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May 2008
Excavated:  April 9-17 and May 5-14, 2008
Image Taken:  May 12, 2008
Backfilled:  May 14, 2008

An arroyo at the Palisades site was actively eroding a number of rooms and a midden, or trash dump. Stabilization measures, such as constructing check dams in the arroyo, failed to stop the erosion. In 1999, an NPS archaeological crew dug a meter-wide test pit a few yards from the arroyo and found a masonry wall, indicating that other archaeological features would continue to be lost if excavations were not conducted.

The NPS/MNA crew relocated this wall, and followed it to learn what type of structure it was part of. They excavated a circular room with a hearth in the center and a ventilator shaft. Circular rooms sometimes serve as kivas. Such structures are used by modern Puebloan tribes such as the Hopi and Zuni for ceremonial purposes.

Learn more about the excavation of the kiva here.