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Shelltown and The Hind Site: A Study of Two Hohokam Craftsman Communities in Southwestern Arizona, Volume 1, Part 1

Editor(s): William S. Marmaduke ; Richard J. Martynec

Year: 1993

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Shelltown (AZ AA: 1:66[ASM]) and the Hind site (AZ AA: 1:62[ASM]) were small, surprisingly uncommon prehistoric settlements inhabited by members of the Hohokam culture in south-central Arizona between the early 8th and late 10th centuries A.D. Although they seem relatively large now – the Hind site is approximately 20 acres and Shelltown is a protean 178 acres – neither site appears to have been occupied by more than a couple of extended families at any one point in time. However, at Shelltown, in the late decades, there may have been a more concentrated grouping, perhaps approaching the character of a true village of small stature. During most of these site’s occupational histories, their population probably consisted of no more than a couple of nuclear families. It is even more likely that many of the occupations represented a single nuclear family, apparently all on an intermittent basis. There is not much evidence to suggest permanent residence at these sites, although opinions differ on among the research team members. The material record at each of the sites indicates that they were likely seasonal encampments. At The Hind site, occupation occurred from about A.D. 700 to A.D. 800, and again sometime in the middle A.D. 800s. At Shelltown, use of the site spans the early to late middle A.D. 800s, and A.D. 925- 1025. Shelltown and the Hind site are not unique, however, in their magnitude, organization, or antiquity. Similarly-sized and arrayed sites are exceedingly common in the Hohokam culture area, although known sites of any type dating to the 8th and 9th centuries are less numerous than sites inhabited after A.D. 900. What makes these two sites rare is what happened at them apart from the normal routine of subsistence activities and other everyday actions. These sites were inhabited by specialized craftsmen --jewelry and ornament makers –perhaps at a scale seen nowhere else in the American Southwest. Their output was astonishing in its variety: bracelets, pendants, effigy figures, beads, and rings made from as many as 36 separate species of marine shell obtained from the waters or beaches of the Gulf of California or, in lesser degree, the Pacific Ocean; mosaic inlays and pendants of turquoise, muscovite, pyrite, copper ores, and galena; pendants and beads ground from schist and slate, or simply adapted from a quartz crystal. This document is Volume 1, Part 1 of the report. Please see for Volume 1, Part 2.

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Cite this Record

Shelltown and The Hind Site: A Study of Two Hohokam Craftsman Communities in Southwestern Arizona, Volume 1, Part 1. William S. Marmaduke, Richard J. Martynec. Flagstaff, Arizona: Northland Research, Inc. 1993 ( tDAR id: 378257) ; doi:10.6067/XCV8B858ZJ


Temporal Coverage

Calendar Date: 825 to 1025 (Shelltown)

Calendar Date: 700 to 800 (Hind Site)

Spatial Coverage

min long: -112.213; min lat: 32.63 ; max long: -111.749; max lat: 32.969 ;

Individual & Institutional Roles

Contact(s): Bureau of Reclamation, Phoenix Area Office

Field Director(s): James D. Mayberry ; Richard J. Martynec ; James Copus

Principal Investigator(s): William S. Marmaduke

Sponsor(s): USDI Bureau of Reclamation, Phoenix Area Office

Permitting Agency(s): USDI Bureau of Reclamation

Prepared By(s): Northland Research, Inc.

Submitted To(s): USDI Bureau of Reclamation, Phoenix Area Office

Record Identifiers

Central Arizona Project, Non-indian Distribution Division, Task No.(s): 23; 16

Bureau of Reclamation Contract No.(s): 3-PA-30-00740

File Information

  Name Size Creation Date Date Uploaded Access
cap-distribtuion-division-shelltown-and-the-hind-site-volume-1... 154.37mb May 18, 2017 4:55:21 PM Public
Arizona State University The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation National Science Foundation National Endowment for the Humanities Society for American Archaeology Archaeological Institute of America