The
village ruins are too much broken down to permit definite statement of
the means employed for smoke exits, but had the inhabitants employed
such exits as are in use in the pueblos today some evidence of them
would remain. Probably there was no other exit than the door, and
perhaps trapdoors or small openings in the roofs, such as were formerly
employed in the inhabited pueblos, according to their traditions. In the
cavate lodges no exit other than the door was possible, and many of them
are found with their walls much blackened by smoke.

The fireplaces or fire holes of the cavate lodges have already been
alluded to, and one of the best examples found is illustrated in plate
XXXII, and the location of a number of others is shown on the general
plan. These fireplaces are located not in the center of the chamber, but
near the principal doorway, and doubtless the object of this location
was to facilitate the escape of the smoke. Fire holes were never located
in interior rooms. The fireplace illustrated in plate XXXII has been
already described (p. 227); it was excavated in the solid rock of the
floor and was lined with fragments of pottery laid in mud mortar as
closely as their shape would permit. A part of this pottery lining can
be seen in the illustration. When the room was cleared out the fire hole
was found to be about half full of fine ashes.

  [Illustration: Plate XLVII.


The ruins of the lower Verde valley represent a comparatively late
period in the history of the Pueblo tribes. The period of occupancy was
not a long one and the population was never large, probably not
exceeding at any time 800 or 1,000 souls, possibly less than 700; nor
were the dwellings in that region all occupied at the same time.

There is no essential difference, other than those due to immediate
environment, between the architecture of the lower Verde region and that
of the more primitive types found in other regions, Tusayan for example.
The Verde architecture is, however, of a more purely aboriginal type
than that of any modern pueblo, and the absence of introduced or foreign
ideas is its chief characteristic. There are no chimneys, no adobe
walls, no constructive expedients other than aboriginal and rather
primitive ones. The absence of circular kivas[10] or sacred council
chambers is noteworthy.

  [Footnote 10: As this term has been already defined, it is here
  used without further explanation. For a full discussion of these
  structures, see “A Study of Pueblo Architecture,” by Victor
  Mindeleff, in 8th. Ann. Rep. Bur. Eth., 1886-87, Washington, 1891.]

The circular kiva is a survival of an ancient type--a survival supported
by all the power of religious feeling and the conservatism in religious
matters characteristic of savage and barbarous life; and while most of
the modern pueblos have at the present time rectangular kivas, such, for
example, as those at Tusayan, at Zuñi, and at Acoma, there is no doubt
that the circular form is the more primitive and was formerly used by
some tribes which now have only the rectangular form. Still the
abandonment of the circular and the adoption of the rectangular form,
due to expediency and the breaking down of old traditions, was a very
gradual process and proceeded at a different rate in different parts of
the country. At the time of the Spanish conquest the prevailing form in
the old province of Cibola was rectangular, although the circular kiva
was not entirely absent; while, on the other hand, in the cliff ruins of
Canyon de Chelly, whose date is partly subsequent to the sixteenth
century, the circular kiva is the prevailing, if not the exclusive form.
But notwithstanding this the Hopi Indians of Tusayan, to whom many of
the Canyon de Chelly ruins are to be attributed, today have not a single
circular kiva. The reason for this radical departure from the old type
is a simple one, and to be found in the single term environment. The
savage is truly a child of nature and almost completely under its sway.
A slight difference in the geologic formations of two regions will
produce a difference in the arts of the inhabitants of those regions,
provided the occupancy be a long one. In the case of the Tusayan kivas
the rectangular form was imposed on the builders by the character of the
sites they occupied. The requirement that the kiva should be under
ground, or partly under ground, was a more stringent one than that it
should be circular, and with the rude appliances at their command the
Tusayan builders could accomplish practically nothing unless they
utilized natural cracks and fissures in the rocks. Hence the abandonment
of the circular form and also of the more essential requirement, that
the kiva should be inclosed within the walls of the village or within a
court; the Tusayan kivas are located indiscriminately in the courts and
on the outskirts of the village, wherever a suitable site was found,
some of them being placed at a considerable distance from the nearest

It will be seen, therefore, that it is impossible to base any
chronologic conclusions on the presence or absence of this feature,
notwithstanding the undoubted priority of the circular form, except in
so far as these conclusions are limited to some certain region or known
tribal stock. If it be assumed that the Verde ruins belong to the
Tusayan, and all the evidence in hand favors that assumption, the
conclusion follows that they should be assigned to a comparatively late
period in the history of that tribe.

That the period of occupancy of the lower Verde valley was not a long
one is proved by the character of the remains and by what we know of the
history of the pueblo-building tribes. There are no very large areas of
tillable land on the lower Verde and not a large number of small ones,
and aside from these areas the country is arid and forbidding in the
extreme. Such a country would be occupied only as a last resort, or
temporarily during the course of a migration. The term migration,
however, must not be taken in the sense in which it has been applied
to European stocks, a movement of people en masse or in several large
groups. Migration as used here, and as it generally applies to the
Pueblo Indians, means a slow gradual movement, generally without any
definite and ultimate end in view. A small section of a village,
generally a gens or a subgens, moves away from the parent village,
perhaps only a few miles. At another time another section moves to
another site, at still another time another section moves, and so on.
These movements are not possible where outside hostile pressure is
strong, and if such pressure is long continued it results in a
reaggregation of the various scattered settlements into one large
village. Such in brief is the process which is termed migration, and
which has covered the southwest with thousands of village ruins. Of
course larger movements have occurred and whole villages have been
abandoned in a day, but as a rule the abandonment of villages was a
gradual process often consuming years.

  [Illustration: Plate XLVIII.

Before the archeologic investigation of the pueblo region commenced and
when there was little knowledge extant by which travelers could check
their conclusions, the immense number of ruins in that region was
commonly attributed to an immense population, some writers placing the
number as high as 500,000. Beside this figure the present population,
about 9,000, is so insignificant that it is hardly surprising that the
ancient and modern villages were separated and attributed to different
tribal stocks.

The process briefly sketched above explains the way in which village
ruins have their origin; a band of 500 village-building Indians might
leave the ruins of fifty villages in the course of a single century.
It is very doubtful whether the total number of Pueblo Indians ever
exceeded 30,000. This is the figure stated by Mr. A. F. Bandelier, whose
intimate acquaintance with the eastern part of the pueblo region gives
his opinion great weight. The apparently trifling causes which sometimes
result in the abandonment of villages have been already alluded to.

The lower Verde forms no exception to the general rule sketched above.
Scattered along the river, and always located on or immediately adjacent
to some area of tillable land, are found many small ruins, typical
examples of which have been described in detail. These form the
subordinate settlements whose place in the general scheme has been
indicated. The masonry is generally of river bowlders only, not dressed
or prepared in any way. The number of these settlements is no greater
than would be required for one complete cycle or period, although the
evidence seems to support the hypothesis that the movement commenced in
the northern part of the region and proceeded southward in two or
perhaps three separate steps. It is possible, however, that the movement
was in the other direction. This question can be settled only by a
thorough examination of the regions to the north and south.

There are two, possibly three, points in the region discussed where a
stand was made and the various minor settlements were abandoned, the
inhabitants congregating into larger bands and building a larger village
for better defense against the common foe. These are located at the
extreme northern and southern limits of the region treated, opposite
Verde and near Limestone creek, and possibly also at an intermediate
point, the limestone ruin above Fossil creek. These more important ruins
are all built of limestone slabs, and the sites are carefully selected.
The internal evidence supports the conclusion that the movement was
southward and that in the large ruin near Limestone creek the
inhabitants of the lower Verde valley had their last resting place
before they were absorbed by the population south of them, or were
driven permanently from this region. The strong resemblance of the
ground plan of this village to that of Zuñi has been already commented
on, and it is known that Zuñi was produced in the way stated, by the
inhabitants of the famous “seven cities of Cibola,” except that in this
case Zuñi was the second site adopted, the aggregation into one village,
or more properly a number of villages on one site, having taken place a
few years before. The fact that Zuñi dates only from the beginning of
the last century should not be lost sight of in this discussion.

The inhabitants of the Verde valley were an agricultural people, and
even in the darkest days of their history, when they were compelled to
abandon the minor settlements, they still relied on horticulture for
subsistence, and to a certain extent the defense motive was subordinated
to the requirements of this method of life. There can be no doubt that
the hostile pressure which produced the larger villages was Indian,
probably the Apache and Walapai, who were in undisputed possession at
the time of the American advent, and but little doubt that this pressure
consisted not of regular invasions and set sieges, but of sudden raids
and descents upon the fields, resulting in the carrying off of the
produce and the killing of the producers. Such raids were often made by
the Navajo on Tusayan, Zuñi, and the eastern pueblos and on the Mexican
villages along the Rio Grande for some years after the American
occupation, and are continued even today in a small way on the Tusayan.
The effect of such raids is cumulative, and it might be several years
before important action would result on the part of the village Indians
subjected to them. On the other hand, several long seasons might elapse
during which comparative immunity would be enjoyed by the village. In
the lower Verde there is evidence of two such periods, if not more, and
during that time the small pueblos and settlements previously referred
to were built. None of these small settlements was occupied, however,
for more than a few decades, the ground plans of most of them indicating
an even shorter period.

That cavate lodges and cliff-dwellings are simply varieties of the same
phase of life, and that life an agricultural one, is a conclusion,
supported by the remains in the lower Verde valley. The almost entire
absence of cliff-dwellings and the great abundance of cavate lodges has
already been commented on, and as the geologic formations are favorable
to the latter, and unfavorable to the former on the Verde, whereas the
Canyon de Chelly, where there are hundreds of cliff-dwellings and no
cavate lodges, the conditions are reversed, this abundance of cavate
lodges may be set down as due to an accident of environment. The cavate
lodge of the Rio Verde is a more easily constructed and more convenient
habitation than the cliff-dwelling of Canyon de Chelly.

  [Illustration: Plate XLIX.

An examination and survey of the cliff ruins of Canyon de Chelly, made
some years ago by the writer, revealed the fact that they were always
located with reference to some area of adjacent tillable land and that
the defensive motive exercised so small an influence on the selection
of the site and the character of the buildings that it could be ignored.
It was found that the cliff-dwellings were merely farming outlooks,
and that the villages proper were almost always located on the canyon
bottom. With slight modifications these conclusions may be extended over
the Verde region and applied to the cavate lodges there. The relation of
these lodges to the village ruins and the character of the sites
occupied by them support the conclusion that they were farming outlooks,
probably occupied only during the farming season, according to the
methods followed by many of the Pueblos today, and that the defensive
motive had little or no influence on the selection of the site or the
character of the structures. The bowlder-marked sites and the small
single-room remains illustrate other phases of the same horticultural
methods, methods somewhat resembling the “intensive culture,” of modern
agriculture, but requiring further a close supervision or watching of
the crop during the period of ripening. As the area of tillable land in
the pueblo region, especially in its western part, is limited, these
requirements have developed a class of temporary structures, occupied
only during the farming season. In Tusayan, where the most primitive
architecture of the pueblo type is found, these structures are generally
of brush; in Canyon de Chelly they are cliff-dwellings; on the Rio Verde
they are cavate lodges, bowlder-marked sites and single house remains;
but at Zuñi they have reached their highest development in the three
summer villages of Ojo Caliente, Nutria, and Pescado.

  [Illustration: Plate L.

Since the American occupancy of the country and the consequent removal
of the hostile pressure which has kept the Pueblo tribes in check,
development has been rapid and now threatens a speedy extinction of
pueblo life. The old Laguna has been abandoned, Acoma is being
depopulated, the summer pueblos of Zuñi are now occupied all the year
round by half a dozen or more families, and even in Tusayan, the most
conservative of all the pueblo groups, the abandonment of the home
village and location in more convenient single houses has commenced. It
is the old process over again, but with the difference that formerly the
cycle was completed by the reaggregation of the various families, and
little bands into larger groups under hostile pressure from wilder
tribes, but now that pressure has been permanently removed, and in a few
years, or at most in a few generations, the old pueblo life will be
known only by its records.


ACOMA, Abandonment of                                    261
 -- Kivas in                                             257
 -- Selection of site of                                 215
ADOBE, Absence of, in Verde ruins                   187, 257
 -- construction of modern introduction                  238
 -- Limit to use of                                      238
AGE of cavate lodges                                     225
 -- -- Verde ruins                                  209, 257
AGRICULTURE, Ancient, in Verde valley                    247
ANAWITA, Tusayan tradition by                            188
APACHE, Effect of, on pueblo tribes                      260
ARCHITECTURE of ancient Verde pueblos                    185
BANDELIER, A. F., on ancient pueblo population           259
BASKETRY in cavate lodges                                228
BEAVER CREEK cliff ruin, Description of                  186
BONE implements in cavate lodges                    223, 224
BOWLDERS, ancient pueblo walls of         206, 217, 246, 249
 -- on line of ancient irrigating ditch                  244
 -- Sites marked by, in Verde valley           194, 235, 261
BRUSH, Structures of, discussed                          237
CAMP VERDE established and abandoned                     185
CANYON DE CHELLY, Cliff dwellings in                     254
 -- Kivas in                                             257
CASA GRANDE, Character of structure of                   238
 -- and San Juan ruins compared                          186
CAVATE LODGES, Ancient, how excavated                    251
 -- described and figured                                217
 -- in Verde valley                                 187, 192
 -- on Fossil creek                                      203
 -- Reason for abundance of                              260
CAVE DWELLINGS in Arizona                                224
CHACO ruins and Casa Grande compared                     186
CHIMNEYS, Absence of, in Verde cavate lodges   187, 256, 257
CHINKING of walls                                        248
CI-PA, an ancient Hopi stopping place                    189
CISTS. _See_ Storage cist; Water pocket
CLIFF DWELLINGS, Absence of, in Verde valley        187, 260
 -- in Arizona                                           224
 -- why constructed                                      260
 -- _See_ Cavate lodge.
CORN found in cavate lodges                              225
COURTS in ancient Verde ruins                            196
 -- _See_ Plaza.
CUSHING, F. H., on depressed structures in Arizona       245
DEBRIS, Height of ancient villages judged by        198, 240
DEFENSIVE motive of cliff dwellings                      260
 -- sites of ancient Verde villages            193, 206, 208,
                                               214, 215, 216
DE FOREST, J. W., on Connecticut indian spades           183
DILLER, J. S., on formation in which
    cavate lodges occur                                  219
DIMENSIONS of ancient pueblos                            211
DOORWAYS in cavate lodges                           222, 251
ESPEJO, A. DE, Expedition of, in 1583                    185
FARFAN, M, Visit of, to Arizona in 1598                  185
FIBER Bundles of, in cavate lodges                       228
FIREHOLES in ancient Arizona structures             232, 246
FIREPLACE in cavate lodges                          224, 256
FLAGSTAFF, Ariz., Cavate lodges near                217, 223
FLOORS plastered for leveling                            251
FRESHET, Effect of, on ancient Verde irrigating ditch    240
 -- in Rio Verde                                         191
GARDENS of cavate village                                224
GENTES, Aggregation, of, in villages                     195
GRANARIES, Pima, how formed                              246
GROUND-PLAN, how affected by long occupancy              212
HAVASUPAI cavate lodges                             224, 225
HAWIKUH, Mission established at                          229
HEIGHT of ancient Verde pueblos                          209
HOFFMAN, W. J., on Beaver creek cliff ruin               186
 -- on Montezuma well                                    186
HOLMES, W. H., on San Juan cavate lodges                 222
HOMOLOBI, an ancient Hopi village                        189
HOPI, Canyon de Chelly ruins attributed to the           257
HORN implements in cavate lodges                         224
HORTICULTURE, Ancient, on Rio Verde            187, 194, 238
IMPLEMENTS in cavate lodges                         224, 228
IRRIGATION ditches in Verde valley              194, 237-238
JACAL structures                                         237
KIVA architecture, Evolution of                          257
 -- circular, Absence of, in Verde cavate lodges         257
 -- in Verde ruins                                       196
LAGUNA, Abandonment of                                   261
LEROUX, ----, Ruins in Verde valley mentioned by         186
MANCOS RIVER, Cavate lodges on                           222
MARRIAGE custom of the pueblos                           197
MASONRY of ancient Verde villages              201, 203, 204,
                                               212, 248, 259
 -- -- cavate lodges                                     225
MEARNS, E. A., on Verde ruins                            186
METATES in cavate lodges                                 223
MIGRATION, Pueblo, how effected                          258
 -- tradition of the Hopi                                188
MILITARY art of ancient pueblos                          215
MINDELEFF, V., on notched doorways                       254
 -- on pueblo kivas                                      257
MONTEZUMA WELL described                                 186
MORTAR, Excessive use of, in ancient villages            249
NAVAJO, Effect of, on pueblo tribes                      260
 -- Hogan construction by the                            237
NELSON, E. W., on certain ruined pueblo features         202
NUTRIA, a Zuñi summer village                       206, 261
OJO CALIENTE, a Zuñi summer village                 206, 261
OÑATE, JUAN DE, Expeditions of                           185
ORAIBI, Architectural character of                       195
OVEN in cavate lodge                                     226
PALAT-KWABI, a Hopi stopping place                       189
PÁLÜ-LÜ-KOÑA, the Hopi serpent deity                     188
PASSAGEWAY in cavate lodge                     222, 225, 227,
                                               231, 232, 235
 -- Absence of, in Verde ruins                           199
PAT-KI-NYÛMÛ, the Hopi water-house phratry               188
PESCADO, a Zuñi summer village                      206, 261
PIMA, Granaries of the                                   246
PISÉ construction in Arizona                             238
PLASTERING in Verde cavate lodges              222, 225, 251
PLAZA in cavate village                                  223
 -- _See_ Court.
POPULATION of ancient cavate lodges                      251
 -- -- pueblos                                 203, 211, 259
POTSHERDS around cavate lodges                           224
 -- in cavate lodges                                     228
 -- in Verde ruins                                  213, 217
 -- on bowlder-marked sites                              235
 -- Cavate fireplace lined with                          256
POWELL, J. W. on Arizona cavate lodges                   223
 -- Santa Clara cavate lodges                            224
PRESCOTT, Arizona, Mines discovered near                 185
 -- Visit of Espejo to vicinity of                       185
QUESADA, A. DE, Visit of, to Arizona                     185
RAINFALL in Verde valley                                 245
RESERVOIR, ancient, Traces of                       236, 237
 --, Depression like, in Verde valley                    245
ROOF timbers, Source of, in Verde valley                 196
ROOMS, Arrangement of, in cavate lodges        220, 221, 229
 -- Detached, in Verde ruins                             198
 -- Distribution of, in ancient villages            197, 210
 -- Size of, in ancient villages                    198, 210
RUINS, Extent of, in the southwest                       259
 -- of Verde valley                                      185
SANDAL in cavate lodges                                  228
SAN FRANCISCO, early name of Rio Verde                   186
 -- MOUNTAIN, Cavate lodges near               217, 223, 225
SAN JUAN RIVER, Cavate lodges on                         222
SANTA CLARA, Cavate lodges near                     217, 224
 -- Ancient pueblos of                                   225
SITE of cavate lodges                                    219
 -- Selection of, of ancient villages                    215
SITTING STONES in ancient Arizona structures             246
SPRINGERVILLE, N. Mex., Ruins at                         202
STEPHEN, A. M., Tusayan tradition obtained by            188
STEPPING-STONES to cavate lodge                          253
STEVENSON, JAS., Cavate lodges visited by                223
STONE implements in cavate lodges                   223, 224
STORAGE cist described and figured                  221, 250
 -- room in cavate lodge                            228, 229
SUMMER village, Ruins of, on Rio Verde                   206
TAGS, Architectural character of                         195
 -- Defensive character of                               215
TEXTILE fabrics in cavate lodges                         228
THRASHING FLOORS in Verde valley                         246
TRADITION of Hopi water-people                           188
TSEGI. _See_ Canyon de Chelly.
TUSAYAN, Primitive architecture of                       261
 -- Kivas in                                             257
 -- Notched doorways in                             254, 255
 -- Occupancy of Verde valley by the                     188
 -- Water gentes of the                                  188
 -- _See_ Hopi.
VARGAS, DIEGO DE, New Mexico reconquered by              231
VERDE RIVER, Former name of                              186
 -- VALLEY, Aboriginal remains in                    185-261
VILLAGES, Ancient, in Verde valley                       192
WALAPAI and Havasupai affinity                           224
 -- Effect of, on pueblo tribes                          260
 -- tradition of cavate lodges                           225
WALLS, Ancient pueblo, how built                         248
 -- Carved, in ancient ruins                             202
 -- Defensive, in Verde ruins                       202, 203
 -- Massive, in Verde ruin                               199
WATER PEOPLE of Tusayan probably from south              188
 -- pockets in cavate lodge                         228, 235
 -- storage in ancient Verde pueblo                      199
WINDOW-OPENINGS of cavate lodges                    222, 251
WOMEN, House building by                                 197
WOOD, Implements of, in cavate lodges                    224
ZUÑI, Adoption of site of                           215, 259
 -- Defensive character of                               215
 -- Kivas in                                             257
 -- Population of                                        195

       *       *       *       *       *

Errors and Notes

The article on Pueblo Architecture from the 8th annual report is
available from LibraryBlog as e-text #19856.

Limestone creek, Clear creek, Fossil creek etc.
  _capitalization as in the original_
The spelling “bowlder” is standard for Bureau of Ethnology articles.

we dwelt in the Pa-lát-kwa-bĭ
We traveled northward from Palat-kwabi
  _inconsistent spelling in original_
somewhat different
  _text reads “diferent”_
about ten rooms arranged in +L+ shape
  _text unchanged_
the artificial improvement of the site
  _text reads “artifical”_
A group occurring at the point marked _E_ on the map
  _text reads “occuring”_
plate XLV shows the character of stone employed
  _text reads “LXV”_
rude in character. As elsewhere stated
  _text has comma for period_

*** End of this LibraryBlog Digital Book "Aboriginal Remains in Verde Valley, Arizona - Thirteenth Annual Report of the Bureau of Ethnology to the - Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution, 1891-92, - Government Printing Office, Washington, 1896, pages 179-262" ***

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