The Anasazi           The Casas Grandes        The Hohokam     The Mogollon             The Sinagua             The Salado

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The Sinagua were named by archaeologists, a Spanish word, "Sinagua" means "without water". The Sinagua occupied the area around the San Francisco Peaks and along the Verde River Valley of Northern Arizona. A major, well known Sinagua settlement, Tuzigoot National Monument, flourished around approximately 1000 to 1400 A.D. This settlement was built on top of a hill with walls of limestone and sandstone sealed with 3" to 4" thick mortar. Rafters of pinyon, juniper, cottonwood, sycamore, and occasional pine were used, then waterproofed with grass, reeds, bark, and mud. This was one of over fifty pueblos in the Middle Verde Valley alone.

The Hohokam were already settled in the area when the Sinagua arrived. Evidence of their presence dates back to 800 A.D. They built canal systems and pit houses in the area, but by 1125 the Hohokam left the region only to continue to trade with their Sinaguan neighbors.

The Sinagua were farmers. Tending to fields of corn, beans, squash, and cotton. Cotton was well utilized as weaving became one of the Sinaguas best arts. Besides cotton, the Sinagua also used yucca, human hair for cordage, and coarse grass for mats. After the corn was harvested, it was stored in large pottery ollas then sealed with stoppers to keep rodents out. The pottery produced by the Sinagua was basic and functional. Most painted pottery was traded in from the neighboring cultures: Hohokam, Salado, Mogollon, and Anasazi. Most likely, the painted pottery, parrots, shell, turquoise, and other needs of the Sinaguan people were traded for abundant materials of the area, such as argillite, copper ore, and salt. More than likely a major trade item for the Sinagua was their finely made woven cotton goods.

The Sinagua people also basked in a phenomenal natural diversity. What was not grown in fields, was foraged from the surrounding environment. Acorns, walnuts, grapes, nuts & berries, cattails, cactus fruit, mesquite beans, yucca, agave, crayfish, frogs, fish, beaver, muskrat, rabbits, ducks, geese, pronghorn antelope, elk, deer, and much more was hunted and gathered.

However, around 1425 A.D. the Sinaguan moved.  Speculations are from either a shortage or a catastrophe. Drought, unproductive crops, overcrowding & disease, pests, conflicts with other peoples, or maybe it was just time to continue their migration.