|Mesa Verde National Park|
|IUCN Category II (National Park)|
|Location||Montezuma County, Colorado, USA|
|Area||52,121. A national park is a reserve of land usually declared and owned by a national Government, protected from most Human development and pollution Montezuma County is the southwesternmost of the 64 counties of the State of Colorado of the United States. The United States of America —commonly referred to as the The City of Cortez is a Home Rule Municipality that is the County seat and the most populous city of Montezuma County, Colorado, United 93 acres (210. 93 km²)|
51,890. 65 acres (209. 99 km²) federal
|Established||June 29, 1906|
|Visitors||557,248 (in 2006)|
|Governing body||National Park Service|
|Mesa Verde National Park*|
|UNESCO World Heritage Site|
|State Party||United States of America|
|Region†||Europe and North America|
|Inscription||1978 (2nd Session)|
|* Name as inscribed on World Heritage List.|
† Region as classified by UNESCO.
Mesa Verde National Park is a U.S. National Park and UNESCO World Heritage Site located in Montezuma County, Colorado, United States. Events 512 - A Solar eclipse is recorded by a monastic chronicler in Ireland. Year 1906 ( MCMVI) was a Common year starting on Monday (link will display full calendar of the Gregorian calendar (or a Common year starting The National Park Service ( NPS) is the United States federal agency that manages all National Parks, many National Monuments, and other conservation A UNESCO World Heritage Site is a site (such as a Forest, Mountain, Lake, Desert, Monument, Building, complex As of 2008 there are a total of 878 World Heritage Sites located in 145 "State Parties" The United States of America —commonly referred to as the A UNESCO World Heritage Site is a site (such as a Forest, Mountain, Lake, Desert, Monument, Building, complex A UNESCO World Heritage Site is a site (such as a Forest, Mountain, Lake, Desert, Monument, Building, complex The National Park Service ( NPS) is the United States federal agency that manages all National Parks, many National Monuments, and other conservation United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization ( UNESCO) is a specialized agency of the United Nations established on November 16 A UNESCO World Heritage Site is a site (such as a Forest, Mountain, Lake, Desert, Monument, Building, complex Montezuma County is the southwesternmost of the 64 counties of the State of Colorado of the United States. The State of Colorado ( or chiefly by nonresidents) is a state located in the Rocky Mountain region of the United States of America. The United States of America —commonly referred to as the The park occupies 81. 4 square miles (211 square kilometers) and features numerous ruins of homes and villages built by the ancient Pueblo people. A mile is a unit of Length, usually used to measure Distance, in a number of different systems including Imperial units United States The kilometre ( American spelling: kilometer) symbol km is a unit of Length in the Metric system, equal to one thousand "Anasazi" directs here For the X-Files episode see Anasazi (The X-Files. It is best known for several spectacular cliff dwellings — structures built within caves and under outcroppings in cliffs — including Cliff Palace, which is thought to be the largest cliff dwelling in North America. Cliff Palace is the largest Cliff dwelling in North America. The Ancient Pueblo structure is located in Mesa Verde National Park, in the southwest Cliff dwelling is the general archaeological term for the habitations of primitive peoples formed by utilizing niches or Caves in high cliffs with more or less excavation The Spanish term Mesa Verde translates into English as "green table".
Mesa Verde National Park is located in the lower south-western corner of the state of Colorado(37. 183784,-108. 488687).
Elevations in the park range from about 6,100 feet (1,860 meters) to about 8,400 feet (2,560 meters). A foot (plural feet or foot; symbol or abbreviation ft or sometimes &prime – the prime symbol) is a non-SI unit The metre or meter is a unit of Length. It is the basic unit of Length in the Metric system and in the International The terrain in much of the park is dominated by ridges and valleys running roughly north and south; many of these ridges peak at an east–west crest near the park's northern border which turns more northerly–southerly towards the park entrance. The northernmost point is 13. 2 miles (21. 2 kilometers) farther north than the southernmost; the westernmost point is 11. 9 miles (19. 2 kilometers) farther west than the easternmost.
Spanish explorers seeking a route from Santa Fe to California in the 1760s and 1770s were the first Europeans to reach the Mesa Verde (green table) region, which they named after its high, tree-covered plateaus. Santa Fe ( Navajo: Yootó is the Capital of the state of New Mexico. California ( is a US state on the West Coast of the United States, along the Pacific Ocean. In Geology and Earth science, a plateau, also called a high plateau or tableland, is an area of highland, usually consisting However, they never got close enough to see the ancient stone villages, which would remain a secret for another century. Occasional trappers and prospectors visited, with one prospector, John Moss, making his observations known in 1873. The following year he led eminent photographer William Henry Jackson through Mancos Canyon, at the base of Mesa Verde. See Honoré Jackson for the Canadian revolutionary William Henry Jackson ( April 4[[ 843]] - June 30[[ 942]] was an American There Jackson both photographed and publicized a typical stone cliff dwelling. In 1875 geologist William H. Holmes retraced Jackson's route. William Henry Holmes ( December 1, 1846 &ndash April 20, 1933) was an American Anthropologist, Archaeologist, Reports by both Jackson and Holmes were included in the 1876 report of the Hayden Survey, one of the four federally financed efforts to explore the American West. These and other publications led to proposals to systematically study Southwestern archaeological sites. They did not lead to action for some years.
Meanwhile, ranchers were beginning to settle the Mancos Valley. Some climbed up into Mesa Verde and observed more and larger stone structures. Looting of artifacts began, both for home display and for sale cheaply to visitors to the region. In a dismal two decades of despoliation, the most responsible ranchers were members of the Wetherill family, who also had the best relations with the local Ute tribe on whose territory Mesa Verde was located. Richard Wetherill (1858-1910 a member of a prominent Colorado ranching family was an amateur explorer in the discovery research and excavation of sites associated with the The Wetherills collected artifacts for sale to the Historical Society of Colorado as well as private collectors, and began assembling a small library of relevant publications. They also saw the tourist potential of the cliff dwellings they now sought out systematically. Over several years they reoriented their ranch toward guiding tourists through the cliff dwellings, and became the first experts on them. Although they continued to dig in the ruins, knocking down some walls and roofs and gathering artifacts without extensive documentation, the Wetherill's actions were more responsible and considered than those of the looters that preceded them. Modern archaeological opinion generally agrees that the Wetherill family were reasonable caretakers in an era before archaeological standards and federal oversight and protection. 
One noteworthy early visitor was a New York newspaper reporter named Virginia McClurg, whose efforts over a period of years helped lead eventually to park status for Mesa Verde. Another, in 1889 and 1890, was photographer and travel writer Frederick H. Chapin. Frederick H Chapin ( 5 September 1852 - 25 January 1900) was an American business man Mountaineer, photographer amateur archaeologist He described the landscape and structures in an 1890 article and 1892 book, The Land of the Cliff-Dwellers, whose many excellent photographs were the first extensive view of Mesa Verde available to the public. Like other visitors in the early years, he was guided by the Wetherills.
Perhaps the most important early visitor was Gustaf Nordenskiöld, son of Finnish-Swedish polar explorer Adolf Erik Nordenskiöld, in 1891. Cliff Palace is the largest Cliff dwelling in North America. The Ancient Pueblo structure is located in Mesa Verde National Park, in the southwest Gustaf Nordenskiöld ( 29 June 1868 - June 6 1895) Swedish scholar of Finnish descent a member of the Nordenskiöld Gustaf Nordenskiöld ( 29 June 1868 - June 6 1895) Swedish scholar of Finnish descent a member of the Nordenskiöld Baron (Nils Adolf Erik Nordenskiöld, also known as A E Nordenskioeld (November 18 1832 Helsinki, Finland &mdash August 12 1901 Dalby Skåne Nordenskiöld, a trained mineralogist, introduced scientific methods to artifact collection, recorded locations, photographed extensively, diagrammed sites, and correlated what he observed with existing archaeological literature as well as the home-grown expertise of the Wetherills. Local opposition surfaced, however, and after it was learned that his artifacts would be shipped to a Scandinavian museum, he was arrested and falsely charged with "devastating the ruins. " Rumors of lynching circulated. Only intervention by several Washington cabinet secretaries freed Nordenskiöld. On return to Sweden he published, in 1893, the first scholarly study of the ruins, The Cliff Dwellers of the Mesa Verde, which put Mesa Verde on the map in the international community. Nordenskiöld activities remained controversial for many decades but are generally recognized as highly valuable today. Nordenskiöld's collection of Mesa Verde artifacts, in a Helsinki, Finland museum, is the largest outside the U. Helsinki (in Finnish;) or Helsingfors (in Swedish;) is the Capital and largest city of Finland. S. Former Mesa Verde National Park superintendent Robert Heyder summed up Nordenskiöld's contributions:
Yet vandalism continued. By the end of the 19th century, it was clear that Mesa Verde needed protection from unthinking or greedy people. An early Mesa Verde National Park superintendent, Hans Randolph, described the situation at the best known cliff dwelling, Cliff Palace:
As concern grew over the archaeological well being of Mesa Verde's ruins, and those in other nearby sites, the area was established as a national park on June 29, 1906. Events 512 - A Solar eclipse is recorded by a monastic chronicler in Ireland. Year 1906 ( MCMVI) was a Common year starting on Monday (link will display full calendar of the Gregorian calendar (or a Common year starting As with all historical areas administered by the National Park Service, the park was listed on the National Register of Historic Places on October 15, 1966. The National Park Service ( NPS) is the United States federal agency that manages all National Parks, many National Monuments, and other conservation The National Register of Historic Places (NRHP is the United States government's official list of districts sites buildings structures and objects deemed worthy of Events 533 - Byzantine General Belisarius makes his formal entry into Carthage, having conquered it from the Year 1966 ( MCMLXVI) was a Common year starting on Saturday (link will display full calendar of the 1966 Gregorian calendar. It was designated a World Heritage Site on September 6, 1978. A UNESCO World Heritage Site is a site (such as a Forest, Mountain, Lake, Desert, Monument, Building, complex Events 3114 BC - According to the Proleptic Julian calendar the current era in the Maya Long Count Calendar started Year 1978 ( MCMLXXVIII) was a Common year starting on Sunday (link displays the 1978 Gregorian calendar) The park was named with the Spanish for green table because of its forests of juniper and piñon trees. Junipers are Coniferous plants in the genus Juniperus of the cypress family Cupressaceae. The pinyon (or piñon) Pine group grows in the southwestern United States and in Mexico.
A set of six buildings built by the National Park Service in 1921, the Mesa Verde Administrative District, was designated a National Historic Landmark on May 29, 1987. Mesa Verde Administrative District is a set of six National Park Service buildings within Mesa Verde National Park, constructed in 1921 in a "pueblo revival" style A National Historic Landmark (NHL is a Building, site, Structure, Object, or District, that is officially recognized by the Events 363 - Roman Emperor Julian defeats the Sassanid army in the Battle of Ctesiphon, under the walls of the Year 1987 ( MCMLXXXVII) was a Common year starting on Thursday (link displays 1987 Gregorian calendar) It consists of the first buildings constructed by the National Park Service which are based on cultural traditions represented in the park area. The principal designer believed that structures could be used for interpretive purposes to explain the construction of prehistoric dwellings in the Park, and be compatible with their natural and cultural setting.
In the summer of 2002, the park, which is covered with pine and cedar forests, suffered from a large number of forest fires; parts of it were closed. A forest is an area with a high density of Trees There are many definitions of a forest based on various criteria A wildfire, also known as a wildland fire, forest fire, brush fire, vegetation fire, grass fire, Peat fire, All areas of the park have since re-opened, but some areas show significant damage from the fire.
Mesa Verde's park entrance is about 9 miles (15 kilometers) east of the community of Cortez. The City of Cortez is a Home Rule Municipality that is the County seat and the most populous city of Montezuma County, Colorado, United The visitor center is 15 miles (24 kilometers) from the entrance, and Chapin Mesa (the most popular area) is another 6 miles (10 kilometers) beyond the visitor center. A visitor center, centre (see Spelling differences) or visitor information centre may be A visitor center at a specific attraction
The park's Chapin Mesa Archeological Museum provides information about the Ancient Puebloan civilization and displays findings and artwork.
Three of the cliff dwellings on Chapin Mesa are open to the public. Spruce Tree House is open all year, weather permitting. Spruce refers to Trees of the genus Picea, a genus of about 35 species of Coniferous Evergreen trees in the Family Pinaceae Balcony House and Cliff Palace are open except in the winter; visitors may tour them only on ranger-guided tours. Cliff Palace is the largest Cliff dwelling in North America. The Ancient Pueblo structure is located in Mesa Verde National Park, in the southwest The cliff dwellings on Wetherill Mesa, including Long House and Step House, can be reached via a 12 mile (19. 2 kilometer) long mountain road leading southwest from the park visitor center. Many other dwellings are visible from the road but not open to tourists.
In addition to the cliff dwellings, Mesa Verde boasts a number of mesa-top ruins. Examples open to public access include the Far View Complex, Cedar Tree Tower, and the Sun Temple, all on Chapin Mesa, and Badger House Community, on Wetherill Mesa.
Also in the park are hiking trails, a campground, and facilities for food, fuel, and lodging; these are unavailable in the winter.
Mesa Verde is best known for a large number of well preserved cliff dwellings, houses built in shallow caves and under rock overhangs along the canyon walls. A cave is a natural underground void large enough for a human to enter For the song see CANYONMID. For the band see Canyon (band. A canyon (rarely cañon) or gorge The structures contained within these alcoves were mostly blocks of hard sandstone, held together and plastered with adobe mortar. Sandstone is a Sedimentary rock composed mainly of Sand -size Mineral or rock grains. Adobe bricks are a Natural building material made from Sand, Clay, water and some kind of fibrous or Organic material ( Sticks, Specific constructions had many similarities, but were generally unique in form due to the individual topography of different alcoves along the canyon walls. In marked contrast to earlier constructions and villages on top of the mesas, the cliff dwellings of Mesa Verde reflected a region-wide trend towards the aggregation of growing regional populations into close, highly defensible quarters during the 1200s.
While much of the construction in these sites conforms to common Pueblo architectural forms, including Kivas, towers, and pit-houses, the space constrictions of these alcoves necessitated what seems to have been a far denser concentration of their populations. KIVA was a full-service Television station in Yuma Arizona, broadcasting locally on VHF channel 11 initially as an Independent station Mug House, a typical cliff dwelling of the period, was home to around 100 people who shared 94 small rooms and eight kivas built right up against each other and sharing many of their walls; builders in these areas maximized space in any way they could and no areas were considered off-limits to construction .
Not all of the people in the region lived in cliff dwellings; many colonized the canyon rims and slopes in multi-family structures that grew to unprecedented size as populations swelled. Decorative motifs for these sandstone/mortar constructions, both cliff dwellings and non-, included T-shaped windows and doors. This has been taken by some archaeologists, such as Stephen Lekson (1999), as evidence of the continuing reach of the Chaco Canyon elite system, which had seemingly collapsed around a century before. Chaco Culture National Historical Park is a United States National Historical Park and it is a portion of a UNESCO World Heritage Site hosting the densest Other researchers see these motifs as part of a more generalized Puebloan style and/or spiritual significance, rather than evidence of a continuing specific elite socioeconomic system.
For most of the 12th and 13th centuries, known archaeologically as the Classic Period, the Ancient Puebloan Indians lived in the cliff dwellings. "Anasazi" directs here For the X-Files episode see Anasazi (The X-Files. The reason for their sudden departure about 1275 remains unexplained; theories range from crop failures due to droughts to an intrusion of foreign tribes from the North.
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