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Excavations
at
Valshni
Village,
Arizona

Cover
Copyright

2002 Editor's Foreword

1973 Editor's Foreword

Author's Preface

Table of Contents

List of Figures

List of Tables

Regional & vicinity maps

Introduction

Habitat

Methods

Dating

Architecture
Vamori
Topawa
Non-architectural Features
Pottery
Local
Intrusive
Misc. Clay Objects
Burial

Stonework

Bonework

Shellwork

Summary and Conclusions

Appendix: Canal

Bibliography

2000 notes

Logo


Stonework

The scarcity of stonework at Valshni Village was one of the chief characteristics of the site. The range in shapes, sizes, and styles was rather limited, and the individual occurrence of each type was in no case frequent. Ninety-six stone artifacts were found at Valshni Village.


Metates

Total sample:

3

Three metate fragments were found, of which only one was nearly complete. Two, one a thick slab type and the second, a basin type, were too fragmentary to produce meaningful measurements. The following data is from the nearly complete specimen.

Material:

Granite

Style:

Basin-shaped

Shape:

Roughly rectangular, rounded ends; the grinding basin is wide and shallow

Size:

Length:

46+ cm.

Width:
37 cm.

Thickness:
8 cm.

Grinding Surfaces:

Both concave.

Associated Manos:

None.

Remarks:

The nearly intact metate probably belongs in the Topawa Phase, however the association is not clear cut. Data for similar horizons in Papagueria and surrounding areas is almost completely lacking. The metate is not a typical Hohokam type, although it resembles one illustrated in Excavations at Snaketown (Gladwin, et al., 1937: Plate L, a). The Snaketown example is thicker.

Manos

Total sample:

27

Type I

Sample:

5

Material:

Granite rocks, water rolled.

Shape:

Little attention to shaping; roughly oval in outline; irregular in cross-section, though a tendency toward being loaf shaped.

Size:

Length:
10.5 cm. - 14.0 cm.

Width:
9.0 cm. - 11.5 cm

Thickness:
4.0 cm. - 6.5 cm.

Grinding Surface:

Flat to convex, one side only. The grinding surface is usually the only worked part of this mano type.

Remarks:

This type is of the Vamori Phase at Valshni Village. However, Scantling's Type I is the same for the Sells Phase at Jackrabbit Ruin (1940: Plate XV, a, b, c), therefore this type probably did exist during the Topawa Phase but was not found.

Type Ia

Sample

4

Material:

Granite

Shape:

Oval to rectangular in outline; rectangular to lenticular in cross-section.

Size:

Length:
17.5 cm.

Width:
13.0 cm. - 13.5 cm.

Thickness:
3.0 cm. - 4.5 cm.

Grinding Surface:

Flat to convex. One specimen was bifacial, flat on one side, convex on the other.

Remarks:

This type is essentially the same as Type I except that they were often larger and showed a flat upper surface which was sometimes used as another grinding surface. These were found in both the Vamori and Topawa Phases and resemble Scantling's Type II (1940:Plate XV, d, e)

Type II

Sample:

4

Material:

Chiefly lava, some granite.

Shape:

Rectangular in outline; loaf-shaped in cross-section. The edges were made nearly parallel and curved in toward the rounded ends.

Size:
Length:
18.0 cm. - 25.8 cm.

Width:
8.4 cm. - 12.5 cm.

Thickness:
3.5 cm - 5.3 cm.

One small specimen of this type was found which measured 5.9 cm. in width and 1.9 cm. in thickness. The length was indeterminate.

Grinding Surface:

Slightly convex on the long axis and flat across the short axis. The grinding was confined to one side.

Remarks:

Type II was the predominant mano type on the site. The type was made for a trough metate and was probably used with two hands. Type II resembles Scantling's Type IV (1940:Plate XV, h, i) and a type common at Snaketown (Gladwin, et al., 1937:Plate XLVI). It was associated mainly with the Vamori Phase.

Type IIa

Sample:

4

Material:

Lava.

Shape:

Rectangular with squared to rounded ends in outline; rectangular to lenticular in cross-section.

Size:

Length:
14.5 cm. - 17.0 cm.

Width:
9.5 cm. - 10.5 cm.

Thickness:
2.8 cm. - 3.3 cm.

Grinding Surface:

Flat to slightly convex on the long axis; same for the short axis. The upper surface had been used as a secondary grinding surface.

Remarks:

These are the same as Type II except that they are thinner and the upper surface was used as a grinding surface. It was associated only with the Vamori Phase.

Rubbing Stones

Total sample:

6

Material:

Granite.

Shape:

Round to roughly oval.

Size:

Diameters:

5.8 cm. - 10.0 cm.

Thickness:

3.0 cm. - 4.5 cm.

Grinding Surfaces:

Flat to slightly convex.

Remarks:

These were usually water-worn pebbles, roughly shaped to fit the hand. One was very well made. It was round with a slightly convex grinding surface, and the sides were beveled in towards the top. It resembled those found at Snaketown (Gladwin, et al., 1937:Plate XLVI) but lacked the groove. These stones were often bifacial and one was found of the small, wedge-shaped type usually associated with earlier horizons. The others were like those illustrated by Scantling (1940: Plate XVIII, d - f). Of the specimens found, most belong in the Vamori Phase, but enough had later associations to indicate their presence in the Topawa Phase.

Pestles

Total sample:

2

Material:

Granite.

Shape:

Blunt and roughly oval in cross-section; rectangular to oval in outline. These underwent only rudimentary shaping and little attention was paid to anything but the grinding end.

Size:

Length:

14.7 cm. - 17.0 cm.

Diameter:

6.0 and 8.0 cm.

Grinding Surface:

Convex; confined to the large end.

Remarks:

These are short pestles and. were made for a shallow mortar. They are the same general type as Scantling's Type 1 (1940: Plate XVIII, a, b), but lacked knobs and grooves which fitted the hand and were not as well worked. Both specimens belong in the Vamori Phase .

Hammerstones

Total sample:

7

Material:

Granite, diorite, and basalt.

Shape:

Oval to circular in cross-section.

Size:

Diameter:
4.9 cm. - 8.0 cm.

Remarks:

One slightly projecting area on each stone was used as a striking surface. One shows a pecked depression for the thumb. These are the same types as those illustrated by Scantling (1940: Plate XVII, g-i). They were equally frequent in both phases.

Fig. 24. Stonework Figure 24. Stonework from Valshni Village (Courtesy Arizona State Museum)
a, effigy palette with small mortar on under side.
b, sandstone bowl.

Click here for higher quality image.

Higher resolution version, (1054 x 694 pixels, 69 KB).

Effigy Palette (Fig. 24, a)

Total sample:

1

Remarks:

The palette is made of mica schist and has been worked into the form of a frog. It measures 15.0 cm. in length, 10.3 cm. in width, and 2.0 cm. in thickness. A palette is outlined on the top side, but it was finished and apparently never used. The under side has been polished smooth and has a small basin 5.0 cm. in diameter and 1.0 cm. deep ground in the center. This basin shows much use, probably as a mortar, and resembles those found in effigy vessels of the Sacaton Phase at Snaketown (Gladwin, et al., 1937: Plate LX1, a, b). It came from the floor of the same house as the sandstone bowl and is associated with the Vamori Phase.

Stone Vessels (All Vamori Phase)

Total sample:

4

Specimen 1

A stone vessel (Fig. 24, b) of the same type as those reported for the Colonial and Sedentary Periods at Snaketown (Gladwin, et al., 1937: Plate LIII). This is a sandstone Bowl 9.0 cm. in diameter and 5.0 cm. in height. The wall thickness at the top is 0.5 cm. and the interior depth is 3.5 cm. The sides are convex, while the bottom is slightly convex.

Specimen 2

A fragment of a shallow sandstone dish which was rectangular with rounded ends. The bottom is flat, the sides convex. It is 2.0 cm. in height.

Specimen 3

A fragment of a round or oval dish of sandstone, it is 2.2 cm. high. There is an incised groove running around the outside, 0.6 cm. from the top. Other grooves are at right angles to this one, running to the bottom of the vessel.

Specimen 4

A small vessel of granite, possibly a mortar. It was roughly round, 5.0 cm. in diameter, and 3.7 cm. in height. The interior is 1.2 cm. in depth. It is roughly made and shows little use.

Ground Blades

Total sample:

1

One blade of schist was found of the same type as has been reported from the Sacaton Phase at Snaketown (Gladwin, et al., 1937: Plate XL, b). This blade belongs in either the late Vamori or early Topawa Phase, probably the latter. It was found on' the.- floor of House 15. Its association there with the mountain sheep horn may mean that it was in some way used in the preparation of the meat.

Stone Ring

Total sample:

1

One-half of a stone ring of lava. It belongs in the Vamori Phase. It is 6.2 cm. in diameter and 3.3 cm. in thickness.

Axes

Total sample:

3

All were fragmentary. Combining the characteristics shown by these fragments, it can be said that the axe type was the single-bitted, three-quarter groove axe on which the head was used as a maul. The groove was bordered on each side by a ridge. This type of axe has been reported from many sites in Southern Arizona and is illustrated by Scantling (1940: Plate XIX, a). Two of the axe fragments were Vamori and one was unplaced.

Perforated stone disc

Total sample:

1

One disc was recovered (Fig. 25, d). This was made of schist, perforated through the center. It is 4.0 cm. in diameter and 0.7 cm. thick. There is a medial groove around the edge and four groups of grooves which cross the medial groove. Each group consists of four incisions. There is a group at each quadrant. The disc is placed in the Topawa Phase on the basis of being found in Mound 4. Aside from the grooves, it appears to be the same as the one illustrated by Scantling (1940:Plate XXI, b).

Fig. 25. Stonework from Valshni Village Figure 25. Stonework from Valshni Village (Courtesy Arizona State Museum)
Abrading tools and unidentified objects
a - reamer.
b - abrading knife.
c - whetstone.
d - perforated, incised stone disc.
e - ground rod of schist.
f - unidentified object.
g - abrading tool.
Length of a, 9.3 cm.


Click here for better quality image Better quality image (1053 x 651 pixels, 148 KB).

Turquoise Beads

Total sample:

2

One round bead, 0.8 cm. in diameter was found associated with the Topawa Phase. An oblong bead, 1.0 cm. in length and 0.4 cm. in width, with the perforation in the center, was associated with the Vamori Phase.

Steatite Beads

Total sample:

7

These beads were small and round, averaging 0.45 cm. in diameter. All are associated with the Vamori Phase.

Mosaic Plaque

Total sample:

1

A mosaic plaque fragment was recovered from House 3 (Vamori Phase). The upper surface has a beveled edge at least 3.0 cm. wide. This edge was covered with a pseudo-cloissone decoration. The bottom was flat and decorated in a similar manner. This disc is the same as the later type found at Snaketown (Gladwin, et al., 1937: Plate CX).

Abrading Tools (Fig. 25, a, b, c, g)

Total sample:

8

This group is represented by five whetstones, two reamers and one knife. These were made of schist, diorite, slate and sandstone. All have been shaped to some degree. The whetstones are either broad and flat or long and rectangular. The reamers have been tapered to a dull point at one end. The knife is broad and flat with one edge ground down. As a rule they are well polished where they have been used for abrasion. These tools occurred only in the Vamori Phase and were not reported to occur at all in the Sells Phase.

Unidentified Objects

Total sample:

3

Specimen 1

A short, polished rod of schist, oval in cross-section, 7.5 cm. long, and 1.2 cm. in diameter. Both ends are tapered to a point (Fig. 25, e).

Specimen 2

An object of granite, rectangular in cross section and in outline (Fig. 25, f). It is 8.5 cm. long, 2.8 cm. wide, and 0.9 cm. thick. A groove encircles the object 1.2 cm. from one end. A notch has been cut on each side, along the groove and extending down onto the body. The object is polished from much handling.

Specimen 3

A small object of green stone, rectangular in outline, and loaf-shaped in cross-section. It is 2.3 cm. long, 0.9 cm. wide, and 0.7 cm. thick.

Fig. 26. Valshni Village flaked tools Figure 26. Stonework from Valshni Village (Courtesy Arizona State Museum)
a - knife
b, c - drill points
d, g - projectile points
h - flake scraper


Click here for better quality image. Better quality image (1141 x 339 pixels, 54 KB).

Projectile Points (Fig. 26, d - g)

Total sample:

10

Type I

Sample:

4

Material:

Obsidian (3) and quartzite (1).

Shape:

Triangular with flat base and side notches; two are serrated.

Size:

Length:
2.0 cm. 2.8 cm.

Width:
0.8 cm. 1.2 cm.

Phase:
Vamori.
Type II

Sample:

3

Material:

Quartzite and jasper.

Shape:

Triangular with concave base.

Size:
Length:
1.9 cm. - 3.9 cm.

Width:
1.0 cm. - 1.2 cm.

Phase:

Vamori.

Type III

Sample:

2

Material:

Quartzite and jasper.

Shape:

Triangular with concave base.

Size:

Length:
2.1 cm. - 2.2 cm.

Width:
1.2 cm. - 1.4 cm.

Phase:

Vamori.

Type IV

Sample:

1

Material:

Quartzite.

Shape:

Small, triangular point with flat bottom and ground serrations.

Size:
Length:
1.5+ cm.

Width:
1.1 cm.

Phase:

Late Vamori.


Remarks:

All projectile points fit into the general pattern of the Hohokam.


Drill Points (Fig. 26, b, c)

Total sample:

4

Type I

Sample:

2

Material:

Quartzite and chert.

Shape:

Roughly triangular; long and thick; base rounded or square.

Size:

Length:
3.9 cm.
Width:
1.3 cm.

Phase:

Vamori

Type II

Sample

2

Material:

Quartzite and jasper.

Shape:

Roughly triangular.

Size:

Length:
1.9+ cm.
Width:
0.7 cm.

Phase:

Late Vamori.

Remarks:

Roughly worked; show some chipping and are the same as Type I except they are much smaller.

Knives (Fig. 26, a)

Total sample:

2

Material:

Jasper and a crystalline volcanic rock.

Shape:

Long, thick and triangular; only one shows the base and it has a thick stem.

Size:

Length:

5.0 cm.

Width:

1.8 cm.

Phase:

Vamori.

Flake Scraper (Fig. 26, h)

Total sample:

1

Remarks:

Only one scraper was found. This was a small flake scraper of chert. One edge was finely retouched to give the scraping edge. It is the same type of scraper as that reported from Snaketown (Gladwin, et a.l., 1937:Plate XCV, c). It came from the Vamori Phase.

Flake Blades

Total sample:

2

Remarks:

These were made of large flakes of porphyritic andesite. Neither specimen is complete, but look as though they were roughly rectangular in outline. Retouching is shown on one or both edges. These are up to 14.0 cm. long and average 8.0 cm. wide. They appear similar to the type present in the Sells Phase (Scantling, 1940: Plate XV). One came from each of the two phases on the site.

Discussion

The distinctive feature of the stone complex at Valshni Village is the paucity of material, especially in grinding tools. This deficiency in grinding tools is rather difficult to explain, but its negative quality may be listed as a characteristic of the Vamori and Topawa Phases.

Two possible explanations are offered for this lack of milling stones. The occupants of Valshni Village may have used stone grinding tools, but did most of their work outside the village, or they may have depended largely on wood. The Papago in recent times have made extensive use of wood for such purposes. In view of the knowledge of food grinding activity both from archaeological and historical periods, the latter explanation would seem to be the most plausible. It does not appear reasonable to explain the lack of grinding stone by a lack of food gathering and agriculture. Agriculture, perhaps, was not greatly developed, but certainly food gathering was practiced, as it would be very improbable that any group could exist in the environment of Papagueria without utilizing to the fullest extent every source of food. The permanent nature of the village is indicated by the large trash mounds and the time span of occupation. The dwellings would suggest a sedentary group. These data indicate a group relying on a fairly permanent food supply. Modern Papago fields are plentiful in the areas around Valshni Village. Partial reliance on agriculture in prehistoric times was quite possible. [Ed. Note: Carbonized corn cobs have been found on the Santa Rosa Wash associated with Casa Grande Red-on-buff and Tanque Verde Red-on-brown (Raab:personal communication).]

Meat, especially deer and rabbit, also played an important part in the diet of these people, as is shown by the quantities of animal bones. The bones were found on all parts of the site.

The stone that does occur correlates in general with that found in the later Sells Phase. The chief differences are changes in Piano types and the change in the chipped stone industry. The principal Piano type on the site, Type II, was found only sparingly in the Topawa and Sells Phases, and bifacial manos were apparently unknown in the Sells Phase. These were replaced by the more crudely made Type I. Chipped stone tools never held a place of importance in the Papagueria. The greatest use of chipped tools was in the Vamori Phase. Almost no chipped stone was found in the Topawa Phase at Valshni Village. The same situation holds true in the Sells Phase at Jackrabbit Ruin (Scantling, 1940:56).

Possibly wooden projectile points were the predominant type in these phases.

At the time Valshni Village was occupied, the Hohokam groups in the Gila Basin and Tucson areas were carrying on a prolific grinding stone industry. At the same time they were doing very little work with chipped stone. This, coupled with the scarcity of faunal remains, indicates that very little dependence was placed on hunting by the Hohokam (Gladwin, et al., 1937:114). So it would seem that the people in Papagueria had a different economy than their neighbors during the earlier phases, relying chiefly on hunting and gathering. In the Sells Phase there was apparently a great increase in agricultural activity, due perhaps to the introduction of irrigation methods. Coupled with this was an increase in grinding tools which represent, in the main a continuation of the few types employed earlier plus the introduction of some new ones.

The type of axe found on the site conforms both to a type found in the Sells Phase and to a type found in the Santa Cruz Phase at Snaketown (Gladwin, et al., 1937: Plate LXXVII, e). It is not the same type -as-reported from the Sacaton Phase there. The assumption would be that the Valshni Village type belongs either in the earlier portion of the Vamori Phase or in the later Topawa Phase. However, the small amount of evidence for axes at the site does not permit any discussion about the significance of this.

The type of mosaic plaque at Valshni Village is the same as the later of the two types found at Snaketown. This type occurred chiefly in the Sacaton Phase, but a few specimens were associated with the Santa Cruz Phase. While stonework is not usually a satisfactory means of dating, the occurrence of such a specialized object at Valshni Village would serve to strengthen the dating of the Vamori Phase.




. Burial
Top of page



Table of Contents
Bonework .


Table of Contents
(Sequencing left to right, top to bottom)

Cover

Copyright

2002 Editor's Foreword

1973 Editor's Foreword

Author's Preface

Table of Contents

List of Figures

List of Tables

Regional & vicinity maps

Introduction

Habitat

Methods

Dating

Architecture

Vamori Architecture

Topawa Architecture

Non-architectural Features

Pottery

Local pottery

Intrusive pottery

Misc. Clay Objects

Burial

Stonework

Bonework

Shellwork

Summary and Conclusions

Appendix: Canal

Bibliography

2000 notes



Walter 'Dutch' Duering
PO Box 8429
Phoenix, AZ 85066-8429
United States

duering@stockmorehouse.com