Message #384: From: AzTeC SW Archaeology SIG To: "'Matthias Giessler'" Subject: Ancient Indian Settlement Bulldozed Date: Wed, 27 Nov 96 07:09:00 MST Encoding: 28 TEXT [ Clipped from http://www.azcentral.com/flash/digest/digest.html; Full article and location map appears in the Arizona Republic, Wednesday, November 27, 1996 -- Page 1 ANCIENT INDIAN RUINS BULDOZED A sand-and-gravel company has torn through traces of an ancient Indian settlement by Cave Creek Wash, in the heart of a planned desert preserve in north Phoenix. Wheeler Construction Co. was supposed to steer clear of two archaeological sites in the wash. Instead, the company graded most of an area where the prehistoric Hohokam people had farmed. "Their value to the scientific community or public is damaged, if not lost altogether," said Kenneth Rozen, cultural resource manager at the State Land Department. This isn't private property but state trust land, where Wheeler operates under a lease from the Land Department. The issue of mining has made it a battleground between Phoenix and the state. Earthmovers cut into at least 80 percent of the sites, which cover about 20 acres, Rozen said. Wheeler has hired an archaeologist to figure out what happened and what remedies are possible. "It looks like a mistake was made," said Martin Aronson, an attorney representing the company. Phoenix officials, who are fighting to get Wheeler out of the wash, are irate. The city plans to acquire the state trust land around Cave Creek Wash and turn it into part of a 12,000-acre desert preserve. "Six months ago, we asked Wheeler and the state of Arizona to stop destroying the desert," said Scott Phelps, spokesman for Mayor Skip Rimsza. "Now, they have expanded their circle of ruin by destroying history."