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Mesa Verde, Colorado

Mesa Verde

Now I know that this isn't really a Jeep trail, But it is located right near one of America's best places to Jeep so I thought I would throw this in because I can! Hey, it's my site so I can be creative any way I want. I must admit that these fotos are not the best. They are film fotos I had to scan into the computer and I really don't like this scanner. It does ok but I really miss the one I had before. I would still have it had canon decided to make drivers for Windows 7 but they did not so I had to throw it out. It would scan up to 9600 dpi. It was incredible. I scanned the air engine on the main page at full resolution when I first got it and you could read the writing on the rivets. It also too 20 minutes to scan but it sure was cool. Anyway, I am not a fan messing with fotos with Photoshop or other programs because that takes away from being a great photographer. I will crop my fotos and that's about it: until this set. I will admit that I helped the fotos look better than they are. Something gets lost when you scan and I just added it back. Enough on this.

Mesa Verde was discovered or found way back in 1873 by an old prospector. The following year he led a photographer down in to the area so he could document the find. This was followed by others seeking to figure out the find. A female journalist from, the New York Daily Graphic led two expeditions to the canyon area in the early 1880's and is given credit for finding some of the major sites such as Cliff House and Balcony House. When I lived over in Colorado, there were some serious forest fires in the Mesa Verde area. As serious as they were, new sites were discovered that had been hidden for all of these years. 




Fotos from Mesa Verde; part 1

As time passed, more and more people became interested in the ruins. Who lived there? What was their lifestyle? And more puzzling, where did they go?  Years of study by smarter people then I have decided that the first inhabitants, called Puebloans arrived in the are around 650 ad. The culture lasted to around  the year 1300. The reason for leaving is suggested as there was a horrible drought from 1276 to 1299 which forced the farming culture to move on. As to where, no one is sure. Evidence points to the south where similar pottery has been discovered near the Rio Grande River. By the time it was discovered, the land was owned by the Ute Indians, given to them by a treaty in 1873. Records show that they did winter in the canyons but did not live in the structures left behind. Of course, we all know how treaties with the Native Americans always turned out. We give them supposedly the worst land available and suddenly something is discovered, like gold, oil or ancient ruins and oops we made a mistake. We will be taking the land back and sending you somewhere else. And as we all know, it isn't Indian property anymore. 

more fotos

The first part of the area to gain Federal protection was in 1889 and called Goodman Point Pueblo. Over the next 2 decades, many activists implored the government for complete protection of the area. Already ancient artifacts were disappearing and there was vandalism taking place. Finally in 1906, Teddy Roosevelt made the area a national park. The park contains over 52,000 acres and is home to 4300 ancient sites as well as 600 cliff dwellings. Before being made a park, many artifacts disappeared with the people who explored the area. According to early accounts, when discovered, many of the sites had the appearance of being abandoned in a rush. Many items of clothes, utensils, and tools were left as if the owners took off in a rush. This is similar to Utah's Boston Terrace when it was found. Needless to say, a lot of these items were taken as souvenirs, never to be seen again. Federal law now prohibits the removal of any type of artifact from any of its protected areas. Utah also has a law that prohibits taking items from unexplored archaeological sites. You've been warned.... ha ha!  OK, if you happen to be in the 4 corners area or say, maybe Durango Colorado, I would highly recommend that you take a day and visit Mesa Verde and see the past come alive.    

last of the fotos