El Centro College History Department

Ancient Pueblo Peoples Page



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To Links about the Ancient Pueblo Peoples ("Anasazi")
To Chaco Canyon Culture Links
To Outline of Class Discussion
To Hopi
To Zuni
Other Pueblo Resources
Capstone Program Main Page


General Links for the Ancient Pueblo Peoples
  • The Anasazi's Ancestors - article
  • Anasazi Archaeology - Mainly tourism page but map and general info
  • South Western Archaeology - Extensive list of links for the southwest
  • Prehistoric Peoples of the Southwest - Course outline with notes and illustrations, very helpful
  • Lost City Museum - excellent photos of artifact
  • Treading in the Past - Sandals of the Anasazi - Everything you need to know about sandals
  • Archaeological Sites of the Southwest
  • Mesa Verde National Park
  • Mesa Verda National Park
  • GORP - Mesa Verde National Park - Colorado
  • The Anasazi Desert People - Article, photo, links
  • Anasazi Civilization - Mainly for tourism but some info here
  • The Anasazi - Article, photos, links
  • Anasazi - Indian Village State park, photos, brief information
  • Anasazi Ruins - Links
  • Sandia Pueblo - Article
  • San Felipe Pueblo - Article
  • Ancient Pueblo Great House Yielding Unexpected Findings - Article with photos
  • The Sinagua (Western Anasazi) - Article, photos, links
  • Anasazi Pottery Restoration
  • Goat Hill Site - paper
  • Anasazi - article
  • Anasazi - article and links
  • Anasazi Baskets and Pottery - article, diagrams, and photos in black and white
  • Anasazi Culture - Photo and description of pottery
  • Archaeology of the Southwest - Anasazi
  • Anasazi Cliff Dwellers - A Virtual Tour - nifty
  • Anasazi - Photos, article
  • Sipapu - Anasazi Emergence into the Cyber World - very helpful overview with illustrations
  • Anasazi - brief overview of development
  • Anasazi Heritage Center - Lots of information
  • Social Strife May Have Exiled Ancient Indians - New York Times article
  • Anasazi - brief article
  • Anasazi Sacred Sites - photos, article
  • Mystery of the Ancient Ones - Historic travel article
  • Anasazi Site Planning - Scholarly article with photo
  • Southwestern Indian Civilizations - Anasazi - Image gallery with explanations
  • Anasazi - article, photos
  • The Southwest - Hohokam, Anasazi, Mogollon - lecture notes
  • Anasazi Pictography - article and lots of photos
  • Anasazi - Early Phase - article; continues beyond early phase through links
  • Anasazi - map, brief article

  • Chaco Canyon Culture Links

  • Chaco Canyon Prehistoric Buildings
  • Chaco Canyon
  • Chaco Canyon - Center of Anasazi Culture
  • Chaco Canyon - Supernova Pictograph
  • Chaco Canyon
  • Chaco Culture National Historic Park
  • Chaco Canyon East Anasazi Archaeology
  • Chaco Canyon Gallery
  • Chaco Canyon
  • Onroute Destinations - Chaco Canyon
  • Chetro Ketl Great Kiva 3-D Model
  • Chaco Canyon

    General Pueblo Resources

  • Pueblo Indians
  • Pueblo Cultural Center
  • Pueblo Pottery Exhibit
  • Sipapu-Chetro Ketl Great Kiva
  • How the Pueblo People Learned to Create Pottery
  • The Earth Survives: 1400 Years of Pueblo Pottery
  • Desert Peoples & Culture
  • New Mexico: Travel and History
  • PaleoGraphics: Designs of the Southwest
  • Southwest Native Americans
  • The Pueblo Revolt
  • Salina Pueblo Missions National Monument
  • The Spanish Entrada & Pueblo Revolt
  • Indian Ruins of the Southwest
  • Indigenous Peoples of New Mexico
  • Pueblo Pottery - article with photos
  • Jemez Pottery
  • Southwestern U.S. - Northwest New Mexico - useful site with map, illustrations, outline of discussion
  • Salinas Pueblo Missions - guide
  • The Tigua of Texas
    Outline of Class Discussion: The Ancient Pueblo Peoples (Anasazi)

  • The term "Anasazi" has come under criticism from today's Pueblo Peoples since it is a Navajo word meaning "ancient enemies"
  • Long sequence of developmental stages
  • Basket Maker (1-400 CE) abundance of fine quality basketry; basically Desert Culture life; by 100 CE began settling down; dogs domesticated; Mogollon influenced pottery or some suggest Caddo influences.
  • By 400-700 Modified Basket Maker Stage - pit houses often in caves or rock overhangs of cliffs; cotton and beans added; bow and aroow, stone ax came into use, turkeys domesticated
  • By 700 development quickened - more foods, gardens expanded, drafts/arts flourished; surplus led to lesire time with expanded interest in esthetic and spiritual impulses
  • By 700, contiguous rooms - "Pueblos" - from Spanish word "town"
  • Families joined together, became bigger and bigger - apartments
  • Pit houses turned into round subterranean ceremonial chambers called "kivas"
  • Pueblos also developmental stages - at peak, Great Pueblo period - 1100-1300 CE; classic age of beautiful textiles, pottery, jewelry; kivas smaller
  • Included Chaco Canyon Cultures (11 major sites, hundreds of smaller sites)
  • Tower-like structures and other new architectural forms appeared
  • Life in Pueblos:

    A. Close knit units, individual subordinated to the group
    B. Generally good-natured and peaceful (Hopi means "peaceful ones")
    C. Did fight fiercely in defense but not offensive
    D. Directed by religious societies - theocracies
    E. Seems to have been no class structure
    F. Religion permeated all of life
    G. Pueblo men are said to have devoted a least 1/2 time to religious activities
    H. Numerous dieties and beneficent spirits called Kachinas (Katcinas)

    (1) No women and children in kivas
    (2) pits of kivas symbolized Sipapu - a place of great mystery in the north where men had first entered the world from the underground
    (3) "scare Kachinas" masked, whipped bad out of young boys as preliminary initiation
    (4) Most well-known kachina - Kokopelli, a fertility kachina

    I. Rigidly conformist society; individualistic - witches
    J. Also one of most tranquil and cooperative in world
    K. Practiced intensive agriculture
    L. Matrilineal so women owned crops, houses, furniture
    M. Dryland farming; in east, river bottoms
    N. Communal rabbit hunting; gathering
    O. Men wore loincloth of cotton with second piece over in sort of kilt; sometimes pancho-like shirt; women cotton garments tied above right should secured with belt
    P. Men wore hair with bangs and knot in back but loose in ceremonies; women variety including Hopi and Zuni coiled hair symbolized squash blossom; older women wore braids
    Q. Women did cooking and much of construction of houses; made excellent pottery and basketry although not weavers
    R. Monogamists; little courtship or emotion; divorce simple, put his stuff out
  • From 1300 to 1540 prospered in new locations including Chihuahua and Phoenix areas
  • New traits appeared including lead glaze pottery, murals on kivas, roots of Kachina "cult", plazas
  • But at peak also began to decline and disappear on northern and western frontiers
  • Return to Desert Culture - and many had continued to live this lifestyle throughout Pueblo period - Yuman-speaking peoples like Havasupais, Walapais, Yavapais, Mohaves, Hakhidhomas, Maricopas, Yumas, Cocpas, and Utaztecan-speaking Chemehuevis
  • About 1450 large scale withdrawals; by time Europeans arrived, many Pueblos abandoned
  • Don't know why - theories include change in climate, erosion, hostile invaders, intrapeublo factionalism, all of the above
  • But, Zuni and Hopi remain - inheritors of Ancient Pueblo Culture
  • Largest Pueblo today that of Zuni in Western New Mexico - about 2500 people
    To Capstone Main Page