Classic Period Occupation on the Santa Cruz Flats: The Santa Cruz Flats Archaeological Project, Part 1

Editor(s): Kathleen Henderson; Richard J. Martynec

Year: 1993


This report presents the results of archaeological investigations at 13 prehistoric sites located on the Santa Cruz Flats. The investigations were sponsored by the Bureau of Reclamation in order to mitigate the impact to prehistoric resources in the construction of the Central Arizona Irrigation and Drainage District, Central Unit II and III irrigation systems. These systems are located southwest of Interstate 10, south and west of Eloy, Arizona, south and east of Arizona City, Arizona, and north of Friendly Comers, Arizona. The 13 sites included three villages, one farmstead, and nine resource procurement loci; most of these were occupied during the late Sedentary or Classic periods. The primary goal of the study was to describe and elucidate the Classic period occupation of the Santa Cruz Flats. Evidence presented here indicates that there was a change in the structure and distribution of settlement between the late pre-Classic and Classic periods on the Santa Cruz Flats. The contrasts in settlement structure suggest that this change involved the transition from economically autonomous village communities to a centrally coordinated platform mound complex. A change in subsistence patterns may also be indicated. The locations of pre-Classic communities suggest that there was greater diversification of subsistence options, with procurement of resources across a wide range of rnicroenvironments. During the Classic period, this diversification was supplanted by an intense focus on agriculture. Although it is clear that wild or gathered resources continued to supplement the diet, these may have been obtained in part through exchange networks established with other mound communities located to exploit the same set of resources as in the pre-Classic period.

Cite this Record

Classic Period Occupation on the Santa Cruz Flats: The Santa Cruz Flats Archaeological Project, Part 1. Kathleen Henderson, Richard J. Martynec. Flagstaff, Arizona: Northland Research, Inc. 1993 ( tDAR id: 378271) ; doi:10.6067/XCV8H132V6

Spatial Coverage

min long: -111.789; min lat: 32.517 ; max long: -111.447; max lat: 32.738 ;

Record Identifiers

Central Arizona Project, Non-indian Distribution Division, Task No.(s): 63; 60; 62; 61

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

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