Archaeological Investigations at AZ U:6:2(ASU), An Historic Camp on the Banks of the Salt River, Maricopa County, Arizona

Author(s): Patricia E. Brown

Year: 1978


Under contract with the Bureau of Reclamation, the Office of Cultural Resource Management (OCRM), Department of Anthropology, Arizona State University conducted a cultural resource study of AZ U:6:2(ASU), an historic site located adjacent to Granite Reef Dam on the south side of the Salt River. A portion of the historic camp was contained within the construction right-of-way of the Salt River Siphon, a feature of the Central Arizona Project which connects the Granite Reef and Salt-Gila Aqueducts. The Salt River Siphon project also included the study of a prehistoric site on the north side of the river directly opposite AZ U:6:2 (ASU). The results of that study are presented in a separate report.

The camp (AZ U:6:2(ASU)) was first used as a work camp for the construction of Granite Reef Dam in 1906-1908. The dam was a diversion structure on the Salt River located in south-central Arizona. The site was later re-occupied during World War I and for brief periods in 1916 and 1920, when repairs were made on the dam.

This report documents OCRM's cultural resource investigations of the historic camp. The investigations and evaluation included archaeological field data recovery; examination of written records, documents, maps, and photographs; and interviews with Gertrude Hill Muir who was born at Granite Reef Dam in 1909. These separate lines of evidence were used to construct a general framework of the camp's structure and its history.

Historically, the work camp represents a transitional period between the frontier way of life which had characterized the early settlement in the Southwest and the modern pattern of industrialization and growth. The frontier period was initiated by the efforts of individuals or small groups of individuals to establish a foothold in the harsh desert environment. This pattern was gradually superseded in the late 19th and early 20th centuries by more concerted efforts toward ordered growth and development. The conception of the Salt River Project and the construction of Roosevelt and Granite Reef Dams were among the first organized steps in that direction.

Cite this Record

Archaeological Investigations at AZ U:6:2(ASU), An Historic Camp on the Banks of the Salt River, Maricopa County, Arizona. Patricia E. Brown. 1978 ( tDAR id: 393101) ; doi:10.6067/XCV8W37Z56

Temporal Coverage

Calendar Date: 1916 to 1920

Calendar Date: 1906 to 1908

Spatial Coverage

min long: -111.701; min lat: 33.491 ; max long: -111.673; max lat: 33.528 ;

Record Identifiers

Bureau of Reclamation Purchase Order No.(s): 7-01-32-04160

File Information

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OCRM-32-1978-Archaeology-AZ-U-6-2-ASU--Historic-Camp-Salt-Rive... 2.47mb Jun 20, 2014 12:13:37 PM Confidential

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