History & Culture

Sunset Crater Volcano is the youngest volcano in the San Francisco Volcanic Field. Its eruption, around the year 1085, displaced area residents, buried homes, and radically altered the landscape below O'Leary Peak. People who lived in the area told stories of the eruption that survive to the present day, and modern-day residents of this volcanic field include their descendants as well as the descendants of immigrants from around the world.

The site was made into a national monument by President Herbert Hoover on May 26, 1930, to protect its geologic formations. In 1990 the name was changed to Sunset Crater Volcano National Monument. Today, the monument occupies 3,040 acres and is surrounded by Coconino National Forest.

 

Last updated: October 29, 2021

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