Prehistoric Uses of a Developing Floodplain: Archaeological Investigations on the East Bank of the Santa Cruz River at A-Mountain


Between 18 March and 12 April 1997, archaeologi­cal fieldwork was conducted at two sites in the Con­gress Street to Twenty-ninth Street segment of the Arizona Department of Transportation's Interstate 10 Corridor Improvement Project in Tucson, Arizona. Both sites are buried in the eastern Holocene terrace of the Santa Cruz River, directly opposite A-Mountain. In Locus 1 were stratified alluvial deposits containing features dating to the early Cienega phase (800-400 B.C.) and late Cienega phase (400 B.C.-A.D. 50) of the Late Archaic/Early Agricultural period, and the Late Rincon subphase (A.D. 1100-1150) of the Hohokam Sedentary period. In Locus 2 were features dating to the Hohokam Colonial period (A.D. 750-950) and possibly other Hohokam periods. The stratigraphies of the east and west banks of the Santa Cruz River are comparable in this area, and they show that Holocene alluvial processes in the A-Mountain reach were generally similar to, and synchronic with, those in other reaches of the middle Santa Cruz Valley. Archaeological data recovered from these sites indicate that the same set of environmental characteristics attracted settlers to this part of the valley through at least the last 2,600 years, but site functions and intensities of use may have changed over time. While the diversity of locally available wild plant foods remained relatively constant, accumulated cultural impacts over time may have reduced the diversity of local fauna and led to increased agricultural depend­ence. During the Hohokam Sedentary period, pottery exchange relationships between inhabitants of this locale and other Tucson Basin settlements became less varied and complex, perhaps due to decreased social integration in the region.

Cite this Record

Prehistoric Uses of a Developing Floodplain: Archaeological Investigations on the East Bank of the Santa Cruz River at A-Mountain, 10. Jonathan B. Mabry, Michael W. Lindeman, Helga Wocherl. 1999 ( tDAR id: 425570) ; doi:10.6067/XCV8425570

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min long: -111.023; min lat: 32.187 ; max long: -110.925; max lat: 32.229 ;

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Contact(s): Salt River Project Cultural Resource Manager

Contributor(s): Jenny L. Adams; Michael W. Diehl; James M. Heidke; R. Jane Silva; Jennifer A. Waters

Repository(s): Salt River Project, Tempe, AZ

Prepared By(s): Desert Archaeology, Inc.

Submitted To(s): Arizona Department of Transportation, Engineering Consultants Services

Record Identifiers

Technical Report No.(s): 98-10

Project No.(s): ACNH 10-4-(154)

TRACS No.(s): 010 PM 258 H3134 OIC

SRP Library Call No.(s): E90926.L56 1980

SRP Library Barcode No.(s): 00090627

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