Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 37.djvu/777

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ANCIENT DWELLINGS OF THE RIO VERDE VALLEY.

In other parts of the building several bone implements, including a corn-shucker and a handsomely wrought marlin-spike, fashioned from the leg-bone of deer, were obtained. Scalps or headdresses were also unearthed. Indeed, the materials here found formed quite an extensive collection, including numerous food articles, bones of various animals, pieces of cloth, matting and basket-work, ropes and cords of cotton and yucca, sticks for fire-making, knitting or weaving, and many other uses.

None of the ancient buildings of this region exceed this one in picturesque grandeur, although many are more extensive. Its very location excites admiration and inspires respect for those who built it, whatever may have been the motive which prompted to the selection of such a site; nor is it lacking in architectural beauty. Its existence proves its great strength.

Of the ruined pueblos, an extensive group of buildings on the left bank of the Verde River, six miles northwest of Fort Verde, Arizona, may be fairly considered a representative example. This pueblo consisted of two terraced buildings surmounting a limestone cliff. The larger one, in which I have made some exploration, faces the Verde, the other fronting on a side canon to the south; the walls of the latter, as well as the face of the cliff, contain numerous cave-dwellings, in which sundry articles of pottery and basket-work, as well as stone tools, were exhumed. The accompanying plan (Fig. 12) exhibits the relations of these structures. This ruin, which does not differ materially from many others in the Verde region, is quite similar to the inhabited villages of the Moquis of Eastern Arizona and the modern pueblos of New Mexico. As it was conveniently accessible from the fort, I made it the subject of some research, and caused considerable excavations to be made in parts of the larger building, and also in the caves of the adjacent caƱon.

The larger edifice had been three stories in height in front, where it rested upon the level rock, thence terraced down the slope of a ravine behind it, the lower tiers of rooms having apparently, been but a single story in height. Previous to my first visit the front of the building had been thrown down over the cliff by the white settlers to supply material for repairing an old acequia, which has since served the whites, as it did the cliffdwellers of old, with water for irrigating purposes. Several of the ranchmen in the vicinity called my attention to articles made of pottery, and a varied assortment of interesting relics, which they had secured when tearing down the ruin, in which they claimed to have discovered dozens of human skeletons, one of gigantic stature (the usual story), and a quantity of burial urns and other vessels of pottery and stone. These accounts were in some measure substantiated by the abundance of broken pottery,