Recovery of Additional Information from the Gila River Farm Expansion Area


As a result of a cultural resource investigation of the Gila River Farms expansion area conducted by Archaeological Consulting Services Ltd. (ACS), a number of significant cultural resources were identified within the project area. Of particular interest was cultural material associated with the World War II Japanese-American internment camp of Camp Rivers. This camp was used between May, 1942 and November 1945 and housed approximately 12.000 Japanese and Nisei (Japanese-Americans born and educated in the United States). The camp was named after Jim Rivers who was the first Native American of Piman descent to be killed in action during World War I. The camp was divided into two units: Butte and Canal camps. The project area surrounds the larger of these units, Butte Camp. Butte Camp covered approximately 789.25 acres (319 .4 ha) at the foot of Sacaton Butte. The camp was divided into a series of blocks, each with a requisite set of facilities for housing and feeding for 300 persons. A block characteristically had 14 barracks. one mess hall, a recreation hall. a laundry and ironing room. and two latrines. The complex also included a hospital, administrative offices, warehouses. auto repair shops, a post office, a camouflage net factory, a school, and other common use facilities.

A review of the project by the Bureau of Indian Affairs, Bureau of Reclamation, Gila River Indian Community, and State Historic Preservation Office resulted in the recommendation that further data recovery be undertaken in order to mitigate potential effects of the project. A plan designed to recover further information primarily from the remains associated with Butte Camp was developed by Dr. Richard Effland, Dr. Margerie Green, and Ms . Monique Sawyer-Lang of ACS. This plan involved a number of specific tasks to assure that the important qualities of the cultural material within the project would be preserved through recordation and documentation prior to construction. These tasks initially were defined at a meeting held on March 1, 1988 which was attended by representatives of the Bureau of Indian Affairs, Bureau of Reclamation, State Historic Preservation Office, Gila River Indian Community, Gila River Farms, Franzoy-Corey Engineers and Architects, and Archaeological Consulting Services.

ACS initially had investigated an area which covers approximately 5,625 acres (2276 ha) south of Casa Blanca on the Gila River Indian Community. The purpose of this investigation was to identify potentially significant historic and/or prehistoric cultural properties which might be affected by development of the area. While the main portion of the Butte Camp has been excluded from development by the Gila River Farms, several peripheral components of the camp will be affected. These components include deposits of trash which appeared to be relatively isolated within the desert surrounding Butte Camp as well remains of the camp' s dairy. These remains were considered components of Camp Rivers. the whole of which is potentially eligible for National Register inclusion.

Deposits of trash from the Butte Camp were identified surrounding the north and east sides of the camp. These areas were located north of Seed Farm Road in an area which was surveyed intensively. Areas to the southeast and south of the camp (south of Seed Farm Road) were not surveyed during the initial survey, but it is assumed that the remains extended into these areas. In order to fully delineate the extent of the trash scatter surrounding the camp, an intensive 100% survey of the previously unsurveyed portions of area southeast and south of the camp, was performed. This survey defined more deposits of trash as expected.

The purpose of this survey was not only to delineate the full boundaries of this scatter of trash, but also to define any other unknown components which may relate to the World War II Japanese-American internment camp. Data relating to prehistoric remains within the area were also collected as warranted. As was expected, isolated prehistoric artifacts and limited scatters of prehistoric artifacts were encountered along with the historic period remains. None of these meet the criteria for eligibility for the National Register of Historic Places. Recordation during the survey has provided documentation on the distribution and nature of the prehistoric phenomena. A pattern reflecting travel and limited use of the area is suggested. This is similar to the pattern found throughout the project area.

Cite this Record

Recovery of Additional Information from the Gila River Farm Expansion Area. Monique Sawyer-Lang, Richard W. Effland, Jr.. Tempe, Arizona: Archaeological Consulting Services, Ltd. 1988 ( tDAR id: 402031) ; doi:10.6067/XCV81C1ZR4

This Resource is Part of the Following Collections


Investigation Types
Site Evaluation / Testing Systematic Survey

Ashtray Aspirin Can Bed Frame Bicycle Bit Bobbin Bolt Book Bottle Bowl Bracelet Broom Bucket Buckle Butter Dish Button Can Cane Carafe Chair Chalk Chisel Churn Cigarette Holder Cigar Holder Cleaning Supply Bottle Cleaning Supply Can Clock Clothes Hanger Clothing Fastener Coffee Pot Coin Collar Comb Condiment Bottle Container Cosmetic Bottle Cosmetic Can Cot Frame Crock Cup Curtain Rod Dessert Glass Dish Doll Earring Electric Cord Eraser Eyeglasses Eyelet File Fireplace Equipment Fish Hook Fishing Float Fishing Pole Fishing Reel Flag Flower Pot Food Container Closure Frame Fuse Gas Can Glue Bottle Gravy Boat Hair Brush Hair Curler Hammer Handbag Harness Hearing Aid Heater Hinge Hoe Horseshoe Hot Plate Ink Bottle Insulator Jar Jewelry Joint Anchor Jug Kettle Key Keyhole Escutcheon Knitting Needle Leash Light Bulb Lighter Light Fixture Lipstick Tube Liquor Bottle Lotion Tube Marble Match Medicine Bottle Mirror Mixing Bowl Money Mop Mug Nail Necklace Needle Newspaper Opium Pipe Paint Can Pan Paper Roofing Pen Pencil Photograph Picture Hanger Pin Pipe Pitcher Plate Platter Pliers Rake Razor Blade Rice Bowl Ring Rivet Roofing Safety Pin Saki Cup Salt or Pepper Shaker Saucer Saw Scale Scissor Screw Screwdriver Scrub Brush Serving Bowl Sewer Pipe Sewing Needle Shoe Shoe Polish Can Shovel Sinker Soap Dish Spark Plug Spool Sprayer Staple Stemware Stirrup Stove Sugar Bowl Switch Plate Syringe Syrup Jug Table Tack Tape Dispenser Teapot Thermometer Thimble Tile Roofing Tobacco Pipe Toothbrush Toothpaste Tube Trowel Tumbler Tureen Typewriter Utensil Vegetable Dish Washbowl Washer Watch Whistle Window Glass Show More

Geographic Keywords
Casa Blanca Gila River Indian Community Sacaton Butte Seed Farm Road

Temporal Keywords
1940s 20th Century Historic Prehistoric World War II

Temporal Coverage

Calendar Date: 1942 to 1945 (Years in which Camp Rivers was actively used as an internment camp.)

Spatial Coverage

min long: -112.1; min lat: 32.91 ; max long: -111.846; max lat: 33.118 ;

Individual & Institutional Roles

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

Contributor(s): Margerie Green, Dr.; Monique Sawyer-Lang; Penny Dufoe Minturn; Donald Irwin; Domingo Quintero; Burton Young

Field Director(s): Richard Effland, Jr., Dr.

Collaborator(s): State Historic Preservation Office; Gila River Farms; Franzoy-Corey Engineers and Architects

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

Permitting Agency(s): Bureau of Indian Affairs, Phoenix Area Office; Gila River Indian Community

Prepared By(s): Archaeological Consulting Services, Ltd.

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

Record Identifiers

Gila River Indian Community Archaeological License No.(s): GR-02-88

Project Name(s): Gila River Expansion Area Project

Archaeological Resource Protection Act Consultation Permit No.(s): ACS/GR/PA0/001a

File Information

  Name Size Creation Date Date Uploaded Access
CCRS-1988-029-Recovery-of-Additional-Information-from-the-Gila... 4.33mb Jul 1, 1988 Feb 8, 2016 5:16:59 PM Confidential
This file is unredacted.

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