Hohokam Settlement Along the Slopes of the Picacho Mountains, Volume 2, Part 1: The Brady Wash Sites


This volume documents the excavation and testing by the Museum of Northern Arizona of 92 structures, a platform mound, and numerous other features at 15 loci of the Brady Wash site and six small sites in Reach 1 of the Tucson Aqueduct Project, Phase A. These sites are a major segment of the Brady Wash Complex, a Hohokam community that inhabited the floodplain below the northwest slopes of the Picacho Mountains.These investigations provide detailed insight into long-term Hohokam adaptation to a marginal, non-riverine environment.In contrast to the large, riverine Hohokam communities, the Brady Wash community was a much simpler society employing a highly mixed subsistence strategy, equally dependent upon floodwater farming and wild plant gathering. The exploitation and possible cultivation of agave played a particularly important role in this adaptation. The community began in the early Colonial period as a series of small farmsteads along Brady Wash, with field houses and resource procurement and processing sites scattered over a broad area of the floodplain. By the Civano phase, these farmsteads became aggregated into hamlets clustered around a platform mound. The greatest degree of aggregation occurred in the late Civano phase, a time that witnessed the breakdown of riverine Hohokam communities. The Classic period hamlets at Brady Wash retained the earlier and simpler organization of small courtyard groups rather than the large compound groups typical of Classic period riverine sites. The plat form mound at Locus S of the Brady Wash complex is the smallest known example of this architectural type. Although surrounded by other structures and by a compound wall, there was no evidence of habitation at the mound itself. Instead, the platform mound served as a communal food storage and processing area, particularly for agave. The Brady Wash complex was integrated into the Hohokam regional system, but by its simpler organization and mixed subsistence base, the Brady Wash community was apparently able to maintain its stability for 600-700 years, until the call apse of the general Hohokam system ca. A.D. 1450.

Cite this Record

Hohokam Settlement Along the Slopes of the Picacho Mountains, Volume 2, Part 1: The Brady Wash Sites, 2(1). Richard Ciolek-Torrello, Martha M. Callahan, David H. Greenwald. Museum of Northern Arizona Research Paper ,35. Flagstaff, Arizona: Department of Anthropology, Museum of Northern Arizona. 1988 ( tDAR id: 377937) ; doi:10.6067/XCV8Z60PW2

This Resource is Part of the Following Collections

Temporal Coverage

Calendar Date: 850 to 1450

Spatial Coverage

min long: -111.543; min lat: 32.573 ; max long: -111.23; max lat: 32.893 ;

Record Identifiers

Bureau of Reclamation Contract No.(s): 3-CS-30-00790

File Information

  Name Size Creation Date Date Uploaded Access
hohokam-settlement-along-the-slopes-of-the-picacho-mountains-b... 125.43mb Oct 13, 2017 12:14:27 PM Public