Thursday, March 12, 2015

Indian Ruins

We took our first day trip this morning.  We made a big loop though the countryside and went to the towns of La Palma, Randolph, Coolidge (yep, named after the President), and Florence.  The first two are but ink spots on the road to somewhere else.

Coolidge is home to Casa Grande Ruins National Monument part of the National Parks system so our Senior Pass got us in for zip.  Even now it is amazing to realize that a civilization once lived on the desert floor with very little and yet they were able to develop an agricultural society out of the desert compete with shelter that rivals today buildings.  They trapped in the surrounding desert in the early morning during the coolest part of the day.  Saguaro cactus provided fruits for harvest.  They were proud of their irrigation system.  They used the earth itself as building material and formed massive buildings and waterways.  They are said to be the "First Masters of the American Desert"  The people were known as Hohokam and it is thought that there were several settlements along the Salt and Gila rivers where trading was open.  It is not known what happened the this civilization.  Speculation says either flooding wiped them out or drought made it impossible to keep the agriculture going and they died out.

An observation here.  I have said before how much it upsets me that someone would deface another persons property.  That being said you have no idea how upset I was to see kids crawling on and in the ancients dwelling in the last picture above.  Signs everywhere say, Stay Out or Stay Off and yet parents do nothing to keep their adolescent kids out of it.  I was disgusted to think of all the time the ancients spent building the facilities and the government has spent preserving them just to let kids run wild through them.  There is a small detachment of rangers working to restore some areas, give guided tours but they allow unguided tours and they just can't be everywhere at the same time.  I strongly believe they should only allow guided tours of these magnificent ruins.

We moved on to the historic town of Florence.  Downtown is old time western complete with the attached sidewalks (more modern) to the buildings.  The town is home to the `Pinal County Historical Museum.  This small museum houses a virtual cornucopia of historic relics.  Furniture made from cactus, a Tom Mix collection (old time cowboy for those to young to know), Indian exhibits including playing cards made from deer skin that the Apache people developed after watching the Spaniards that came though the area in 1690.  Origins of the Indian Casino?   And then who knew you might want to keep the noose that hung a specific criminal.  Apparently this county did and they have several on display with a card depicting who they hung, why and when.  Including the only woman hung in Arizona history, Eva Dugan.  She was decapitated during the procedure.

Right now it seems the weather has changed a bit and it is much cooler this evening than it was last night.  After a refreshing dip in the pool we are settling in with the clouds and the lovely sunset.

Hope all is well and thanks for visiting.

No comments:

Post a Comment