Superstition Mountain History Discussion - OLD B/W PHOTOS

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Re: Superstition Mountain History Discussion - OLD B/W PHOTO

Post by roc2rol » Fri Oct 01, 2010 8:02 am

LDMGOLD wrote:Ed:

The first time that the word Superstition was applied to the Superstition Mountains was probably around 1866. The military made several reference to the mountain in their campaign reports as Sierra Supersticiones. Actually most references at the time called the mountains the Salt River Mountains. The first published maps that made clear reference to these mountains as the Superstitions was about 1870. All these maps references can be found in the Hayden Library, Map Section, at Arizona State University. I researched this topic at Hayden Library when I was taking a cartography class for my geology degree a long, long time ago. The name of Superstition Mountains originated from the Anglo farmer of the Salt River Valley who grew hay for the Army at Fort McDowell. These farmers always noticed the Pimas were very superstitious of mountains to the east of the Salt River Valley. The farmers at first made reference to the mountains as the Superstitious Mountains, then the Superstition Mountains. There are different references as to the source of this information, however James H. McClintock, Arizona's official historian c. 1914, recorded the story in several different references, however I don't know how many of them have survived to this day. Hope this information helps answer your questions.
All this information should be available at the Superstition Mountain-Lost Dutchman Museum on the Apache Trail northeast of Apache Junction.

Tom K.
Thanks for the valuable historical information!!

Wonder what made the Pima’s so skittish of the mountains? Or was it just their sly way of trying to keep something pure from outsiders? Did Coronado ever visit these mountains as so many writers have conjectured? Or more specifically: did he ever see the Supers from the west side? How extensively did the Hohokam explore these mountains?

I’m just thinking out loud and rhetorically inquiring.
I have to be careful I don’t get to far a field.
I’m famous for that! :D

Especially about libraries. Arizona as some great collections. Hayden, Heard, Pueblo Grande, Apache Junction, you mentioned. Someday, I’ll get my ducks in a row and try to do some research in these fine centers. I’m concentrating on the Phoenix town site canal system. So the earlier discussion about the crossing of the Salt River really got my interest!

Tom, do you know if the Salt River Project offices in Tempe still have the museum displays of the canals works?

Thanks agrin,
Ed

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Re: Superstition Mountain History Discussion - OLD B/W PHOTO

Post by LDMGOLD » Fri Oct 01, 2010 2:09 pm

Ed: The Pimas were primarily fearful of the mountains because of ambushes they had suffered from the Apaches-Yavapais in the area. Some of the more colorful stories associate it with fear of the "Thunder Gods." The "Thunder God" was represented by the violent summer storms over the mountains that produced wind, lightning, thunder and rain.

No, I haven't found any documentation that places Coronado Expedition any closer to the Superstition Mountain than the San Pedro River where it meets the Gila River. Coronado followed the river route into the area by following the San Pedro then the Gila River on east. However, Marcos de Niza supposedly made it to the Casa Grande ruins on the Gila River around 1549. Of course he was known as the "liar friar."

These mountains have a lot history, but also a lot of BS and lies and sometimes it is difficult to separate the truth from the fiction. You might say it is a very thin gray line between the two.

Take care,

Tom K.

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Re: Superstition Mountain History Discussion - OLD B/W PHOTO

Post by javaone » Fri Oct 01, 2010 3:44 pm

Hey Tom K,

I don't have any questions - Just wanted to say Thanks for sharing. This is some good reading...

Jerry

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Re: Superstition Mountain History Discussion - OLD B/W PHOTO

Post by roc2rol » Sat Oct 02, 2010 7:19 pm

LDMGOLD wrote:Ed: Some of the more colorful stories associate it with fear of the "Thunder Gods." The "Thunder God" was represented by the violent summer storms over the mountains that produced wind, lightning, thunder and rain.


I can understand that, Tom
Just with the sudden storm we had tonight
Imagine being back in those mountains a 1000 years ago
a sudden monsoon breaks
the Thunder echos w/ a lowrumble
Lightening flashes shadowing strange images
down pour of rain flash ravine flooding !

That had to be as story told
by the brave only

the cliff dwelling in Rogers Canyon
were they the HoHokam Indians?

Thanks
ed

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Re: Superstition Mountain History Discussion - OLD B/W PHOTO

Post by LDMGOLD » Sat Oct 02, 2010 8:32 pm

The cliff dwellings in Roger Canyon were constructed by the Salado, the same ones that created the Tonto Ruins near Roosevelt Lake. They were dated somewhere between 800-1000 AD. However, it is interested to note that several people with credentials believe Circlestone was created (constructed) by the Hohokam and had an agrarian use. Again not all archaeologist agree with this hypothesis either. When it comes to a lot of these old ruins there is a lot of speculation based on some fact and some subjective information that can always be debated. To the best of my knowledge I agree that Roger's Canyon was constructed by the Salado, and also that Circlestone was created by the Hohokam. There a couple of sites on line that address these issue, but I am not sure you will find any answer there either.

Take care,

Tom K.

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Re: Superstition Mountain History Discussion - OLD B/W PHOTO

Post by cubfan64 » Sun Oct 03, 2010 4:11 am

LDMGOLD wrote:The cliff dwellings in Roger Canyon were constructed by the Salado, the same ones that created the Tonto Ruins near Roosevelt Lake. They were dated somewhere between 800-1000 AD. However, it is interested to note that several people with credentials believe Circlestone was created (constructed) by the Hohokam and had an agrarian use. Again not all archaeologist agree with this hypothesis either. When it comes to a lot of these old ruins there is a lot of speculation based on some fact and some subjective information that can always be debated. To the best of my knowledge I agree that Roger's Canyon was constructed by the Salado, and also that Circlestone was created by the Hohokam. There a couple of sites on line that address these issue, but I am not sure you will find any answer there either.

Take care,

Tom K.
Tom, I'm fascinated by Circlestone and hope to get out there again next spring on another trip. Can you elaborate here why you suspect it is a Hohokam structure? Were there things found there at one time or another that suggest that, or is it just purely specualation?

The place amazes me that so much work obviously was required to put it together and in such a remote location. It's one of those things that I wish we could have seen when it was completed rather than in the state of ruins it is now :(.

As an aside, do you happen to have any Circlestone books personally for sale that are bound differently than the ones from the SMHS? The one I have never made it home in one piece as the binding cracked as soon as I got on the airplane and it's now a well read piles of mostly separate pages :)

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Re: Superstition Mountain History Discussion - OLD B/W PHOTO

Post by LDMGOLD » Sun Oct 03, 2010 8:53 am

Paul:

Many years ago I took Sam Henderson, Superintendent of Casa Grande National Monument in Coolidge to Circlestone on a three-day pack trip. He had been studying the solar alignment phenomena at Casa Grande. He was convinced Circlestone had something to do with Casa Grande. The Casa Grande Ruins could be seen from Circlestone if a large smoking fire was built and the haze was not as bad as today. Henderson degree was in Archaeology from University of Northern Arizona, However I don't know where his graduate work was done. He was eventually transferred to Wapatki north of Flagstaff. Henderson, like others I packed into Circlestone believed that it was constructed by the Hohokam rather than the Salado. There are several things that convinced him it was not Salado. He was convinced the stone work at Circlestone was not Salado in origin and also some artifacts that lay around on the ground were not conducive to the Salado culture. Most of my opinions have been shaped from experts I have taken to the site. I also packed a archaeologist from Smithsonian Institute into the site in 1984. His conclusion supported Sam Hendersons. They agreed that the site was to far for water to have ever served as a stock corral. If I went into all the details involving Circlestone I would have a book on this site. Circlestone is certainly an enigma on this rugged and vast landscape we call the Superstition Wilderness Area.

Take care, oh excuse any typo I am recovered from my trip to Clifton yesterday. I spent the day on the San Francisco River cleanup project that Terry Johnson had going. Sharon and I had a great time exploring the coarse of the San Francisco River and meeting a lot of really nice people.

Tom K.

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Re: Superstition Mountain History Discussion - OLD B/W PHOTO

Post by roc2rol » Sun Oct 03, 2010 10:28 am

That’s fascinating on the Hohokam and CircleStone.

Not to over tax you but I’m also interested in the Salado Indians.

I visited Tonto Monument many many moons ago.

At the time I was there I was with my 3 kids. We walked up to the ruins & were exploring it. We were the only people there. Off to the north a large thunder cloud was rolling in. It was getting to be dusk. I was in awe of the lightening flashes and impending storm. What a sight! Wondering what the inhabitants must of thought 1000’s of years ago.

It was then that my little girl (Shelly) grabbed my hand and said:
‘Daddy, we better go before the Indians return.’
Ya know… in my head I thought:
you may just be right Shelly and we took our leave. :)

The Tonto Basin would have included what is Roosevelt Lake and the valley to the north & west, right? How many inhabitants do they figure was there? It was the main part of the Salado habitation, correct? The cliff dwelling in Rogers Canyon. Was that just a temporary area that they used for specialized functions? Or did large groups of people live and survive there year round?

have a find day
Ed
LDMGOLD wrote:
Take care, oh excuse any typo I am recovered from my trip to Clifton yesterday. I spent the day on the San Francisco River cleanup project that Terry Johnson had going. Sharon and I had a great time exploring the coarse of the San Francisco River and meeting a lot of really nice people.

Tom K.
good work!
This is a link to recent article on the Salt River clean-up
http://www.azcentral.com/news/articles/ ... ation.html
Ed

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Re: Superstition Mountain History Discussion - OLD B/W PHOTO

Post by LDMGOLD » Wed Oct 06, 2010 5:52 am

Ed:

From what I understand the Salado started out as pit house builders and advance to cliff dwelling type structure for protection from their enemies. The boundaries of the Salado and Hohokam intersected in the Superstition Wilderness Area and along the Central Mountain corridor of Arizona.
The Salado primarily were more hunters and gathers. They sometimes grew small plots of maize, melons, squash, and beans. The Hohokam were the true farmers. They developed irrigation in the arid Arizona desert and prospered. There are places were these two cultures crossed over a bit in their use of the land. The Tonto National Monument has an excellent display on the Salado culture in and around the upper Salt River and Tonto Basin. The Pueblo Grande Museum and Casa Grande are both excellent places to study and understand the Hohokam culture.

Take care,

Tom K.

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Re: Superstition Mountain History Discussion - OLD B/W PHOTO

Post by roc2rol » Thu Oct 07, 2010 8:05 am

The Hohokam, Salado …all the ancients of Arizona are certainly a mystery. Excellent archaeological studies have been done; yet, trying to ferret out their religion, customs ect.. remain speculation. Especially the Hohokam. They left behind such a network of settlements, villages, and canal

A question I’ve often wondered about is why these groups never took to metalworking?
I know they did some things with copper-- but compared to their European counterparts they certainly lagged behind.
Metal seems to be abundant in the Arizona landscape.
The Hohokam in particular must have found gold and been impressed with it.
Its a hard substance not be!
Is there some thing were missing in their history?

Once again I don’t mean to stray to far a field—

& I do have a more specific contemporary question concerning the mountains.

Tom, do you recall a Cessna plane that crashed into Roosevelt Lake?
This would have been in the early1970’s.

Thanks

Ed

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