Jan 29, 2014

Utah State Parks- Anasazi State Museum



Many years ago I had watched a movie GERONIMO! which was on coming TNT. It kind of hooked me to the TV till the end. The rugged landscape of Arizona and New Mexico, the history of America and the photography ... At the end I felt sad for the guy! I remembered about this movie on an Apache hero when I visited the Anasazi State Museum in Utah. There was a postcard with Geronimo's picture on it. 

Anasazi State Museum Utah
A postcard of Geronimo

Geronimo was an Apache leader who fought against Mexico and United States when they tried to expand into the Apache lands. He joined the revenge war when his mother, wife and children were killed by Mexicans. Well, you can read about him and the history on Wiki-page here.

Anasazi State Museum Utah
Restored pithouse
Anasazi State Museum near Boulder, is an attraction for history lovers on the east end of scenic Byway-12. It was on the way while I was driving from Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument to Capitol Reef National Park.

Well, a little information on Anasazi Society which I gathered from my visit to various historic sites. Anasazi means 'Ancient People' who inhabited in the drylands of American South-West. They are believed to be the ancestors of today's Hopi. They lived in groups, in houses with many rooms called Pueblos- a spanish word for 'village'. These pueblos were built on high cliffs, several hundred feet above the valley, using adobe- mixture of mud, sand and dry straw compressed into bricks. These buildings were multi-storied which didn't have many windows and doors. They have Kivas- round rooms dug into the ground for secret religious rituals and ceremonies. Anasazis had many gods who represented nature and natural forces like Mother Earth, Sun and Rain. They also had temples built for these gods, like Sun Temple in Mesa Verde National Park, Colorado. They knew how to farm in the dry lands. They cultivated mostly corn. But, they vanished into the mystery. Their sudden disappearance baffles the historians.

Anasazi State Museum Utah
The museum is located at an ancestral puebloan site which is believed to be occupied between AD 1050 and 1175. The site has excavated and reconstructed village. The museum displays Anasazi artifacts that were found during the excavation and also the history and photography. There are many arrowheads made of different stones on display. The video program tells about the Anasazi Civilization. The store has a great collection of art and souvenirs.

The ruins are located behind the museum. There is replica of the settlement and walking beyond it will lead you to the actual pueblo. A restored (replica?) of a pithouse is interesting. The settlement is burnt at places and the assumption is that the people who lived here during 12th century burnt it on purpose before abandoning it. 

Park has an entrance fee of $5. You can park and have a look at the store for free though :) 
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Related articles-
American South-West: A road trip
Lower Calf Creek Waterfalls in Grand Staircase Escalante
Escalante Petrified Forest State Park, Utah
Utah's Coral Pink Sand Dunes
Devil's Garden in Grand Staircase Escalante
State Parks of Utah

If you want pictures please ask me :)
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Scrapbook- A Travel Blog by Kusum Sanu is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

10 comments:

  1. The Anasazi people are so interesting. If this park is near Boulder, it is probably in Colorado maybe. We have not been to the Grand Staircase, but we definitely have visited Capitol Reef which is in Utah. State Parks at least in the western US do a great job explaining the history,

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    1. Well, there is a small town Boulder in Utah too.

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  2. What an interesting post and a great museum.

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  3. I haven't heard of Anasazis (I must admit I have a lot of catching up to do abou the Native American history. ) so thank you for the introduction. I think their history and the museum are very fascinating. I haven't seen Geronimo either. I think its good for me to see it to learn more about the culture. Really intresting post.

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    1. The movie is much about the war than cultural intro. But, the museums and parks are great places to learn about these ancient people.

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  4. Nice collections....

    thanks for sharing....

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  5. Always a pleasure to read and learn about a new place here, Kusum:)

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