On my recent trip to Arizona, we visited Tuzigoot! Don’t you just love the word Tuzigoot? It’s so fun to say. It makes me want to break out in song. Tuzigoot, Tuzigooooooot! Actually, Tuzigoot is an Apache phrase that’s been translated as “crooked water”.The Tuzigoot National Monument preserves a pueblo ruin on the summit of a limestone and sandstone ridge just east of Clarkdale, Arizona. Tuzigoot is an ancient village or pueblo built by a culture known as the Sinagua.
The pueblo consisted of about 97 ground level rooms. The earliest datable rooms at Tuzigoot were built around 1000 A.D. The Sinagua were agriculturalists with trade connections that spanned hundreds of miles. The latest estimate is about 250 people lived here at one time. The people left the area around 1400. Some theories that have been suggested are over use of the land, drought, disease, warfare, and politics.
I wondered how did they get into the rooms? Well, the floor rooms had hatchways through the roofs. The upper rooms probably had doorways through the side. Why they entered through the roofs is unclear. Probably for some type of protection. The protection may have been from people or animals.
Here’s my sister-in-law waving from the top floor.