casa grande national monument

A Lost Civilization at Casa Grande

One of our favorite things about a road trip is the small stops along the way.  We always bring up a map, look for roadside attractions or national monuments and add them as via points along our route.  We’ve found some of our favorite oddities and towns this way.  Casa Grande was just a short 20 min off our route and well worth the stop.

Casa Grande (Spanish for Big House) is the remains of a 4 story structure abandoned around 1450.  The national monument is multiple structures surrounded by a compound wall.  The ancient Sonoran Desert people called “Hohokam” were an impressive tribe.  They existed in a very harsh environment where they farmed the Gila Valley, developed wide-scale irrigation farming and extensive trade connections that lasted over a thousand years!

Casa Grande National Monument

Casa Grande

casa grande

casa grande national monument

Casa Grande is full of interesting stories of the hardy inventive people who built it.  So if you find yourself driving through Arizona, take a little detour to the nation’s first archaeological preserve.

Famous for my "how-not-to" videos, and typically the man behind the camera, sometimes I’m forced to be here in the “spotlight”. When you see my face you’re probably reading something more technical than adventurous, but either way I do my best to tell it like it is and infuse my opinions into the commentary…after all this is a blog and not MSN.

Comments (6)

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  • Another interesting thing: There used to be trees around the Hohokam people used for food, but now with all the up-stream dams the area has only a small amount of desert vegetation. Sad really.

  • paul van

    Also reminds me of the civilization that built Mesa Verde. The history of the peoples that inhabited the west are truly interesting. They had a great sense of being spiritually balanced in their lives.

  • mary

    It amazes me that the Indian’s buildings have held up through the years. One of my favorite places is the Mesa Verde in Colorado. It is a very spiritual feeling being on their grounds.

  • I guess the roof was built to protect from erosion but it looks quite funny!


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