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Pueblo people of Chaco Canyon transported logs

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posted on Jun, 12 2016 @ 01:55 AM
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Saturday June 11, 2016
Pueblo people lugged logs for leagues

Chaco Canyon in New Mexico preserves the remains of the largest buildings made in North American prior to the 19th century. More than 800 years ago, Pueblo peoples constructed huge "great-houses" there, with hundreds of rooms made of stone and whole logs.

But the source of the logs has been something of a mystery. Now Chris Guiterman, a PhD student in the Laboratory for Tree Ring Research at the University of Arizona, and his colleagues, have traced the logs in the Chaco Canyon buildings to two forests on mountain ranges more than 75 kilometres away.
www.cbc.ca...


As far as I know, this was done by people simply cooperating to move the logs. I don't know more than that...but thought it was interesting.

If you follow the "Guns, Germs, and Steel" philosophy, one of the major problems of North American cultures was the lack of sturdy animals strong enough to serve for tranport.




posted on Jun, 12 2016 @ 02:15 AM
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a reply to: Byrd

Where there's a will there's a way. Humans are so innovative and industrious it is not surprising that this culture was able to create such structures from man/woman power alone.

Thanks,

Blue Wolf



posted on Jun, 12 2016 @ 03:55 AM
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a reply to: Byrd

I suspect they used the river system, much like the ancient Britons who floated huge stones on boats from Wales to Stone Henge. To float logs would have been easier and the article I attached shows a map of the rivers.

I just see this as a natural thing any ancient culture would have done to make their buildings strong. Homo sapiens has been around for a long time and our brains are incredibly innovative. I watched my grandchild when only a toddler pile up her toys and cushions inside her playpen and also put some on the outside of the pen before climbing up and out.
I was amazed until other people said their little ones had done the same. I suspect its something we have never tried to measure, innovation in our young kids, which probably has been learned throughout our generations.

Some articles I read also say they also had horses and oxen whom would have pulled the logs over the land, although even if they didn't I expect the people themselves greased the logs and pulled them themselves.



posted on Jun, 12 2016 @ 04:21 AM
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a reply to: Byrd

Thanks Byrd


I downloaded a half-dozen of their podcast shows and look forward to hearing them. Hopefully they're as informative/educational as Radiolab and BBC podcasts.

The idea of these people floating logs down river seems reasonable. Given the way we learn from each other I wonder if there might be evidence of others taking the same approach? 50+ miles isn't so far; the logs may have taken less than two days to arrive nearby and they'd likely have a spot for seizing them from the water. Maybe they dammed a channel for the logs to be trapped in or found a shallow bed where the flow rate was slow enough to drag them ashore?

I imagine up to a ton of water-soaked log would carry a frightening momentum.




If you follow the "Guns, Germs, and Steel" philosophy, one of the major problems of North American cultures was the lack of sturdy animals strong enough to serve for tranport.


Very enjoyable read. There's another one called Sapiens by Yuval Noah Harari that runs like a companion piece. Although it's got a political sub-text, I think a few ATSers will enjoy it.



posted on Jun, 12 2016 @ 05:35 AM
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Imagine each great-house housing dozens if not hundreds of people. There are several of these great-houses, Penasco Blanco, Una Vida, etc, all interconnected through a series of roads. They even cut steps in the the rock face of the steep mountain sides.

Along the way from one great-house to another are several pueblos which likely houses livestock with just enough living space for a single family and their animals.

if I try to imagine it when the place was populated, I see many people walking the roads with wares, baskets, clothing, pottery, trading with one great house to another. When you take into account how many people were living there collectively and how well built their "great-houses" were, its not hard imagining them with enough ingenuity to transport lumber one way or another.

For context, these "great-houses" are nothing short of castles before castles existed. An amazing people!

For scale: Backside of a great-house"



Size of a single Grand Kiva:



These photos are my own.
edit on 12-6-2016 by Rosinitiate because: (no reason given)

edit on 12-6-2016 by Rosinitiate because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 12 2016 @ 06:38 AM
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originally posted by: Shiloh7
a reply to: Byrd

I suspect they used the river system, much like the ancient Britons who floated huge stones on boats from Wales to Stone Henge. To float logs would have been easier and the article I attached shows a map of the rivers.

I just see this as a natural thing any ancient culture would have done to make their buildings strong. Homo sapiens has been around for a long time and our brains are incredibly innovative. I watched my grandchild when only a toddler pile up her toys and cushions inside her playpen and also put some on the outside of the pen before climbing up and out.
I was amazed until other people said their little ones had done the same. I suspect its something we have never tried to measure, innovation in our young kids, which probably has been learned throughout our generations.

Some articles I read also say they also had horses and oxen whom would have pulled the logs over the land, although even if they didn't I expect the people themselves greased the logs and pulled them themselves.

I have visited Chaco several times over the last twenty years, it's a mystical place for me and I feel drawn to return from time to time.

The main complex of four small city's sits in the desert and the nearest river, the San Juan, is miles away. We did see water flowing in the Chaco wash in September of 2013. It was the first time the wash was flooded in seventeen years and the water receded overnight. My friends and I are convinced the area must have had much more rainfall in the past, with a more arid weather cycle starting about 1400 to 1600 AD.
We also disagree with the Park service people about the use of the structures known as Kivas. We think some, but not all, were used as cisterns or tanks where water was stored underground to reduce evaporation in the long periods between rains.

There were no draft animals, horses, mules, or oxan in the new world until the arrival of the Spanish, so the logs and building materials weren't moved in that way. Perhaps with the help of domesticated Buffalo, Elk, or dogs, although that seems unlikely. The remains found of most prevalent domesticated animal in the canyon was the turkey.

Living in Chaco would have been a hard life and required planing and discipline in the use of resources to survive.



posted on Jun, 12 2016 @ 07:06 AM
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a reply to: Shiloh7

Evidently you have not been to the area.

There's no river system involved between the mountains and the location of the buildings.

I don't know if there's even a usually dry 'wash' going the right direction. I don't think so. I think the runoff goes toward the San Juan river that empties into the Colorado River. That's not the right direction for Chaco.



posted on Jun, 12 2016 @ 07:46 AM
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originally posted by: BO XIAN
a reply to: Shiloh7

Evidently you have not been to the area.

There's no river system involved between the mountains and the location of the buildings.

I don't know if there's even a usually dry 'wash' going the right direction. I don't think so. I think the runoff goes toward the San Juan river that empties into the Colorado River. That's not the right direction for Chaco.


I believe the more dominant theory as to what happen to the pueblos was climate change. As the years progress you begin to see the abandonment of great-houses for cliff dwelling living. Seems they were migrating north also. So potentially, the local environment could have been a little more wet and as the desert took over they abandoned their current existence.
edit on 12-6-2016 by Rosinitiate because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 12 2016 @ 07:57 AM
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originally posted by: Nickn3

a reply to: Byrd

We also disagree with the Park service people about the use of the structures known as Kivas. We think some, but not all, were used as cisterns or tanks where water was stored underground to reduce evaporation in the long periods between rains.




Interestingly enough, if you were to "square" the circle (great kiva) in the 4 corners of each great kiva have narrow steps that get you in-between the outer walls of the Kiva and the walls of the adjoining rooms. The only reason I can see was for maintenance reasons.

Suddenly, after sharing that thought with you, the maintenance passageways make more sense in that, now we are talking greater stress to the Kiva walls.

All that being said, when visiting Penasco Blanca (the yet to be excavated city site, you can spot all the kiva locations buried underneath simply because of the thick fresh grass circular patches. I gathered that was from the rich soil from those locations used as fires. So, theres that.
edit on 12-6-2016 by Rosinitiate because: (no reason given)

edit on 12-6-2016 by Rosinitiate because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 12 2016 @ 09:18 AM
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Yeah, with out beasts of burden, that would have been one hell of a chore.

The desert soutthwest doesn't have much to offer in the way of beasts of burden (other than some random camels that the US government released once the army got sick of dealing with them, and went with the new train system instead, and which seem to be somewhat thriving). But there were bison in West Texas, hugging the Chihuahua desert.

Indians never domesticating the bison likely had more to do with how viscious the bulls can be. I often hear them being used to help describe how testy the auroch used to be.

Anyway, i wonder how they transported the logs?



posted on Jun, 12 2016 @ 10:40 AM
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a reply to: bigfatfurrytexan

When looking at the still existing framework within, many/most of the logs used show signs of being burnt, especially at the core. I had in my mind that they were under siege and their city burnt and pillaged. I suspected the Dine/Navaho as they didn't have villages or showed signs of domestication until perhaps watching and learning from the pueblos.

I believe the Dine were not indigenous to the local area but from up north in Canada. There is a tribe up north separated by thousands of miles and hundreds of years but their phonetics are quite similar. Strangely enough, it fits in with their creation myth.

Now, all that being said, I'm quite certain I'm taking lots of liberties coming to that conclusion. Curiously though, is it possible to artificially petrify wood through some form of cooking, burning lumber where it reduces weight but still quality for supporting a stone castle?
edit on 12-6-2016 by Rosinitiate because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 12 2016 @ 10:44 AM
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Super cool! Thank you for sharing.



posted on Jun, 12 2016 @ 11:41 AM
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originally posted by: Shiloh7
a reply to: Byrd

I suspect they used the river system, much like the ancient Britons who floated huge stones on boats from Wales to Stone Henge. To float logs would have been easier and the article I attached shows a map of the rivers.


This is in the middle of the Great Southwest Desert.


I just see this as a natural thing any ancient culture would have done to make their buildings strong.


Most of their buildings were of stone.


Some articles I read also say they also had horses and oxen whom would have pulled the logs over the land, although even if they didn't I expect the people themselves greased the logs and pulled them themselves.

The Americas didn't have horses or oxen or large animals for transport (bison are pretty untameable) before the arrival of the Spanish.



posted on Jun, 12 2016 @ 11:45 AM
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originally posted by: Nickn3
We also disagree with the Park service people about the use of the structures known as Kivas. We think some, but not all, were used as cisterns or tanks where water was stored underground to reduce evaporation in the long periods between rains.

Very impractical. It doesn't rain that much here. You could never fill the thing up.



posted on Jun, 12 2016 @ 08:40 PM
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a reply to: Byrd

I'm not that sure about that.

The area can get some enormous cloud bursts that drop a LOT of water in a short time.

And during the season, there can be several such massive storms.

A pit on property I know of about 5' X 6' X 5' filled in less than a few hours. And that was without much of the runoff being channeled, directed into it.

Good topic. Thanks.



posted on Jun, 12 2016 @ 09:55 PM
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a reply to: Byrd
Byrd,
Thanks for posting
I haven't had a chance to read source materials yet,
but one important aspect is that the logs come from two completely separate sources, many miles apart in different mountain ranges.
If it's not covered in your source I'll try to dig up the article I read about it.



posted on Jun, 12 2016 @ 09:59 PM
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a reply to: BO XIAN
BO XIAN,
Although the desert south west can have torrential rains they are not predictable or consistent.
Believe me I have been in the desert when flash floods happen, there is no way you are going to control the logs in n any fashion.



posted on Jun, 12 2016 @ 10:15 PM
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a reply to: Rosinitiate
The dene speaking people didn't arrive until well after Chaco collapsed, in fact it was the same change in climate that caused the dene speakers to leave northern Canada, that formented the downfall of Chaco.
Search for my thread on the dene migration.



posted on Jun, 12 2016 @ 11:23 PM
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originally posted by: punkinworks10
a reply to: BO XIAN
BO XIAN,
Although the desert south west can have torrential rains they are not predictable or consistent.
Believe me I have been in the desert when flash floods happen, there is no way you are going to control the logs in n any fashion.


I quite agree about not controlling much of anything in the brief flash floods of the region.

I was merely commenting that some cisterns could likely be filled in at least some seasons with the typically big but brief torrential cloud bursts.



posted on Jun, 12 2016 @ 11:26 PM
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a reply to: punkinworks10

I'm interested in that thread, too.

IIRC, the DNA studies insist that ALL Native American (South, Central and North) came originally from the tribal group in the Northern Mongolia/Southern Siberian area. There evidently was some injection of Polynesian DNA into some of the South American groups . . . and IIRC, there's some connection, to a small degree, with Australian aborigines.

But this is way off the topic of Chaco. Though their DNA should also be from the Siberian area.




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