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Title: The Cliff Ruins of Canyon de Chelly, Arizona - Sixteenth Annual Report of the Bureau of Ethnology to the Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution, 1894-95, Government Printing Office, Washington, 1897, pages 73-198
Author: Mindeleff, Cosmos, 1863-
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "The Cliff Ruins of Canyon de Chelly, Arizona - Sixteenth Annual Report of the Bureau of Ethnology to the Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution, 1894-95, Government Printing Office, Washington, 1897, pages 73-198" ***

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images generously made available by the Bibliothèque nationale de France
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      This document is taken from the _Sixteenth Annual Report of
      the Bureau of Ethnology to the Secretary of the Smithsonian
      Institution_, 1894-95, Government Printing Office,
      Washington, 1897, pages 73-198. Images of the original pages
      are available through the Bibliothèque nationale de France
      (BnF/Gallica) (http://gallica.bnf.fr/).

Transcriber's Note:

      Typographical errors are listed at the end of the text.
      Brackets within quotations are in the original.




  Introduction                                                    79
    History and literature                                        79
    Geography                                                     82
  Classification and descriptions                                 89
    Ruins of the pueblo region                                    89
      I--Old villages on open sites                               93
     II--Home villages on bottom lands                            94
    III--Home villages located for defense                       111
     IV--Cliff outlooks or farming shelters                      142
  Details                                                        153
    Sites                                                        153
    Masonry                                                      159
    Openings                                                     164
    Roofs, floors, and timber work                               165
    Storage and burial cists (Navaho)                            166
    Defensive and constructive expedients                        170
    Kivas or sacred chambers                                     174
    Chimney-like structures                                      182
    Traditions                                                   190
  Conclusions                                                    191


Plate                                                           Page
   XLI. Map of the ancient pueblo region,
            showing location of Canyon de Chelly                  79
  XLII. Map of Canyon de Chelly and its branches                  85
 XLIII. Detailed map of part of Canyon de Chelly,
            showing areas of cultivable land                      93
  XLIV. Section of old walls, Canyon de Chelly                    95
   XLV. General view of ruin on bottom land,
            Canyon del Muerto                                     97
  XLVI. Village ruin in Canyon de Chelly                         103
 XLVII. Casa Blanca ruin, Canyon de Chelly                       105
XLVIII. Mummy cave, central and eastern part                     112
  XLIX. Eastern cove of Mummy cave                               115
     L. Reservoir in ruin No. 10                                 127
    LI. Small village, ruin No. 16, Canyon de Chelly             129
   LII. Walls resting on refuse in ruin No. 16                   131
  LIII. Cliff outlook in lower Canyon de Chelly                  149
   LIV. Cliff ruin No. 14                                        151
    LV. Site marked by pictographs                               153
   LVI. Site difficult of approach                               159
  LVII. Masonry in Canyon de Chelly                              161
 LVIII. Chinked walls in Canyon de Chelly                        163
   LIX. A partly plastered wall                                  165
    LX. Plastered wall in Canyon de Chelly                       167
   LXI. Storage cist in Canyon de Chelly                         169
  LXII. Navaho burial cists                                      171
 LXIII. Kivas in ruin No. 10,
            showing second-story walls                           173

Figure                                                          Page
    1. Ground plan of an old ruin in Canyon del Muerto            95
    2. Ground plan of a ruin on bottom land
           in Canyon del Muerto                                   96
    3. Ground plan of small ruin in Canyon de Chelly              96
    4. Granary in the rocks, connected with a ruin                97
    5. Ground plan of a ruin in a cave                            98
    6. Ground plan of Pakashi-izini ruin, Canyon del Muerto       99
    7. Ground plan of a ruin in Canyon del Muerto                100
    8. Ground plan of a ruin in Tseonitsosi canyon               100
    9. Ground plan of a much obliterated ruin                    101
   10. Ground plan of a ruin in Canyon de Chelly                 101
   11. Ground plan of a village ruin                             103
   12. Ground plan of kivas in Canyon de Chelly                  103
   13. Ground plan of a small ruin on bottom land                104
   14. Ground plan of the upper part of Casa Blanca ruin         105
   15. Ground plan of the lower part of Casa Blanca ruin         106
   16. Ground plan of Mummy Cave ruin                            113
   17. Ruin in a rock cove                                       117
   18. Ground plan of a ruin in a rock cove                      117
   19. Ground plan of a ruin on a ledge                          118
   20. Ground plan of ruin No. 31, Canyon de Chelly              119
   21. Ground plan of ruin No. 32, Canyon de Chelly              120
   22. Section of a kiva wall                                    122
   23. Ruin No. 10 on a ledge in a cove                          123
   24. Ground plan of ruin No. 10                                124
   25. Oven-like structure in ruin No. 10                        127
   26. Plan of oven-like structure                               128
   27. Ground plan of a small village, ruin No. 16               129
   28. Ruins on a large rock                                     130
   29. Ground plan of ruins No. 49                               131
   30. Ruins on an almost inaccessible site                      133
   31. Ground plan of a large ruin in Canyon del Muerto          134
   32. Ground plan of a small ruin in Canyon del Muerto          135
   33. Ground plan of a small ruin                               135
   34. Plan of a ruin of three rooms                             136
   35. Ground plan of a small ruin, with two kivas               136
   36. Ground plan of a small ruin, No. 44                       137
   37. Ground plan of a ruin on a rocky site                     137
   38. Rock with cups and petroglyphs                            138
   39. Ground plan of a ruin in Canyon de Chelly                 139
   40. Site showing recent fall of rock                          140
   41. Ruin No. 69 in a branch canyon                            140
   42. Ground plan of a small ruin in Canyon del Muerto          140
   43. Ground plan of a small ruin                               141
   44. Plan of a ruin with curved inclosing wall                 141
   45. Ground plan of ruin No. 34                                142
   46. Ground plan of cliff outlook No. 35                       143
   47. Plan of a cliff outlook                                   143
   48. Plan of cliff ruin No. 46                                 144
   49. Plan of cliff room with partitions                        145
   50. Plan of a large cliff outlook in Canyon del Muerto        145
   51. Plan of a cluster of rooms in Canyon del Muerto           146
   52. White House ruin in Tseonitsosi canyon                    146
   53. Ground plan of a ruin in Tseonitsosi canyon               147
   54. Plan of rooms against a convex cliff                      147
   55. Small ruin with curved wall                               147
   56. Ground plan of a cliff outlook                            148
   57. Plan of cliff outlook No. 14, in Canyon de Chelly         148
   58. Ground plan of outlooks in a cleft                        149
   59. Plan of a single-room outlook                             149
   60. Three-room outlook in Canyon del Muerto                   150
   61. Plan of a two-room outlook                                150
   62. Plan of outlook and burial cists, No. 64                  150
   63. Plan of rectangular room, No. 45                          151
   64. Rectangular single room                                   151
   65. Single-room remains                                       152
   66. Site apparently very difficult of access                  158
   67. Notched doorway in Canyon de Chelly                       164
   68. Cist composed of upright slabs                            169
   69. Retaining walls in Canyon de Chelly                       172
   70. Part of a kiva in ruin No. 31                             175
   71. Plan of part of a kiva in ruin No. 10                     176
   72. Kiva decoration in white                                  177
   73. Pictograph in white                                       178
   74. Markings on cliff wall, ruin No. 37                       178
   75. Decorative band in kiva in Mummy Cave ruin                179
   76. Design employed in decorative band                        180
   77. Pictographs in Canyon de Chelly                           181
   78. Plan of chimney-like structure in ruin No. 15             182
   79. Section of chimney-like structure in ruin No. 15          183
   80. Plan of chimney-like structure in ruin No. 16             184
   81. Section of chimney-like structure in ruin No. 16          185
   82. Plan of the principal kiva in Mummy Cave ruin             186
   83. Chimney-like structure in Mummy Cave ruin                 187

  [Illustration: Plate XLI (Map)
  Ancient Pueblo Region
  Showing Location of Canyon De Chelly]


By Cosmos Mindeleff



Although Canyon de Chelly is one of the best cliff-ruin regions of the
United States, it is not easily accessible and is practically unknown.
At the time of the conquest of this country by the "Army of the West" in
1846, and of the rush to California in 1849, vague rumors were current
of wonderful "cities" built in the cliffs, but the position of the
canyon in the heart of the Navaho country apparently prevented
exploration. In 1849 it was found necessary to make a demonstration
against these Indians, and an expedition was sent out under the command
of Colonel Washington, then governor of New Mexico. A detachment of
troops set out from Santa Fé, and was accompanied by Lieutenant
(afterward General) J. H. Simpson, of the topographical engineers, to
whose indefatigable zeal for investigation and carefulness of
observation much credit is due. He was much interested in the archeology
of the country passed over and his descriptions are remarkable for their
freedom from the exaggerations and erroneous observations which
characterize many of the publications of that period. His journal was
published by Congress the next year[1] and was also printed privately.

    [Footnote 1: Thirty-first Congress, first session, Senate Ex. Doc.
    No. 64, Washington, 1850.]

The expedition camped in the Chin Lee valley outside of Canyon de
Chelly, and Lieutenant Simpson made a side trip into the canyon itself.
He mentions ruins noticed by him at 4½, 5, and 7 miles from the mouth;
the latter, the ruin subsequently known as Casa Blanca, he describes at
some length. He also gives an illustration drawn by R. H. Kern, which is
very bad, and pictures some pottery fragments found near or in the ruin.
The name De Chelly was apparently used before this time. Simpson
obtained its orthography from Vigil, secretary of the province (of New
Mexico), who told him it was of Indian origin and was pronounced
_chay-e_. Possibly it was derived from the Navaho name of the place,

Simpson's description, although very brief, formed the basis of all the
succeeding accounts for the next thirty years. The Pacific railroad
surveys, which added so much to our knowledge of the Southwest, did not
touch this field. In 1860 the Abbé Domenech published his "Deserts of
North America," which contains a reference to Casa Blanca ruin, but his
knowledge was apparently derived wholly from Simpson. None of the
assistants of the Hayden Survey actually penetrated the canyon, but one
of them, W. H. Jackson, examined and described some ruins on the Rio de
Chelly, in the lower Chin Lee valley. But in an article in Scribner's
Magazine for December, 1878, Emma C. Hardacre published a number of
descriptions and illustrations derived from the Hayden corps, among
others figures one entitled "Ruins in Cañon de Chelly," from a drawing
by Thomas Moran. The ruin can not be identified from the drawing.

This article is worth more than a passing notice, as it not only
illustrates the extent of knowledge of the ruins at that time (1878),
but probably had much to do with disseminating and making current
erroneous inferences which survive to this day. In an introductory
paragraph the author says:

  Of late, blown over the plains, come stories of strange newly
  discovered cities of the far south-west; picturesque piles of
  masonry, of an age unknown to tradition. These ruins mark an era
  among antiquarians. The mysterious mound-builders fade into
  comparative insignificance before the grander and more ancient
  cliff-dwellers, whose castles lift their towers amid the sands of
  Arizona and crown the terraced slopes of the Rio Mancos and the

Of the Chaco ruins it is said:

  In size and grandeur of conception, they equal any of the present
  buildings of the United States, if we except the Capitol at
  Washington, and may without discredit be compared to the Pantheon
  and the Colosseum of the Old World.

In the same year Mr J. H. Beadle gave an account[2] of a visit he made
to the canyon. He entered it over the Bat trail, near the junction of
Monument canyon, and saw several ruins in the upper part. His
descriptions are hardly more than a mention. Much archeologic data were
secured by the assistants of the Wheeler Survey, but it does not appear
that any of them, except the photographer, visited Canyon de Chelly. In
the final reports of the Survey there is an illustration of the ruin
visited by Lieutenant Simpson about thirty years before.[3] The
illustration is a beautiful heliotype from a fine photograph made by
T. H. O'Sullivan, but one serious defect renders it useless; through
some blunder of the photographer or the engraver, the picture is
reversed, the right and left sides being interchanged, so that to see it
properly it must be looked at in a mirror. The illustration is
accompanied by a short text, apparently prepared by Prof. F. W. Putnam,
who edited the volume. The account by Simpson is quoted and some
additional data are given, derived from notes accompanying the
photograph. The ruin is said to have "now received the name of the Casa
Blanca, or White House," but the derivation of the name is not stated.

    [Footnote 2: Western Wilds, and the Men who Redeem Them:
    Cincinnati, Philadelphia, Chicago, Memphis, 1878.]

    [Footnote 3: U.S. Geog. Surveys West of the 100th Meridian,
    Lieutenant George M. Wheeler in charge; reports, vol. VII,
    Archæology; Washington, 1879, pp. 372-373, pl. xx.]

In 1882 Bancroft could find no better or fuller description than
Simpson's, which he uses fully, and reproduces also Simpson's (Kern's)
illustration. In the same year investigation by the assistants of the
Bureau of Ethnology was commenced. Colonel James Stevenson and a party
visited the canyon, and a considerable amount of data was obtained. In
all, 46 ruins were visited, 17 of which were in Del Muerto; and
sketches, ground plans, and photographs were obtained. The report of the
Bureau for that year contains an account of this expedition, including a
short description of a large ruin in Del Muerto, subsequently known as
Mummy Cave. A brief account of the trip was also published elsewhere.[4]
The next year a map of the canyon was made by the writer and many new
ruins were discovered, making the total number in the canyon and its
branches about 140. Since 1883 two short visits have been made to the
place, the last late in 1893, and on each trip additional material was
obtained. In 1890 Mr F. T. Bickford[5] published an account of a visit
to the canyon, illustrated with a series of woodcuts made from the
photographs of the Bureau. The illustrations are excellent and the text
is pleasantly written, but the descriptions of ruins are too general to
be of much value to the student.

    [Footnote 4: Bull. Am. Geog. Soc., 1886, No. 4; Ancient
    Habitations of the Southwest, by James Stevenson.]

    [Footnote 5: Century Magazine, October, 1890, vol. XL, No. 6, p.
    806 et seq.]

In recent years several publications have appeared which, while not
bearing directly on the De Chelly ruins, are of great interest, as they
treat of analogous remains--the cliff ruins of the Mancos canyon and the
Mesa Verde. These ruins were discovered in 1874 by W. H. Jackson and
were visited and described in 1875 by W. H. Holmes,[6] both of the
Hayden Survey. This region was roamed over by bands of renegade Ute and
Navaho, who were constantly making trouble, and for fifteen years was
apparently not visited by whites. Recent exploration appears to have
been inaugurated by Mr F. H. Chapin, who spent two summers in the Mesa
Verde country. Subsequently he published the results of some of his
observations in a handsome little volume.[7] In 1891 Dr W. R. Birdsall
made a flying trip to this region and published an account[8] of the
ruins he saw the same year. At the time of this visit a more elaborate
exploration was being carried on by the late G. Nordenskiöld, who made
some excavations and obtained much valuable data which formed the basis
of a book published in 1893.[9] This is the most important treatise on
the cliff ruins that has ever been published, and the illustrations can
only be characterized as magnificent. All of these works, and especially
the last named, are of great value to the student of the cliff ruins
wherever located, or of pueblo architecture.

    [Footnote 6: U.S. Geol. Survey, F. V. Hayden in charge; 10th Ann.
    Rept. (for 1876), Washington, 1878.]

    [Footnote 7: The Land of the Cliff Dwellers, by Frederick H.
    Chapin; Boston, 1892.]

    [Footnote 8: Bull. Am. Geog. Soc., vol. XXIII, No. 4, 1891; The
    Cliff Dwellings of the Cañons of the Mesa Verde.]

    [Footnote 9: The Cliff Dwellers of the Mesa Verde, by
    G. Nordenskiöld; Stockholm and Chicago, 1894.]


The ancient pueblo culture was so intimately connected with and
dependent on the character of the country where its remains are found
that some idea of this country is necessary to understand it. The limits
of the region are closely coincident with the boundaries of the plateau
country except on the south, so much so that a map of the latter,[10]
slightly extended around its margin, will serve to show the former. The
area of the ancient pueblo region may be 150,000 square miles; that of
the plateau country, approximately, 130,000.

    [Footnote 10: See Major C. E. Dutton's map of the plateau country
    in 6th Ann. Rept. U.S. Geol. Survey, pl. xi. His report on "Mount
    Taylor and the Zuñi plateau," of which this map is a part,
    presents a vivid picture of the plateau country, and his
    descriptions are so clear and expressive that any attempt to
    better them must result in failure. The statement of the geologic
    and topographic features which is incorporated herein is derived
    directly from Major Dutton's description, much of it being taken

The plateau country is not a smooth and level region, as its name might
imply; it is extremely rugged, and the topographic obstacles to travel
are greater than in many wild mountain regions. It is a country of
cliffs and canyons, often of considerable magnitude and forming a bar to
extended progress in any direction. The surface is generally smooth or
slightly undulating and apparently level, but it is composed of a series
of platforms or mesas, which are seldom of great extent and generally
terminate at the brink of a wall, often of huge dimensions. There are
mesas everywhere; it is the mesa country.

Although the strata appear to be horizontal, they are slightly tilted.
The inclination, although slight, is remarkably persistent, and the
thickness of the strata remains almost constant. The beds, therefore,
extend from very high altitudes to very low ones, and often the
formation which is exposed to view at the summit of an incline is lost
to view after a few miles, being covered by some later formation, which
in turn is covered by a still later one. Each formation thus appears as
a terrace, bounded on one side by a descending cliff carved out of the
edges of its own strata and on the other by an ascending cliff carved
out of the strata which overlie it. This is the more common form,
although isolated mesas, bits of tableland completely engirdled by
cliffs, are but little less common.

The courses of the margins of the mesas are not regular. The cliffs
sometimes maintain an average trend through great distances, but in
detail their courses are extremely crooked; they wind in and out,
forming alternate alcoves and promontories in the wall, and frequently
they are cut through by valleys, which may be either narrow canyons or
interspaces 10 or even 20 miles wide.

The whole region has been subjected to many displacements, both flexures
of the monoclinal type and faults. Some of these flexures attain a
length of over 80 miles and a displacement of 3,000 feet, and the faults
reach even a greater magnitude. There is also an abundance of volcanic
rocks and extinct volcanoes, and while the principal eruptions have
occurred about the borders of the region, extending but slightly into
it, traces of lesser disturbances can be found throughout the country.
It has been said that if a geologist should actually make the circuit of
the plateau country, he could so conduct his route that for
three-fourths of the time he would be treading upon volcanic materials
and could pitch his camp upon them every night. The oldest eruptions do
not go back of Tertiary time, while some are so recent as probably to
come within the historic period--within three or four centuries.

The strata of the plateau country are remarkable for their homogeneity,
when considered with reference to their horizontal extensions; hardly
less so for their diversity when considered in their vertical relation.
Although the groups differ radically from each other, still each
preserves its characteristics with singularly slight degrees of
variation from place to place. Hence we have a certain amount of
similarity and monotony in the landscape which is aided rather than
diminished by the vegetation; for the vegetation, like the human
occupants of this country, has come under its overpowering influence.
The characteristic landscape consists of a wide expanse of featureless
plains, bounded by far-off cliffs in gorgeous colors; in the foreground
a soil of bright yellow or ashy gray; over all the most brilliant
sunlight, while the distant features are softened by a blue haze.

The most conspicuous formation of the whole region is a massive
bright-red sandstone out of which have been carved "the most striking
and typical features of those marvelous plateau landscapes which will be
subjects of wonder and delight to all coming generations of men. The
most superb canyons of the neighboring region, the Canyon de Chelly and
the Del Muerto, the lofty pinnacles and towers of the San Juan country,
the finest walls in the great upper chasms of the Colorado, are the
vertical edges of this red sandstone."

Of the climate of the plateau country it has been said that in the large
valleys it is "temperate in winter and insufferable in summer; higher up
the summers are temperate and the winters barely sufferable." It is as
though there were two distinct regions covering the same area, for there
are marked differences throughout, except in topographic configuration,
between the lowlands and the uplands or high plateaus. The lowlands
present an appearance which is barren and desolate in the extreme,
although the soil is fertile and under irrigation yields good crops.
Vegetation is limited to a scanty growth of grass during a small part of
the year, with small areas here and there scantily covered by the
prickly greasewood and at intervals by clumps of sagebrush; but even
these prefer a higher level, and develop better on the neighboring mesas
than in the valleys proper. The arborescent growth consists of sparsely
distributed cottonwoods and willows, closely confined to the river
bottoms. On intermediate higher levels junipers and cedars appear, often
standing so closely together as to seriously impede travel, but they are
confined to the tops of mesas and other high ground, the valleys being
generally clear or covered with sagebrush. Still higher up yellow pines
become abundant and in places spread out into magnificent forests, while
in some mountain regions scrub oak, quaking asp, and even spruce trees
are abundant.

In the mountain regions there is often a reasonable amount of moisture,
and some crops, potatoes for example, are grown there without
irrigation; but the season is short. In the Tunicha mountains the Navaho
raise corn at an altitude of nearly 8,000 feet, but they often lose the
crop from drought or from frost. On the intermediate levels and in the
lowlands cultivation by modern methods is practically impossible without
irrigation, except in a few favored localities, where a crop can be
obtained perhaps two years or three years in five. But with a minute
knowledge of the climatic conditions, and with methods adapted to meet
these conditions, scanty crops can be and are raised by the Indians
without irrigation throughout the whole region; but everywhere that
water can be applied the product of the soil is increased many fold.

Near the center of the plateau country, in the northeastern corner of
Arizona, a range of mountains crosses diagonally from northwest to
southeast, extending into New Mexico. In the north an irregular cluster
of considerable size, separated from the remainder of the range, is
called the Carrizo; and the range proper has no less than three names
applied to different parts of it. The northern end is known as the
Lukachukai, the central part as the Tunicha, and the southern part as
the Chuska or Choiskai mountains, all Navaho names. The two former
clusters attain an altitude of 9,500 feet; the Tunicha and the Chuska
are about 9,000 feet high, the latter having a flat top of considerable

On the east these mountains break down rather abruptly into the broad
valley of the Chaco river, or the Chaco wash, as it is more commonly
designated; on the west they break down gradually, through a series of
slopes and mesas, into the Chin Lee valley. Canyon de Chelly has been
cut in the western slope by a series of small streams, which, rising
near the crest of the mountain, combine near its head and flow in a
general westerly direction. The mouth of the canyon is on the eastern
border of the Chin Lee valley. It is 60 miles south of the Utah boundary
and 25 miles west of that of New Mexico; hence it is 60 miles east and a
little north from the old province of Tusayan, the modern Moki, and 85
miles northwest from the old province of Cibola, the modern Zuñi. Its
position is almost in the heart of the ancient pueblo region; the Chaco
ruins lie about 80 miles east, and the ruins of the San Juan from 60 to
80 miles north and northeast.

  [Illustration: Plate XLII
  Map of Canyon De Chelly and Its Branches
  Surveyed by Cosmos Mindeleff]

The geographic position of Canyon de Chelly has had an important effect
on its history, forming as it does an available resting place in any
migratory movement either on the north and south line or east and west.
The Tunicha mountains are a serious obstacle to north and south movement
at the present day, but less so than the arid valleys which border them.
Except at one place, and that place is difficult, it is almost
impossible to cross the mountains with a wheeled vehicle, but there are
innumerable trails running in all directions, and these trails are in
constant use by the Navaho, except in the depths of winter. The mountain
route is preferable, however, to the valley roads, where the traveler
for several days is without wood, with very little water and forage, and
his movements are impeded by deep sand.

To the traveler on foot, or even on horseback, Canyon de Chelly is
easily accessible from almost any direction. Good trails run northward
to the San Juan and northeastward over the Tunicha mountains to the
upper part of that river; Fort Defiance is but half a day's journey to
the southeast; Tusayan and Zuñi are but three days distant to the
traveler on foot; the Navaho often ride the distance in a day or a day
and a half. The canyon is accessible to wagons, however, only at its

The main canyon, shown on the map (plate XLII) as Canyon de Chelly and
known to the Navaho as Tsé-gi, is about 20 miles long. It heads near
Washington pass, within a few miles of the crest of the mountain, and
extends almost due west to the Chin Lee valley. The country descends by
a regular slope from an altitude of about 7,500 feet at the foot of the
main crest to about 5,200 feet in the Chin Lee valley, 25 miles west,
and is so much cut up locally by ravines and washes that it is
impassable to wagons, but it preserves throughout its mesa-like

About 3 miles from its mouth De Chelly is joined by another canyon
almost as long, which, heading also in the Tunicha mountains, comes in
from the northeast. It is over 15 miles long, and is called on the map
Canyon del Muerto; the Navaho know it as Én-a-tsé-gi. About 13 miles
above the mouth of the main canyon a small branch comes in from the
southeast. It is about 10 miles long, and has been called Monument
canyon, on account of the number of upright natural pinnacles of rock in
it. In addition to those named there are innumerable small branches,
ranging in size from deep coves to real canyons a mile or two long.
Outside of De Chelly, and independent of it, there is a little canyon
about 4 miles long, called Tse-on-i-tso-si by the Navaho. At one point
near its head it approaches so near to De Chelly that but a few feet of
rock separate them.

On the western side of the mountains there are a number of small
perennial streams fed by springs on the upper slopes. Several of these
meet in the upper part of De Chelly, others in Del Muerto, and in the
upper parts of these canyons there is generally water. But, except at
the time of the autumn and winter rains and in the spring when the
mountain snows are melting, the streams are not powerful enough to carry
the water to the mouth of the canyon. The flow is absorbed by the deep
sand which forms the stream bed. Ordinarily it is difficult to procure
enough water to drink less than 8 or 10 miles from the mouth of De
Chelly, but occasionally the whole stream bed, at places over a quarter
of a mile wide, is occupied by a raging torrent impassable to man or
beast. Such ebullitions, however, seldom last more than a few hours.
Usually water can be obtained anywhere in the bottom by sinking a
shallow well in the sand, and it is by this method that the Navaho, the
present occupants of the canyon, obtain their supply.

The walls of the canyon are composed of brilliant red sandstone,
discolored everywhere by long streaks of black and gray coming from
above. At its mouth it is about 500 feet wide. Higher up the walls
sometimes approach to 300 feet of each other, elsewhere broadening out
to half a mile or more; but everywhere the wall line is tortuous and
crooked in the extreme, and, while the general direction of De Chelly is
east and west, the traveler on the trail which runs through it is as
often headed north or south. Del Muerto is even more tortuous than De
Chelly, and in places it is so narrow that one could almost throw a
stone across it.

At its mouth the walls of Canyon de Chelly are but 20 to 30 feet high,
descending vertically to a wide bed of loose white sand, and absolutely
free from talus or débris. Three miles above Del Muerto comes in, but
its mouth is so narrow it appears like an alcove and might easily be
overlooked. Here the walls are over 200 feet high, but the rise is so
gradual that it is impossible to appreciate its amount. At the point
where Monument canyon comes in, 13 miles above the mouth of De Chelly,
the walls reach a height of over 800 feet, about one-third of which
consists of talus.

The rise in the height of the walls is so gradual that when the canyon
is entered at its mouth the mental scale by which we estimate distances
and magnitudes is lost and the wildest conjectures result. We fail at
first to realize the stupendous scale on which the work was done, and
when we do finally realize it we swing to the opposite side and
exaggerate. At the junction of Monument canyon there is a beautiful rock
pinnacle or needle standing out clear from the cliff and not more than
165 feet on the ground. It has been named, in conjunction with a
somewhat similar pinnacle on the other side of the canyon, "The
Captains," and its height has been variously estimated at from 1,200 to
2,500 feet. It is less than 800. A curious illustration of the effects
of the scenery in connection with this pinnacle may not be amiss. The
author of Western Wilds (Cincinnati, 1878) thus describes it:

  But the most remarkable and unaccountable feature of the locality is
  where the canyons meet. There stands out 100 feet from the point,
  entirely isolated, a vast leaning rock tower at least 1,200 feet
  high and not over 200 thick at the base, as if it had originally
  been the sharp termination of the cliff and been broken off and
  shoved farther out. It almost seems that one must be mistaken; that
  it must have some connection with the cliff, until one goes around
  it and finds it 100 feet or more from the former. It leans at an
  angle from the perpendicular of at least 15 degrees; and lying down
  at the base on the under side, by the best sighting I could make, it
  seemed to me that the opposite upper edge was directly over me--that
  is to say, mechanically speaking, its center of gravity barely falls
  with the base, and a heave of only a yard or two more would cause it
  to topple over. (Page 257.)

The dimensions have already been given. The pinnacle is perfectly plumb.

The rock of which the canyon walls are formed is a massive sandstone in
which the lines of bedding are almost completely obliterated. It is
rather soft in texture, and has been carved by atmospheric erosion into
grotesque and sometimes beautiful forms. In places great blocks have
fallen off, leaving smooth vertical surfaces, extending sometimes from
the top nearly to the stream bed, 400 feet or more in height and as much
in breadth. In the lower parts of the canyons the walls, sometimes of
the character described, sometimes with the surfaces and angles smoothed
by the flying sand, are generally vertical and often overhang,
descending sheer to the canyon bottom without talus or intervening
slopes of débris. The talus, where there is any, is slight and consists
of massive sandstone of the same character as the walls, but much
rounded by atmospheric erosion. The enlarged map (plate XLIII) shows
something of this character.

Near its mouth the whole bottom of the canyon consists of an even
stretch of white sand extending from cliff to cliff. A little higher up
there are small areas of alluvium, or bottom land, in recesses and coves
in the walls and generally only a foot or two above the stream bed.
Still higher up these areas become more abundant and of greater extent,
forming regular benches or terraces, generally well raised above the
stream bed. At the Casa Blanca ruin, 7 miles up the canyon, the bench is
8 or 10 feet above the stream. Each little branch canyon and deep cove
in the cliffs is fronted by a more or less extended area of this
cultivable bottom land. Ten miles up the talus has become a prominent
feature. It consists of broken rock, sand, and soil, generally overlying
a slope of massive sandstone, such as has been described, and which
occasionally crops out on the surface. With the development of the talus
the area of bottom land dwindles, and the former encroaches more and
more until a little above the junction of Monument canyon the bottom
land is limited to narrow strips and small patches here and there.

These bottom lands are the cultivable areas of the canyon bottom, and
their occurrence and distribution have dictated the location of the
villages now in ruins. They are also the sites of all the Navaho
settlements in the canyon. The Navaho hogans are generally placed
directly on the bottoms; the ruins are always so located as to overlook
them. Only a very small proportion of the available land is utilized by
the Navaho, and not all of it was used by the old village builders. The
Navaho sites, as a whole, are far superior to the village sites.

The horticultural conditions here, while essentially the same as those
of the whole pueblo region, present some peculiar features. Except for a
few modern examples there are no traces of irrigating works, and the
Navaho work can not be regarded as a success. The village builders
probably did not require irrigation for the successful cultivation of
their crops, and under the ordinary Indian methods of planting and
cultivation a failure to harvest a good crop was probably rare. After
the Harvest season it is the practice of the Navaho to abandon the
canyon for the winter, driving their flocks and carrying the season's
produce to more open localities in the neighboring valleys. The canyon
is not a desirable place of residence in the winter to a people who live
in the saddle and have large flocks of sheep and goats, but there is no
evidence that the old inhabitants followed the Navaho practice.

During most of the year there is no water in the lower 10 miles of the
canyons, where most of the cultivable land is situated. The autumn rains
in the mountains, which occur late in July or early in August, sometimes
send down a little stream, which, however, generally lasts but a few
days and fails to reach the mouth of the canyon. Late in October, or
early in November, a small amount comes down and is fairly permanent
through the winter and spring. The stream bed is even more tortuous than
the canyon it occupies, often washing the cliffs on one side, then
passing directly across the bottom and returning again to the same side,
the stream bed being many times wider than the stream, which constantly
shifts its channel. In December it becomes very cold and so much of the
stream is in shade during a large part of the day that much of the water
becomes frozen and, as it were, held in place. In the warm parts of the
day, and in the sunshine, the ice is melted, the stream resumes its
flow, and so gradually pushes its way farther and farther down the
canyon. But some sections, less exposed to warmth than others, retain
their ice during the day. These points are flooded by the water from
above, which is again frozen during the night and again flooded the next
day, and so on. In a short time great fields of smooth ice are formed,
which render travel on horseback very difficult and even dangerous.
This, and the scant grazing afforded by the bottom lands in winter,
doubtless is the cause of the annual migration of the Navaho; but these
conditions would not materially affect a people living in the canyon who
did not possess or were but scantily supplied with horses and sheep. The
stream when it is flowing is seldom more than a foot deep, generally
only a few inches, except in times of flood, when it becomes a raging
torrent, carrying everything before it. Hence irrigation would be
impracticable, even if its principles were known, nor is it essential
here to successful horticulture.

One of the characteristic features of the canyons at the present day is
the immense number of peach trees within them. Wherever there is a
favorable site, in some sheltered cove or little branch canyon, there is
a clump of peach trees, in some instances perhaps as many as 1,000 in
one "orchard." When the peaches ripen, hundreds and even thousands of
Navaho flock to the place, coming from all over the reservation, like an
immense flock of vultures, and with disastrous results to the food
supply. A few months after it is difficult to procure even a handful of
dried fruit. The peach trees are, of course, modern. They were
introduced into this country originally by the Spanish monks, but in De
Chelly there are not more than two or three trees which are older than
the last Navaho war. At that time, it is said, the soldiers cut down
every peach tree they could find. But, aside from the peaches, De Chelly
was until recently the great agricultural center of the Navaho tribe,
and large quantities of corn, melons, pumpkins, beans, etc, were and are
raised there every year. Under modern conditions many other localities
now vie with it, and some surpass it in output of agricultural products,
but not many years ago De Chelly was regarded as the place par

It will be clear, therefore, that prior to very recent times De Chelly
would be selected by almost any tribe moving across the country, and,
barring a hostile prior occupancy, would be the most desirable place for
the pursuit of horticultural operations for many miles in any direction.
The vicinity of the Tunicha mountains, which could be reached in half a
day from any part of the canyons, and which must have abounded in game,
for even now some is found there, would be a material advantage. The
position of the canyon in the heart of the plateau country and of the
ancient pueblo region would make it a natural stopping place during any
migratory movement either north and south or east and west, and its
settlement was doubtless due to this favorable position and to the
natural advantages it offered. This settlement was effected probably not
by one band or tribe, nor at one time, but by many bands at many times.
Probably the first settlements were very old; certainly the last were
very recent.



No satisfactory general classification of the ruins of the ancient
pueblo region has yet been made; possibly because the material in hand
is not sufficiently abundant. There are thousands of ruins scattered
over the southwest, of many different types which merge more or less
into each other. In 1884 Mr A. F. Bandelier, whose knowledge of the
archeology of the southwest is very extensive, formulated a
classification, and in 1892, in his final report,[11] he announces that
he has nothing to change in it. The classification is as follows:

I. Large communal houses several stories high.

  (_a_) Composed of one or two, seldom three, extensive buildings,
  generally so disposed as to surround an interior court.

  (_b_) Polygonal pueblos.

  (_c_) Scattered pueblos, composed of a number of large many-storied
  houses, disposed in a more or less irregular manner; sometimes in
  irregular squares or on a line.

  (_d_) Artificial caves, resembling in number, size, and disposition
  of the cells the many-storied communal dwelling.

  (_e_) Many-storied dwellings, with artificial walls, erected inside
  of natural caves of great size.

II. Detached family dwellings, either isolated or in groups forming

    [Footnote 11: Arch. Inst. of America, 5th Ann. Rept., p. 55; and
    Arch. Inst. of America, Papers, American series, IV, p. 27.]

Many hundreds of ruins have been examined by Mr Bandelier, and doubtless
the classification above afforded a convenient working basis for the
region with which he is most familiar, the basin of the Rio Grande and
its tributaries. It does not apply very well to the western part of the
pueblo region.

The distinguishing characteristics of the first group (of five
classes)--houses several stories high--are as follows: Each building
consisted of an agglomeration of a great number of small cells, without
any larger halls of particularly striking dimensions. All the buildings,
except outhouses or additions, were at least two stories high, and the
lower story was entered only from the roof. The various stories receded
from the bottom to the top. The prevalence of the estufa (kiva)
generally, or often, circular in form.

Ruins of class II--detached family dwellings--consist sometimes of a
single room; more often of several rooms. The rooms are generally built
of stone, although examples constructed of mud and adobe are also found
in certain regions. The average size of the room is larger than in the
communal building, and there is a gradual increase in size of rooms from
north to south. There are front doorways and light and air holes are
larger than in the communal houses. Mr Bandolier suggests that the
detached family dwelling was the early type, and that only when enemies
began to threaten were the communal houses resorted to for purposes of

This classification is apparently based on external form alone, without
taking into account the numerous influences which modify or produce
form; and while no doubt it was sufficient for field use, it is not
likely to be permanently adopted; for there does not appear to be any
essential or radical difference between the various classes. Moreover,
there does not appear to be any place in the scheme for the cliff ruins
of the variety especially abundant in De Chelly and found in many other
localities, unless indeed such ruins come under class II--detached
family dwellings; yet this would imply precedence in time, and the ruins
themselves will not permit such an inference.

The essential uniformity of types which prevails over the immense area
covered by the ancient pueblo ruins is a noteworthy feature, and any
system of classification which does not take it into account must be
considered as only tentative. What elements should be considered and
what weight assigned to each in preparing a scheme of classification is
yet to be determined, but probably one of the most important elements is
the character of the site occupied, with reference to its convenience
and defensibility. There are great differences in kind between the great
valley pueblos, located without reference to defense and depending for
security on their size and the number of their population, of which Zuñi
and Taos are examples, and the villages which are located on high mesas
and projecting tongues of rock; in other words, on defensive sites where
reliance for security was placed on the character of the site occupied,
such as the Tusayan villages of today. Within each of these classes
there are varieties, and there are also secondary types which pertain
sometimes to one, sometimes to the other, and sometimes to both. Such
are the cliff ruins, the cavate lodges, and the single house remains.

The unit of pueblo architecture is the single cell, and in its
development the highest point reached is the aggregation of a great
number of such cells into one or more clusters, either connected with or
adjacent to each other. These cells were all the same, or essentially
so; for while differentiation in use or function had been or was being
developed at the time of the Spanish conquest, differentiation in form
had not been reached. The kiva, of circular or rectangular shape, is a
survival and not a development.

Large aggregations of many cells into one cluster are the latest
development of pueblo architecture. They were immediately preceded by a
type composed of a larger number of smaller villages, located on sites
selected with reference to their ease of defense, and apparently the
change from the latter to the former type was made at one step, without
developing any intermediate forms. The differences between the largest
examples of villages on defensive sites and the smallest appear to be
only differences of size. Doubtless in the early days of pueblo
architecture small settlements were the rule. Probably these settlements
were located in the valleys, on sites most convenient for horticulture,
each gens occupying its own village. Incursions by neighboring wild
tribes, or by hostile neighbors, and constant annoyance and loss at
their hands, gradually compelled the removal of these little villages to
sites more easily defended, and also forced the aggregation of various
related gentes into one group or village. At a still later period the
same motive, considerably emphasized perhaps, compelled a further
removal to even more difficult sites. The Tusayan villages at the time
of the Spanish discovery were located on the foothills of the mesas, and
many pueblo villages at that period occupied similar sites. Actuated by
fear of the Ute and Comanche, and perhaps of the Spaniards, the
inhabitants soon after moved to the top of the mesa, where they now are.
Many villages stopped at this stage. Some were in this stage at the time
of the discovery--Acoma, for example. Finally, whole villages whose
inhabitants spoke the same language combined to form one larger village,
which, depending now on size and numbers for defense, was again located
on a site convenient for horticulture.

The process sketched above was by no means continuous. The population
was in slow but practically constant movement, much the same as that now
taking place in the Zuñi country; it was a slow migration. Outlying
settlements were established at points convenient to cultivable fields,
and probably were intended to be occupied only during the summer.
Sometimes these temporary sites might be found more convenient than that
of the parent village, and it would gradually come about that some of
the inhabitants would remain there all the year. Eventually the
temporary settlement might outgrow the parent, and would in turn put out
other temporary settlements. This process would be possible only during
prolonged periods of peace, but it is known to have taken place in
several regions. Necessarily hundreds of small settlements, ranging in
size from one room to a great many, would be established, and as the
population moved onward would be abandoned, without ever developing into
regular villages occupied all the year. It is believed that many of the
single house remains of Mr Bandelier's classification[12] belong to this
type, as do also many cavate lodges, and in the present paper it will be
shown that some at least of the cliff ruins belong to the same category.

    [Footnote 12: See a paper by the author on "Aboriginal remains in
    Verde valley, Arizona," in 13th Ann. Rept. Bureau of Ethnology, p.
    179 et seq.]

The cliff ruins are a striking feature, and the ordinary traveler is apt
to overlook the more important ruins which sometimes, if not generally,
are associated with them. The study of the ruins in Canyon de Chelly has
led to the conclusion that the cliff ruins there are generally
subordinate structures, connected with and inhabited at the same time as
a number of larger home villages located on the canyon bottom, and
occupying much the same relation to the latter that Moen-kapi does to
Oraibi, or that Nutria, Pescado, and Ojo Caliente do to Zuñi; and that
they are the functional analogues of the "watch towers" of the San Juan
and of Zuñi, and the brush shelters or "kisis" of Tusayan: in other
words, they were horticultural outlooks occupied only during the farming

Mr G. Nordenskiöld, who examined a number of cliff and other ruins in
the Mancos canyon and the Mesa Verde region, adopts[13] a very simple
classification, as follows:

   I. Ruins in the valleys, on the plains, or on the plateaus.
  II. Ruins in caves in the walls of the canyons, subdivided as follows:
      (a) Cave dwellings, or caves inhabited without the erection
         of any buildings within them.
      (b) Cliff dwellings, or buildings erected in caves.

    [Footnote 13: The Cliff Dwellers of the Mesa Verde, pp. 9 and 114.]

From its topographic character it might be expected that the Canyon de
Chelly ruins would hardly come within a scheme of classification based
upon those found in the open country; and here, if anywhere, we should
find corroboration of the old idea that the cliff ruins were the homes
and last refuge of a race harassed by powerful enemies and finally
driven to the construction of dwellings in inaccessible cliffs, where a
last ineffectual stand was made against their foes; or the more recent
theory that they represent an early stage in the development of pueblo
architecture, when the pueblo builders were few in number and surrounded
by numerous enemies. Neither of these theories are in accord with the
facts of observation. The still later idea that the cliff dwellings were
used as places of refuge by various pueblo tribes who, when the occasion
for such use was passed, returned to their original homes, or to others
constructed like them, may explain some of the cliff ruins, but if
applicable at all to those of De Chelly, it applies only to a small
number of them.

  [Illustration: Plate XLIII
  Detailed Map of Part of Canyon De Chelly
  Showing Areas of Cultivatable Land]

The ruins of De Chelly show unmistakably several periods of occupancy,
extending over considerable time and each fairly complete. They fall
easily into the classification previously suggested, and exhibit various
types, but the earliest and the latest forms are not found. In the
descriptions which follow the classification below has been employed:

    I--Old villages on open sites.
   II--Home villages on bottom lands.
  III--Home villages located for defense.
   IV--Cliff outlooks or farming shelters.


In the upper part of the canyon, and extending into what we may call the
middle region, there are a number of ruins that seem to be out of place
in this locality. They are exactly similar to hundreds of ruins found in
the open country; such, for example, as the older villages of Tusayan,
located on low foothills at the foot of the mesa, and the peculiar
topographic characteristics of the location have not made the slightest
impression on them. These ruins are located on gentle slopes, the
foothills of the talus, as it were, away from the cliffs, and are now
marked only by scattered fragments of building stone and broken pottery.
The ground plans are in all cases indistinguishable; in only a few
instances can even a short wall line be traced. They seem to have been
located without special reference to large areas of cultivable land,
although they always command small areas of such land. There is a
remarkable uniformity in ruins of this type in character of site
occupied, outlook, and general appearance. They are always close to the
stream bed, seldom more than 10 or 12 feet above it, and the sites were
chosen apparently without any reference to their defensibility. A
typical example occurs at the point marked 60 on the detailed map (plate
XLIII), another occurs at 58, and another at 52. One of the largest
examples is in the lower part of the canyon. At the junction of Del
Muerto there is a large mass of rock standing out alone and extending
nearly to the full height of the canyon walls. On the south it is
connected with the main wall back of it by a low tongue of rock,
sparsely covered in places by soil and sand, and on the top of this
tongue or saddle there is a large ruin of the type described, but no
ground plan can now be made out. Possibly the obliterated appearance of
this ruin and of others of the same class is due to the use of the
material, ready to hand and of the proper size, in later structures. It
is known that a similar appearance was produced in Tusayan by such a
cause. The old village of Walpi, on a foothill below the mesa point and
the site of the village at the time of the Spanish conquest, presents an
appearance of great antiquity, although it was partly occupied so late
as fifty years ago. When the movement to the summit of the mesa became
general, the material of the old houses was utilized in the construction
of the new ones, and at the present day it can almost be said that not
one stone remains above another. So complete is the obliteration that no
ground plan can be made out.

If similar conditions prevailed in De Chelly, there might be many more
ruins of this class than those so far discovered. Even those found are
not easily distinguished and might easily be passed over. Possibly there
were small ruins of this type scattered over the whole canyon bottom. An
example which occurs at the point marked 12 on the map, and shown in
plate XLIV, presents no trace on the surface except some potsherds,
which in this locality mean nothing. The site is a low hill or end of a
slope, the top of which is perhaps 25 feet above the stream bed, but
separated from it by a belt of recent alluvium carpeted with grass. The
hill itself was formed of talus, covered with alluvium, all but a small
portion of which was subsequently cut away, leaving an almost vertical
face 15 or 18 feet high. In this face the ends or vertical sections of
several walls can be seen; one of them is nearly 3 feet thick and
extends 4 feet below the present ground surface.

The filling of these ruins to a depth of 4 or 5 feet and the almost
complete absence of surface remains or indications does not necessarily
imply a remote antiquity, although it suggests it. During the fall and
early winter months tremendous sand storms rage in the canyon; the wind
sweeps through the gorge with an almost irresistible power, carrying
with it such immense quantities of sand that objects a few hundred feet
distant can not be distinguished. These sand storms were and are potent
factors in producing the picturesque features of the red cliffs forming
the canyon walls; but they are constructive as well as destructive, and
cavities and hollow places in exposed situations such as the canyon
bottom are soon filled up. The stream itself is also a powerful agent of
destruction and construction; during flood periods banks of sand and
alluvium are often cut away and sometimes others are formed. Yet there
are reasons for believing that the old village ruins on open sites, now
almost obliterated, mark the first period in the occupancy of the
canyon, perhaps even a period distinctly separated from the others.
Excavation on these sites would probably yield valuable results.


Ruins comprised in the second class are located on the bottom lands,
generally at the base of a cliff, and without reference to the
defensibility of the site. They are, as a rule, much broken down, and
might perhaps be classed with the ruins already described, but there are
some distinctive features which justify us in separating them. Ruins of
this class are always located either at the base of a cliff or in a cove
under it, on the level or raised but slightly above the bottom land, and
sometimes at a considerable distance from the stream. The ground plans
can generally be distinguished, and in many instances walls are still
standing--sometimes to a height of three stories. The ground plans
reflect more or less the character of the site they occupy, and we would
be as much surprised to find plans of their character in the open
country as we are to see plans of class I within the canyon. Unlike the
ground plans of class I, those of this group were laid out with direct
reference to the cliff behind them, and which formed, as it were, a part
of them.

  [Illustration: Plate XLIV
  Section of Old Walls, Canyon De Chelly]

In point of size, long period of occupancy, and position these villages
were the most important in the canyon. The ruins often cover
considerable areas and almost invariably show the remains of one or more
circular kivas. Sometimes they are located directly upon the bottom
land, more often they occupy low swells next the cliff, rising perhaps
10 feet above the general level and affording a fine view over it.
Sometimes they are found in alcoves at the base of the cliff, but they
always rest on the bottom land which extends into them; these merge
insensibly into the next class--village ruins on defensible sites--and
the distinction between them is partly an arbitrary one, as is also that
between the last mentioned and the cliff ruins proper.

  [Illustration: Fig. 1--Ground plan of an old ruin in Canyon del

Figure 1 is a ground plan of a small ruin located in Del Muerto, on the
bottom lands near its mouth. No standing walls now remain, but there is
no doubt that the village at one time covered much more ground than that
shown on the plan. There are now remains of sixteen rooms on the ground,
in addition to two kivas. There is a shallow alcove in the cliff at the
ground level, and the overhanging cliff gave the village some protection
overhead. Plate XLV shows another example in Del Muerto, the largest in
that canyon. The walls are still standing to a height of three stories
in one place, and the masonry is of high class. The back cliff has not
entered into the plan here to the same extent that it generally does.
Figure 2, a ground plan, exhibits only that portion of the area of the
ruin on which walls are still standing. It shows about 20 rooms on the
ground, exclusive of three or perhaps four kivas. The rooms are small as
a rule, rectangular, and arranged with a more than ordinary degree of
regularity. One room still carries its roof intact, as shown on the
plan. In the center of the ruin are the remains of a very large kiva,
over 36 feet in diameter. It is now so much broken down that but little
can be inferred as to its former condition, except that there was
probably no interior bench, as no remains of such a structure can now be
distinguished. The size of this kiva is exceptional, and it is very
probable that it was never roofed. The structures within the kiva, shown
on the ground plan, are Navaho burial cists. West of the large kiva
there were two others, less than 20 feet in diameter. One of these was
circular; the other was irregular in shape, perhaps more nearly
approaching an oval form. At no fewer than five places within the ruin
there are comparatively recent Navaho burials.

  [Illustration: Fig. 2--Ground plan of a ruin on bottom land in
  Canyon del Muerto.]

  [Illustration: Fig. 3--Ground plan of a small ruin in Canyon de

Figure 3 is a ground plan of a small and very compact village, situated
on the south side of the canyon at the point marked 28 on the detailed
map. It is located on a slightly raised part of the bottom, commanding
an outlook over a large area now under cultivation by the Navaho. The
wall lines are remarkably, although not perfectly, regular, and show at
least 25 rooms; there were probably others to the northward and
eastward. The rooms are now almost filled with débris, but two of them
are still intact, being kept in order by the Navaho and used for the
storage of corn. The roofs of both these rooms are now on the ground
level. The covered room nearest the cliff, shown on the plan, has been
divided into two small compartments by a wall through the middle; access
to each of these is obtained by a framed trapdoor in the roof about a
foot square. This dividing wall is probably of Navaho origin, as the
separate rooms formed by it are too small for habitation and the masonry
is very rough. A short distance to the north along the cliff there is a
Navaho house, roughly rectangular in plan, which was constructed of
stone obtained from this site. The masonry of the ruin presents a very
good face, not due to chinking, however, which was but slightly
practiced, but to the careful selection of material. Some of the stones
show surface pecking.

  [Illustration: Plate XLV
  General View of Ruin on Bottom Land, Canyon Del Muerto]

About 300 feet above or southeast of this ruin there are the remains of
two small rooms which were placed against the cliff. They are of the
same general character as those described, and doubtless formed part of
the same settlement. Between the two occurs a curious feature. A large
slab of rock, 280 feet long and not more than 12 feet thick at any
point, has split off from the cliff and dropped down to the ground,
where it remains on edge. This slab is triangular in elevation and about
50 feet high at the apex. Between it and the cliff, in the upper part,
there is a space from 2 to 2½ feet wide. This is easily accessible from
the north, on the edge of the slab, and can be reached from the southern
end, but with much difficulty. Figure 4 shows this feature and its
relation to the ruin. There is no doubt that this was a granary or huge
storage bin, and probably the two rooms on the south were placed there
to guard that end; the northern end, of more easy access, being
protected by the village itself. It was well adapted to this purpose--a
fact that the Navaho have not been slow to appreciate. They have
constructed small bins near the northern end, shown on the plan, and
beyond this timbers have been wedged in so as to furnish a means of
closing the cleft. In the cleft itself cross walls have been
constructed, dividing it into several compartments. The interior forms a
convenient dry, airy space, and at the time it was visited the floor was
covered with a litter of cornhusks.

  [Illustration: Fig. 4--Granary in the rocks, connected with a ruin.]

Almost directly opposite this ruin, on the other side of the canyon, are
the remains of a village that might properly be called a cave village.
At this point a large rock stands out from the cliff and in it there is
a cavity shaped almost like a quarter sphere. Its greatest diameter is
45 feet and its height about 20 feet. The bottom land here is 10 or 12
feet above the stream bed and slopes up gradually toward the cliff,
forming the bottom of the cave, which is perhaps 18 or 20 feet above the
stream and some distance from it. The cave commands an extensive outlook
over the cultivable lands below it and those extending up a branch
canyon a little above.

The whole bottom of the cave is covered by remains of rooms, shown in
plan in figure 5. The population could not have been greater than 10 or
12 persons, yet the remains of two kivas are clearly shown. Both were in
the front of the cave, adjoining but not connected with each other, and
were about 12 feet in diameter. Both had interior benches, extending in
one perhaps completely around, in the other only partly around. The
rooms are very irregular in shape and in size, ranging from 8 by 10 feet
to 3 by 4 feet, but the latter could be used only for storage. The
masonry is not of fine grade, although good; but not much detail can be
made out, as the place has been used as a sheepfold by the Navaho and
the ground surface has been filled up and smoothed over.

  [Illustration: Fig. 5--Ground plan of a ruin in a cave.]

The largest ruin in the canyons is that shown in plan in figure 6. It is
situated in Del Muerto, on the canyon bottom at the base of a cliff, and
is known to the Navaho as Pakashi-izini (the blue cow). The name was
derived probably from a pictograph of a cow done in blue paint on the
canyon wall back of the ruin. Traces of walls extend over a narrow belt
against the cliffs about 400 feet long and not over 40 feet wide, and
over this area many walls are still standing. Scattered over the site
are a number of large bowlders. No attempt to remove these was made, but
walls were carried over and under them, and in some cases the direction
of a wall was modified to correspond with a face of a bowlder.

The settlement may have consisted of two separate portions, divided by a
row or cluster of large bowlders. The group shown on the right of the
plan was very compactly built, in one place being four rooms deep, but
no traces of a kiva can be seen in it, nor does there appear to be any
place where a kiva could be built within the house area or immediately
adjacent to it. At present 14 or 15 rooms may be traced on the ground
and the whole structure may have comprised 30 rooms. The wall lines are
not regular. In the western end of the structure there is a narrow
passageway into a large room in the center. Such passageways, while
often seen in the valley pueblos, are rare in these canyons. The three
rooms to the south of the passageway appear to have been added after the
rest of the structure was completed, and diminished in size regularly by
a series of steps or insets in the northern or passage wall.

  [Illustration: Fig. 6--Ground plan of Pakashi-izini ruins, Canyon
  del Muerto.]

The other portion of the ruin shows the remains of about 40 rooms on the
ground, in addition to three kivas; there may have been 60 rooms in this
part of the settlement, or 85 or 90 rooms altogether. The population
could not have been over 55 or 60 persons, or about 12 families. In
other words, it appears that, owing to the peculiarities of conditions
under which they lived, and of the ground plan which resulted, the
largest settlement of this class in the canyons, extending over 400 feet
in one direction, provided homes for a very limited number of people. As
it is probable that each family had one or more outlooks, occupied in
connection with their horticultural operations, it will readily be seen
that only a small number of inhabitants might leave a large number of
house remains, and that it is not necessary to assume either a large
population or a long period of occupancy.

The kivas are clustered in the lower end of the settlement, and all
appear to have been inclosed within walls or other buildings. Two of
them are fairly well preserved; of the third only a fragment remains.
The inclosure of the kivas is a suggestive feature, which will be
discussed later, as will also the square shaft shown on the plan as
attached to the principal kiva.

It will be noticed that in several places where bowlders occur within
the limits of the settlement they have been incorporated into the walls
and form part of them. In two places they have altered the direction of
walls and produced irregularities in the plan. Elsewhere the face of a
rock has been prolonged by a wall carried out to continue it, as in the
front wall of the principal kiva apartment. This apartment appears to
have been entered from the west through a passageway. This is an
anomalous feature and suggests modernness.

  [Illustration: Fig. 7--Ground plan of a ruin in Canyon del Muerto.]

Figure 7 is a ground plan of another ruin in Del Muerto. There is a
slight cove or bay in the cliff at the point where the ruin occurs, and
the ground, which is on the level of the bottom lands, is strewn with
large bowlders, as in the example last described. But few remains of
walls are now observable, and there are traces of only one kiva. This
was situated near the outer edge of the settlement. The wall lines are
irregular and the disposition and size of the bowlders are such that it
is improbable that this site was ever occupied by a large cluster of
rooms. On the left of the plan will be seen a small room or storage cist
still intact. At the point marked > in the center of the site a burial
cist was found and excavated in 1884 by Mr Thomas V. Keam. It contained
the remains of a child, almost perfectly desiccated. It is said that
when the remains were first removed the color of the iris could be
distinguished. The specimen was subsequently deposited in the National

  [Illustration: Fig. 8--Ground plan of a ruin in Tseonitsosi canyon.]

A ruin which occurs in Tse-on-i-tso-si canyon, near the mouth of De
Chelly, is shown in plan in figure 8. There were two kivas, one of which
was benched. The number of rooms connected with them is remarkably
small--there could not have been more than six, if there were that
many--and the character of the site is such as to preclude the
possibility of other rooms in the immediate vicinity. Some of the walls
are still standing, and exhibit a fair degree of skill in masonry.

  [Illustration: Fig. 9--Ground plan of a much obliterated ruin.]

A type of which there are many examples is shown in plan in figure 9.
These ruins occur on the flat, next the cliff, which is seldom bayed and
overhangs but slightly. They are usually so much obliterated that only
careful scrutiny reveals the presence of wall lines, and walls standing
to a height of 6 inches above the ground are rare. In the example
illustrated no traces of a kiva can be found, but the almost complete
destruction of the walls might account for this. There is every reason
to suppose that these ruins are of the same class as those described
above, the remains of home villages located without reference to
defense, and no reason to suppose otherwise. They are probably instances
where, owing to exposed situation, early abandonment, and possibly also
proximity to later establishments, destruction has proceeded at a
greater rate than in other examples.

  [Illustration: Fig. 10--Ground plan of a ruin in Canyon de Chelly.]

Ruins of the class under discussion were not confined to any part of the
canyons, but were located wherever the conditions were favorable. An
example which occurs in the lower part of the canyon, at the point
marked 3 on the map, is shown in plan in figure 10. It occurs at the
back of a deep cove in a little branch canyon, and was at one time quite
an extensive village. It was located on a slight slope or raised place
next the cliffs and overhung by them. A stone dropped from the top of
the cliffs would fall 45 or 50 feet out from their base. There are
remains of three kivas. The central one, which was 12 feet in diameter,
still shows nearly all its periphery, and the wall is in one place
3 feet high. The western kiva is now almost obliterated, but it can
still be made out, and shows a diameter of 15 feet. It is 50 feet west
of the central kiva and on a level about 8 feet below it, being only
about 3 feet above the bottom land. East of the central kiva, and
between it and a large bowlder, there was another, of which only a part
now remains.

North of the central kiva, and extending nearly to the cliff behind,
there are remains of rooms. One corner is still standing to a height of
3 to 4 feet. The western wall was smoothly plastered outside and was
pierced by a narrow notched doorway. The northern wall has an opening
still intact, shown in plate LVIII; it is 2 feet high and 14 inches
wide, with a lintel composed of six small sticks about an inch in
diameter, laid side by side. The sticks are surmounted by a flat stone,
very roughly shaped and separated from them by an inch of mud plaster or
mortar. The masonry is exceptionally well executed, that of the northern
wall being composed of large stones carefully chinked and rubbed down.
The chinking appears to have been carried through in bands, producing a
decorative effect, resembling some of the masonry of the Chaco ruins.
The western wall is composed of larger stones laid up more roughly with
less chinking, and appears to have been a later addition. On the back
wall of the cave are marks of walls showing a number of additional
rooms, and there is no doubt that at one time there was quite an
extensive settlement here.

Around the corner from the last example, as it were (at the point marked
4 on the map), and at the mouth of a little canyon that opens out from
the head of the cove, the ruin shown in plate XLVI occurs. The village
was located on the canyon bottom, in a shallow cove hardly 25 feet deep,
but the view over the bottom is almost closed by a large sand dune, bare
on top and but scantily covered on the sides with grass and weeds. Were
it not for this dune, the site of the ruin would command one of the best
areas of cultivable land in the canyon, but apparently an extensive
outlook was not a desideratum. The slight elevation of the site above
the level of the bottom lands is shown in the illustration.

  [Illustration: Plate XLVI
  Village Ruin in Canyon De Chelly]

The village was not a large one, having been occupied probably by only
two families, yet there are traces of two kivas. That on the west is so
far obliterated that its outline can be made out only with difficulty.
That on the east still shows a part of its wall to a height of about a
foot. The plan, figure 11, shows the general arrangement. Some of the
walls are still standing to a height of 2 or 3 feet, and at the eastern
end of the ruin there is a room with walls 6 feet high. More than the
usual amount of mud mortar was used in the construction of the walls of
this room, and the interstices were filled with this, chinking with
small stones being but slightly practiced. The masonry of the other
walls is rougher, with even less chinking, and some of them show later
additions which did not follow the main lines. The eastern room had two
openings and the tops of the walls are apparently finished, for there
are no marks of roof timbers. The room may have been roofless, but the
same effect might have been produced by recent Navaho repairs and
alterations. In the exterior wall, at the southeastern corner, there is
a series of hand-holes, as though access to the interior were sometimes
had in this way, but the hand-holes are later than the wall. On the back
wall of the cove there are a number of pictographs.

  [Illustration: Fig. 11--Ground plan of a village ruin.]

  [Illustration: Fig. 12--Ground plan of kivas in Canyon de Chelly.]

Just above the mouth of Del Muerto and on the opposite side of the main
canyon, at the point marked 17 on the map, there was a village on the
canyon bottom. It overlooked a fine stretch of cultivable land on both
sides of the canyon. There is a large isolated mass of rock here, nearly
as high as the cliffs on either side, and connected with those back of
it by a slope of talus and débris, partly bare rock, partly covered with
sand dunes. At the point where the ruin occurs the rock is bare and
about 40 feet high, partly overhanging the site. The remains, shown in
plan in figure 12, occupy the summit of a hill about 10 feet high,
composed principally of débris of walls. Only a few faint traces now
remain, but two kivas are still clearly distinguishable. The one on the
south had an interior bench, which apparently extended around it. The
other shows walls 2 feet high, and has been plastered with a number of
successive coats. The small wall on the extreme right of the plan is
composed of almost pure mud.

There are a number of ruins in the canyons of the type shown in figure
13. They are generally located directly on the bottom, and seldom as
much as 5 feet above it, within coves or under overhanging cliffs; they
are always of small area, and generally so far obliterated that no walls
or wall remains are now visible. The obliteration is due not so much to
antiquity, which may or may not have been a cause, but to the character
of the site they occupied. They are always in sheltered situations, and
being on the canyon bottom are much used by the Navaho as sheepfolds and
have been so used for years. Sometimes, although rarely, faint traces of
kivas can be made out.

  [Illustration: Fig. 13--Ground plan of a small ruin on bottom land.]

The example illustrated occurs at the point marked 43 on the map. It is
situated in a cove in a point of rock jutting out from the main cliff.
The rock is about 60 feet high and the cove about 30 feet deep, and the
remains are but a few feet above the level of the bottom land outside.
The walls are composed of rather small stones; the interstices were
chinked with spawls, and the masonry was laid up with an abundance of
mud mortar. The back wall of the cove is considerably blackened by

One of the most striking and most important ruins in the canyon is shown
in plan in figures 14 and 15. This is the ruin seen by Lieutenant
Simpson in 1849 and subsequently called Casa Blanca. It is also known
under the equivalent Navaho term, Kini-na e-kai or White House. The
general character of the ruin is shown in plate XLVII, which is from a
photograph. At first sight this ruin appears not to belong to this
class, or rather to belong both to this class and the succeeding one
composed of villages located with reference to defense; but, as will
appear later, it has nothing in common with the latter.

  [Illustration: Plate XLVII
  Casa Blanca Ruin, Canyon De Chelly]

In its present condition the ruin consists of two distinct parts--a
lower part, comprising a large cluster of rooms on the bottom land
against the vertical cliff, and an upper part which was much smaller and
occupied a cave directly over the lower portion and was separated from
it only by some 35 feet of vertical cliff. There is evidence, however,
that some of the houses in the lower settlement were four stories high
against the cliff, and in fact that the structures were practically
continuous; but for convenience of description we may regard the ruin as
composed of two.

The lower ruin covers an area of about 150 by 50 feet, raised but a few
feet above the bottom land, probably by its own debris. Within this area
there are remains of 45 rooms on the ground, in addition to a circular
kiva. On the east side there are walls still standing to a height of 12
and 14 feet. It is probable that the lower ruin comprised about 60
rooms, which, with a liberal allowance for the rooms in the cave, would
make a total of 80. This would furnish accommodations for a maximum of
10 or 12 families or a total population of 50 or 60 persons. It is
probable, however, that this estimate is excessive and that the total
population at any one time did not exceed 30 or 40 persons.

  [Illustration: Fig. 14--Ground plan of the lower part of Casa Blanca

The ground plans shown are the result of a very careful survey, plotted
on the ground on a large scale (10 feet to 1 inch--1:120), and the
irregularities shown were carefully noted and put down at the time.
These irregularities, which are commonly ignored in the preparation of
plans of ruins, are of the highest importance. From them the sequence of
construction can often be determined.

  [Illustration: Fig. 15--Ground plan of the upper part of Casa Blanca

The walls of the lower ruin are somewhat obscured by loose débris, of
which a large amount is lying about. Roof débris is especially abundant;
it consists of small twigs and lumps of clay, with ends of beams
projecting here and there. The principal walls occur in the eastern
part, where some of them are 2 feet thick and still standing to a height
of 10 and 12 and in one place of 14 feet. An inspection of the plan will
show that, as is invariably the case where a wall rises to a height of
more than one story, the lower part is massive and the upper wall sets
back 5 or 6 inches, reducing its thickness by that amount. All the heavy
walls occur either about the kiva or east of it. Apparently these walls
were built first especially heavy and massive, and afterward, when upper
stories were added, it was not found necessary to carry them up the full
thickness. It will be noticed that the wall extending eastward from the
corner of the kiva, and which is from a foot to 6 feet high at the
present time, extends through the heavy wall which crosses it 33 feet to
the east, and is continuous to its termination about 50 feet east,
against another heavy wall. The last-mentioned wall is also continuous
from the cliff out to the front of the ruin, a distance of about 46

The heavy walls of the lower ruin are immediately under the upper cave.
Back of them the cliff presents an almost smooth face of rock, 35 feet
high and slightly overhanging. On this rock face there are marks which
show that formerly there were upper stories, the rooms of which are
outlined upon it. The rock surface was coated in places with a thin wash
of clay, doubtless to correspond with the other walls of the rooms, but
this coating was necessarily omitted where the partition walls and roofs
and floors abutted on the rock. This is shown in plate XLVII. Although
the marks are now so faint as to be easily overlooked, at a certain hour
in the day, when the light falls obliquely on the rock, they can be
clearly made out. At a point about 50 feet east of the kiva the
structure was three stories higher than it is now. The roof of the upper
story was within 4 feet of the floor of the cave, and under the gap or
gateway in front of the main room above. West of this point there are
the marks of but two stories additional. Farther west the structure rose
again, but not to the height attained on the east.

The kiva was placed directly against the cliff. This is an unusual
arrangement; but it will be noticed that the walls in front of it are of
a different character from those on the east, and it is probable that
when the kiva was built it opened to the air. The kiva is also anomalous
in its construction. It presents the usual features of the inner
circular chamber and an inclosing rectangular wall, but in this case the
intermediate space was filled in solidly, and perhaps was so
constructed. The kiva is still 6 feet deep inside, which must be nearly
its maximum depth, and the roof was probably placed at a level not more
than a foot or two above the present top. Whether the village was placed
on a slight raise, or on the flat, level with the bottom land about it,
and subsequently filled up with the debris of masonry, etc, can not be
determined without excavation; but the top of the kiva is now 16 feet
above the general level of the bottom land, and its bottom 10 feet above
that level. It is possible that the kiva was much deeper than now
appears, as no sign of the usual interior bench can be seen above the
present ground surface, nor can any connection with the chimney-like
structure to the south of it be determined, yet such connection must
have existed. Probably not only this kiva but the whole ruin would well
repay excavation.

The interior of the kiva was not exactly circular, being a little
elongated northeast and southwest. The inclosing wall on the east is
still standing in one place to a height of 5 feet above the top of the
kiva structure, and about a foot above that level is marked by a
setback, which reduces its thickness. Apparently the upper part was
added at a date some time subsequent to the completion of the kiva
structure, as the wall on the south, now some 3 feet above the level
mentioned, does not conform to the lower exterior wall on which it was
placed. On the western side there is another fragment of the upper
inclosing wall. Both this wall and the one on the south are less than 15
inches in thickness.

West of the kiva there are remains of other stone walls which differ in
character from those on the east. They are now usually less than 3 feet
high; they were 12 to 15 inches thick, and the lines are very irregular.
South of the kiva, in the center of the ruin, there are other stone
walls even thinner and more irregularly placed than those on the west,
but most of the walls here are of adobe. As the use of adobe blocks is
not an aboriginal feature, the occurrence of these walls is a matter of
much interest, especially as they are so intimately associated with the
stonework that it is not always an easy matter to separate them.

The occurrence and distribution of adobe walls is shown on the ground
plan. They are not found as subordinate walls, dividing larger rooms,
except perhaps in one instance; but apparently this method of
construction was employed when it was desired to add new rooms to those
already constructed. No room with walls constructed wholly of adobe can
be made out, but walls of this character closing one side of a room are
common, and rooms with two or even three sides of adobe are not
uncommon. There are some instances in which part of a wall is stone and
part adobe, and also instances in which the lower wall, complete in
itself, is of stone, while the upper part, evidently a later addition,
is of adobe; such, for example, is the cross wall in the eastern tier,
about 30 feet from the cliff.

The mere occurrence of adobe here is evidence of the occupancy of this
site at a period subsequent to the sixteenth century--we might almost
say subsequent to the middle of the seventeenth; but its occurrence in
this way and in such intimate association with the stone walls indicates
that the occupancy was continuous from a time prior to the introduction
of adobe construction to a period some time subsequent to it. This
hypothesis is supported by other evidence, which will appear later.
Attention may here be directed to the fact that there are four
chimney-like structures in the lower ruin, all of adobe, and all, except
the one which pertains to the kiva, attached to adobe walls.

On the western margin of the ruin, and nowhere else within it, there are
traces of another kind of construction which was not found elsewhere
within the canyon. This method is known to the Mexicans as "jacal," and
much used by them. It consists of a row of sticks or thin poles set
vertically in the ground and heavily plastered with mud. At present not
one of these walls remains to a height of 6 inches above the ground, but
the lines of poles broken off at the ground level are still visible. The
ground at this point is but 3 or 4 feet above the general level of the
bottom. The ground plan shows the occurrence of these wall remains on
the western edge of the site. They are all outside of but attached to
what was formerly the exterior wall on that side.

There are remains of four Navaho burial cists in the lower ruin, at the
points shown on the ground plan. These are constructed of stones and mud
roughly put together in the ordinary manner, forming thin, rounded
walls; but these can not be confounded with the other methods of
construction described. Three of the cists have long been in ruins and
broken down; the one on the east is but a few years old.

Access to the upper ruin can now be had only with much difficulty. In
the western end of the cave there is a single room placed on the cliff
edge, and between this and the end of a wall to the right a small stick
has been embedded in the masonry at a height of about 2 feet from the
rock. The cliff here is vertical and affords no footing, but by throwing
a rope over the stick a man can ascend hand over hand. During the period
when the houses were occupied, access was had in another and much easier
way, through a doorway or passageway nearly in the center of the ruin
and directly over the point where the lower village was four stories
high. The roof of the lower structure was less than 4 feet below the
floor of the cave; yet there is no doubt that a doorway or passageway
existed also at the western end of the cave, as the western end of the
wall on the right of the stick is neatly finished and apparently

The principal room in the upper ruin is situated nearly in the center of
the cave, and is the one that has given the whole ruin its name. The
walls are 2 feet thick, constructed of stone, 12 feet high in front and
7 feet high on the sides and inside. The exterior was finished with a
coat of whitewash, with a decorative band in yellow; hence the name of
Casa Blanca or White House. West of the principal room there is a
smaller one, which appears to be a later addition. The walls of this
room are only 7 inches thick, of adobe on the sides and back and of
small stones in front. The top of the wall is about 2 feet below the top
of the wall on the east. The coat of whitewash and the yellow decorative
band are continuous over both rooms, but the white coat was also applied
to the exterior western wall of the main room. In the main room there is
a series of small sticks, about half an inch in diameter, projecting 8
inches from the wall and on a line 3 or 4 inches under where the roof

The small room in the eastern end of the cave was located on a kind of
bench or upper level, and was constructed partly of stone and partly of
adobe. The stone part is the upper portion of the eastern half. On the
west there is a small opening or window, with an appliance for closing
it. It is probable that this room was used only for storage. In the
western end of the cave there is another single room, which is clearly
shown in plate XLVII. The front wall is 11 feet high outside and 5 feet
high inside. The lower portion is stone, the upper part and sides are
adobe, and the side walls rest on nearly 2 feet of straw, ashes, etc.
The buttress shown in the illustration is of stone and the front wall
that it supports is slightly battened. A close inspection of the
illustration will show that this wall rests partly on horizontal timber
work, a feature which is repeated in several walls in the main cluster
of the ruins.

The use of timber laid horizontally under a wall is not uncommon, and as
it will be discussed at greater length in another place, it may be
dismissed here with the statement that as a rule it failed to accomplish
the purpose intended. But the use of the buttress is an anomalous
feature which it is difficult to believe was of aboriginal conception.
Its occurrence in this ruin together with so many other unaboriginal
features is suggestive.

The walls of the principal room and of the rooms immediately in front of
it are constructed of stone; all the other walls in the upper ruin are
of adobe or have adobe in them. The two rooms on the east and two walls
of the room adjoining on the west are wholly of adobe, about 7 inches
thick and now 3 and 4 feet high. In the southeast corner of the second
room from the east there is an opening through the front wall which may
have been a drain. It is on the floor level, round, 5 inches in
diameter, and smoothly plastered. In the fourth room from the east there
is a similar hole. Both of these discharge on the edge of the cliff, and
it is difficult to imagine their purpose unless they were expedients for
draining the rooms; but this would imply that the rooms were not roofed.
Although the cliff above is probably 500 feet high, and overhangs to the
degree that a rock pushed over its edge falls 15 feet or more outside of
the outermost wall remains, and over 70 feet from the foot of the cliff,
still a driving storm of rain or snow would leave considerable
quantities of water in the front rooms if they were not roofed, and some
means would have to be provided to carry it off.

In the same room, the fourth from the east, there are the remains of a
chimney-like structure, the only one in the upper ruin. It is in the
northeast corner, at a point where the wall has fallen and been replaced
by a Navaho burial cist also fallen in ruin, and was constructed of
stone. There is no doubt that it was added some time after the walls
were built, as it has cracked off from the wall on the east, which shows
at that point its original finish. In the eastern wall of this room
there is a well-finished opening, and at the corresponding point in the
wall of the room on the right, the third wall from the east, there is
another. The latter wall is of adobe, or rather there are two adobe
walls built side by side; one, the eastern, considerably thinner than
the other. The opening extends through both walls; it was neatly
finished and was closed by a thin slab of stone plastered in with mud.
It has the appliance for closing mentioned above and described later
(page 165). Most of the openings in the walls appear to have been closed
up at the time the houses were abandoned.

The front wall of the main room is 12 feet high in front and was stepped
back 6 inches at half its height from the ground. The stepback is
continued through the front wall of the small room on the west. Near the
center of the main room there is a well-finished doorway, directly over
the point where a cross wall in front of it comes in. This opening was
originally a double-notched or T-shape doorway, but at a later period
was filled up so as to leave only a rectangular orifice. The principal
entrance to the upper ruin was in front of this opening and a little to
the left of it. It will be noticed from an inspection of the plan that
the room into which this entrance opened was divided at a point about
4 feet back from the cliff edge by a stone wall not more than half the
thickness of the walls on either side of it. This cross wall is still
6 feet high on the side nearest the cliff, but there is no evidence of a
doorway or opening through it. The back rooms must have been reached by
a ladder in front, thence over the roof of the room. The cliff entrance
was a narrow doorway left in the front wall. The ends of the walls on
either side were smoothly finished, as in the western doorway.

There are many lumps of clay scattered about on the ground, some showing
impressions of small sticks. Apparently they are the debris of roofs.
There are also some fragments of pottery, principally corrugated ware.
The adobe walls in the upper ruin rest generally on rock, sometimes on
ashes and loose debris; in the lower ruin they rest usually on stone
foundations. The occurrence in this ruin of many features that are not
aboriginal suggests that it was one of the last to be abandoned in the
canyon, but there are certain features which make it seem probable that
the upper portion continued to be inhabited for some time after the
lower portion. The contrivance for closing openings is identical with
examples found in the Mesa Verde region, and it is probable that an
intimate connection between the two existed.


The distinction between home villages located on bottom lands absolutely
without reference to the defensive value of the site, and other villages
located on defensive sites, is to some extent an arbitrary one. The
former, which are always located at the base of or under an overhanging
cliff, sometimes occupy slightly raised ground which overlooks the
adjacent land, and the latter are sometimes so slightly raised above the
bottoms they overlook as hardly to come within the classification.
Moreover, ruins in their present condition sometimes belong to both
classes, as in the example last described. Yet a general distinction may
be drawn between the classes, in that the former are generally located
directly upon the bottom land and invariably without thought or regard
to the defensive value of the site, while in the latter the effect of
this requirement is always apparent.

The class of ruins which has been designated as the remains of villages
located for defense comprises all the most striking remains in the
canyon, many of which may properly be termed cliff ruins. The
characteristics of the class are: A site more or less difficult of
access--generally an elaborate ground plan, although sometimes they
consist of only a few rooms--and the invariable presence of the kiva or
estufa, here always circular in form. The largest ruin of this class
occurs in Del Muerto, and is known as Mummy Cave ruin. It is called by
the Navajo Tse-i-ya-kin. It is situated in the upper part of the canyon,
near the junction of a small branch, and has an extensive outlook.

At a height of about 80 feet above the top of a gentle slope of earth
and loose rock, and perhaps 300 feet above the stream bed, there are two
coves in the rock, connected by a narrow bench. The western cove is
about 100 feet across and its back is perhaps 75 feet from the front
wall of the cliff. The eastern cove is over 200 feet across and perhaps
100 feet deep, while the connecting ledge is about 110 feet long. Ruins
occur on the central ledge and on similar ledges in the back parts of
both coves.

The western or smaller cove is accessible only from the ledge, which in
turn can be approached only from the eastern cove. The smaller cove had
a row of little rooms across the back and there are traces of walls on
the slope in front of these. Fourteen rooms can now be made out on the
ground; altogether there may have been 20 rooms in this portion.
Practically all the available space on the ledge was occupied by rooms,
and 10, all of considerable size, can now be traced. The total number in
this portion was 14 or 15. The eastern cove contained the largest part
of the settlement. The back part is occupied by a ledge about 50 feet
wide entirely covered by remains of walls. Some 44 rooms can now be made
out on the ground, in addition to 3 or perhaps 4 circular kivas, and the
whole number of rooms may have been 55. Assuming, then, that the various
portions of the ruin were inhabited at the same time, we would have a
total of 90 rooms; but, as many of them could be used only for storage,
the population could not have been more than 60 persons.

The rooms in the western cove are fairly uniform in size and were
probably habitations, for they are all too large to be classed as
storage rooms. There was no kiva in this portion, however, nor any
unoccupied place where a kiva might have been placed. It seems clear,
therefore, that this portion was either an appendage of the other or was
occupied at a later period; in either case it was constructed at a date
subsequent to the remains in the eastern cove.

  [Illustration: Plate XLVIII
  Mummy Cave, Central and Eastern Part]

The intermediate ledge, which is about 110 feet long and about 30 feet
wide, was practically all occupied by a row of seven rooms, some of them
of more than one story. These rooms are exceptionally large--larger than
any group of rooms in the canyon or in this part of the country. The
outside or front wall is more than 20 feet from the cliff back of it,
and the rooms are from 10 to 15 feet wide. Figure 16, which is a ground
plan of the ruin, shows the exceptional size of these rooms. All of them
were at least two stories high; some were three. The walls in this
portion are generally 2 feet or more thick and exceptionally well
constructed. Its eastern end is still standing to a height of three
stories, and carries a roof intact, giving a tower-like effect to that
portion. Originally this portion rose but one story above the other
rooms. Throughout nearly all its length the front wall shows part of the
upper story, which is also marked on the cliff wall by a thin wash of
clay, in the same manner as in the Casa Blanca ruin. The two rooms west
of the tower were surmounted by a single large room. The cliff wall is
coated with a thin wash of yellowish clay, and no mark of a cross wall
or partition can be seen upon it. There are no openings between the
three eastern rooms on the ground floor. The first room to the west of
the tower has a square chimney-like shaft, and a niche or alcove
connected with it. The second room also has a niche and a rounded shaft.
The third room has neither niche nor shaft.

  [Illustration: Fig. 16--Ground plan of Mummy Cave ruin.]

The front wall was exceptionally heavy, but the upper portion has fallen
inward, forming a heavy mass of debris against it. The east and south
sides of the tower, for about 5 feet of its height, are decorated by
inlaying small stones 1 to 2 inches long and half an inch thick. The
same decoration occurs at intervals down the front wall, but
irregularly. This feature is not chinking, such as has been described,
and has no constructive value, but is purely decorative. Back of the
rooms west of the tower there are some old pictographs on the cliff wall
at the place where the roof abutted on it. Here the wash of clay before
mentioned was necessarily omitted. In the first room there is a
pictograph of a man, in the second a semicircle, both done in
light-green paint.

The lower part of the outer corner of the tower has fallen out. At this
point there was a small doorway or opening, which was the only entrance
on the south or east. The corner which has fallen was apparently
supported by three or four sticks laid horizontally on the rock at an
angle of 45 degrees with either wall. The giving way of the timber
support apparently caused the fall of the corner, but why a structure
otherwise so substantial should be placed on such frail support, when a
filling of masonry was both easy and practicable, is not clear.

The doorway mentioned is the only opening into the ground-floor room in
the tower. Connection with the rooms on the west was through a large
doorway in the western wall of the second story, and in the story above
there was a similar opening. These are shown in plate XLVIII, which is a
general view of the central portion of the eastern cove.

The lintels of the openings in the central part are formed of round
sticks, about 3 inches in diameter, matched, and bound together with
withes. These withes may be seen in places where the mud plaster has
fallen away. The stick lintels occur only in the central portion; the
windows and doorways of the other portions of the ruin, some fine
examples of which remain, are always finished with stone lintels and
sometimes with stone jambs.

A little east of the center of the front wall there is a large rock, or
rather a pile of large rocks, near the outer edge of the ledge. This is
shown in the illustration. Instead of removing this obstruction the wall
was built under and over it. Near the western end of the front wall
there is a large doorway or opening. Access to the western cove was
along the narrow edge of the ledge under the front wall, thence through
this doorway. The doorway gave entrance to a very narrow space, less
than 4 feet square, surrounded by a heavy wall with a doorway through
the left or western wall into the last apartment of the series. Through
the western wall of this apartment a doorway opened on the end of the
ledge and the western cove. This principal entrance is shown in plate
XLVIII. Its size is exceptional, it being about 6 feet high. A little
below the top there is a single stick across it, and a similar
contrivance was found in place in the openings in the tower, but it does
not occur in the opening in the cross wall. The same feature is found in
the modern pueblos, where the stick forms the support of a blanket
draped to close the opening.

  [Illustration: Plate XLIX
  Eastern Cove of Mummy Cave]

A little east of the doorway in the front wall there is a small opening
near the ground, through which can be seen what appears to be a roof. It
is but 2 feet above the ground, however, and very roughly constructed.
It consists of a layer of cedar logs; above this a layer of small
sticks, and above this again slabs of stone and mud. It occurs under a
narrow room or passage, shown on the plan, and seems to have been the
floor of that room rather than a roof of a space below.

Roofing or flooring beams project from the tower on three sides. They
are all rounded and carefully selected or matched. Those of the lower
story or first roof are 4½ inches in diameter, those of the story above
about 3 inches, while those of the roof, which occur in pairs, are about
2½ inches. They all, except those of the lower story, project about
2 feet from the wall. All the beams are from 18 inches to 2 feet apart,
and the roof is formed of canes or willow sticks less than half an inch
in diameter laid very neatly in patterns. The work here is by far the
best in any part of the canyon. The beams of the first floor are
represented only by the ends which pass through the walls, the middle
portion being gone.

The cliff wall forming one side of the rooms in the tower was coated
with a wash of yellowish clay to correspond with the other sides. It
shows bare rock at the points where the floors abutted against it. The
roof of the second story or middle room was 10 inches thick, and the
marks are on the same level as those of the rooms over the west of the
tower. There are also beam holes in the third story about 4 feet above
its floor, but extending only from the cliff out to its opening.

A singular feature occurs in the tower, which is difficult to explain.
The upper part of the third-story room was coated in the interior with
whitewash, which appears to have been carelessly applied. Small
quantities struck the setback at the floor level and spattered over the
wall below--that of the second-story room. In one case a considerable
quantity of the whitewash struck the top of a beam in what would be the
roof of the second story and scattered over the wall surface below it.
It is therefore clear that at the time when the whitewash was applied,
which was either at the time or subsequent to the habitation of the
rooms, there was no floor to the third-story room nor roof to the second
story. The stains of whitewash never go below the floor level of the
second story.

The house remains in the eastern cove are partly shown in plate XLIX,
which is from a photograph. The point of view is from the ledge in front
of the tower. The ruins rest on a ledge in the back of the cove formed
of debris well compacted and apparently consisting partly of sheep dung.
The rooms are small, sometimes three deep against the back of the cove,
and many of them could only have been used for storage. The principal
structure is the western kiva, with its chimney-like attachments. This
is described at length on pages 177, 179, 186, and 187. Adjoining it on
the east is another kiva, part of whose wall is still two stories high,
and clearly shown in the illustration. Some 50 or 60 feet to the east or
southeast there is another circular structure, which apparently had no
interior bench. The small semicircular structure shown on the plan and
in the illustration, which rests against and is roofed by the rock, is a
Navaho burial cist, and another of these cists, of large size, occurs
west of the principal kiva; but the ruin as a whole contains much less
evidence of Navaho work than those farther down the canyon.

Many of the walls are built entirely of small pieces of stone, not more
than 3 or 4 inches long by 2 inches wide and half an inch to an inch and
a half thick. This construction is especially noticeable in inner walls.
The joints are carefully plastered, evidently with the hand, but the mud
is seldom allowed to cover the stone. It appears to have been applied
externally, in pellets about the size of a walnut. The general thickness
of walls is about 15 inches, although on the intermediate ledge they are
over 2 feet, but some of the less important walls consist of a single
layer, 6 to 8 inches thick. Walls are sometimes seen here supported by
vertical timbers incorporated in them after the manner later described
at some length. Ends of logs project here and there from the debris on
the slope, but probably many of them are the débris of roofs.

The peculiar and anomalous features presented by the remains on the
intermediate ledge seem to require some explanation. This portion of the
ruin is not only different from the other portions, but different also
from anything else in the canyon, and the difference is not one of
degree only. Doubtless systematic excavation in the various parts of the
ruin would afford an explanation. In the absence of such work we can
only speculate on the problem.

The occurrence of two chimney-like shafts in connection with the
rectangular rooms west of the tower is significant. Nowhere else in the
canyons, except in the Casa Blanca ruin, do these structures occur, so
far as known, except in connection with circular kivas. As regards the
ruin named, it is almost certain that it was occupied in the historic
period, probably in the seventeenth century.

The division of the ruin into three separate parts, the absence of kivas
in the western cove, and the method of access to that portion all
attract attention. If there were monks or other Spaniards in the
settlement, the explanation would be plain; they and those of the
natives allied with them would occupy the central ledge, and the
anomalous features would be natural under the circumstances. Such a
hypothesis would explain also the source of the many unaboriginal
features which are found in other parts of the canyon, but there is no
direct evidence to support it. It should be mentioned, however, that the
walls here rest on about half an inch of substance which resembles
compacted sheep dung. If the substance is really such, the walls must
have been built within the historic period.

  [Illustration: Fig. 17--Ruin in a rock cove.]

At the point marked 48 on the map there is a ruin which resembles
somewhat in its location an example previously described (page 98). It
is situated in a cove in a jutting point of rock, forming part of the
talus slope, and is about 20 feet above the bottom, which it overlooks.
Figure 17 shows the character of the site, and figure 18 is a ground
plan. At the back of the cove a row of small rooms, five or six in
number, was built against the rock. In front of these there were two
kivas and perhaps other rooms. Only fragments of these now remain, but
it can still be seen that both kivas had interior benches, and that the
western one has been plastered with several successive coats--at least
four. There are no pictographs on the back wall, and but little
staining by smoke. The masonry is rather rough, consisting of large
stones, pretty well chinked with small spawls.

  [Illustration: Fig. 18--Ground plan of a ruin in a rock cove.]

Some of the walls were plastered. The western end of the ruin has been
partially restored by the Navaho and used for burial cists, and other
cists have been built on the site independent of the old walls, as shown
on the plan. Figure 19 is a ground plan of a ruin on a ledge near the
mouth of Del Muerto, at the point marked 15 on the map. It is situated
at the back of a considerable bay, directly opposite a large rock at the
mouth of Del Muerto, and overlooked the whole of the bottom land in the
bay. The houses were built on a bench or ledge, about 30 feet wide,
overhung by the cliff above and dropping down almost vertically to the
bottom land, about 40 feet below, but on the east access to the bench
was easy by a slope of talus extending up to it. The site was covered
with bowlders, and walls have been built over and under them. The
masonry is good, and was composed of larger stones than usual, carefully
chinked with spalls, the work being well done.

There were but 10 rooms on the ground, in addition to one circular kiva;
some of these rooms are too small for habitation, and one of them
appears to have been a rectangular kiva. On the same bench, about 100
feet westward, however, there are traces of other rooms, the walls of
which were very thin. The cliffs back of the ruin and for 200 feet west
of it are covered with pictographs in white and colors.

  [Illustration: Fig. 19--Ground plan of a ruin on a ledge.]

Near the center of that portion of the ruin shown on the ground plan
there is a large room which may have been a rectangular kiva. The walls
are over 2 feet thick in the first story, diminishing at the roof level
by a step or setback to the ordinary thickness of about a foot. These
walls, as usual in such structures, were about 2 feet thick; they are
slightly curved, the front wall markedly so, and the interior corners
are well rounded. No reason for this curvature is apparent, and it is
certainly not dictated by the occurrence of the rock over which the wall
is built, as only the point of this rock comes through the wall in the
western side of the front wall. There may have been an opening into the
room through the eastern wall connecting it with the room on that side,
as the masonry is there broken down; but this is doubtful, as the
eastern room itself has no exterior opening. It is more probable that
the large room was entered through the roof, for the thin wall of the
second story shows in front one side of a well-finished doorway.

Just outside of the heavy front wall there is a round hole in the
ground, the remains of a vertical shaft connected with the interior of
the room. The hole is about a foot in diameter, and is neatly plastered
inside, and appears to have been a chimney or a chimney-like structure
such as occur in connection with the kivas in other ruins. It will later
be discussed in detail.

The circular kiva occupies the western end of that part of the room
shown in the plan. It was 15 feet in diameter, and is exceptionally well
built. The wall is standing for about half of its circumference, and was
so neatly finished that the interior coating of plaster was apparently
omitted. There are no traces of inclosing rectangular walls; the
thickness of the kiva walls and the exceptionally large stones used in
parts of it suggest that the kiva stood alone. So far as the walls
remain standing, an interior bench can be traced, about 2 feet wide and
6 feet below the top of the outside wall. On the southeastern side, in
the interior, there is a buttress or projection, which terminates the
bench at this point.

  [Illustration: Fig. 20--Ground plan of ruin No. 31, Canyon de

The walls between the rectangular room described and the circular kiva
are thin and very irregularly laid out. In front of the rectangular room
and on the edge of the bench, which is here but a few feet above the
talus, a rather heavy wall has been built over the top of a rock, and
inside or to the north of it another wall has been placed, hardly 2 feet
distant. These walls are connected at the eastern end by a thin cross
wall, now but slightly above the ground surface and notched like a
doorway. Below the notch a slab of stone has been placed and was
apparently used as a step. The purpose of these walls is not clear, but
they may have constituted an entrance or passageway to the village. If
so, we have here a very efficient defensive expedient and a decided
anomaly in cliff-village architecture.

At the point marked 31 on the map there is a small ruin on a ledge about
150 feet above the bottom and difficult of access. The site overlooks
considerable areas of bottom land on both sides of the canyon, and was
probably connected with and formed part of a larger ruin on the same
ledge and east of it, which will next be described. On this site there
are remains of half a dozen rooms or more and of one circular kiva,
which was 20 feet in diameter. (See ground plan, figure 20.) The site
has been much filled up, and the kiva appears as a cylindrical
depression, flush with the ground outside, but 3 to 5 feet deep inside.
The walls are rather thin and smoothly plastered inside. On the south
side there is an opening extending down to the floor level and opening
directly on the sharply sloping rock. This feature will later be
discussed at some length. The walls to the west of the kiva are still 14
or 15 feet high, showing two stories, and were well constructed and
smoothly plastered. The interior of the kiva shows a number of
successive coats of plastering--at least eight.

  [Illustration: Fig. 21--Ground plan of ruin No. 32, Canyon de

Immediately above the last-mentioned ruin, and on the same ledge, occur
the remains of a large settlement, shown in plan in figure 21. It will
be noticed that here, as in some of the previous examples described, the
general arrangement consists of a row of rooms against the cliff, with
the kivas in front. There were at least 17 rooms in line, and there
may have been as many as 30 to 50 rectangular rooms in the village,
scattered over an area nearly 200 feet long by 65 feet wide, but not all
of this area was covered. Three kivas are still clearly shown.

This ruin is especially interesting on account of the site it occupies.
The walls were placed on sharply sloping rock and in some cases on
loose debris, and numerous expedients were resorted to to prevent them
from slipping down the slope. The fact that these expedients were not
successful makes them more interesting. Upright logs were inclosed in
the walls and anchored in holes drilled in the rock below; horizontal
logs were built into the masonry as ties and placed below it, and heavy
retaining walls were erected. These constructive expedients will later
be discussed at greater length.

The whole slope is more or less covered with debris, and there is no
doubt that this was at one time a considerable settlement. The cliff
walls near the east end show traces of two stories, and in one place of
three stories, which formerly rested against them. Moreover, the number
of successive coats of plaster in the kiva shows an extended occupancy,
an inference which is further supported by the variety of expedients
which were adopted to hold the walls in place.

The marked irregularity of the five eastern rooms as compared with the
regular series west of them will be noticed on the plan. These eastern
rooms must have been added at a period subsequent to the completion of
the others. The marks of a second and third story occur on the cliff
back of this cluster, and there is no doubt that it was an important
part of the settlement. West of the area shown on the plan traces of
walls occur on the slope and among the debris for a distance of over 100

Parts of three kivas can now be seen on the ground, and this was
probably the total number in the settlement. The fronts of all of them
have fallen out, notwithstanding various expedients that were employed
to hold them in place. The western wall of the western kiva is part of
the rectangular system and was apparently in place before the kiva was
built. A triangular block which formed the junction in front of this
kiva and the central one has slipped down and new walls were afterward
built to restore the kivas to their original shape. The central kiva has
an interior bench, which was, however, added after the structure was
completed, and in fact after the front had been replaced. The second
falling off of the front has left a fine section of the wall, and the
changes which have taken place are plainly shown in it.

That the interior bench was added long after the original kiva had been
completed and occupied is shown by the occurrence between it and the
wall of nearly an inch of plaster composed of separate coatings, each
smoke-blackened, varying from the thickness of a piece of heavy paper
up to an eighth of an inch or more. If one of these coatings were added
each year, twelve or fifteen years at least must have elapsed between
the building of the kiva and the construction of the interior bench. The
original floor of the kiva was composed of a layer of mud mortar about
an inch thick, and extends through under the bench, the top of which is
about 3 feet above it; Under this floor there is a straight wall at
right angles to the cliff and extending some 4 feet toward the center of
the kiva; what is left of it is just under the floor level.

There is a suggestion in this that the site of the kiva was originally
occupied by rectangular rooms, and there is a further suggestion, in the
end sections referred to, that the kiva had at some period fallen into
decay and was subsequently rebuilt. All this occurred before the first
falling out of the front.

The section shows that the original walls were not so thick as the
present ones, and that there was formerly a slight setback in the wall
of 2½ or 3 inches at the level of the present bench, reducing the
thickness of the wall by that amount. The original outside wall on the
east extends only 6 inches above this setback. The upper portion of the
exterior wall was added at the same time that the bench was constructed
and is the same thickness as the lower part of the original wall. Figure
22 will make clear the changes which have taken place.

There was a recess of some kind in the original wall on the east and a
similar one on the west side, but they have been filled up by the later
additions. The upright logs which were built into the masonry are
incorporated in the older walls. Under the floor, and apparently under
the walls themselves, there is a layer nearly a foot thick of loose
débris consisting of cornstalks, corn leaves, ashes, and loose dirt.
The floor of the east circular room, which still covers about half the
interior, rests similarly on a layer of ashes. The expedients employed
to hold the front walls of these kivas in place are later discussed at
some length.

  [Illustration: Fig. 22--Section of a kiva wall.]

Figure 23 shows the character of site occupied by a village ruin of some
size situated in the first cove in the cliff wall below the mouth of
Canyon del Muerto. The cliff here is about 300 feet high and the ruin
is located on a ledge in a cove about 70 feet above the stream bed.
Although seemingly very difficult to reach, the ruin is of comparatively
easy access without artificial aid. The cavity was caused apparently by
the occurrence of a pocket of material softer than that about it, and
this softer material has weathered out, showing very strongly the lines
of cross bedding, which, in the massive rock on either side, have been
almost entirely obliterated. The strata are inclined at an angle and the
edges project from a few inches to about a foot, forming a series of
little benches tilted up at an angle of about 45 degrees. By the
exercise of some agility, one can ascend along these benches. About
halfway between the site of the ruin and the stream bed there is a
narrow horizontal bench, and again halfway between this bench and the
ruin there is another, about 55 feet above the stream. Access to the
ruins is greatly facilitated by these intermediate ledges.

The bench on which the ruin occurs is about 250 feet long and generally
about 20 feet wide, the surface being almost flat. There are structures
on the extreme northern and on the extreme southern ends, but a
considerable part of the intermediate area was not occupied. Reference
to the ground plan (figure 24) will show that most of the buildings
occur on the northern half of the ledge, which was fairly well filled by
them. Many of the walls in this portion are apparently underlaid by a
foot or more of ashes, sheep dung, domestic refuse, cornhusks, etc.

  [Illustration: Fig. 23--Ruin No. 10 on a ledge in a cove.]

The room which is shown in the center of the plan, at the southern end
of the main group, stood alone and was the largest rectangular room in
the village. It covered an area 15 feet by 9 feet inside the walls,
which are now 5 or 6 feet high. The masonry is very good, although
chinking with spalls was but slightly employed to finish the exterior;
inside it is more apparent. The western wall was built over the edge of
the sloping rock forming the back of the cove, as shown on the plan, and
this rock projects below the wall into the room. There were apparently
no openings in the walls, except some very small ones on the eastern
side, near the floor level. In the southern wall a piece of rough timber
was inlaid in the masonry, about 5 feet above the floor, flush with the
wall inside and extending nearly through it. This piece of timber was
crooked and its bend determined the wall line, which is bowed outward,
as shown on the ground plan. This feature will be discussed later.

There were two circular kivas in the village, one of which was unusually
small, being only about 10 feet in diameter north and south; the
east-and-west diameter is a trifle smaller. There was apparently no
bench in the interior, but on the western or northwestern side there
is a bench-like recess of about a foot which occupies 7 feet of the
circumference. The whole interior was covered with a number of washes
of clay, applied one over another, forming a coating now nearly
three-quarters of an inch thick. This is cracked and peeled off
in places, and in the section eighteen coats, generally about one
thirty-second of an inch thick, may be counted. Each coat or plastering
is defined by a film of smoke-blackened surface.

  [Illustration: Fig. 24--Ground plan of ruin No. 10.]

On a level about 2 feet above the bench and about 5 feet above the
present ground surface, there seems to have been some kind of roof. The
stones here project into the interior slightly beyond the wall surface,
and the plaster seems to curve inward. This point or level is from 6 to
18 inches below the top of the wall, and here there are remains of
occasional small sticks, about an inch in diameter, which projected into
the kiva. They are irregularly disposed and probably had no connection
with the roof, but there are no traces of heavier timbers above them. In
the interior a white band with points completely encircled the kiva. The
top of this band is about a foot above the present ground surface and
about 18 inches below the bench on the western side. It is illustrated
in figure 72.

The exterior wall of the kiva was very roughly laid up, and some of the
lower stones were set on edge, which is rather an anomalous feature.
There is no evidence that the structure was ever inclosed in rectangular
walls, as was the usual custom; in fact, the occurrence of other walls
near it would apparently preclude such an arrangement. The wall which
runs north or northwest from the kiva, joining it to the cliff wall
behind, is pierced by a doorway some feet above the ground, and in front
of or below this doorway there is a buttress or step of solid masonry,
shown on the plan. There was apparently an open space between this
doorway and the next wall to the north. The room entered through the
doorway was very small, and its roof, formed by the overhanging cliff,
is much blackened by smoke.

The main or north kiva was 15 feet in diameter on the floor, with a
bench a foot wide extending around it. The external diameter is over 20
feet. The interior was decorated by bands and dots in white, which are
described at length in another place (page 178). The roof was 5½ feet
above the bench, and there is a suggestion that it rested on a series of
beams extending north and south, but this is not certain.

On the southeastern side, at the point where the kiva comes nearest the
edge of the cliff, there was a narrow opening or doorway not more than
15 inches wide. This was the only entrance to the interior, except
through the roof, and it opens directly on the edge of the cliff, so
that it is very difficult, although not impossible, to pass it. In front
of the opening a little platform was built on the sloping edge of the
cliff, as though entrance was had from the lower bench by artificial
means, but it is more probable that this feature is all that remains of
a chimney-like structure.

Above this kiva there was apparently a living room, the walls of which,
where they still remain on the north and west sides, were approximately
straight, but the corners were rounded. The roof was formed by the
overhanging cliff and the interior walls were whitewashed. The kiva
walls were about 18 inches thick, but on the west side, in the small
room between the kiva and the cliff, the masonry is much heavier, the
lower part extending into the room a foot farther than the upper. This
is caused by the wall of the second-story room above setting in toward
the east or center of the kiva. This upper wall was supported by a beam,
part of which is still in place. The small room behind is much blackened
by smoke.

The exterior wall of the main kiva on the northwest side is very rough.
On the northeast and southeast, however, it is covered by straight walls
which are well finished. The western end of the north wall is joined to
the exterior circular wall of the kiva, at the point shown on the plan,
by a short flying wall whose purpose is not clear. It extends to what
may have been the roof of the kiva, but underneath it is open. The
triangular cavity formed by it is too small to permit the passage of a
person, and was available only from the second story.

The site of these ruins commands an extensive prospect, including
several small areas of good bottom land, one of which lies directly in
front of it; but the number of other ruins in the cove suggests that
there was once a much larger area of bottom land here, and this
suggestion is supported by the presence of several large cottonwood
trees, now standing out in the midst of the sand, in the bed of the
stream, where these trees never grow. Some of these trees are not yet
entirely dead, indicating that the change in the bed of the stream was a
recent one. Against the foot of the talus, just above the ruin, there is
a narrow strip of bottom land, about 3 feet above the stream bed, and on
it a single tree, still alive, but inclined at an angle. In the stream
bed, above and below the ruin, there are large trees, of which only
one or a few branches are still alive. The position of the cove with
reference to the stream bed made the bottom lands here especially
subject to erosion when the stream assumed its present channel and they
were gradually worn away.

The western end of the ledge was occupied by a structure whose use at
first sight is not apparent. The wall, as shown on the plan, is curved,
very thick and heavy, and built partly over the sloping rock forming the
back of the cave. The front wall is 3 feet thick, and its top, now
level, is about 5 feet above a narrow bench in front of it. There is no
doorway or other opening into it, and access into its interior was had
over the steep sloping rock to the north by means of hand-holes in the
rock. These are shown in plate L. The interior appears to have been

This structure measures 15 by 5 feet inside, there being no wall on the
north, as the east wall merges into the sloping rock. The foot-holes in
the rock, before referred to, are at this end, nearest the village, and
appear to be in several series. The structure is so situated that the
sun shines on it only a few hours each day, and it seems more than
probable that it was a reservoir. The bed of the stream, the channel
followed in low water, sweeps against the base of the cliff below this
point, and by carrying water 20 feet it would be directly beneath and
about 50 feet below it. Finally, the cliff wall above this point is
decorated with pictographs of tadpoles and other water symbols in common
use among the pueblos, and these do not occur elsewhere on this site. In
the southwestern corner of the structure, near the bottom, there was an
opening about 18 inches high, which was carefully filled up from the
inside and plastered. This may have been an outlet by which the water
was discharged when the reservoir was cleaned out. The wall has caved in
slightly above it. The mud mortar used in building this structure and
the other walls was necessarily brought from below.

  [Illustration: Plate L
  Reservoir in Ruin No. 10 ]

About 25 feet east of the reservoir there are remains of a small single
room, rectangular, with a circular addition, shown on the ground plan.
The walls are well chinked and well constructed, the mud mortar being
used when about the consistency of modeling clay. In front of this room,
about 5 feet distant and on the edge of the sloping rock, a hole has
been pecked into the solid rock of the ledge. This hole is 12 inches
wide on top, slightly tapering, 10 inches deep on the upper side, and
4 inches on the lower. Twelve feet to the northeast there is a similar
hole, and below it, distant 10 inches, another, and beyond this others,
distributed generally along the foot of the sloping rock forming the
back of the ledge, but sometimes farther out on the flat floor. Probably
these holes mark the sites of upright posts supporting a drying scaffold
or frame, the horizontal poles of which extended backward to the wall of
the cliff.

  [Illustration: Fig. 25--Oven-like structure in ruin No. 10.]

Near the center of the ledge, at the point shown on the plan, there are
some remains which strongly suggest the Mexican oven. The bed rock,
which is here nearly flat, was removed to a depth of about 4 inches over
a rectangular area measuring 4 feet north, and south by 3½ feet. There
were natural fissures in the rock on the north and west sides which left
clean edges. The southern edge appears to have been smashed off with a
rock. The eastern side required no dressing, as it was at a slightly
lower level, and it was to reach this level that the rock was removed.
In the rectangular space described there was a circular, dome-shape
structure, about 3 feet in diameter, composed of mud and sticks, with a
scant admixture of small stones. This is shown in figure 25, and in plan
in figure 26. The walls were about 3 inches thick, and from their slope
the structure could not have been over 3 feet high. The mud which
composed the walls was held together by thin sticks or branches,
incorporated in it and curved with the wall--apparently some kind of
a vine twisted together and incorporated bodily. On the edge of the
rectangular space there is a drilled hole, 3 inches in diameter, shown
in the illustration. Three feet to the south there is another, 6 inches
in diameter.

If this structure was a dome-shape oven, and it is difficult to imagine
it anything else, its occurrence here is important. It is well known
that the dome-shape oven, which is very common in all the pueblos, in
some villages being numbered by hundreds, is not an aboriginal feature,
but was borrowed outright from the Mexicans. If the structure above
described was an oven, it is clear evidence of the occupancy of these
ruins within the historic period--it might almost be said within the
last century. No other structure of the kind was found in the canyon,
however, and it should be stated that the ovens of the pueblos are as
a rule rather larger in size than this and usually constructed of small
stones and mud--sometimes of regular masonry plastered. There is a
suggestion here, which is further borne out by the chimney-like
structures to be discussed later, that only the idea of these structures
was brought here, without detailed knowledge of how to carry it out--as
if, for example, they were built by novices from description only.

Figure 27 is the ground plan of a small village ruin situated at the
mouth of Del Muerto at the point marked 16 on the map. The site, which
is an excellent one, but rather difficult of access, overlooks the
bottom land at the junction of the canyons and a long strip on the
opposite side, together with a considerable area above. The approach is
over smooth sandstone inclined at such an angle as to make it difficult
to maintain a footing, but the ruin can be reached without artificial

  [Illustration: Fig. 26--Plan of oven-like structure.]

The village was not of large extent and contained but one kiva, but the
walls were well constructed and the masonry throughout is exceptionally
good. The exterior wall of the western rooms was constructed of small
stones neatly laid. The eastern room of the two was built after the
other, and entrance was had by an almost square opening 2 feet from
the ground. To facilitate ingress, a notch was dug in the wall about
8 inches from the ground. There was no communication between the rooms,
the western room being entered by a small doorway on the western side,
about 8 inches from the ground, 3 feet high and 14 inches wide. There
was no plastering in the interior of these rooms.

  [Illustration: Plate LI
  Small Village, Ruin No. 16, Canyon De Chelly]

The kiva is 15 feet in diameter on the floor, and about 23 feet in its
exterior diameter. The walls are 3 feet thick above the bench level and
4 feet thick below it. The interior was plastered with a number of
successive coats, probably four or five in all; but although the wall is
still standing to a height of 4 feet or more above the bench, there are
gaps on the eastern and western sides which render it impossible to say
whether doorways were there or not. The eastern break exposes the
western side of the inclosing wall, which is smoothly finished as though
there were originally a recess here. There are rectangular inclosing
walls on the east and south; the northern side was formed by the cliff
against which the kiva rests, while on the west there are no traces of
an inclosing wall. The triangular spaces formed by the inclosing walls
on the northeast and southeast sides of the kiva were not filled up in
the customary manner, but appear to have been preserved as storerooms.
The southeastern space was connected with the kiva by a narrow doorway,
shown in the plan, and another doorway, completely sealed, led from this
space into the room adjoining on the east. The latter doorway had not
been used for a long time prior to the abandonment of the ruin, and its
opening into the rectangular room was carefully concealed from that side
by several successive coats of plaster.

  [Illustration: Fig. 27--Ground plan of a small village, ruin No. 16.]

On the south side of the kiva and outside the rectangular wall is a
square buttress or chimney-like construction, 4 by 3 feet, inclosing a
shaft 10 by 5 inches. This feature will be discussed in another place.
It was added after the wall was completed, and embedded in it, about a
foot from the ground, is a heavy beam about 5 inches in diameter. Plate
LI, which shows the whole front of the village, will make this feature
clear. The beam projects from the kiva wall at or under the floor
level, and seems to have no reference to the shaft, which is, however,
shouldered to accommodate it. Similar beams project from the walls to
the east, about 8 inches above the bed rock.

In the room east of the kiva no doorway was found. The walls are still
intact to a minimum height of 6 feet from the floor, except in the
southeast corner, where they are 3 feet. The opening described, which
occurs in the southwest corner of the room, was 4 feet from the floor;
and in the southeast corner, where the wall is broken down, there now
are remains of one side of a similar opening on the same level. No
stains of smoke are found on the exterior coat of plaster in this room,
but the coats underneath were much blackened. The room north of the one
described, and adjoining the kiva, was also without a doorway, unless it
existed in the northeast corner, next the cliff, where no trace of walls
now remains. The walls of this room, now 6 feet high, were plastered and
show old smoke stains. The wall on the western side of the kiva is very
rough, as though at one time another wall existed outside of it. This is
shown in plate LII, which shows also the débris, consisting of ashes,
sheep dung, and refuse, well compacted, upon which the wall rests.

  [Illustration: Fig. 28--Ruins on a large rock.]

West of the kiva and on the extreme edge of the cliff are the remains of
two small apartments, a trifle below the surface of the ledge and with a
3-foot wall on the south. These are too small for habitations, and were
used probably for the storage of corn. About 100 feet west of the group
described, on the same bench, there are remains of a large room, divided
into two, and of quite rough construction. It contains several Navaho
dead and may be of Navaho origin.

  [Illustration: Plate LII
  Walls Resting on Refuse in Ruin No. 16]

A type of site which is abundant in the San Juan country and is found in
other regions, but is very rare in this, is shown in figure 28. This
example, which occurs in the upper part of Del Muerto, is the only one
of its kind in the canyons. A large mass of rock, smoothed and rounded
by atmospheric erosion, but still connected with the cliff at one point,
juts out into the bottom, a large area of which is commanded by it. At
three different levels there are remains of rooms, the group on the
summit being the largest. It is doubtful whether any of these remains
represent permanent villages, but it is possible that the uppermost one
did. It is therefore included in this place.

  [Illustration: Fig. 29--Ground plan of ruins No. 49]

At the point marked 49 on the map there is a ruin or group of ruins
which presents some anomalous features. Figure 29 shows in detail the
distribution of the remains. The rooms were located on narrow benches in
the cliff, the principal part on a high, narrow bench, 40 or 50 feet
above the top of the talus and over 300 feet above the canyon bottom.
Access to the upper ledge from the top of the talus is exceedingly
difficult, requiring a climb over almost vertical rock for 40 feet.
Above the ledge there is massive sandstone, but below it for 100 feet or
more there is an area of cross bedding, and the rock has an almost
vertical cleavage, apparently standing upright in thin slabs 2 to 6
inches thick. Access was had by aid of the rough projections of the
slabs, aided where necessary by hand and foot holes pecked in the rock.
At several places little platforms of masonry have been built.

At the northern end of the upper ledge there are five small cells
occupying its whole width, and whose front wall follows the winding
ledge. The walls are about 5 feet high, and their tops bear the marks of
the poles which carried the roof. There are no exterior openings, nor is
there any evidence of a means of communication between the rooms; but in
the second room from the south two stones project from the wall inside,
near the southeastern corner, forming rude steps, doubtless to a
trapdoor in the roof. These cells could hardly have been used as
habitations. The floors are covered with many lumps of clay, which
apparently formed part of the roof.

To the south of this cluster of cells there was a large room of
irregular shape on a level about 8 feet higher. The remainder of the
ledge, which is about on the same level as this large room, is almost
covered with large bowlders, but at several points on it other remains
of walls occur. The largest room of all was near its center. It was
built against the cliff, which formed one of its sides, and measured
about 16 by 6 feet. There are no evidences of any partitions or roof,
the latter probably being formed by the overhanging rock. As the room
was built partly on the sloping rock, the floor is very uneven. It could
hardly have been used as a habitation, but may have been employed for
the storage of water.

The southern end of the lower ledge merges into the head of the talus,
the northern part drops down by a sharply sloping and in places an
almost vertical wall of about 30 feet; thence it descends to the bottom
by a long slope of bare rock, generally passable on foot. The lower
ledge is about 50 feet above the upper. Upon it are scattered the
remains of a few rooms of the same general character as those above, but
smaller. Many of these have been utilized for modern Navaho burials, and
perhaps some of them were constructed for that purpose. If these rooms
were used as habitations, it must have been under very peculiar
circumstances; moreover, the site is hardly suited for such a purpose,
having the sunshine less than half of the day. In this respect it is

At the southern end of the ledge there is a large angular bowlder, one
edge of which rests against the cliff wall and is free from the ground.
Under this the walls of a small room can be seen. The cliff formed one
side of the room and the bowlder acted as a roof. On the extreme
northern end of the ledge, 200 feet distant from the nearest room, there
are remains of a structure standing alone. The masonry is much rougher
than that of the other rooms, and, although the walls are now about
6 feet high, there is no evidence of any doorway or opening into the

On the surface of the sloping rock, at this point nearly flat, there are
traces of a circular kiva 18 or 20 feet in diameter. These traces occur
at a point about midway between the southern and northern ends of the
lower ledge and some 30 feet below it. The cliff walls, both of the
lower and upper ledges, are covered with pictographs in white, red, and

  [Illustration: Fig. 30--Ruin on an almost inaccessible site.]

The location and character of this site and the character of the remains
suggest that most if not all of the rooms which can now be traced were
used for storage only. For this purpose the site is well adapted. But
the remains of the circular kiva at the foot of the lower ledge show
plainly that there were at one time some habitations here. Doubtless
these were located on the smooth rock at the foot of the cliff, and the
disappearance of all traces of walls may be due to the subsequent use of
the material by the Navaho for the construction of burial cists, in
which the site abounds. There still remains on the ground a fair amount
of broken stone, suitable for building, but no lines of wall are now

Figure 30 shows one of the most inaccessible sites in the canyon. It
occurs at the point marked 62 on the map, where there is a narrow ledge
nearly 400 feet above the stream. The approach is over bare rock,
sharply sloping, but passable at two points by an active man accustomed
to climbing. Both of these points are near the western or left-hand end
of the ruin; toward the right the rock becomes vertical. Immediately
below this ruin there are the remains of a large settlement on a low
spur near the stream, now much obliterated, and above and below it on
suitable sites there were a number of small settlements which may have
been connected with it.

  [Illustration: Fig. 31--Ground plan of a large ruin in Canyon del

There were a number of rooms scattered along the ledge which appear to
have been used as habitations. The overhanging cliff is so close that in
a number of cases it formed the roof of the room, and the whole site was
an inconvenient and dangerous one. The rooms on the east rest on a large
block which has split off from the wall since the walls were built, and
now hangs apparently ready to drop at any moment.

At the time this site was inhabited access was had over the smooth
rounded rock on the west. Here hand and foot holes have been pecked in
the steep places, but as the rock is much exposed to atmospheric erosion
these holes are now almost obliterated. After ascending the rock the
village was entered through a doorway in a wall of exceptional
thickness, shown on the left of the drawing. The room which was entered
through this doorway appears to have been placed at this point to
command the entrance to the village. The wall is exceptionally heavy and
was pierced with oblique loopholes commanding a narrow bench immediately
in front of it. This appears to have been a purely defensive expedient,
and as such is unique.

The site commands an extensive outlook over the canyon bottom, including
several areas of cultivable land, and while it may have been occupied as
a regular village, such occupancy could not have been long continued.
Altogether the site and the character of the house remains are anomalous
and doubtless resulted from anomalous conditions.

  [Illustration: Fig. 32--Ground plan of a small ruin in Canyon del

Figure 31 is a ground plan of a large ruin in Del Muerto. It occupied
almost the whole available area of the ledge on which it is situated,
and over 40 rooms can now be made out on the ground, in addition to 3
circular kivas. The settlement may have comprised between 80 and 100
rooms, which would accommodate 15 to 20 families. The size is very
unusual, and the presence of but 3 kivas would indicate that the
families were closely related. There are other examples of this
character in the canyons, but not so large as the one illustrated.

  [Illustration: Fig. 33--Ground plan of a small ruin.]

Figure 32 illustrates a type which is more common. Here we have the
usual arrangement of rooms along the cliff, with a kiva in front of
them. There were altogether not over 10 or 12 rooms, and they were
probably occupied by one family. Figure 33 shows a kind rather more
abundant than the last, and consisting like it of one circular kiva with
rooms back of and between it and the cliff. Ruins of this type are
generally well protected by an overhanging cliff. Figure 34 is another
example, in which only three rectangular rooms can be made out. The site
here is almost covered with large bowlders. All these examples occur in
Del Muerto.

  [Illustration: Fig. 34--Plan of a ruin of three rooms.]

  [Illustration: Fig. 35--Ground plan of a small ruin, with two kivas.]

Figure 35 is a ground plan of a small ruin which occurs at the point
marked 36 on the map. It is situated in a shallow cove at the head of
the talus, 200 or 300 feet above the bottom, and is of comparatively
easy access. There is but a small amount of cultivable bottom land
immediately below it, but it commands extensive areas on the opposite
site of the canyon and in the lower part of a branch on that side. There
are but few remains of rooms other than parts of two kivas, but there is
no question that there was at one time a considerable number here. Both
kivas had interior benches, and were of small size, plastered in the
interior. The masonry is fair to good. On the highest point of the
bowlder shown on the right of the plan there is a fragment of compacted
sheep dung and soil, which is now 6 feet above the ground. It is all
that remains of a layer of some thickness which must have been deposited
when the surface was filled up to or nearly to the top of the rock.
Possibly there was a wall outside and only the intermediate space was

  [Illustration: Fig. 36--Ground plan of a small ruin, No. 44.]

  [Illustration: Fig. 37--Ground plan of a ruin on a rocky site.]

Figure 36 is the ground plan of a somewhat similar ruin which occurs at
the point marked 44 on the map. It is situated on the top of the talus,
against the cliff, and commands a fine outlook over the cultivable lands
in the cove below it and on the canyon bottom proper. There are but few
wall remains, but two kivas can still be made out. There is no ledge
here, and the walls were built on loose debris of rocks and talus. The
builders had some trouble in holding the walls in place, and only partly
succeeded in doing so. About one-half of the principal kiva is standing,
showing masonry composed of exceptionally large stones, roughly chinked.
The other, or western kiva, was similarly constructed, and both had
interior benches. The front of the western kiva fell out, the builders
being unable to tie it or to hold it in place on its loose foundation,
and other walls were constructed inside of it, as shown on the plan.
There were other walls outside the main kiva, apparently rectangular
inclosing walls. This example is interesting because the masonry was
constructed on a foundation of loose debris, not on bed rock, and the
knowledge possessed by the builders was not sufficient to enable them to
overcome the natural difficulties of the site. Although ultimately the
village had to be abandoned as a failure, it was certainly occupied for
some years, and this occupancy suggests that there was some strong
objection to the lower part of the canyon. It illustrates, moreover, the
importance which was attached to a command or outlook over extensive
cultivable areas, as to obtain such an outlook the builders were content
to occupy even such an unsuitable site as the one described.

Figure 37 shows a small ruin similar to those described, but located on
a site almost covered with large bowlders. The principal structure now
remaining is a circular kiva, which, contrary to the usual plan, was
placed close up against the cliff; possibly the cliff formed part of the
back wall. Large bowlders so closely hemmed in the structure that there
was neither space nor necessity for an inclosing wall. The kiva was
benched for about half of its circumference.

Under the large bowlder to the right of the kiva a complete room had
been built, with a doorway of the usual type through the front wall.
Scattered remnants of other walls may be seen here and there, but none
show well-defined rooms. Petroglyphs are quite numerous, and one small
bowlder to the left of and next to the kiva is covered with cups, dots,
and carvings. It is shown in figure 38.

  [Illustration: Fig. 38--Rock with cups and petroglyphs]

Figure 39 shows a ruin where the site was not so restricted. One
well-defined room and two kivas still remain, and there are traces of
other chambers. The main kiva formed part of a compact little group of
rooms, of which it occupied the front, and appears to have been inclosed
by a curved wall of rough construction. A curved inclosing wall is an
anomalous feature, and it is not at all certain that it occurs here, as
the wall is so much broken down that its lines can not now be clearly
made out. Excavation would doubtless determine this, as the whole site
has been much filled up with sand and loose earth.

The second kiva, which was about the same size as the first, was
situated some little distance from the other, and on the outer edge of
the little platform or bench on which the settlement was located. It
still shows about half of its wall. The rectangular room near the main
kiva still stands to a height of 3 and 4 feet. The wall nearest the kiva
is pierced by a number of small openings, and by a neatly finished
double-notched doorway, which is illustrated in another place (figure

The whole front of the site has been filled up to a probable depth of
several feet, and a number of Navaho burials have been made on it. These
are shown on the plan by shaded spots. Owing to the soft ground
underneath, it was easier to excavate a hole and wall it up than to
construct the regular surface cist, and the former plan was followed.

Although many of the sites are covered with bowlders and blocks of stone
fallen from above, which often occur among and even over walls, close
inspection generally shows that the walls were constructed after the
rocks fell. There are two instances, however, which are doubtful, and in
one (shown in figure 40) it appears that large blocks of rock have
fallen since the walls were constructed. Such falls of rock are not
uncommon now in the fall and winter months, when frost and seepage from
the melting snow sometimes split off huge fragments.

  [Illustration: Fig. 39--Ground plan of a ruin in Canyon de Chelly.]

The site mentioned occurs at the point marked 47 on the map. It is in a
cove under a mass of rock which juts out from the cliff, and is about 30
feet above the bottom, on the edge of a slope of loose rock which
extends some distance above it. At the top of the talus, over 200 feet
above, there is another ruin, which was probably only an outlook, as no
trace of a kiva can be found, and it is possible that the lower site was
connected with and formed part of the upper one. The lower site
contained a circular kiva, only a small portion of which now remains,
and the ground is covered with blocks of rock which must have fallen
since the walls were built. They appear to have fallen quite recently.
It can still be seen that the kiva had an interior bench, and that there
was a room, or perhaps rooms, between it and the back of the cove; but
beyond this nothing can now be made out.

  [Illustration: Fig. 40--Site showing recent fall of rock.]

There are many favorable sites in the branch canyons, but not many of
them are occupied, possibly because in the upper parts of these canyons
the bottom land is of small area and is sometimes rough, being composed
of numerous small hillocks. The flat bottom lands of the canyon proper
are much easier to cultivate, but the sites in the side canyons offered
much better facilities for defense. Figure 41 shows the plan of a ruin
which occurs at the point marked 69 on the map, on the western side of a
branch canyon through which passes the trail to Fort Defiance. It is
situated in a shallow cove at the top of the talus and overlooks an
extensive area of fine bottom land below it. At the eastern end there is
a single room about 10 feet long; its front wall extends up to the
overhanging rock, which forms the roof of the room. A small cist has
been built against it on the west.

  [Illustration: Fig. 41--Ruin No. 69, in a branch canyon.]

About 60 feet west, on the same ledge, there are remains of other rooms
which rested probably on the talus. Several rooms can be made out, but
only one shows standing walls. This is on the western end, and the walls
are now about 5 feet high. Four feet from the top of the wall there is a
clear line of demarcation extending horizontally across it. Below this
line the masonry consists of large flat slabs of rock laid in mud
mortar, which was used nearly dry and stuffed into the cracks to some
extent. Above the line the stones were carefully selected and the work
was well done, the whole being finished by a thin coat of plaster. There
is no opening in the lower part, but in the upper part there is a neatly
finished doorway 3 feet high and slightly tapering. The bottom of this
opening extends 2 inches below the line, and the lintel is composed of a
large slab of stone a trifle wider than the thickness of the wall, but
fitted flush on the outside.

  [Illustration: Fig. 42--Ground plan of a small ruin in Canyon del

On a bench about 100 feet higher than the ruin described there are two
small rooms, extending up to the overhanging rock above them. These
rooms, which may be of Navaho origin, were reached by means of a narrow
ledge extending from the top of a slope of loose rock and debris about
300 yards to the southward, or up the canyon.

Figure 42 is a ground plan of a small ruin in Del Muerto in which the
usual preponderance of rectangular rooms is illustrated. The site was
restricted, but there is an apparent attempt to carry out the usual
arrangement of a row of rooms against the cliff, with a kiva in front.
Probably only three of the rooms shown were used as habitations. The
plan of the kiva, which occurs in the center, was somewhat marred by a
large bowlder, which must have projected into it, but apparently no
attempt was made to dress off the projecting point.

  [Illustration: Fig. 43--Ground plan of a small ruin.]

Figure 43 is the plan of a ruin located on a more open site. Only a few
walls now remain, but there is no doubt that at one time more of the
site was covered than now appears. There are remains of two, and perhaps
of three, circular kivas.

  [Illustration: Fig. 44--Plan of a ruin with curved inclosing wall.]

Figure 44 shows a ruin in which the plan is somewhat more elaborated.
There are remains of several well-defined rooms, and two kivas are still
fairly well preserved. The ledge is narrow and the rooms are stretched
along it, with kivas at either end. That on the east was benched nearly
all around its interior, and the outside inclosing wall, on the east,
apparently follows the curve. An example in which this feature occurs
has been mentioned above (page 138). It is very rare, but in this case
the evidence is clearer than in the one previously described. The
western kiva, somewhat smaller than the other, was also benched, and had
an exterior shaft, like those mentioned above and later described at

  [Illustration: Fig. 45--Ground plan of ruin No. 34.]

Figure 45 is a plan of a small ruin of the same type, which occurs in
the middle region of De Chelly. It occupies the site marked 34 on the
map, and is situated in a niche in a deep cove, where the outlook is
almost completely obscured by a large sand dune in front of it. It
comprised one circular kiva and four rectangular rooms, but, contrary to
the usual result, the latter are fairly well preserved, while the former
is almost completely obliterated. This may be due to the use of the
rectangular rooms as sites for Navaho burial cists, of which there are
no fewer than six here, and possibly the kiva walls furnished the
necessary building material for the construction of the cists. The old
masonry is of good quality, the outside wall being formed of selected
stones of medium size, well laid and carefully chinked. Most of the
walls were plastered inside. In a cleft in the rock to the right of this
ruin there is a kind of cave, with foot-holes leading up the rock to it,
and quite difficult of access. It formerly may have been used for
storage, but at present contains only some remains of Navaho burials.


Ruins comprised in the class of cliff outlooks, or farming shelters, are
by far the most numerous in the canyon. They were located on various
kinds of sites, but always with reference to some area of cultivable
land which they overlooked, and seldom, if ever, was the site selected
under the influence of the defensive motive. It is not to be understood
that such motive was wholly absent; it may have been present in some
cases, but the dominating motive was always convenience to some adjacent
area of cultivable land.

The separation of this class of ruins from the preceding village ruins,
while clear and definite enough in the main, is far from absolute. The
sole criterion we have is the presence or absence of the kiva, as the
sites occupied are essentially the same; but this test is in a general
way sufficient. It is possible that in certain cases the kiva is so far
obliterated as to be no longer distinguishable, but the number of cases
in which this might have occurred is comparatively small. The kivas, as
a rule, were more solidly constructed than the other rooms, and, as the
preceding ground plans show, sometimes survived when the rectangular
rooms connected with them have entirely disappeared.

  [Illustration: Fig. 46--Ground plan of cliff outlook No. 35.]

Figure 46 is the plan of an outlook in the same cove as the last example
of village ruin illustrated, and only 200 or 300 yards south of it. It
may have been connected with that ruin, but could not in itself have
been a village, as there are no traces of a kiva on the site, and hardly
room enough for one on the bench proper. At the extreme northern end
there are traces of walls on the rocks at a lower level.

  [Illustration: Fig. 47--Plan of a cliff outlook.]

The walls which were at right angles to the cliff were not carried back
to it after the usual manner, but stopped about 3 feet from it, and the
rooms were closed by a back wall running parallel to the cliff, and
about 3 feet from it. This wall rises to a height of about 4 feet before
it meets the overhanging cliff, and consequently there is a long narrow
passageway, about 3 feet high and 3 feet wide on the bottom, between it
and the cliff. A small man might wriggle through, but with difficulty.

The ruin commands a fine outlook over the cove. The masonry is good,
being composed of selected stone well chinked with small spalls, and
sometimes with bits of clay pressed in with the fingers.

Figure 47 shows a ruin located at the point marked 37 on the map. There
is a high slope of talus here, the top of which is flat and of
considerable area.

The ruin is invisible from below in its present condition, but the site
commands a fine outlook over several considerable areas of bottom land.
The walls are now much obliterated and worked over by the Navaho, but
the remains are scattered over quite an extensive area and may have been
at one time an extensive settlement; however, no traces of a kiva can
now be seen. Marks on the cliff show that some of the houses had been
three stories high. Some places on the cliff, which were apparently
back-walls of rooms, were plastered and coated with white, and there are
many pictographs on the rock. The masonry is of fair quality, but the
stones were laid with more mortar than usual.

  [Illustration: Fig. 48--Plan of cliff ruin No. 46.]

Figure 48 is a ground plan of a ruin which occurs at the point marked 46
on the map. It is situated in a cove in the rock at the top of the
talus, 300 or 400 feet above the bottom, and immediately above the
rectangular single room described and illustrated on page 151. It
commands an extensive outlook over the bottom lands on both sides of the
canyon and above. The cove is about 40 feet deep, and, though so high
up, has been used as a sheep close, and doubtless some of the walls have
been covered up. Four rooms are still standing in two little clusters of
two rooms each. The walls of the rooms on the west are composed of large
stones laid in plenty of mud mortar and plastered inside and out; those
of the eastern portion were built of small stones, chinked but not
plastered. One of the rooms is blackened by smoke in the corner only, as
though there had been some chimney structure here, which subsequently
had fallen away. The cliff walls back of the eastern part are heavily
smoke-blackened; back of the western portion there are no stains. There
is now no trace of a circular kiva, but there is a heavy deposit of
sheep dung on the ground which might cover up such traces if they
existed. This site commands one of the best outlooks in the canyon, but
access, while not very difficult, is inconvenient on account of the
great height above the bottom.

  [Illustration: Fig. 49--Plan of cliff room with partitions.]

Figure 49 shows a common type of ruin in this class. The original
structure appears to have contained one or two good rooms, which by
subsequent additions have been divided into several. These later
additions may have been made by the Navaho, who used the building
material on the ground; at any rate the structure is now merely a
cluster of storage cists.

  [Illustration: Fig. 50--Plan of a large cliff outlook in Canyon del

One of the most extensive ruins of the cliff-outlook type situated in
Canyon del Muerto is shown in figure 50. The plan shows at least eight
rooms stretched along the cliff at the top of the talus. Figure 51 shows
five rooms arranged in a cluster. One of these is still complete, the
walls extending to the overhanging rock above which formed the roof. It
will be noticed that the front room was set back far enough to allow
access to the central room through a doorway in the corner. This was a
convenience, rather than a necessity, for many of the rooms in ruins of
this class were entered only through other rooms or through the roof,
and a direct opening to the outer air was not considered a necessity;
probably because these rooms in the cliff, which have been termed
outlooks, were not in any sense watch towers, but rather places of abode
during the harvest season, where the workers in the field lived when not
actually employed in labor, and where the fields tinder cultivation
could always be kept in view--an arrangement quite as necessary and
quite as extensively practiced now as it was formerly.

Figure 52 shows a cluster of rooms in the little canyon called
Tseonitsosi. This is another Casa Blanca, or White House, and, oddly
enough, it resembles its namesake in De Chelly, not only in the coat of
whitewash applied to the front of the main room, but in having a
subordinate room to the left, over which the wash extends, and in the
character of the site it occupies. The principal part of the structure
was built in a cave, 18 or 20 feet from the ground, across the front of
which walls extended as in the other Casa Blanca, and, like that ruin,
there are also some ruins at the foot of the cliff, on the flat. Figure
53 is a ground plan. The resemblance to the other Casa Blanca, however,
goes no further. The ruin here illustrated represents a very small
settlement, hardly more than half a dozen rooms in all, and there is no
trace of a circular kiva, or other evidence of permanent habitation. It
is possible that the space between the edge of the floor of the cave
above and the whitened house back of it was occupied by some sort of
structure, but no evidence now remains which would warrant such a
hypothesis, except that the door of the white house is now about 4 feet
above the ground. The cave is only 40 feet long and a little over 10
feet deep, and there is not room on the floor for more than three or
four rooms, in addition to those shown on the plan. The room on the
right still preserves its roof intact, showing the typical pueblo roof
construction. It has a well-preserved doorway, and three other openings
may be seen in the main room.

  [Illustration: Fig. 51--Plan of a cluster of rooms In Canyon del

  [Illustration: Fig. 52--White House ruin in Tseonitsosi canyon.]

Apparently some effort at ornamentation was made here. The whitewash was
not applied to the fronts of the two back rooms so as to cover all of
them, but in a broad belt, leaving the natural yellowish-gray color of
the plastering in a narrow band above and a broad band below it.
Moreover, the principal opening of the larger room was specially
treated; in the application of the whitewash a narrow border or frame of
the natural color was left surrounding it. The attempt to apply
decoration not utilitarian in character is rare among the ruins here. It
implies either a late period in the occupancy of this region, or an
occupancy of the site by a people who had practiced this method of
house-building longer or under more favorable conditions than the

  [Illustration: Fig. 53--Ground plan of a ruin in Tseonitsosi canyon.]

  [Illustration: Fig. 54--Plan of rooms against a convex cliff.]

  [Illustration: Fig. 55--Small ruin with curved wall.]

Figure 54 shows an arrangement of rooms along a narrow ledge at the top
of the talus, where the cliff wall is not coved or concave, but convex.
Some of these little rooms may have been used only for storage, but
others were undoubtedly habitations. Figure 55 shows an example in which
the back wall is curved, as though it was either built over an old kiva
or an attempt was made to convert a rectangular room into a kiva. There
were originally three rooms in the cluster, only one of which remains,
but that one is of unusual size, measuring about 15 by 10 feet. If the
room was used solely as a habitation, there was no necessity for the
back wall, as the side walls continue back to the cliff. Including the
little cove on the left, there are seven Navaho burial places on this

  [Illustration: Fig. 56--Ground plan of a cliff outlook.]

Plate LIII shows an outlook in the lower part of De Chelly, at the point
marked 6 on the map. The lower part of the cliff here flares out
slightly, forming a sharp slope; where it meets the vertical rock there
is a small bench, on which the ruin is situated. It is apparently
inaccessible, but close examination shows a long series of hand and foot
holes extending up a cleft in the rock, and forming an easy ascent. The
site commands a good outlook over the bottom lands.

The ruin consists of three rectangular rooms arranged side by side
against the cliff, and a kind of curved addition on the east. Figure 56
is a ground plan. The walls are still standing from a foot to 4 feet
high, and produce the impression of being unfinished; although carefully
chinked, they were neither plastered nor rubbed down. The two western
rooms were built first, and the eastern wall extends through the front.
East of these rooms there is a small rectangular chamber, and east of
this again a low curved wall forming a little chamber or cist of
irregular form (not shown in the plan). The front wall was extended
beyond this and brought in again to the cliff on a curve, forming
another small cist of irregular shape. This and the little chamber west
of it were doubtless used for storage. They resemble in plan Navaho
cists, but the masonry, which is exactly like the other walls here, will
not permit the hypothesis of Navaho construction. Except for some slight
traces in the northwest corner of the west room, there are no smoke
stains about, nor are there any pictographs on the cliff walls. The
western room was pierced by a window opening which was subsequently
filled up, possibly by the Navaho, who have five burial cists here.

  [Illustration: Fig. 57--Plan of cliff outlook No. 14, in Canyon de

Figure 57 is the plan of a small outlook which occurs at the point
marked 14 on the map. Opposite the mouth of Del Muerto there is an
elevated rocky area of considerable extent, perhaps 50 feet above the
bottom, but shelving off around the edges. Near the cliff this is
covered by sand dunes and piles of broken rock; farther out there is a
more level area covered thinly with sand and soil, and here there is a
large ruin of the old obliterated type already described (page 93).

  [Illustration: Plate LIII
  Cliff Outlook in Lower Canyon De Chelly]

Near the edges the rock becomes bare again, and is 20 to 30 feet high,
descending sheer or with an overhang to the bottoms or to the stream
bed. On the western side, facing north, the ruin illustrated occurs. It
is a mere cubby hole, and was evidently located for the area of
cultivable land which lies before it, and which it almost completely
commands. The cavity is about 12 feet above the ground and appears to
have been divided by cross walls into three rooms, two of which were
quite small. The back room was small, dark, and not large enough to
contain a human body unless it was carefully packed in, and at various
points along the back wall there are seeps of water. The interior of the
little room was very wet and moldy at the time when it was examined, in
winter, but in the summer time is probably dry enough.

  [Illustration: Fig. 58--Ground plan of outlooks in a cleft.]

The masonry is fair and the surface is finished with plaster. The open
space in front of the small back room and the outer wall of the room
itself are much blackened by smoke, as though the inhabitant lived here
and used the small room only to store his utensils and implements. A
small room on the east must have been used for a similar purpose. Both
of these rooms were entered through narrow doorways opening on the
principal space. The site is an ideal one for a lookout, but not well
suited for a habitation. Plate LIV shows its character.

  [Illustration: Fig. 59--Plan of a single-room outlook.]

Cliff outlooks are often found on sites whose restricted areas preclude
all possibility that they formed parts of larger settlements since
obliterated. The ruin just described is an example. Another instance
which occurs in Del Muerto is shown in figure 58. Here a deep cleft in
the rock was partly occupied by two or three rooms. There was room for
more, but apparently no more were built. There was not room, however,
for even a small village. There are several other examples in the canyon
almost identical with these, but this type is not nearly so abundant as
the succeeding. Figure 59 is a plan of a ruin near the mouth of Del
Muerto. It was a single room, situated on a ledge perhaps 30 or 40 feet
above the bottom land which it overlooked and of easy access. This is
the most common type of outlook or cliff ruin, and it might almost be
said that they number hundreds, sometimes consisting of one room alone,
sometimes of two or even three The general appearance of these outlooks
is shown in figure 60, which shows an example containing three rooms.

  [Illustration: Fig. 60--Three-room outlook in Canyon del Muerto.]

  [Illustration: Fig. 61--Plan of a two-room outlook.]

Figure 61 is a ground plan of an example containing two rooms, which
occurs below the large ruin described before (No. 31, page 119), and
figure 62 shows an example with one room, obscured and built over with
Navaho cists. This site is located in the upper part of the canyon, on
top of the talus, about 100 feet above the stream, and commands an
outlook over several areas of bottom land on both sides. The walls are
built about 10 feet high, and are composed of medium-size stones laid in
courses and carefully chinked with small spalls. The southwestern corner
of the room is broken down, but the eastern wall is still standing, and
shows a well-finished opening on that side. There are several Navaho
burial cists on this site.

  [Illustration: Fig. 62--Plan of outlook and burial cists, No. 64.]

  [Illustration: Plate LIV
  Cliff Ruin No. 14]

  [Illustration: Fig. 63--Plan of rectangular room No. 45.]

Figure 63 is the plan of a type of ruin which is rather anomalous in the
canyon. It occurs at the point marked 45 on the map, and occupies a
small flat area almost on top of the talus 300 feet or more above the
stream bed. It is just below the ruin described and illustrated on page
144 (figure 48), and hardly 20 feet distant from it, and yet it does not
appear to have been connected with it. It consists of a single large
room, 20 feet long by 11½ feet wide outside, and the site commands an
extensive prospect over bottom lands on both sides of the canyon, and
above, but the only opening in the wall on that side is a little
peephole 6 inches square and 2 feet from the ground. This is sufficient,
however, to command nearly the whole outlook. There is a doorway on the
eastern side, one side of which, fairly well finished, remains. There
was apparently no other opening, unless one existed on the western side,
where, in the center, the wall is broken down to within 2 feet of the
ground. Along the western side of the room, at the present ground
surface, there are remains of a bench about a foot wide; the eastern
side is covered above this level.

  [Illustration: Fig. 64--Rectangular single room.]

The masonry is very rough and chinked only with large stones. The
interior is roughly plastered in places, and small pieces of stone are
stuck on flat. The corners are rounded. Externally the masonry has the
appearance of stones laid without mortar, like a Navaho stone corral,
and were it not for the occurrence of other similar remains, it might be
regarded as of Navaho or white man's construction, as the size, site,
plan, and masonry are all anomalous. Figure 64 shows an example,
however, closely resembling the one described in these features, and
figure 65 shows another. Altogether there are four or five examples,
distributed over a considerable area.

Somewhat similar wall remains are seen in places on the canyon bottom,
where they are always of modern Navaho origin, and it is quite possible
that the ruins above mentioned should be placed in the same category. It
will be noticed that in the plan the doorway or entrance opening is on
the eastern side--an invariable requirement of Navaho house
constructions; but it is only within recent times that the Navaho have
constructed permanent, rectangular abodes, and even now such houses are
rarely built. It is difficult to understand, moreover, why recourse
should be had to such inconvenient sites, if the structures are of
Navaho origin, as these Indians always locate their hogans on the bottom
lands, or on some slight rise overlooking them.

  [Illustration: Fig. 65--Single-room remains.]

Distributed throughout the canyons, wherever a favorable situation could
be found, there are a great number of sites resembling those of the
cliff outlooks, but showing now no standing wall. There is always some
evidence of human occupancy, often many pictographs on the back wall, as
in an example in the lower part of the canyon shown in plate LV. This
occurs at point 2 on the map, in a cove perhaps 100 feet across, with
caves on the northern and southern sides.

  [Illustration: Plate LV
  Site Marked by Pictographs]

In the southern cave there are no traces of masonry, but the back of the
cave is covered with hand prints and pictographs of deer, as shown in
the plate. In the northern cave there are traces of walls. Many of the
sites do not show the faintest trace of house structures; some of them
have remains of storage cists, and many have remains of Navaho burial
cists, associated with pictographs not of Navaho origin. Some idea of
the number and distribution of these sites may be obtained from the
following list, wherein the numbers represent the location shown on the
detailed map: 2, 8, 9, 11, 18, 19, 21, 22, 23, 25, 26, 30, 38, 39, 40,
42, 43, 53, 54, 57, and 66--in all 21 sites which occur between the
mouth of De Chelly and the junction of Monument canyon, 13 miles above.
Beyond this point they are rare, as the areas of cultivable land become
scarce. A similar distribution prevails in Del Muerto.



The character of the site occupied by a ruin is a very important feature
where the response to the physical environment is as ready and complete
as it is in the ancient pueblo region. This feature has not received the
attention it deserves, for it is more than probable that in the ultimate
classification of ruins that will some day be formulated the site
occupied will be one of the principal elements considered, if not the
most important. The site is not so important per se, but must be
considered with reference to the specific character of the ruin upon it,
its ground plan, the character of other ruins in the vicinity which may
have been connected with it, and its topographic environment. The
character and ground plan of a cliff ruin would be so much out of place
on an open valley site that it would immediately attract attention. The
reverse is equally remarkable.

Considering all that has been written about the cliff ruins as defensive
structures, it is strange how little direct evidence there is to support
the hypothesis; how few examples can be cited which show anything that
can be construed as the result of the defensive motive except the
general impression produced on the observer. Nor, on the other hand, do
these ruins as a whole give any support to the theory that they
represent an intermediate stage in the development of the pueblo people.
Some few may, perhaps those examined by Mr F. H. Cushing south and east
of Zuñi do; but more than 99 per cent of them give more support to a
theory that they are the ultimate development of pueblo architecture
than to the other hypothesis, for they contain in themselves evidence of
a knowledge of construction equal and even superior to that shown in
many of the modern pueblo villages. The only thing anomalous or
distinctive about the cliff ruins, considered as an element of pueblo
architecture, is the character of site occupied. If this were dictated
by the defensive motive, it would seem reasonable to suppose that the
same motive would have some direct influence on the structures, yet
examples where it has affected the arrangement of rooms or ground plan
or the character of the masonry are exceedingly rare and generally

It is well to specify that in the preceding remarks the term cliff ruin
has been applied to small settlements, comprising generally less than
four rooms, sometimes only one or two, and usually located on high and
almost inaccessible sites. These are comprised in class IV of the
classification here followed. Regular villages located in the cliffs or
on top of the talus (class III) are a different matter. These have
nothing in common with the small ruins, except that sometimes there is a
similarity of site. Doubtless in some of these ruins the defensive
motive operated to a certain extent. In classes I and II, however, the
influence of the defensive motive, in so far as it affected the
character of site chosen, is conspicuous by its absence. As there is no
evidence that the cliff ruins of class IV were separate and distinct
from the other ruins, but the contrary, the defensive motive may be
assigned a very subordinate place among the causes which produced that
phase of pueblo architecture found in Canyon de Chelly.

An hypothesis as to the order in which sites of the various classes were
occupied can not be based on the present condition of the ruins. It is
more than likely that the older ruins served as quarries of building
material for succeeding structures erected near them, and probably some
of the cliff ruins themselves served in this way for the erection of
others, for there are many sites from which the building stone has been
almost entirely removed; yet there is no doubt that these sites were
formerly occupied. The Navaho also have contributed to the destruction.
Notwithstanding their horror of contact with the remains of the dead,
quite a number of buildings have been erected by these Indians with
material derived from adjacent ruins. It is evident that the gathering
of this material would be a much lighter task than to quarry and prepare
it, no matter how roughly the latter might be done.

In a study of some ruins in the valley of the Rio Verde, made a few
years ago, a suggestion was made of the order in which ruins of various
kinds succeeded one another--a sort of chronologic sequence, of which
the beginning in time could not be determined. Studies of the ruins and
inhabited villages of the old province of Tusayan (Moki) and Cibola
(Zuñi), and a cursory examination of ruins on Gila river, show that they
all fall easily into the same general order, which is somewhat as

1. The earliest form of pueblo house is doubtful. As a rule, in most
localities the earliest forms are already well advanced. As it is now
known that the ancient pueblo region was not inhabited by a vast number
of people, but by a comparatively small number of little bands, each in
constant though slow movement, this condition is what we would expect to
find. It is probable that the earliest settlements consisted of single
houses or small clusters located in valleys convenient to areas of
cultivable land and on streams or near water.

2. The next step gives us villages, generally of small size, located on
the foothills of mesas and overlooking large areas of good land which
were doubtless under cultivation. This class comprises more examples
perhaps than any other, and many of them come well within the historic
period, such as six of the seven villages of Tusayan at the time of the
Spanish conquest in 1540, all of the Cibolan villages of the same date,
and some of the Rio Grande pueblos of that time.

3. In some localities, though not in all, the small villages were at a
later period moved to higher and more inaccessible sites. This change
has taken place in Tusayan within the historic period, and in fact was
not wholly completed even fifty years ago. The pueblo of Acoma was in
this stage at the time of the conquest, and has remained so to the
present day. As a rule each of the small villages preserved its
independence, but in some cases they combined together to occupy
together a high defensive site. Such combination is, however, unusual.

4. The final stage in the development of pueblo architecture is the
large, many-storied, or beehive village, located generally in the midst
of broad valleys, depending on its size and population for defense, and
usually adjacent to some stream. In this class of structure the
defensive motive, in so far as it affected the choosing of the site,
entirely disappears. The largest existing pueblo, Zuñi, made this step
early in the eighteenth century; the next largest, Taos, was probably in
this stage in 1540, and has remained so since. In some cases ruins on
foothill sites (2) have merged directly into many-storied pueblos on
open sites (4), without passing through an intermediate stage.

There is another step in the process of development which is now being
taken by many pueblos, which, although an advance from the industrial
point of view, is to the student of architecture degeneration. This
consists of a return to single houses located in the valleys and on the
bottom lands wherever convenience to the fields under cultivation
required. This movement is hardly twenty years old, but is proceeding at
a steadily accelerating pace, and its ultimate result is the complete
destruction of pueblo architecture. Whatever we wish to know of this
phase of Indian culture must be learned now, for two generations hence
probably nothing will remain of it.

This hasty sketch will illustrate some of the difficulties that lie in
the way of a complete classification of the ruins of the pueblo country.
It is impossible to arrange them in chronologic sequence, because they
are the product of different tribes who at different times came under
the influence of analogous causes, and results were produced which are
similar in themselves but different in time. It is believed, however,
that the classification suggested exhibits a cultural sequence and
probably within each tribe a chronologic order.

In this classification no mention has been made of the cliff and cave
ruins. These structures belong partly to class III, villages on
defensive sites, and partly to a subclass which pertained to a certain
extent to all the others. In the early stages of pueblo architecture the
people lived directly on the laud they tilled. Later the villages were
located on low foothills overlooking the land, but in this stage some of
the villages had already attained considerable size and the lands
overlooked by them were not sufficient for their needs. As a consequence
some of the inhabitants had to work fields at a distance from the home
village, and as a matter of convenience small temporary shelters were
erected near by. In a still later stage, when the villages were removed
to higher and more easily defended sites, the number of farming shelters
must have largely increased, as suitable sites which also commanded
large areas of good land could not often be found. At a still later
stage, when the inhabitants of a number of small villages combined to
form one large one, this difficulty was increased still more, and it is
probable that in this stage the construction of outlying farming
settlements attained its maximum development. Often whole villages of
considerable size, sometimes many miles from the home pueblo, were
nothing more than farming shelters. These villages, like the single-room
shelters, were occupied only during the farming season; in the winter
the inhabitants abandoned them completely and retired to the home

Some farming villages, such as those described above, are still in use
among the pueblos. The little village of Moen-Kapi, attached to Oraibi,
but 75 miles distant from it, is an example. There are also no fewer
than three villages in the Zuñi country of the same class. Nutria,
Pescado, and Ojo Caliente are summer villages of the Zuñi, although
distant from that pueblo from 15 to 25 miles. It is significant that
none of these subordinate villages possess a kiva. It is believed that
the cliff ruins and cavate lodges, which are merely variants of each
other due to geological conditions, were simply farming shelters of
another type, produced by a certain topographic environment.

The importance which it is believed should attach to the site on which a
ruin is found will be apparent from the above. It was certainly a
prominent element in the De Chelly group. A study of the detailed map
here published will illustrate how completely the necessity for
proximity to an area of cultivable land has dominated the location of
the settlements, large and small; and a visit to the place itself would
show how little influence the defensive motive has exercised. Near the
mouth of the canyon, where cultivable areas of land are not many, there
are few ruins, but those which do occur overlook such lands. In the
middle portion, where good lands are most abundant, ruins also are most
abundant; while above this, as the rocky talus develops more and more,
the ruins become fewer and fewer; and in the upper parts of the canyon,
beyond the area shown on the map, they are located at wide distances
apart, corresponding to little areas of good land so located. Not all of
the available land was utilized, and only a small percentage of the
available sites were built upon. Between the mouth of De Chelly and the
junction of Monument canyon, 13 miles above, there are seventy-one
ruins. A fair idea of their distribution may be obtained from a study of
the detailed map (plate XLIII), in conjunction with the following

  I. Old villages on open sites occur at the points marked 12, 41, 52,
    17_a_, 55, 60, 61, and 67; in all, nine sites; principally in the
    upper part of the canyon.

  II. Home villages on bottom lands, located without reference to
    defense, occupy sites 3, 4, 17, 20, 28, 48, and 51; in all, seven
    sites. Probably there are many more ruins of this class and the
    preceding, now so far obliterated as to be overlooked or

  III. Home villages on defensive sites occur at the points marked
    5, 10, 13, 15, 16, 27, 31, 32, 34, 36, 37, 40, 44, 47, 59, 62,
    and 66; in all, seventeen. This includes many sites where the
    settlements were very small, often only a few rooms, but there
    is always at least one kiva.

  IV. Cliff outlooks and farming shelters occupy sites 2, 6, 7, 8, 9,
    11, 14, 18, 19, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 29, 30, 33, 35, 38, 39,
    42, 43, 45, 46, 49, 50, 53, 54, 56, 57, 64, 63, 65, 68, 69, and
    70; in all, thirty-seven, or more than half. Some of these sites
    are now marked only by Navaho remains, and possibly a small
    percentage of them are of Navaho making, but the sites which are
    clearly and unmistakably Navaho are not mentioned here. Of all the
    sites only one (No. 7) is actually inaccessible without artificial

The absence of any attempt to improve the natural advantages of the
sites is remarkable. No expedients were employed to make access either
easier or more difficult, except that here and there series of hand and
foot holes have been pecked in the rock. Steps, either constructed of
masonry or cut in the rock, such as those found in the Mancos canyon and
the Mesa Verde region, are never seen here. The cavities in which the
ruins occur are always natural; they are never enlarged or curtailed or
altered in the slightest degree, and very rarely is the cavity itself
treated as a room, although there are some excellent sites for such
treatment. The back wall of a cove is often the back wall of a village,
but aside from this the natural advantages of the sites were seldom

The settlements were always located with reference to the canyon bottom,
and access was never had from above, notwithstanding that in some cases
access from above was easier than from below. Yet the inhabitants must
necessarily have obtained their supply of firewood from above, as the
quantity in the canyons, especially in that part where most of the ruins
occur, is very limited. The Navaho throw the wood over the cliffs,
afterward gathering up the fragments below and carrying them on their
backs to their hogans at various points on the canyon bottom. The crash
of falling logs, dropped or pushed over the edge of a cliff, sometimes
400 or 500 feet high, is not an infrequent sound in the canyon, and is
at first very puzzling to the visitor.

The canyon walls are so nearly vertical, or rather so large a proportion
is vertical, that egress or ingress, except at the mouth of the canyon,
is a matter of great difficulty. Near the junction of Monument canyon,
13 miles above the mouth of De Chelly, there is a practicable horse
trail ascending a narrow gorge to the southeast. The Navaho call it the
Bat trail, on account of its difficulties. Another horse trail crosses
Del Muerto some 8 or 10 miles above its mouth. With these exceptions
there is no point where a horse can get into the canyons or out of them,
but there are dozens of places where an active man, accustomed to it,
can scale the walls by the aid of foot-holes which have been pecked in
the rock at the most difficult places. These foot trails are in constant
use by the Navaho, who ascend and descend by them with apparent ease,
but it is doubtful whether a white man could be induced to climb them,
except perhaps under the stress of necessity. There are even some trails
over which sheep and goats are driven in and out of the canyon, but
anyone who had not seen the flocks actually passing over the rocks would
declare such a feat impossible. Some of these trails at least are of
Navaho origin. Whether any of them were used by the former dwellers in
the canyon can not now be determined; it seems probable that some of
them were.

  [Illustration: Fig. 66--Site apparently very difficult of access.]

  [Illustration: Plate LVI
  Site Difficult of Approach]

Plate LVI shows a characteristic site in the lower part of the canyon.
It occurs at the point marked 8 on the map, and is now quite difficult
of approach, owing to the wearing away or weathering of a long line of
foot-holes in the sloping rock, but formerly access was easy enough. It
is now marked by a cluster of Navaho burial cists. Figure 66 shows an
example that occurs in De Chelly, about 8 miles above the junction, of
Monument canyon. At first glance, and at a distance, this site appears
to be really inaccessible, but a close inspection of the figure will
show that it could be reached with comparative little difficulty over
the rounded mass of rock shown to the left. By cutting off that side of
the figure it could be made to serve as an illustration of a wholly
inaccessible ruin.


The ancient pueblo builder, like his modern successor, was so closely in
touch with nature, so dependent on his immediate physical surroundings,
that variations in some at least of his arts are more natural and to be
expected than uniformity. Especially is this true of the art of
construction, and variations in masonry are more often than not the
result of variations in the material employed, which is nearly always
that most convenient to hand. Yet there were other conditions that
necessarily influenced it, such, for example, as the character of the
structure to be erected, whether permanent or temporary. The summer
village of Ojo Caliente presents a type of masonry much ruder than any
found in the home village of Zuñi, although both were built and occupied
by the same people at the same time.

Within the limits of Canyon de Chelly, where the physical conditions and
the character of material are essentially uniform, a considerable
variation in the masonry is found, implying that some conditions other
than the usual ones have influenced it. Were the masonry of one class of
ruins inferior or superior throughout to that of another it might be
easily explained, but variations within each class are greater than
those between classes. Conditions analogous to those which prevailed in
the case of Ojo Caliente and Zuñi may have governed here, or there may
have been other conditions of which we now know nothing. It may be that
sites originally occupied as farming shelters subsequently became
regular villages, as has happened in other regions. The position of the
kivas in many of the ruins suggests this. As a whole the masonry is
inferior to that found in the Mancos canyon and the Chaco, and superior
to that of Tusayan, but, as in Tusayan, where the masonry is sometimes
very roughly constructed, the builders were well acquainted with the
methods which produced the finer and better work.

The highest type of masonry in the pueblo system of architecture
consists of small blocks of stone of nearly uniform size, dressed, and
laid in courses, and rubbed down in situ. No attempt was made to break
joints. This system requires the careful preparation of the material
beforehand, and examples of it are not very common in Canyon de Chelly.
As a variant we have walls composed of stones of fairly uniform size,
laid with the best face out and with the interstices chinked with small
spalls. The chinking is carried to such an extent in some places, as in
the Chaco ruins, that the walls present the effect of a mosaic composed
of small spalls. Chinking is almost a universal practice, and in some
localities had passed, or was passing, from a mere constructive to a
real decorative feature. Here we have the beginning of that architecture
which has been defined by Ferguson as "ornamental and ornamented
construction"--in other words, of architecture as an art rather than as
a craft.

The use of an exterior finish of plaster was conducive to poor masonry.
Such plastering is found throughout the region, but it is much more
abundant in the modern than in the ancient work. Perhaps we may find in
this a suggestion of relative age; not in the use of plastering, but in
its prevalence.

Pueblo masonry is composed of very small units, and the results obtained
testify to the patience and industry of the builders rather than to
their knowledge and skill. In fact, their knowledge of construction was
far more limited than would at first sight be supposed. The marked
tabular character of the stone used rendered but a small amount of
preparation necessary for even the best masonry. For over 90 per cent of
it there was no preparation other than the selection of material. The
walls and buildings were always modified to suit the ground, never the
reverse, and instances in which the site was prepared are very rare, if
not indeed unknown. There are no such instances in De Chelly, where
sites were often irregular, and a small amount of work would have
rendered them much more desirable.

Plate LVII shows a type of masonry which is quite common in De Chelly.
It is the west room of ruin 16, near the mouth of Del Muerto. An attempt
at regularity, and possibly at decorative effect, is apparent in the use
of courses of fairly uniform thickness, alternating with other courses
or belts composed of small thin fragments. Beautiful examples of masonry
constructed on this method occur in the Chaco ruins, but here, while the
method was known, the execution was careless or faulty. Chinking with
small spalls has been extensively practiced and gives the wall an
appearance of smoothness and finish. A similar wall, rather better
constructed, occurs at the point marked 3 on the map, and in this case
the stones composing the wall were rubbed down in situ. Another wall,
which occurs in the same ruin, is shown in plate LVIII. In places very
large stones have been used, larger than one man could handle
conveniently, but the general effect of the wall face is very good. This
effect was obtained by placing the best face of the stone outward and by
careful chinking.

  [Illustration: Plate LVII
  Masonry in Canyon De Chelly]

Chinking was sometimes done, not with slips of stone driven in with a
hammer, after the usual style, but with bits of mud pressed in with the
fingers. The mud was used when about the consistency of modeling clay,
and bears the imprints of the fingers that applied it; even the skin
markings show clearly and distinctly. From this use of mud to its use as
an exterior plaster there is but a short step; in fact, examples which
are intermediate can be seen throughout the canyon. In places mud has
been applied to small cracks and cavities in larger quantities than was
necessary, and the excess has been smoothed over the adjacent stones
forming a wall partly plastered, or plastered in patches. Plate LIX,
which shows the interior of a room in ruin 10, will illustrate this.
Here the process has been carried so far that the wall is almost
plastered, but not quite. In plastered walls the process was carried a
step farther, and the surface was finished by the application of a final
coat of mud made quite liquid. The interior plastering of kivas was
always much more carefully done than that of any other walls. Owing to
blackening by smoke and recoating, the thickness of the plastering in
kivas can be easily made out. Often it is as thin as ordinary paper.

Plate LX shows walls in which an abundance of mud mortar was used, and
the effect is that of a plastered wall. The difference between these
walls and those shown in plate LVII is only one of degree, the wall
shown in plate LIX being of an intermediate type. No instance occurs in
the canyon where a coating of mud was evenly applied to the whole
surface of a wall, in the way, for example, that stucco is used by us.
It seems probable, therefore, that the application of plaster as a
finish grew out of the use of stone spalls for chinking, and its
prevalence in modern as compared with old structures is suggestive. It
is not claimed, however, that because we have examples of the
intermediate stages in De Chelly that the process was developed there.
The step is such a slight one that it might have been made in a hundred
different localities at a hundred different times or at one time; but it
is well to note that in any given group of ruins or locality it is
likely to be later than masonry chinked with stones. Surface finishing
in mud plaster is the prevailing method at the present day, and
well-executed masonry of stone carefully chinked is almost invariably
ancient. The use of surface plaster is largely responsible for the
deterioration of stonework that has taken place since the beginning of
the historic period. The modern village of Zuñi, which dates from the
beginning of the eighteenth century, although built on the site of an
older village, is essentially a stone-built village, though that fact
would never appear from a cursory examination, so completely is the
stonework covered by surface plaster.

In Tusayan (Moki) walls have been observed in progress of erection. The
stones were laid up dry, and some time after, when the rains came and
pools of water stood here and there in pockets on the mesa top, mud
mortar was mixed and the interstices were filled. This method saved the
transportation of water from the wells below up to the top of the mesa,
a task entailing much labor. Doubtless a similar method was followed in
De Chelly, where the stream bed carries water only during a part of the
year. But stone was also actually laid in mud mortar, as shown in plate
LII, which illustrates a rough type of masonry.

It is probable that the practice of chinking grew up out of the scarcity
of water, when walls were erected during the dry season and finished
when the rains made the manufacture of mud mortar less of a task. The
rough wall shown in the illustration is the outside of an interior wall
of a kiva, and it was probably covered by the rectangular inclosing wall
that came outside of it. It will be noticed that chinking, both with mud
and with spalls, was extensively practiced and seems here to have been
an essential part of the construction. In this example it could have no
relation to the finish of the wall, for the wall was not finished.

Much of the masonry in the canyon is of the type described, but examples
differ widely in degree of finish and in material selected. Some of the
walls appear very rough and even crude, so much so that they almost
appear to be the first efforts of a people at an unknown art, but a
closer inspection shows that even the rudest walls were erected with a
knowledge of the principles which were followed in the best ones, and
that the difference resulted only from the care or lack of care
employed. The rudest walls are much superior to the masonry of the
Navaho cists which are found in conjunction with them and which are
constructed on a different method.

Although walls were often built on sloping rock, and the builders had
experience and at times disastrous experience to guide them, the
necessity for a fiat and solid foundation was never appreciated. Walls
were sometimes built on loose debris; even refuse which had been covered
and formed an artificial soil was considered sufficient. There are many
instances in the canyon where lack of foresight or lack of knowledge in
this respect has brought about the destruction of walls. Walls resting
on foreign material occur throughout the region; they are not confined
to anyone class of ruins or to any part of the canyon, but are found as
much or more in the most recent as in the most ancient examples. Mummy
Cave ruin and Casa Blanca are good examples. In the latter the small
room on the left of the upper group (plate XLVII) is especially
interesting. The side walls appear to rest on a deposit of refuse nearly
2 feet thick, which in turn rests on the sloping rock. The front wall is
supported by a buttress as shown; without this support it would
certainly have been pushed out. The buttress appears to have been built
at the same time as the front wall, although its use in this way is not
aboriginal. The whole arrangement is such as would result if this room,
originally represented by a low front wall perhaps, were constructed
when the site became inadequate and consequently at a late period in its

The character of the refuse and debris upon which some of the walls rest
is worth notice. It is well known that sheep were introduced into this
country by the Spaniards, and the presence in the ruins of sheep dung,
or of a material which closely resembles it, is important. Much of this
is due to subsequent Navaho occupancy, and many ruins are used today by
these Indians as sheepfolds. It is said, moreover, that at the time of
the Navaho war, when the soldiers bayoneted all the sheep they could
find, large flocks were driven up into some cliff ruins that are almost
inaccessible, and kept there for a time in security. But many instances
are found where the walls rest directly upon layers of compacted dung.
An example is shown in plate LII, and others are mentioned in the text
under the descriptions of various ruins.

  [Illustration: Plate LVIII
  Chinked Walls in Canyon De Chelly]

It has been suggested that the compacted dung found in the ruins was the
product not of sheep, but of some other domesticated animal which
existed in this country at the time of the first Spanish invasion, but
the evidence to support this hypothesis is so very slight that so far
the suggestion is only a suggestion. Not the slightest trace of this
animal has been found, although it is alleged that it was domesticated
among the pueblos three hundred and fifty years ago.

Although the idea of a strengthening or supporting buttress is thought
to be a foreign introduction, a hypothesis that is strengthened by the
occurrence of other features, the masonry itself is aboriginal in its
principles and probably also in execution. The conservatism of the
Indian mind in such matters is well known. The Zuñi today use stone more
than adobe, although for a hundred years or more there has been an adobe
church in the midst of the village.

Adobe construction in this region is only partially successful. North of
the Gila river, in the plateau country, the climate is not suited to it;
the rains are too heavy and the frosts are destructive. Constant
vigilance and prompt repairs are necessary, and even then the adobe work
is not satisfactory. Certainly in the northern part of the country the
aborigines would not have developed this method of construction in the
face of the difficulties with which it is surrounded; yet there are
examples of adobe work in some of the most important ruins in De Chelly,
as has already been stated. The fact that the only previously known
examples of adobe work occur in ruins which are known to have been
inhabited subsequent to the Spanish conquest, such as the ruin of
Awatobi, in Tusayan, is suggestive. Moreover, adobe construction in this
region belongs to a late period; for the walls are almost always very
thin, usually 6 or 7 inches. The old type of massive walls, 2 or even
3 feet thick, are seldom or never found constructed of adobe, although
such thickness is more necessary in this material than in stone.

There is another method of construction which, although not masonry,
should be noticed here. This is the equivalent of the Mexican "jacal"
construction, and consists of series of poles or logs planted vertically
in the ground close to each other and plastered with mud either outside
or on both sides. The only example of this found in the canyon occurs in
the western part of the lower Casa Blanca ruin, and has already been
mentioned. Did it not occur elsewhere it could be dismissed here as
simply another item of evidence of the modern occupancy of the ruin, but
Dr W. R. Birdsall mentions walls in the Mesa Verde ruins which are
"continued upward upon a few tiers of stone by wickerwork heavily
plastered inside and outside"[14] and Nordenskiöld mentions a similar
construction in the interior of a kiva. Whether a similar foundation or
lower part of stone existed in the Casa Blanca ruin could not be
determined without excavation.

    [Footnote 14: Bull. Am. Geog. Soc., vol. xxiii, p. 598.]


The ruins in De Chelly are so much broken down that few examples of
openings now remain; still fewer are yet intact; but there is no doubt
that they are of the regular pueblo types. Most of the openings in the
De Chelly ruins are rectangular, of medium size, neither very large nor
very small, with unfinished jambs and sills, and with a lintel such as
that shown in plate LVIII, composed of one or two series of light
sticks, sometimes surmounted by a flat stone slab. This example occurs
at the point marked 3 on the map, in what was formerly an extensive
village. The wall on the left, now covered by loosely piled rocks, was
pierced by a narrow notched doorway. The opening shown in the
illustration, which is in the northern wall, is 2 feet high and 14
inches wide; its sill is about 18 inches from the ground. The lintel is
composed of six small sticks, about an inch in diameter, surmounted by a
flat slab of stone, very roughly shaped, and separated from the sticks
by 2 inches of mud mortar.

  [Illustration: Fig. 67--Notched doorway in Canyon de Chelly.]

Plate LVII shows an opening which occurs in ruin No. 16. The building
consisted of two rooms, between which there was no communication. The
eastern room was entered by the doorway shown in the illustration, which
is 2 feet above the ground and 2 feet high. To facilitate ingress a
notch was dug in the wall about 8 inches from the ground. The western
room was entered through a large doorway, shown in plate LI. The sill is
about 8 inches above the ground; the opening is 3 feet high and 14
inches wide. The lintel is composed of small sticks, with a slab of
stone above them, and the top of the opening and perhaps the sides were

  [Illustration: Plate LIX
  A Partly Plastered Wall]

The notched or T-shape doorway, which is quite common in the Mesa Verde
ruins and in Tusayan, is not abundant in De Chelly, but some examples
can be seen there. One is shown in figure 67, which illustrates the
type. There is no doubt that doorways of this kind developed at a time
when no means existed for closing the opening, except blankets or skins,
and when loads were carried on the backs of men. It often happened that
doorways originally constructed of this style were afterward changed by
partial filling to square or rectangular openings. The principal doorway
in the front wall of the White House proper was originally of T-shape;
at some later period, but before the white coating was applied, the
left-hand wing and the standard below it were filled in, leaving an
almost square opening. This later filling is not uncommon in De Chelly,
and is often found in Tusayan, where openings are sometimes reduced for
the winter season and enlarged again in the summer. Many openings are
completely closed, either by filling in with masonry or by a stone slab,
and examples of both of these methods are found in De Chelly. In the
third wall from the east, in the upper part of Casa Blanca ruin, there
is a well-finished doorway sealed by a thin slab of stone set in mud. On
the right side of the opening, about the middle, a loop or staple of
wood has been built into the wall, and in the corresponding place on the
left side a stick about half an inch in diameter projects. An opening
into the small room west of the White House proper has a similar
contrivance, and another example occurs in the front wall of the small
single room in the eastern end of the ruin. Oddly enough the three
examples that occur in this ruin are all found in adobe walls.

This feature appears to have been a contrivance for temporarily closing
openings which were provided with stone slabs, and the latter were
sealed in place with mud mortar when it was desired to close the room
permanently. Examples, identical even in details, have been found in the
Mancos canyon, and one is described and illustrated by Chapin,[15] who
states that the slab was 14½ inches wide at one end, 15½ at the other,
and 25 inches high, with an average thickness of an inch. He mentions
staples on both sides. Nordenskiöld[16] illustrates another or possibly
the same example. He notes, however, an inner frame composed of small
sticks and mud against which the slab rested. He thinks the notched
doorways belonged to rooms most frequented in daily life, while the
others belonged in general to storerooms or other chambers requiring a
door to close them.

    [Footnote 15: Land of the Cliff Dwellers, pp. 149-150, pl. opp.
    p. 155.]

    [Footnote 16: Cliff Dwellers of the Mesa Verde, pp. 52-53, fig. 28.]

Taken as a whole, the settlements in De Chelly appear to have been well
provided with doorways and other openings, and there is no perceptible
difference in this respect between the various classes of ruins.
Openings were freely left in the walls, wherever convenience dictated,
and without regard to the defensive motive, which, in the large valley
pueblos, brought about the requirement that all the first-story rooms
should be entered from the roof, a requirement which has only recently
given way to the greater convenience of an entrance on the ground level.


In the pueblo system of construction roofs and floors are the same; in
other words, the roof of one room is the floor of the room above, and
where a room or house is but one story high no change in the method of
construction is made. The erection of walls was only a question of time,
as the unit of the masonry is small; but the construction of a roof was
a much harder task, as the beams were necessarily brought from a
distance, sometimes a very long distance. The Tusayan claim that some of
the timbers used in the construction of the mission buildings, which
were established prior to the insurrection of 1680, were brought on the
backs of men from San Francisco mountains, a distance of over 100 miles,
and references to the transportation of timber over long distances are
not uncommon in Pueblo traditions. In De Chelly great difficulty must
have been experienced in procuring an adequate supply, as in that
portion of the canyon where most of the ruins occur no suitable trees
grow. Doubtless in many cases, where the location, under overhanging
cliffs permitted, roofs were dispensed with, but this alone would not
account for the dearth of timber found in the ruins. If we suppose the
canyon to have been the scene of a number of occupancies instead of one,
the absence of timber work, as well as the much obliterated appearance
of some of the ruins, would be explained, for the material would be used
more than once, perhaps several times. The Navaho would not use the
timber in cliff ruins under any circumstances, and they would rather
starve than eat food cooked with it. Many of the cliff outlooks, being
occupied only during the farming season and being also fairly well
sheltered, were probably roofless.

Timber was used as an aid to masonry construction in two ways--as a
foundation and as a tie. Many instances can be seen where the walls rest
on beams, running, not with them, but across them. These beams were
placed directly on the rock, and the front walls rested partly on their
ends and partly on the rock itself. Plate LII shows the end of one of
these beams. In nine cases out of ten the beams do not appear to have
served any useful end, but perhaps if the walls were removed down to the
foundations the purpose would be clear. Sometimes a beam was placed on
the rock in the line of the wall above it. The single or separate room
occupying the western end of the upper cave in the Casa Blanca ruin is
an example of this use. The front wall rests on beams, as shown in plate
XLVI. Some of the back adobe walls in the eastern part of the upper ruin
rest on timbers, and instances of this feature are not uncommon in other
parts of the canyon. The southeastern corner of the tower in Mummy Cave
ruin in Del Muerto rested on timbers apparently laid over a small cavity
or hole in the rock. The timber was not strong enough to support the
weight placed upon it, and consequently gave way, letting the corner of
the tower fall out.

Cross walls were sometimes tied to front or back walls by timbers built
into them, but this method, of which fine examples can be seen in the
Chaco ruins, was but slightly practiced here. Timber was used also to
prevent the slipping of walls on sloping sites, being placed vertically
and built into the masonry; but as this use is a constructive expedient
it is discussed under that head.


Facilities for the storage of grain and other produce are essential in
the pueblo system of horticulture, as in any other. As a result, storage
cists are found everywhere. In the modern pueblos the inner dark rooms,
which would otherwise be useless, provide the necessary space, but in
the settlements in De Chelly, which were very small as a rule, there
were few such rooms, and special structures had to be erected. These
differed from the dwelling rooms only in size, although as a rule,
perhaps, the openings by which they were entered were not so large as
those of the dwellings and were sometimes, possibly always, provided
with some means by which they could be closed.

  [Illustration: Plate LX
  Plastered Wall in Canyon De Chelly]

Immense numbers of these storage cists are found in the canyon, some of
them with masonry so roughly executed that it is difficult to
discriminate between the old pueblo and the modern Navaho work.
Sometimes these cists or small rooms form part of a village, more often
they are attached to the cliff outlooks, and not infrequently they stand
alone on sites overlooking the lands whose product they contained. It is
probable that many of the cliff outlooks themselves were used quite as
much for temporary storage as for habitations during the farming season.
These two uses, although quite distinct, do not conflict with each
other. Doubtless many excellent sites, now marked only by the remains of
storage cists, were occupied also during the summer as outlooks without
the erection of any house structures. Some of the modern pueblos now use
temporary shelters of brush for outlooks.

It is not meant that the crops when gathered were placed in these cists
and kept there until used. The harvest was, as a rule, permanently
stored in the home villages, and the cists were used only for temporary
storage. Doubtless the old practice resembled somewhat that followed by
the Navaho today. The harvest is gathered at the proper time and what is
not eaten at once is hidden away in cists of old or modern construction.
If it is well hidden, the grain may remain in the cists for a long time
if not withdrawn for consumption; but as a rule it is taken away a few
months later. The annual emigration of the Navaho commences soon after
the harvest, and at intervals during the winter and spring, and in
summer, if the supply is not then exhausted, visits are paid to the
cists and portions of the grain are carried away.

A large proportion of the cists are of modern Navaho work, but that some
of them were used by the pueblo people who preceded them seems probable
from the similarity in horticultural methods, and from the small size of
many of the villages. A village inhabited by half a dozen people was not
uncommon; one which could accommodate more than fifty was rare.
Moreover, some of the storage cists that occur in conjunction with
dwellings differ from the latter only in size and in their separation
from the other rooms. The masonry is quite as good as that of the
houses, and much superior to the Navaho work.

Plate LXI shows an example which occurs in the lower part of the canyon,
at the point marked 1 on the map. It is placed on a little ledge or
block of rock, 12 feet above the stream and about 8 feet above the
bottom land below it. This is the first considerable area of bottom land
in the canyon. The cist is 2 feet square inside and occupies the whole
width of the rock. An exceptionally large amount of mud plaster was used
on the walls, which are better finished outside than inside. Access was
had by hand-holes in the rock, now almost obliterated. Originally the
structure consisted of two or more rooms.

A little below this site there are some well-executed pictographs, and
on some rocks immediately to the right some crude work of the Navaho of
the same sort. To the left of the cist a round hole 6 or 8 inches in
diameter has been pecked into the almost vertical face of the rock. The
purpose of this is not clear.

The storage of water was so seldom attempted, or perhaps so seldom
necessary, that only one example of a reservoir was found. This has
already been described (page 126). If the cliff ruins were defensive
structures, a supply of water must have been kept in them, and where
this requirement was common, as it would be under the hypothesis,
certainly some receptacle other than jars of pottery would be provided.
Few, if any, of the cliff outlooks are so situated that a supply of
water could be procured without descending to the stream bed, and
without a supply of water the most impregnable site in the canyon would
have little value.

The number of burial cists in the canyon is remarkable; there are
hundreds of them. Practically every ruin whose walls are still standing
contains one or more, some have eight or ten. They are all of Navaho
origin and in many of them the remains of Navaho dead may still be seen.
Possibly the Navaho taboo of their own dead has brought about the
partial taboo of the cliff dwellers' remains which prevails, and which
is an element that must be taken into account in any discussion of the
antiquity of the ruins.

The burial cists are built usually in a corner or against a wall of a
cliff dweller's house, but sometimes they are built against a cliff
wall, and occasionally stand out alone. The masonry is always rough,
much inferior to the old walls against which it generally rests, and
usually very flimsy. The structures are dome-shape when standing alone,
or in the shape of a section of a dome when placed against other walls.
The natural bedding of the stone is sometimes wholly ignored, and in
some cases the walls consist merely of thin slabs of stone on edge, held
together with masses of mud, the whole presenting an average thickness
of less than 3 inches. Such structures on ordinary sites would not last
six months; protected as they are they might last for many years.

  [Illustration: Plate LXI
  Storage Cist in Canyon De Chelly]

Not all the Navaho dead in the canyon find their last resting place in
the ruins. Graves can be seen under bowlders and rocks high up on the
talus; and in one place in De Chelly a number of little piles of stones
are pointed out as the burial places of "many Americans," who, it is
said, were killed by the Navaho in their last war. It is also said that
in the olden days, when the Navaho considered De Chelly their stronghold
and the heart of their country, the remains of prominent men of the
tribe were often brought to the canyon for interment in the ruins. Such
burials are still made, both in the ruins themselves and in cists on
similar sites.

As a whole the Navaho burial cists are much more difficult of access
than the ruins, and some of them appear to be now really inaccessible, a
statement which can be made of but few ruins. Some of them appear to
have been reached from above. The agility and dexterity of the Navaho in
climbing the cliffs is remarkable, and possibly some of the sites now
apparently inaccessible are not so considered by them. As before stated,
there are a number of Navaho foot trails out of the canyon, where
shallow pits or holes have been pecked in the rock as an aid in the more
difficult places, and similar aids were often employed to afford access
to storage and burial cists. Plate LVI shows a site in the lower part of
the canyon where such means have been employed. The pits in the rock are
so much worn by atmospheric erosion that the ascent now is very
dangerous. The cove or ledge to which they lead is about halfway up the
cliff, and on it are a number of cists, one of them still intact, with a
doorway. The masonry consists of large slabs of sandstone set on edge,
sometimes irregularly one above another, the whole being roughly
plastered inside and out. About 200 yards farther up the cove, on the
same side, there is a series of foot holes leading to a small cave about
halfway up, and thence upward and probably out of the canyon. They are
probably of Navaho origin.

  [Illustration: Fig. 68--Cist composed of upright slabs.]

The use of stone on edge is apparently confined to these cists. Figure
68 shows a structure which occurs a little above the ruin marked 37 on
the map. The walls consist of thin slabs of stone set upright and
roughly plastered where they meet. Instances of the use of stone in this
way are not uncommon in the pueblo country, and there are a number of
examples in De Chelly.

As before stated, the typical Navaho burial cist is of dome shape. The
roof or upper portion is supported on sticks so arranged as to leave a
small square opening in the top. Apparently at some stage in its
existence this hole is closed and sealed, but examples were examined
which were very old and one which was but twenty-four hours old, but in
neither case was the opening closed. Doubtless the opening has some
ceremonial significance; it is not of any actual use, as it is too small
to permit the passage of a human body. Plate LXII shows a typical cist
in good order and another such broken down. These examples occur at the
point marked 6 on the map, in the ruin shown in plate LIII. This site is
of comparatively easy access, and there are many others equally easy or
even more so, but, on the other hand, there are many Sites which now
seem to be wholly inaccessible.


The cliff ruins have always been regarded as defensive structures,
sometimes even as fortresses, but in De Chelly whatever value they have
in this respect is due solely to the sites they occupy. There are many
places here where slight defensive works on the approaches to sites
would increase their value a hundredfold, but such works were apparently
never constructed. Furthermore, the ruins themselves never show even a
suggestion of the influence of the defensive motive, except in the two
possible instances already mentioned. The ordinary or dwelling-house
plan has not been at all modified, not even to the extent that it has in
the modern pueblos. If the cliff ruins were defensive structures it
would certainly seem that an influence strong enough to bring about the
occupancy of such inconvenient and unsuitable sites would also be strong
enough to bring about some modifications in the architecture,
modifications which would render more suitable sites available. The
influence of the physical environment on pueblo architecture, and the
sensitiveness of the latter to such influence, has already been
commented on. Moreover, it also has been stated that, so far as known,
but one instance occurs in the canyon where provision was made for the
storage of water; yet without water the strongest "fortress" in the
canyon could not withstand a siege of forty-eight hours. Further,
assuming that the structures were defensive, and well prepared to resist
attack, if necessary, for several days, only a few such attacks would be
required to cause their abandonment, for the crops on the canyon bottom,
practically the sole possessions of the dwellers in the canyon, would
necessarily be lost.

  [Illustration: Plate LXII
  Navaho Burial Cists]

These are some of the difficulties that stand in the way of the
assumption that the cliff ruins were defensive structures or permanent
homes. If, however, we adopt the hypothesis that they were farming
outlooks occupied only during the farming season, and then only for a
few days or weeks at a time, after the manner that such outlooks are
used by the Pueblo Indians at the present time, most of the difficulties

The apparent inaccessibility of many of the sites disappears on close
examination, and we must not forget that places really difficult of
access to us would not necessarily be so regarded by a people accustomed
to that manner of life. Many locations which could not be surpassed as
defensive sites were not occupied, while others much inferior in this
respect were built upon. It was very seldom that the natural conditions
were modified, even to the extent of selecting a route of access other
than that which, would naturally be followed, and, of course, the
easiest route for the cliff dwellers would be also the easiest route for
their enemies. In many cases the easiest way of access, which was the
one used by the cliff dwellers, was not direct. It was not commanded by
the immediate site of the dwellings, except in its upper part, and in
some cases not at all. Enemies could climb to the very doors of the
houses before they could be seen or attacked. The absence of military
knowledge and skill, and of any attempt to fortify or strengthen a site,
or even to fully utilize its natural defensive advantages, is
characteristic of the cliff ruins of De Chelly. If the cliff dwellers
were driven to the use of such places by a necessity for defense, this
absence is remarkable, especially as there is evidence that the
settlements were occupied for a number of, perhaps a great many, years.

Under the head of constructive expedients we have a different result.
The difficulties which came from the occupancy of exceptional sites were
promptly reflected in the construction, and unusual ways and methods
were adopted to overcome them. These methods are the more interesting in
that they were not always successful. It sometimes happened that walls
had to be placed on a foundation of smooth, sloping rock. In such cases
the rock was never cut away, but timbers were employed to hold the wall
in place. In some instances the timbers were laid at right angles to the
line of front wall, at points where cross walls joined it inside. The
front wall thus rested partly on the ends of timbers and partly on rock,
while the other ends of the timbers were held in place by the cross
walls built upon them. An example of this construction is shown in plate
LII. In other instances, where the surface was irregular but did not
slope much, timbers were laid on the wall lines and the masonry rested
partly upon them. An example of this occurs in the Casa Blanca ruin,
shown in plate XLVII. Still another method of using timber in masonry
occurs in a number of ruins. It was seldom effective and apparently was
confined to this region. This consists of the incorporation into the
masonry of upright logs. Figure 69 shows an example that occurs at the
point marked 32 on the map. The site here is an especially difficult
one, as the builders were compelled to place walls not only on sloping
rock foundations, but also on loose débris, and the vertical timber
support is quite common. The three kivas which are shown on the plan
occupied the front of the village, and their front walls have fallen
out. Apparently the same accident has happened at least once, if not
several times, before, and a fragment of a previous front wall has
slipped down 3 or 4 feet, and was left there when the kiva was repaired.
The round dots shown on the plan, two in the wall of the central kiva
and one on the east, represent vertical timbers incorporated in the
masonry. The tops of these logs reach the level of the top of the bench
in the kiva, and their lower ends rest in cavities in the rocks. The
eastern one was removed and was found to be about 2 feet long. The upper
half was charred, although formerly inclosed completely in the masonry,
as though it had been burned off to the required length. The lower end
was hacked off with some blunt implement, and as nearly squared as it
could be done with such means. It was set into a socket or hole pecked
in the solid rock and plastered in with clay. In the outer portion of
the eastern wall of the central kiva there are many marks of sticks,
3 to 4 inches in diameter and placed vertically.

  [Illustration: Fig. 69--Retaining walls in Canyon de Chelly.]

Although timbers as an aid to masonry occur in many ruins, they
predominate in those which have been suggested as the sites most
recently occupied; but in the Chaco ruins timber has been used
extensively and much more skillfully than here. Instances occur where a
cross wall has been tied into a front wall with timber, and so effective
was the device that in one instance a considerable section of cross wall
can be seen suspended in the air, being completely broken out below and
now supported wholly by the ties. Instances can also be seen where
partition walls are supported on crossbeams at some distance from the
ground, forming large and convenient openings between rooms; but nothing
of that kind was seen in De Chelly. In the latter region wherever
horizontal timbers are used for the support of masonry they rest on the
bed rock.

  [Illustration: Plate LXIII
  Kiva in Ruin No. 10, Showing Second-Story Walls]

The same ruin (No. 32) contains an elaborate system of retaining avails,
which are shown partly in figure 69. At first a retaining wall was built
immediately in front of the main kiva, which is now 5 feet high outside.
Apparently this did not serve the purpose intended, for another and much
heavier wall was built immediately next to it. This wall is 4 feet
thick, flush on top and inside, but 10 feet high outside. At half its
height it has a step back of 6 inches. It would seem that even this
heavy construction did not suffice, and still another wall was built
outside of and next to it. This wall is nearly or quite as heavy as the
one described, and its top is on the level of the foot of that wall, but
it is 12 feet high outside. Something of the character of the site may
be inferred from the arrangement of these walls, which have a combined
vertical fall of 27 feet in a horizontal distance of less than 15 feet.
The outer or lower wall has a series of very heavy timbers projecting
from its face; these are placed irregularly. It should be noted that
access to this village was from the bench on either side, and that it
could not be reached from the front, where these walls occur. There are
other walls on the lower slope, similarly reinforced.

A little to the right of the point where these retaining walls occur
there is a room in which horizontal beams have been incorporated in the
masonry. A similar use of timber occurs in ruin No. 16 and is shown in
plate LX. Why timber should be used in this way is not clear. It may be
that when the supply was placed on the ground the builders found that
they had more timber than was needed for a roof and used the excess in
the wall rather than bring up more stone. The posts which were placed
vertically and built into the wall were always short; perhaps they were
fragments or ends cut from roofing timbers that were found to be too
long. In many instances they failed to hold the walls, and possibly the
pit holes in sloping rock, which are numerous on some sites, indicate
places where this expedient was formerly employed.

It is singular that the necessity for such expedients did not develop
the idea of a buttress. On this site such an expedient would have saved
an immense amount of work. In only one place in the canyon was a
buttress found. This was in the Casa Blanca ruin, shown in plate XLVII.
There is no doubt that in this place the buttress was used with a full
knowledge of its principles, and but little doubt that the idea was
imported at a late, perhaps the latest, period in the occupancy of that
site. Had it been known before, it would have been used in other places
where there was great need for it, not so much to prevent the slipping
of walls as to supersede the construction of walls 4 feet thick or more,
and to strengthen outside walls which were likely to give way at any
time from the outward thrust upon them.

Altogether the constructive expedients employed in De Chelly suggest the
introduction of plans and methods adapted to other regions and other
conditions into a new region with different requirements, and that
occupancy of the latter region did not continue long enough to conform
the methods to the new conditions.


The kivas, or estufas as they formerly were called, are sacred chambers
in which the civil and religious affairs of the tribe are transacted,
and they also form a place of resort, or club, as it were, for the men.
Their functions are many and varied, but as this subject has already
been discussed at length[17] it need not be enlarged upon here. In
Tusayan the kivas are rectangular and separated from the houses; in Zuñi
and in some other pueblos they are also rectangular, but are
incorporated in the house clusters--a feature doubtless brought about by
the repressive policy of the Spanish monks. In some of the pueblos, as
in Taos, they are circular, and in many of the older ruins the same form
is found. In the large ruins of Chaco canyon the kivas occur in groups
arranged along the inner side of the rooms; always, where the ground
plan is such as to permit it, arranged on the border of an inner court.
In Canyon de Chelly the kivas are always circular and are placed
generally on the outer edge of the settlement, which is usually the

    [Footnote 17: 8th Ann. Rept. Bur. Eth., "A study of Pueblo
    architecture in Tusayan and Cibola," by Victor Mindeleff;
    Washington, 1891.]

As the function of the kivas is principally a religious one, they are
found only in permanent villages where religious ceremonies were
performed. They are never found in subordinate settlements, or farming
villages, or outlooks, unless such settlements came to be inhabited all
the year--in other words, until they became permanent villages. The
habits and requirements of the Pueblo people make it essential that a
permanent village should have one or more kivas, and we have in the
presence of these structures a criterion by which the character of a
village or ruin may be determined. As the kivas in De Chelly are always
circular, they can generally be easily distinguished.

The circular kiva is unquestionably a survival in architecture--a relic
of the time when the Pueblo people dwelt in circular lodges or huts--and
its use in conjunction with a rectangular system entailed many
difficulties and some awkward expedients to overcome them. The main
problem, how to use the two systems together, was solved by inclosing
the circular chamber in a rectangular cell, and this expedient aided in
the solution of the hardly less important problem of roofing. The roof
of the kiva was the roof of the chamber that inclosed it.

It seems to have been a common requirement throughout the pueblo country
that the kiva should be wholly or partly underground. So strong was this
requirement in Tusayan that the occurrence of natural clefts and
fissures in the rock of the mesa top has dictated the location of the
kivas often at some distance from the houses. But in De Chelly there
were some sites where the requirement could not be filled without
extensive rock excavation wholly beyond the power of the builders. Here
then it seems that other requirements were strong enough to overcome the
ceremonial necessity for partly subterranean structures, for examples of
that kind are comparatively rare. In all of the ruins on the canyon
bottom the requirement could be filled, and as many of the villages on
defensive sites were constructed after the site itself had been partly
filled up with loose débris, it could also be filled in those cases.
There are also instances where the bottom of the kiva rests directly on
the rock, while outside the walls the site was covered deep with
artificial débris. But it would be difficult to determine what was the
surface of the ground when the kiva was in use.

The size and character of the kivas in De Chelly, and their relations to
the other rooms about them, are shown in the ground plans preceding.
Some have walls still standing to a height of 6 feet above the ground,
but this could not have been the total height. Dr H. C. Yarrow, U.S.A.,
in 1874 examined one of the five large circular kivas in Taos. He
states[18] that it was 25 or 30 feet in diameter, arched above, and 20
feet high. Around the wall, 2 feet from the ground, there was a hard
earthen bench, and in the center a fireplace about 2 by 3 feet.

  [Illustration: Fig. 70--Part of a kiva in ruin No. 31.]

Entrance to the kivas is invariably from the roof by a ladder. This
appears to be a ceremonial requirement. Doorways at the ground level are
not only unknown, but also impracticable; but in De Chelly there are
some puzzling features which might easily be mistaken for such doorways.
The principal kiva in the ruin, which occurs at the point marked 10 on
the map, and described above (page 123, figure 24), is on the edge of
the ledge, and its outer wall is so close as to make a passage
difficult, although not impossible. At the point where the curved wall
comes nearest the cliff there is a narrow gap or opening, not more than
15 inches wide. In front of this there appears to be a little platform
on the sloping rock, 2 feet long, 10 inches wide, and now about a foot
high. At first sight this would be taken for a doorway so arranged that
access to the kiva could be obtained only from below; but a closer
examination shows that this was probably only what remains of a
chimney-like structure, such as those described later.

    [Footnote 18: Wheeler Survey Reports, vol. VII, Archæology,
    p. 327.]

In ruin 31 there is another example. The kiva here was about 20 feet in
diameter, with rather thin walls smoothly plastered inside. On the inner
side the walls are from 3 to 5 feet high; outside they are generally
flush with the ground. The kiva is not a true circle, but is slightly
elongated north and south. On the south side, nearest the edge of the
ledge, there is an opening, shown in figure 70. The opening is 6 feet 3
inches wide, and the ends of the curved walls terminate in smoothly
finished surfaces. In front of it there are remains of two walls, about
a foot apart, and so arranged as to form an apparent passageway into the
interior of the kiva. These seem to be a kind of platform, like that
just described, but close inspection shows the walls, which can be
traced to within 6 inches of the inner wall of the kiva. This also may
be the remains of a chimney-like structure. There are other points in
the canyon where the same feature occurs, but in none of them is the
evidence of an opening or doorway more definite than in the examples

  [Illustration: Fig. 71--Plan of part of a kiva in ruin No. 10.]

The masonry of the kivas is always as good as that of any other
structure on the site, and generally much better. The walls are usually
massive; sometimes they are 3 feet thick in the upper part and 4 feet in
the lower portion, where the bench occurs. In a few cases the kiva has
an upper or second story, but when this occurs no attempt is made to
preserve the circular form, and the upper rooms are really rectangular
with much rounded corners. Plate XLIX shows a second-story kiva wall in
Mummy Cave ruin, and plate LXIII one in ruin No. 10 in De Chelly. The
latter occurs over the principal kiva, and the walls which are still
standing on the north and west sides are approximately straight, but the
corners are much rounded. Figure 71 is a detailed plan of part of the
kiva, showing the arrangement of the upper walls. The kiva walls are
about 18 inches thick. On the north side the upper wall is supported by
a heavy beam, part of which is still in place. Under the north-east
corner of the upper room there is a little triangular space formed by a
short connecting wall, shown on the plan. This is really a flying wall,
covering only the upper portion of the space, and its purpose is not
clear, as the opening left is not large enough to permit the passage of
a person, and was available only from the second story.

Apparently the greatest care was bestowed on the construction and finish
of the kivas. The exterior of the circular wall is often rough and
unfinished, but this is probably because the whole structure was
generally inclosed within rectangular walls. The interior was plastered,
often with a number of coats. The southern kiva in ruin No. 10 shows a
number of these on its interior surface, applied one after another, and
now forming a plastering nearly three-quarters of an inch thick. In its
section 18 distinct coats can be counted, separated one from the other
by a thin film of smoke-blackened surface. The kiva in ruin No. 16 has 4
or 5 coats, that in ruin No. 31 shows at least 8. In the last example
the last coat was not decorated, but some of the underlying ones were.

Kivas are used, principally in the autumn and winter, when the farming
season is over and the ceremonies and dances take place. It is probable,
therefore, that each coat of plaster means at least a year in the
history of the kiva, which would indicate that some of the sites were
occupied about twenty years. But Mr Frank H. Cushing has observed in
Zuñi a ceremony, part of which is the refinishing of the kiva interior,
and this occurs only once in four years. This would give a maximum
occupancy of about eighty years to some of the kivas; the ruins as a
whole would hardly justify an hypothesis of a longer occupancy than
this. In Tusayan the interior of the kiva is plastered by the women once
every year at the feast of Powamu (the fructifying moon).

  [Illustration: Fig. 72--Kiva decoration in white.]

The kivas are seldom true circles, being usually elongated one way or
another. Some instances occur which are rectangular, such as the room
shown in figure 19, which was apparently a kiva. Nordenskiöld[19]
illustrates an example which appears to have been oval by design,
differing in this respect from anything found in De Chelly. Most of the
kivas have an interior bench, about a foot wide and 2 feet above the
floor. This bench is sometimes continuous around the whole interior,
sometimes extends only partly around. Wherever the chimney-like
structure is attached to a kiva the bench is omitted or broken at that
point. The kiva wall on the floor level is always continuous except
before the chimney-like feature. The most elaborate system of benches
and buttresses seen in the canyon occurs in the principal kiva of the
Mummy Cave ruin. This is shown in the ground plan, figure 16, and also
in figures 82 and 83. In the ruins of the Mancos, Nordenskiöld found
kivas in which this feature is carried much further. He illustrates[20]
an example with a complete bench regularly divided into six equal parts
by an equal number of buttresses or pillars (properly pilasters)
extending out flush with the front of the bench. This is said to be a
typical example, to which practically all the kivas conform. It has also
the chimney-like structure, to be described later. Like the rectangular
kivas of Tusayan the circular structures of De Chelly have little niches
in the walls. Probably these were places of deposit for certain
paraphernalia used in the ceremonies.

    [Footnote 19: Cliff Dwellers of the Mesa Verde, p. 63, fig. 36.]

    [Footnote 20: Loc. cit., figs. 6 and 7, pp. 15-16.]

Some of the kivas have an interior decoration consisting of a band with
points. Figure 72 shows an example that occurs in ruin No. 10 in De
Chelly, in the north kiva. The band, done in white, is about 18 inches
below the bench, and its top is broken at intervals into groups of
points rising from it, four points in each group. In the north kiva the
interior wall is decorated by a series of vertical bands in white. One
series occurs on the vertical face of the bench; the bands are 2 inches
wide and 8 inches apart. Another series occurs on the wall, and consists
of bands 2½ to 3 inches wide, about 2 feet high and 12 to 14 inches
apart. The bands were observed only on the southern and western sides of
the kiva, but originally there may have been others on the north and

  [Illustration: Fig. 73--Pictograph in white.]

  [Illustration: Fig. 74--Markings on cliff wall, ruin No. 37.]

  [Illustration: Fig. 75--Decorative band in kiva in Mummy Cave ruin.]

In ruin No. 4 there is a similar series of bars, but in this instance
they occur on the cliff wall back of the rooms. They are shown in figure
73. There are four bars or upright bands, done in white paint, and
surmounted by four round dots or spots. To the left of the four bars,
level with their tops, there is a small triangle, also in white. The
bars are 30 inches long and 4 inches wide. The upper dots are nearly
2 feet above, the tops of the bars. It is evident that this figure was
designed to be seen from a distance. Figure 74 shows some markings on
the cliff wall back of ruin No. 37.

  [Illustration: Fig. 76--Design employed in decorative band.]

Examples almost identical with those shown here are abundant in the
Mancos ruins. It was probable they are of ceremonial rather than of
decorative origin, and in this connection it may be stated that Mr Frank
H. Cushing has observed in Zuñi the ceremony of marking the sides of a
kiva hatchway with white bars closely resembling those shown in figure
73. This ceremony occurs once in four years, and the purpose of the
marks is said to be to indicate the cardinal directions. In the
ceremonials of the Pueblo Indians it is necessary to know where the
cardinal points are; a prayer, for instance, is often addressed to the
north, west, south, and east, and when such ceremonials were performed
in a circular chamber some means by which the direction could be
determined was essential.

  [Illustration: Fig. 77--Pictographs in Canyon de Chelly.]

In the principal kiva in Mummy Cave ruin, however, there is a painted
band on the front of the bench which appears to be really an attempt at
decoration. Over the white there is a band 4 or 5 inches wide,
consisting of a meander done in red. This is shown in figure 75, and in
detail in figure 76. The design is similar to that used today. Its
importance arises not so much from this as from the fact that it is
difficult to regard this as other than ornamentation, and the Pueblo
architect had not yet reached the stage of ornamented construction. The
ruins in the Mancos canyon and the Mesa Verdé country obviously
represent a later stage in development than those in De Chelly, yet
nowhere in that region do we find the counterpart of the decoration in
Mummy Cave kiva. Bands with points occur, sometimes on walls of
rectangular rooms. One such is illustrated by Chapin,[21] who also shows
a variety of the meander, treated, however, as a pictograph and without
reference to its decorative value. Similar bands are shown also by
Nordenskiöld,[22] but always with three points, instead of four, which
were done in red. Figure 77 shows some pictographs somewhat resembling
the Mancos examples. These occur at the point marked 1 on the map, in
connection with a small storage cist already described.

    [Footnote 21: Land of the Cliff Dwellers, illustration, pp. 143,

    [Footnote 22: Cliff Dwellers of the Mesa Verde, figs. 6, 7, 76,
    77, and 78.]

No kiva has been found in De Chelly with a roof in place. Nearly all of
them are inclosed in rectangular chambers, and it seems more than
probable that the roofing of the kiva was simply the roofing of the
inclosing chamber. As a rule the inclosing rectangular walls were
erected at the same time as the kiva proper, and the outside of the
inner circular wall was not finished at all. In a few instances the
space between the outer rectangular and inner circular wall was filled
in solid, or perhaps was so constructed, but usually the walls are
separate and distinct.


There are peculiar structures found in some of the ruins, whose use and
object are not clear. Reference has already been made to them in the
descriptions of several ruins, and for want of a better name they have
been designated chimney-like structures. At the time that they were
examined they were supposed to be new, and the first hypothesis formed
was that they were abortive chimneys, but further examination showed
that this idea was not tenable. Subsequently Nordenskiöld's book on the
Cliff Dwellers of the Mesa Verde was published, and it appears therefrom
that this feature is very common in the region treated; so common as to
constitute the type.

  [Illustration: Fig. 78--Plan of chimney-like structure in ruin
  No. 15.]

Figure 78 is a plan of one of these structures which occurs in ruin No.
15 in Canyon de Chelly. This ruin has already been described in detail
(page 118). The chimney-like structure is attached to a rectangular room
with rounded corners, which is supposed to have been a kiva, and which
was two stories high. Excavation revealed the floor level about 7½ feet
below where the roof was placed. In the center of the south wall there
is an opening 1.5 feet high and eighty-five one-hundredths of a foot
(10.2 inches) wide. The south wall is built over a large bowlder, and a
tunnel or opening passes under this to a rounded vertical shaft, about a
foot in diameter, which opens to the air. This perhaps is better shown
in the section (figure 79). At first sight this would appear to be a
chimney, but there are several objections to the idea. The interior of
the shaft is not blackened by smoke, and while the tunnel is somewhat
smoke-stained, the deposit is not so pronounced as on the walls of the
room. The front of the tunnel in the room has a lintel composed of a
single stick about an inch in diameter, as shown in the section. The
roof of the tunnel was the underside of the large bowlder mentioned, and
the stick lintel was of no use except to show that no fire could have
been built under it. The roof of the southern end of the tunnel, where
it opens into the shaft, is considerably lower than at the other end.
The floor of the tunnel and the sides were smoothly plastered, but the
plastering does not appear to have been subjected to the action of fire.

The interior of the room, like the circular kivas already described,
appears to have been plastered with a number of successive coats, all
except the last being heavily stained by smoke. If the structure were a
chimney, it was a dismal failure. The tunnel was made at the time the
wall was erected, and passes under the bowlder over which the wall was
built. A little east of the opening, inside the room, the bowlder shows
through the wall, projecting slightly beyond its face.

  [Illustration: Fig. 79--Section of chimney-like structure in
  ruin 15.]

Outside of the room the corner of the bowlder was chipped off, as shown
on the plan, to permit the rounding of the shaft, the east, west, and
south sides of which were built up with small pieces of stone, a kind of
lining of masonry. There was also an outside structure of masonry, but
how high above the ground it extended can not now be determined. A small
fragment of this masonry is still left on the upper surface of the
bowlder and is shown in the section.

Figure 80 is a plan of another example, which is attached to the
circular kiva in ruin No. 16. This ruin is described on page 129. The
kiva had an interior bench and the floor is 2 feet above its top. On the
south side nearest the cliff edge the bench is interrupted to give place
to a structure much like that described above. In this case, however,
there was no convenient bowlder, and the roof of the tunnel has broken
down so that the method of support can not be accurately determined.
Probably it consisted of slabs of rock, as the span is small, and a
number of large flat stones were removed from the tunnel in excavating.

The top of the tunnel is on the level of the top of the bench, as shown
in figure 81, which is a vertical section. An inspection of the plan
will show that the circular wall of the kiva is complete and that the
inclosing rectangular wall was added later. The shaft was built at a
still later period, and the line or junction marking its inner surface
shows plainly in the interior of the tunnel. The general view of the
ruin (plate LI) shows the exterior of the shaft, and the horizontal
timbers on which the masonry is supported are shown in plate LII.

In front of the tunnel a flat piece of stone was placed on the floor,
and in front of this again, about 2 feet from the mouth of the tunnel,
there was an upright mass of masonry composed of stone and mud, and
forming a curtain or screen before the opening. The original height of
this structure was the same as that of the interior bench.

The inner surface of the rectangular inclosing wall is marked by a line
in the interior of the tunnel. Inside of this line, toward the center of
the kiva, the stones composing the wall are large; outside of it they
are small. The interior plastering of the kiva is not smoke-blackened,
but the coat next the surface is stained, as is also the third coat
underneath. The interior of the tunnel is not much smoke-blackened, but
it appears probable that part of its roof fell while the structure was
still in use, as there are a number of little cavities in the masonry
above its roof level filled with soot. A similar effect might result
from leaks or cavities between the flat roofing stones. In excavating
the tunnel a number of large lumps of clay were found in it, and there
is no doubt that they formed part of the roof. Some of these had
considerable quantities of grass mixed into them or stuck to the clay on
one side. Apparently dry grass was used in the construction. A large
fire could not have been built within the tunnel.

  [Illustration: Fig. 80--Plan of chimney-like structure in ruin
  No. 16.]

The principal kiva in Mummy Cave ruin has an elaborate structure of the
kind under discussion. Figure 82 shows a plan of this kiva, of which a
general view has already been given (figure 75). The bench extended only
partly around the interior, which had a continuous surface at the floor
level, except on the southwest. At this point it is interrupted to give
place to an elaborate chimney-like structure. Figure 83 is a general

The wall surface on the southern side of the kiva has been extended
inward, as shown on the plan by a lighter shaded area. This was done at
some period subsequent to the completion of the kiva, but whether it had
any connection with the chimney-like structure could not be determined.
The curtain or screen before the opening, which seems to be an
invariable feature, is shown in both figures.

In this example the tunnel does not pass through the masonry as in those
previously described, but occurs in the form of a covered trough, shown
in the illustration with the covering removed. It occupies the middle
third of a large recess in the main wall of the kiva, and is connected
at its outer end with a vertical square shaft about a foot wide. This
shaft is separated from the recess above the bench level by a wall only
a few inches thick, composed of a single layer of stones. That portion
of it which is above the tunnel is supported by a single round stick of
wood, as shown in figure 83. The south or inner opening of the tunnel is
reduced to two-thirds, of the width elsewhere by a framing composed of
bundles of sticks bound together with withes and heavily coated with mud
mortar. This was not placed flush with the inner face, but a few inches
back, and the whole structure gives an effect of unusual neatness and
good workmanship.

  [Illustration: Fig. 81--Section of chimney-like structure in ruin
  No. 16]

At various other points in the canyons examples of chimney-like
structures occur, none, however, constructed on the elaborate plan of
that last described. Two examples were found in the large rooms west of
the tower in the central portion of Mummy Cave ruin, and these are
especially worthy of attention because they are attached to rectangular
rooms, which there is no reason to suppose were kivas. The first room
appears to have had a shaft only, without a niche or recess; the second
room west of the tower had a recess and a rounded shaft, while the
third-room had neither recess nor shaft.

The usual form of this feature is that shown in figures 80 and 81, and
consists only of a tunnel and shaft. There are not many examples in the
canyons: altogether there may be a dozen now visible, but excavations in
the village ruins would doubtless reveal others. Except the two in Mummy
Cave ruin last mentioned, and some doubtful examples to be described
later, they occur always as attachments to kivas, never to houses. Some
of them, like the Mummy Cave example, were certainly built at the same
time as the kivas, of which they formed a part; others were added to
kivas after those structures had been completed and used.

  [Illustration: Fig. 82--Plan of the principal kiva in Mummy Cave

The kiva in Casa Blanca ruin (shown in figure 14) appears to have had an
appendage of this sort, not constructed after the usual manner, but
added outside the rectangular wall and composed of mud or adobe. At
three other places in the lower ruin these structures are found, all
constructed of mud or adobe and all attached to adobe walls. It is
doubtful whether these three examples should be classed with the
preceding, but as they may have been used in the same manner they should
be mentioned here. Another doubtful example occurs in the upper part of
the same ruin and has already been described (page 110). It was
constructed of stone at some time subsequent to the completion of the
wall against which it rests.

  [Illustration: Fig. 83--Chimney-like structure in Mummy Cave ruin.]

Over twenty ago Mr W. H. Holmes found a structure in Mancos canyon which
it now appears may be of this type. He illustrates it by a ground plan
and thus describes it:

  The most striking feature of this structure [ruin] is the round
  room, which occurs about the middle of the ruin and inside of a large
  rectangular apartment.... Its walls are not high and not entirely
  regular, and the inside is curiously fashioned with offsets and
  box-like projections. It is plastered smoothly and bears considerable
  evidence of having been used, although I observed no traces of tire.
  The entrance to this chamber is rather extraordinary, and further
  attests the peculiar importance attached to it by the builders and
  their evident desire to secure it from all possibility of intrusion.
  A walled and covered passageway of solid masonry, 10 feet of which
  is still intact, leads from an outer chamber through the small
  intervening apartments into the circular one. It is possible that
  this originally extended to the outer wall and was entered from the
  outside. If so, the person desiring to visit the estufa [kiva] would
  have to enter an aperture about 22 inches high by 30 wide and crawl
  in the most abject manner possible through a tube-like passageway
  nearly 20 feet in length. My first impression was that this
  peculiarly constructed doorway was a precaution against enemies and
  that it was probably the only means of entrance to the interior of
  the house, but I am now inclined to think this hardly probable, and
  conclude that it was rather designed to render a sacred chamber as
  free as possible from profane intrusion.[23]

    [Footnote 23: 10th Ann. Rept. U.S. Geol. and Geog. Survey of the
    Territories, F. V. Hayden in charge (Washington, 1878); report on
    the "Ancient ruins of Southwestern Colorado," by W. H. Holmes;
    p. 395, pl. xxxvii.]

In this example the tunnel was much larger than usual and the vertical
shaft, if there were one, has been so much broken down that it is no
longer distinguishable. Nordenskiöld mentions a considerable number of
kivas with this attachment, and one which is described and figured is
said to be a type of all the kivas in that region, but an inspection of
his ground plans shows more kivas without this feature than with it. In
his description of a small ruin in Cliff canyon he speaks of--

  ... a circular room still in a fair state of preservation. The wall
  that lies nearest the precipice is for the most part in ruins; the
  rest of the room is well preserved. After about half a meter of dust
  and rubbish had been removed, we were able to ascertain that the
  walls formed a cylinder 4.3 meters in diameter. The thickness of the
  wall is throughout considerable, and varies, the spaces between the
  points where the cylinder touches the walls of adjoining rooms[24]
  having been filled up with masonry. The height of the room is 2
  meters. The roof has long since fallen in, and only one or two beams
  are left among the rubbish. To a height of 1.2 meters from the floor
  the wall is perfectly even and has the form of a cylinder, or rather
  of a truncate cone, as it leans slightly inward. The upper portion,
  on the other hand, is divided by six deep niches into the same
  number of pillars. The floor is of clay, hard, and perfectly even.
  Near the center is a round depression or hole, five-tenths of a
  meter deep and eight-tenths of a meter in diameter. This hole was
  entirely full of white ashes. It was undoubtedly the hearth. Between
  the hearth and the outer wall stands a narrow, curved wall,
  eight-tenths of a meter high. Behind this wall, in the same plane as
  the floor, a rectangular opening, 1 meter high and six-tenths of a
  meter broad, has been constructed in the outer wall. This opening
  forms the mouth of a narrow passage or tunnel of rectangular shape,
  which runs 1.8 meters in a horizontal direction and then goes
  straight upward, out into the open air. The tunnel lies under one of
  the six niches, which is somewhat deeper than the others. The walls
  are built of carefully hewn blocks of sandstone, the inner surface
  being perfectly smooth and lined with a thin, yellowish plaster. On
  closer examination of this plaster it is found to consist of several
  thin layers, each of them black with soot. The plaster has evidently
  been repeatedly restored as the walls became blackened with smoke.
  A few smaller niches and holes in the walls, irregularly scattered
  here and there, have presumably served as places of deposit for
  different articles; a bundle of pieces of hide, tied with a string,
  was found in one of them. The lower part of the wall, to a height of
  four-tenths of a meter, is painted dark red around the whole room.
  This red paint projects upward in triangular points, arranged in
  threes, and above them is a row of small round dots of red....
  Circular rooms, built and arranged on exactly the same plan as that
  described above, reappear with exceedingly slight variations in size
  and structure in every cliff dwelling except the very smallest
  ones.... The number of estufas [kivas] varies in proportion to the
  size of the buildings and the number of rooms, ... [The ruin
  described contained two kivas.] ... The description of the first
  estufa applies in every respect to the second, with the single
  exception that the whole wall is coated with yellow plaster without
  any red painting. The wall between the hearth and the singular
  passage or tunnel described above is replaced by a large slab of
  stone set on end. It is difficult to say for what purpose this
  tunnel has been constructed and the slab of stone or the wall
  erected in front of it. As I have mentioned above, this arrangement
  is found in all the estufas.[25]

    [Footnote 24: In the ground plan given there is no point shown
    where the walls of the kiva touch adjoining rooms.]

    [Footnote 25: Cliff Dwellers of the Mesa Verde, pp. 15-17, figs. 6
    and 7.]

The general similarity between the kivas of De Chelly and those of the
Mesa Verde region will be apparent from the above description. It should
be added that in the section which accompanies it the roof of the tunnel
appears to be supported by a series of small cross sticks, although no
information on this point is afforded by the test. The examples which
occur in De Chelly are apparently much ruder and more primitive than
those of the Mancos, and only one of them approaches the latter in
finish and elaboration.

In another place[26] Nordenskiöld mentions an example in which two small
sticks were incorporated in the masonry of the upper part of the tunnel
in a diagonal position. From this he rejects Holmes' explanation that
the passageway was used as an entrance to the kiva, nor does he find the
chimney hypothesis satisfactory. He states, further, that the use of
this feature as a ventilator seems highly improbable. In one place he
found the curtain or screen constructed not of masonry, but--

  ... of thick stakes, driven into the ground close to each other, and
  fastened together at the top with osiers. On the side nearest to the
  hearth this wooden screen was covered with a thick layer of mortar,
  probably to protect the timber from the heat.[27]

    [Footnote 26: Loc. cit., p. 32.]

    [Footnote 27: Loc. cit., p. 70.]

As stated elsewhere, the first hypothesis formed in the field as to the
purpose of these chimney-like structures was that they were abortive
chimneys, but this was found untenable. The next hypothesis, formed also
in the field, was that they were ceremonial in origin and use, but why
they should connect with the open air is not clear. If we could assume
that they were ventilators, the problem would be solved, but it is a far
cry from pueblo architecture to ventilation; a stride, as it were, over
many centuries. Ventilation according to this method--the introduction
of fresh air on a low level, striking on a screen a little distance from
the inlet and being thereby evenly distributed over the whole
chamber--is a development in house architecture reached only by our own
civilization within the last few decades.

If the shaft and tunnel were in place, however, the screen might follow
as a matter of necessity. Entrance to the kivas is always through the
roof, a ceremonial requirement quite as rigidly adhered to today among
the Pueblos as it was formerly among their ancestors. The same opening
which gives access also provides an exit to the smoke from the fire,
which is invariably placed in the center of the kiva below it. This fire
is a ceremonial rather than a necessary feature, for in the coldest
weather the presence of a dozen men in a small chamber, air-tight except
for a small opening in the roof, very soon raises the temperature to an
uncomfortable degree, and the air becomes so fetid that a white man, not
accustomed to it, is nauseated in half an hour or less. Such are the
conditions in the modern kivas of Tusayan. In the smaller structures of
De Chelly they must have been worse. The fire is, therefore, made very
small and always of very dry wood, so as to diminish as far as possible
the output of smoke. Frank H. Cushing states that in certain ceremonials
which occur in the kivas it is considered very necessary that the fire
should burn brightly and that the flame should rise straight from it. If
this requirement prevailed in De Chelly, a screen of some sort would
surely follow the construction of a shaft and tunnel.

More or less smoke is generally present in the kivas when a fire is
burning, notwithstanding the care taken to prevent it. That a similar
condition prevailed in the kivas of De Chelly is shown by the
smoke-blackened plaster of the interiors. In some cases there was a room
over the kivas which must have increased the difficulty very much. There
can be little doubt that the chimney-like structures were not chimneys,
and no doubt at all that they did provide an efficient means of
ventilation, no matter what the intention of the builders may have been.
When we know more of the ceremonials of the Pueblo Indians, and when
extensive excavations have developed the various types and varieties of
these structures in the ruins, we may be able to determine their object
and use.


It has often been stated concerning some given ruin or region that the
traditions of the present inhabitants of the country do not reach them.
In the case of Canyon de Chelly the same statement might be made, for
more than 99 Navaho in 100, when asked what became of the people who
built the old houses in De Chelly, will state that a great wind arose
and swept them all away, which is equivalent to saying that they do not
know. There is a tradition in the Navaho tribe, however, now very
difficult to get, as it is confined to a few of the old priests. It
recites the occupancy of the canyon before the Navaho obtained
possession of it, but, curiously enough, this period is placed after the
Spanish invasion. It is even asserted that there were monks in De
Chelly, and Mummy Cave, Casa Blanca, and one other ruin have been
pointed out as the places where they were stationed. No version of this
tradition definite and complete enough for publication could be obtained
by the writer, but Dr. Washington Matthews, U.S.A., whose knowledge of
Navaho myths and traditions is so great that it can almost be termed
exhaustive, has obtained one and doubtless will publish it.

The Hopi or Moki Indians, whose villages are some three days' journey to
the west, have also very definite traditions bearing on the occupancy of
De Chelly.[28] This tribe, like others, is composed of a number of
related clans who reached their present location from various directions
and at various times; but, with a few exceptions, each of these clans
claims to have lived at one time or another in Canyon de Chelly. How
much truth there is in these claims can be determined only when the
entire region has been examined and thoroughly studied. In the meantime
it will probably be safe to assume that some, at least, of the ruins in
De Chelly are of Hopi origin.

    [Footnote 28: A résumé of the Hopi traditions was prepared by the
    writer from material collected by the late A. M. Stephen, and
    published as chapter iii of "A study of Pueblo architecture,"
    op. cit.]


To understand the ruins so profusely scattered over the ancient pueblo
country we must have some knowledge of the conditions under which their
inhabitants lived. Were nothing at all known, however, we would be
justified in inferring, from the results that have been produced, a
similarity of conditions with those prevailing among the pueblo tribes,
both formerly and now; and all the evidence so far obtained would
support that inference. There is no warrant whatever for the old
assumption that the "cliff dwellers" were a separate race, and the cliff
dwellings must be regarded as only a phase of pueblo architecture.

More or less speculation regarding the origin of pueblo culture is the
usual and perhaps proper accompaniment of nearly all treatises bearing
on that subject. Early writers on the Aztec culture, aided by a vague
tradition of that tribe that they came from the north, pushed the point
of emigration farther and farther and still farther north, until finally
the pueblo country was reached. Pueblo ruins are even now known locally
as "Aztec ruins." Logically the inhabited villages should be classed as
"Aztec colonies," and such classification was not unusual when the
country came into the possession of the United States some fifty years

As our knowledge of the pueblo culture increased, a gradual separation
between the old and the new took place, and we have as an intermediate
hypothesis many "Aztec ruins," but no "Aztec colonies." Finally, as a
result of still further knowledge, the ruins and the inhabited pueblos
are again brought together; several lines of investigation have combined
to show the continuity of the old and the present culture, and the
connection may be considered well established. But there is still a
disposition to regard the cliff ruins as a thing apart. The old idea of
a separate race of cliff dwellers now finds little credence, but the
cliff ruins are almost universally explained as the results of
extraordinary, primitive, or unusual causes.

The intimate relation between the savage and his physical environment
has already been alluded to. Nature, or that part of nature which we
term physical environment, enters into and becomes part of the life of
the savage in a way and to an extent that we can hardly conceive. A
change of physical environment does not produce an immediate change in
the man or in his arts, but in time such must inevitably result.
Twenty-five years ago the savage of the plains and the savage of the
pueblo country were regarded as distinct races, "as different from each
other as light is from darkness;" yet the differences which appeared so
striking at first have become fewer and fewer as our knowledge of the
Indian tribes increased, and those which remain today can almost all be
attributed to a difference in physical environment.

Linguistic researches have shown the close connection which exists
between the Hopi (Moki) and some of the plains (or so called "wild")
Indians. There is no doubt that at the time of the Spanish discovery,
some three hundred and fifty years ago, the Hopi were quite as far
advanced as the other pueblo tribes, and the conclusion is irresistible
that since it may reasonably be inferred that one tribe has made the
change from a nomadic to a sedentary life, other tribes also may have
done so. We may go even farther than this, and assume that a nomadic
tribe driven into the pueblo country, or drifting into it, would remain
as before under the direct influence of its physical environment,
although the environment would be a new one. Granting this, and the
element of time, and we will have no difficulty with the origin of
pueblo architecture.

The complete adaptation of pueblo architecture to the country in which
it is found has been commented on. Ordinarily such adaptation would
imply two things--origin within the country, and a long period of time
for development--but there are several factors that must be taken into
consideration. If the architecture did not originate in the country
where it is found it would almost certainly bear, traces of former
conditions. Such survivals are common in all arts, and instances of it
are so common in architecture that no examples need be cited. Only one
of these survivals has been found in pueblo architecture, but that one
is very instructive; it is the presence of circular chambers in groups
of rectangular rooms, which occur in certain regions. These chambers are
called estufas or kivas and are the council houses and temples of the
people, in which the governmental and religious affairs of the tribe are
transacted. It is owing to their religious connection that the form has
been preserved to the present day, carrying with it the record of the
time when the people lived in round chambers or huts,

In opposition to the hypothesis of local origin it might be stated that
there is no evidence of forms intermediate in development. The oldest
remains of pueblo architecture known are but little different from
recent examples. But it must be borne in mind that pueblo architecture
is of a very low order, so low that it hardly comes within a definition
of architecture as an art, as opposed to a craft. Except for a few
examples, some of which have already been mentioned, it was strictly
utilitarian in character; the savage had certain needs to supply, and he
supplied them in the easiest and most direct manner and with material
immediately at hand. The whole pueblo country is covered with the
remains of single rooms and groups of rooms, put up to meet some
immediate necessity. Some of these may have been built centuries ago,
some are only a few years or a few months old, yet the structures do not
differ from one another; nor, on the other hand, does the similarity
imply that the builder of the oldest example knew less or more than his
descendant today--both utilized the material at hand and each
accomplished his purpose in the easiest way. In both cases the result is
so rude that no sound inference of sequence can be drawn from the study
of individual examples, but in the study of large aggregations of rooms
we find some clues.

The aggregation of many single rooms into one great structure was
produced by causes which have been discussed. It must not be forgotten
that the unit of pueblo construction is the single room, even in the
large, many-storied villages. This unit is often quite as rude in modern
work as in ancient, and both modern and ancient examples are very close
to the result which would be produced by any Indian tribe who came into
the country and were left free to work out their own ideas. Starting
with this unit the whole system of pueblo architecture is a natural
product of the country in which it is found and the conditions of life
known to have affected the people by whom it was practiced.

Granting the local origin of pueblo architecture it would appear at
first sight that a very long period of time must have elapsed between
the erection of the first rude rooms and the building of the
many-storied pueblos, yet the evidence now available--that derived from
the ruins themselves, documentary evidence, and traditions--all suggest
that such was not necessarily the case. As a record of events, or rather
of a sequence of events, tradition, when unsupported, has practically no
value; but as a picture of life and of the conditions under which a
people lived it is very instructive and full of suggestions, which, when
followed out, often lead to the uncovering of valuable evidence. The
traditions of the pueblo tribes record a great number of movements or
migrations from place to place, the statements being more or less
obscured by mythologic details and accounts of magic or miraculous
occurrences. When numbers of such movements are recorded, it is safe to
infer that the conditions dictating the occupancy of sites were unstable
or even that the tribes were in a state of slow migration. When this
inference is supported by other evidence, it becomes much stronger, and
when the supporting evidence becomes more abundant, with no discordant
elements, the statement may be accepted as proved until disproved.

The evident inferiority of the modern pueblos to some of the old ruins
has been urged as an argument against their connection. While
degeneration in culture is yet to be proved, degeneration of some
particular art under adverse conditions, such as war, continued famine,
or pestilence, is not an uncommon incident in history, and it can be
shown that under the peculiar conditions which prevailed in the pueblo
country such degeneration would naturally take place. One of the
peculiarities of pueblo architecture is that its results were obtained
always by the employment of the material immediately at hand. In the
whole pueblo region no instance is known where the material (other than
timber) was transported to any distance; on the contrary, it was usually
obtained within a few feet of the site where it was used. Hence, it
comes about that difference in character of masonry is often only a
difference in material. Starting with a tribe or several tribes of
plains Indians, who came into the pueblo country, we should probably see
them at first building houses such as they were accustomed to
build--round huts of skin or brush, perhaps partly covered with earth,
such as were found all over middle and eastern United States. Supposing
the tribe to have been not very warlike in character and subsisting
principally by horticulture, these settlements would necessarily be
confined to the vicinity of springs and to little valleys where the
crops could be grown. The general character of the country is arid in
the extreme, and only in favored spots is horticulture possible. In a
very short time these people would be forced to the use of stone for
buildings, for the whole country is covered with tabular sandstone,
often broken up into blocks and flakes ready for immediate use without
any preparation whatever. Timber and brush could be procured only with
difficulty, and often had to be carried great distances.

It has been suggested that the rectangular form of rooms might have been
developed from the circular form by the crowding together upon
restricted sites of many circular chambers; but such a supposition seems
unnecessary. A structure of masonry designed to be roofed would
naturally be rectangular; in fact, the placing of a flat roof upon a
circular chamber was a problem whose solution was beyond the ability of
these people, as has already been shown. Along with this advance, or
perhaps preceding it, the social organization of the tribe, or its
division into clans and phratries, would manifest itself, and those who
"belong together" would build together. This requirement was a very
common one and was closely adhered to even a few years ago.

Although degeneration in arts is common enough, a peculiar condition
prevailed in the pueblo region. So far as the architecture was concerned
war and a hostile human environment produced not degeneration but
development. This came about partly by reason of the peculiarities of
the country, and partly through the methods of war. The term war is
rather a misnomer in this connection, as it does not express the idea.
The result was not brought about by armed bodies of men animated by
hostile intentions or bent on extermination, although forays of this
kind are too common in later pueblo history, but rather by predatory
bands, bent on robbery and not indisposed to incidental killing. The
pueblos, with their fixed habitations and their stores of food, were the
natural prey of such bands, and they suffered, just as did, at a later
period, the Mexican settlements on the Rio Grande, with their immense,
flocks of sheep. It was constant annoyance and danger, rather than war
and pitched battles.

The pueblo country is exceptionally rich in building material suited to
the knowledge and capacity of the pueblo builders. Had suitable material
been less abundant, military knowledge would have developed and
defensive structures would have been erected; but as such material could
be obtained everywhere, and there was no lack of sites, almost if not
quite equal to those occupied at any given time, the easiest and most
natural thing to do was to move. Owing to the nature of the hostile
pressure, such movements were generally gradual, not en masse; although
there is no doubt that movements of the latter kind have sometimes taken

These conclusions are not based on a study of the ruins in Canyon de
Chelly alone, which illustrate only one phase of the subject, but of all
the pueblo remains, or rather of the remains so far as they are now
known. They imply a rather sparsely settled country, occupied by a
comparatively small number of tribes and subtribes, moving from place to
place under the influence of various motives, some of which we know,
others we can only surmise. It was a slow but practically constant
migratory movement with no definite end or direction in view. The course
of this movement in a geographical way does not as yet reveal a
preponderance in any one direction; tribes and subtribes moved from east
to west and from west to east, from north to south and from south to
north, and many were irregular in their course, but the movements, so
far as they can now be discerned, were all within a circumscribed area.

There is no evidence of any movement from without into the pueblo group,
unless the close relation of the Hopi (Moki) language to the other
Shoshonean dialects be such evidence, and none of a movement from within
this area out of it, although such movements must have taken place, at
least in the early history of the region. It must be borne in mind in
this discussion that while we can assign approximate boundaries to the
ancient pueblo region on the north, east, and west, no limit can as yet
be fixed on the south. The arid country southward of Gila river and
northward of the Mexican boundary would be a great obstacle to a
movement either north or south, but little as we know about that region
we do know that it was not an insurmountable obstacle. The Casas Grandes
of Janos, in Chihuahua, closely resemble the type of ruins on the Gila
river, in Arizona, of which the best example we now have is the
well-known Casa Grande ruin. We know that there are cliff ruins in the
Sierra Madre, but beyond this we know little. Concerning the immense
region which stretches from Gila river to the valley of Mexico, over
1300 miles in length, we know practically nothing.

In that portion of the pueblo region lying within the United States
migratory movements have, as a rule, been confined to very small areas,
each linguistic family moving within its own circumscribed region. Some
instances of movement away from the home region have taken place even in
historic times, as, for example, the migration of a considerable band of
Tewas from the Rio Grande to Tusayan, where they now are, and moreover,
this movement probably occurred en masse and over a considerable
distance; but there is little doubt that the usual procedure was

Canyon de Chelly was occupied because it was the best place in that
vicinity for the practice of horticulture. The cliff ruins there grew
out of the natural conditions, as they have in other places. It is not
meant that a type of house structure developed here and was transferred
subsequently to other places. When the geological and topographical
environment favored their construction, cliff outlooks were built; from
a different geological structure in certain regions cavate lodges
resulted; in other places there were "watch towers;" in still others
single rooms were built, either lone or in clusters, and these results
obtained quite as often if not oftener within the historic period as in
prehistoric times.

Notwithstanding the possible division of the De Chelly ruins into four
well defined types, there is no warrant for the assumption of a large
population. The types are interrelated and to a large extent were
inhabited not contemporaneously but conjointly. There are about 140
ruins in Canyon de Chelly and its branches, but few of them could
accommodate more than a very small population. Settlements large enough
to furnish homes for 50 or 60 people were rare. As not all of the sites
were occupied at one time, the maximum population of the canyon could
hardly have exceeded 400; it is more likely to have been 300.

The character of the site occupied is one of the most important elements
to be studied in the examination of ruins in the pueblo country. In De
Chelly whatever defensive value the settlements had was due to the
character of the sites selected. It is believed, however, that other
considerations dictated the selection of the sites, and that the
defensive motive, if present at all, exercised very little influence in
this region. The sites here are always selected with a view to an
outlook over some adjacent area of cultivable land, and the structures
erected on them were industrial or horticultural, rather than military
or defensive.

The masonry of the ruins and the constructive expedients employed by the
builders are an insurmountable obstacle in the way of the hypothesis
that the cliff ruins represent a primitive or intermediate stage in the
growth of pueblo architecture. The builders were well acquainted with
the principles and methods of construction employed in the best work
found in other regions; the inferiority of their work is due to special
conditions and to the locality. The presence of a number of extraneous
features, both in methods and principles employed, is further evidence
in the same line. These features are certainly foreign to this region,
some of them suggest even Spanish or Mexican origin, which implies
comparatively recent occupancy.

The openings--doorways and windows--found in the ruins are of the
regular pueblo types. They are arranged as convenience dictated, without
any reference to the defensive motive, which, if it existed at all,
exercised less influence here than it did in the modern pueblos. There
is no evidence of the use of very modern features, such as the paneled
wooden doors found in the pueblos; nor, on the other hand, are there any
very primitive expedients or methods--none which can not be found today
in the modern villages.

The roof, floors, and timber work are also essentially the same as the
examples found in the modern pueblos. The notable scarcity of roofing
timbers in the ruins can probably be explained by the hypothesis of
successive occupancies and subsequent or repeated use of material
difficult to obtain. So far as regards the use of timber as an element
of masonry construction the results obtained in De Chelly are rude and
primitive as compared with the work found in other regions.

The immense number of storage cists found in De Chelly are a natural
outgrowth of the conditions there and support the hypothesis that the
cliff outlooks were merely farming shelters. The small size of many of
the settlements made the construction of storage cists a necessity. The
storage of water was very seldom attempted. A large proportion of the
cists found in De Chelly were burial places and of Navaho origin. As a
rule they are far more difficult of access than the ruins.

There is no evidence of the influence of the defensive motive. Defensive
works on the approaches to sites are never found, nor can such influence
be detected in the arrangement of openings, in the character of masonry,
or in the ground plan. If the cliff ruins were defensive structures, an
influence strong enough to bring about the occupancy of such
inconvenient and unsuitable sites would certainly be strong enough also
to bring about some slight modifications in the architecture, such as
would render more suitable sites available. If we assume that the cliff
ruins were farming outlooks, occupied only during the farming season,
and then only for a few days or weeks at a time, the character of the
sites occupied by them, seems natural enough, for the same sites are
used by the Navaho today in connection with farming operations.

The distribution of kivas in the ruins of De Chelly affords another
indication that the occupancy of that region was quiet and little
disturbed, and that the ruins were in no sense defensive structures.
Kivas are found only in permanent settlements, and the presence of two
or three of them in a small settlement comprising a total of five or six
rooms implies, first, that the little village was the home of two or
more families, and, second, that there was comparative if not entire
immunity from hostile incursions. If the conditions were otherwise,
these small settlements would have combined into larger ones, as was
done in other regions. Probably these small settlements with several
kivas mark a late period in the use of outlying sites. The position of
the kivas in some of the settlements on defensive sites, and their
arrangement across the front of the cove, suggest that such sites were
first used for outlooks, and that their occupancy by regular villages
came at a later period.

All of the now available traditions of the Navaho and of the Hopi
Indians support the conclusions reached from a study of the intrinsic
evidence of the ruins, that they represent a comparatively late period
in the history of pueblo architecture. It appears that some at least of
the ruins are of Hopi origin. It is certain that the ruins were not
occupied at one time, nor by one tribe or band.

As criteria in development or in time the cliff ruins are valueless,
except in a certain restricted way. They represent simply a phase of
pueblo life, due more to the geological character of the region occupied
than to extraordinary conditions, and they pertain partly to the old
villages, partly to the more modern. Apparently they reached their
greatest (not their highest) development in the period immediately
preceding the last well-defined stage in the growth of pueblo
architecture, a stage in which most of the pueblos were at the time of
their discovery by the Spaniards, and in which some of them are now.
Reliance for defense was had on the site occupied, and outlying
settlements for horticultural purposes were very numerous, as they must
necessarily be also in the last stage--the aggregation of many related
villages into one great cluster.

The cliff outlooks in Canyon de Chelly and in other regions, the cavate
lodges of New Mexico and Arizona, the "watch towers" of the San Juan and
of the Zuñi country, the summer villages attached to many of the
pueblos, the single-room remains found everywhere, even the brush
shelters or "kisis" of Tusayan, are all functionally analogous, and all
are the outgrowth of certain industrial requirements, which were
essentially the same throughout the pueblo country, but whose product
was modified by geological and topographical conditions. In the cliff
ruins of De Chelly we have an interesting and most instructive example
of the influence of a peculiar and sometimes adverse environment on a
primitive people, who entered the region with preconceived and, as it
were, fully developed ideas of house construction, and who left it
before those ideas were brought fully in accord with the environment,
but not before they were influenced by it.


  [Transcriber's Note:
  The term "Cliff dwellings" does not occur as an Index entry. The
  cross-references are probably an error for "Cliff ruins."]

Access to cliff Villages                               144, 157, 158
Acoma, structural development of                                 155
Adobe blocks not aboriginal                                      108
  -- construction in pueblo region                               163
  -- walls in Casa Blanca                              108, 109, 111
Age of ruin determined by plastering                             121
Agriculture of the Navaho                                         87
Architecture of cliff ruins                                      153
  --, pueblo, character of                                       193
  --, pueblo, development of                                 91, 193
Arizona, cliff ruins of Canyon de Chelly                      73-198
  --, _see_ Cliff dwellings.
Army of the West, conquest by                                     79
Aztecs, cliff ruins attributed to                                191

Bancroft, H. H., cliff ruins described by                         81
Bandelier, A. F., on classification of pueblo ruins               89
Bat trail in Canyon de Chelly                                    157
Beadle, J. H., Canyon de Chelly visited by                        80
  --, quoted on Canyon de Chelly                                  86
Bench around cliff kivas                     121, 136, 137, 138, 177
  -- in cliff outlook                                            151
Bench-like recess in cliff kiva                                  124
Bickford, F. T., cliff ruins described by                         81
Birdsall, W. R., cliff ruins described by                    81, 163
Bottom lands, home villages on                                    94
Bowlders used in cliff-dwelling masonry                      98, 100
Burial cists in Casa Blanca                                      109
  -- in cliff ruins discussed                                    166
  --, _see_ Cists; Navaho.
Buttress in Casa Blanca                                     110, 162
  -- in cliff ruins                                    119, 125, 129
  -- in kivas                                                    177

Canyon de Chelly, accessibility of                                85
  --, memoir on cliff ruins of                                73-198
  --, location of                                                 84
  --, _see_ Cliff dwellings.
Canyon del Muerto, location of                                    85
  --, ruins in, described                                         81
Casa Blanca, a name of two cliff dwellings                       145
  -- described                                               104-111
  -- described by Simpson                                         79
  --, jacal construction in                                      163
  --, notched doorway in                                         164
Casas Grandes, resemblance of, to Gila river remains             196
Cave ruins, classification of                                    155
  -- village in Canyon de Chelly                                  97
Ceremonial chamber, _see_ Kiva.
Chaco and old-world ruins compared                                80
Chapin, F. H., cliff ruins visited by                             81
  -- on openings in Mancos ruins                                 165
  -- on kiva decoration                                          181
Chelly, origin of name of                                         79
  --, _see_ Canyon de Chelly.
Chimney-like structures discussed                            182-190
  -- in Casa Blanca                                              110
  -- in cliff kiva                                          125, 129
  -- in cliff outlook                                            144
  -- in cliff ruins                                              119
  -- in Mummy Cave ruin                                113, 115, 116
Chinking of cliff-dwelling masonry           102, 103, 104, 117, 118,
                                             123, 127, 142, 144, 148,
                                                  150, 151, 159, 160
Chin Lee valley, ruins in                                         80
Cist, burial, excavation of                                      101
  --, burial, in cliff ruins                                 96, 130
  --, _see_ Burial cist; Navajo; Storage cist.
Clans, localization of, in pueblos                               194
Classification of canyon ruins                                92, 93
  -- of pueblo ruins                                         89, 154
Cliff ruins, classification of                                   155
Climate of cliff ruin region                                      83
Constructive expedients in cliff dwelling                        170
Corn cultivated by the Navaho                                     84
Cups pecked in rock                                              138
Cushing, F. H.
  --, on ceremonial fire                                         190
  --, on ceremonial renewal of kivas                             177
  --, on cliff ruins                                             153
  --, on marking of kiva hatchway                                180

Decoration of cliff house walls                   102, 109, 113, 125,
                                                   147, 160, 177-181
Defense, absence of motive for,
    in cliff ruins                 101, 142, 153, 154, 170, 196, 197
  --, home villages located for                                  111
  --, loopholes an evidence of                                   135
  --, expedients for, in cliff dwellings                         170
Defensive sites, to what attributed                               91
Development of cliff dwellings                                   198
  -- of pueblo architecture                                      155
Distribution of cliff ruins in De Chelly                     156-157
  --, _see_ Classification.
Domenech, _Abbe_ Em., reference by, to Casa Blanca                80
Doorways in cliff dwellings   102, 111, 125, 128, 134, 140, 145, 151
  --, notched, in cliff dwellings                           138, 164
  -- partially closed                                            165
  --, _see_ Openings.
Drain in Casa Blanca                                             110
Dutton, C. E., cliff-ruin region described by                     82

Én-a-tsé-gi, Navaho name of Canyon de Chelly                      95
Environment, village sites influenced by                         153

Farming shelters discussed                                       142
Farming villages, cliff ruins classed as                         156
  -- of the pueblos                                              156
Fireplace, _see_ Chimney-like structure.
Floors of cliff dwellings discussed                         165, 197
Foot-holes, access to cliff houses
    by means of                              132, 134, 142, 148, 158

Geography of cliff-ruin region                                    82
Geology of cliff-ruin region                                  82, 86
Granary structure in cliff ruin                                   97
  --, _see_ Cist.

Hardacre, E. C., on ruins in Canyon de Chelly                     80
Holmes, W. H., cliff ruins described by                           81
  --, on chimney-like structures                                 188
Hopi origin of certain cliff ruins                               198
  -- tradition regarding cliff ruins                             191
  --, _see_ Tusayan.

Jacal construction in Casa Blanca                                108
  -- construction in pueblo region                               163
Jackson, W. H., cliff ruins described by                      80, 81

Keam, T. V., burial cist excavated by                            101
Kern, E. H., Casa Blanca sketched by                              79
Kini-na-e-kai, Navaho name of Casa Blanca                        104
Kisi and cliff dwelling analogous                                198
  -- or brush shelter                                             92
Kivas, absence of, in farming villages                           150
  --, distribution of, in cliff ruins                            197
  --, function of                                                193
  --, how entered                                                190
  --, how-plastered                                              161
  -- in cliff ruins                102, 103, 118, 119, 121, 124, 135,
                               137, 138, 139, 141, 142, 143, 174-182
  -- in Mummy Cave ruin                                          115
  -- in Pakashi-izini ruin                                        99
  -- in Tse-on-i-tso-si canyon                                   101
  -- of Casa Blanca described                                    107
  -- of unusual size                                              95
  --, origin of                                                   91
  --, prevalence of, in pueblo ruins                              90

Lintels of cliff-ruin openings                    102, 114, 140, 164
Loopholes in cliff houses                                        135

Mancos canyon, cliff ruins in                                     81
Masonry deteriorated by plastering                               161
  -- of cliff houses                      95, 98, 101, 102, 104, 128,
                                             136, 137, 140, 142, 143,
                                        144, 148, 149, 150, 159, 197
  --, rude, in cliff houses                                 132, 151
  --, _see_ Chinking; Mortar; Walls.
Matthews, Washington, on Navaho traditions
    regarding cliff ruins                                        191
Mesa Verde, cliff ruins of                                        81
Moen-kapi, a Hopi summer village                             92, 156
Monument canyon, location of                                      85
Moran, Thomas, Canyon de Chelly ruins visited by                  80
Mortar, character of, in cliff house                   127, 140, 160
  --, source of, in cliff-house building                         126
  --, _see_ Masonry; Plastering.
Mummy Cave ruin, benches and buttresses in                       177
  -- described                                               81, 112
  --, kiva in                                                    176

Navaho, agriculture of the                                        81
  --, building material from
          cliff dwellings used by                                154
  -- burials in cliff villages               109, 110, 115, 117, 130,
                                             132, 134, 138, 142, 148,
                                         150, 152, 158, 167-170, 197
  -- burials, _see_ Cists.
  --, cliff ruins utilized by                           96, 104, 152
  --, expedition against the                                      79
  -- granaries in cliff ruins                                     97
  -- house sites in Canyon de Chelly                              87
  -- houses, sites of                                            152
  --, peaches cultivated by the                                   88
  -- structures in cliff dwellings                               140
  -- tradition of cliff dwellings                           191, 198
  -- trails in Canyon de Chelly                                  157
  -- walls in cliff outlooks                                     152
New Mexico, _see_ Cliff dwellings.
Niches in kiva walls                                             178
Nordenskiöld, G., cliff ruins classified by                       92
  --, cliff ruins described by                                    81
  --, on an oval kiva                                            177
  --, on chimney-like structures                            188, 189
  --, on kiva decoration                                         181
  --, on Mesa Verde masonry                                      163
  --, on openings in Mancos ruins                                165
Nutria, a Zuñi summer village                                92, 156

Ojo Caliente, a Zuñi summer village                          92, 158
  --, masonry of                                                 159
Openings, absence of, in cliff houses                            132
  -- in Casa Blanca walls                                        109
  -- in cliff kivas                                    125, 129, 175
  -- in cliff-dwelling walls                       123-124, 164, 197
  -- in Mummy Cave ruin walls                                    114
O'Sullivan, T. H., Casa Blanca photographed by                    80
Outlooks on restricted areas                                     149
  -- or farming shelters discussed                               142
Oven-like structure in cliff ruin                                127
Ovens not an aboriginal feature                                  128

Pakashi-izini ruin in Del Muerto                                  98
Passageway in Casa Blanca                                        109
  -- in cliff dwelling                                           100
Peaches, groves of, in Canyon de Chelly                           88
  -- introduced by Spaniards                                      88
Pescado, a Zuñi summer village                               92, 156
Petroglyphs in cliff villages                                    138
Pictographs in cliff ruins                    98, 103, 113, 118, 126,
                                              133, 144, 152, 178-181
Plastering, effect of, on stonework                              161
  -- of cliff ruin-walls                     118, 120, 121, 129, 140,
                                                  144, 149, 151, 160
  -- of kiva walls                                          121, 176
Platforms of masonry connected with cliff ruins                  132
Population of Casa Blanca                                        105
  -- of cliff dwellings                                 98, 135, 196
  -- of Pakashi-izini ruin                                        99
Pottery fragments iu Casa Blanca                                 111
Pueblo ruins classified                                           89
  --, _see_ Cliff Dwellings.
Putnam, F. W., cliff ruins described by                           80

Reservoir structure connected with cliff village                 126
Roof construction of Casa Blanca                            106, 111
Roofs of cliff dwellings discussed                          165, 197
Rooms, character of, in cliff dwellings                      95, 132
Ruins, pueblo, classified                                         89
  --, _see_ Cliff dwellings; Pueblo.

Sandstorms in Canyon de Chelly                                    91
Sheep introduced by Spaniards                                    162
Simpson, J. H., Casa Blanca visited by                           104
  --, on Navaho expedition                                        79
Sites, inaccessible, of cliff houses     93, 111, 133, 134, 153, 196
  -- of pueblos, how determined                                   91
Spanish influence in cliff-dwelling masonry                      197
  -- monks in Canyon de Chelly                                   191
  --, sheep introduced by                                        162
Stephen, A. M., on Hopi tradition of cliff ruins                 191
Steps, absence of, in cliff villages                             157
Stevenson, James, Canyon de Chelly visited by                     81
Storage cists in cliff ruins discussed                      166, 197
  -- rooms in cliff village                                 130, 132
  --, _see_ Cist; Granary.
Streams in the cliff-ruin region                                  84
Summer villages of pueblos                                   92, 156
Symbolism, water, in pueblo pictography                          126

Taboo of cliff-ruin timber by Navaho                             166
Taos, a many-storied pueblo                                      155
  --, circular kivas at                                          175
Timber, source of, of the Hopi                                   166
  -- used in cliff-dwelling construction     111, 113, 116, 121, 122,
                                                  124, 165, 171, 197
Traditions regarding cliff dwellings                         190-191
Trails in Canyon de Chelly                                       157
Tse-gi, Navaho name of Canyon de Chelly                       79, 85
Tse-i-ya-kin, Navaho name of Mummy Cave ruin                     112
Tse-on-i-tso-si canyon, location of                               85
  --, ruin in                                                    101
Tunicha mountains, reference to                               84, 85
Tusayan, masonry at                                              101
  --, migration to, of Tewas                                     196
  -- villages, location of, when discovered                       91

Vegetation of cliff-ruin region                                   83

Walls, finish of, in cliff ruins                  107, 113, 116, 124
  --, retaining, in Canyon de Chelly                             172
Walpi, former location of                                         93
Washington, Col., Navaho expedition under                         79
Watch towers and cliff dwellings analogous                       198
  -- of pueblos                                                   92
  -- supply of Canyon de Chelly                               86, 88
Wheeler Survey, archeological work under                          80
White House, _see_ Casa Blanca.
Whitewash used in Casa Blanca                                    109
  -- used in Mummy Cave ruin                                     115
  -- used on cliff houses                                        146
Window opening in cliff outlook                                  148
  --, _see_ Opening.

Yarrow, H. C., on kivas at Taos                                  175

Zuñi, a many-storied pueblo                                      155
  --, character of masonry of                                    163
  --, farming villages of                                    92, 156

       *       *       *       *       *

Errors and Anomalies

     _standard spelling for this publication_

   among others figures one entitled ...
     _wording unchanged: "other figures" or omit "figures"_
   the interstices were / chinked with spawls
   pretty well chinked with small spawls
     _spelling in original: more often "spalls"_
   numerous expedients were resorted to to prevent
     _duplication "to to" not an error_
   the Mesa Verdé country
     _"é" in original_
   Over twenty ago Mr W. H. Holmes found
     _missing word in original: probably "years"_

*** End of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "The Cliff Ruins of Canyon de Chelly, Arizona - Sixteenth Annual Report of the Bureau of Ethnology to the Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution, 1894-95, Government Printing Office, Washington, 1897, pages 73-198" ***

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