History of Anasazi Indians, Utah

Taken from the Utah History Encyclopedia (Links Added)

As the Anasazi settled into their village/farming lifestyle, recognizable regional variants or subcultures emerged, which can be usefully combined into two larger groups. The eastern branches of the Anasazi culture include the Mesa Verde Anasazi of southeastern Utah and southwestern Colorado, and the Chaco Anasazi of northwestern New Mexico. The western Anasazi include the Kayenta Anasazi of northeastern Arizona and the Virgin Anasazi of southwestern Utah and northwestern Arizona. To the north of the Anasazi peoples - north of the Colorado and Escalante rivers - Utah was the home of a heterogeneous group of small-village dwellers known collectively as the Fremont.

Although they continued to move around in pursuit of seasonally available foods, the earliest Anasazi concentrated increasing amounts of effort on the growing of crops and the storage of surpluses. They made exquisite baskets and sandals, for which reason they have come to be known as "Basketmakers." They stored their goods (and often their dead) in deep pits and circular cists - small pits often lined with upright stone slabs and roofed over with a platform of poles, twigs, grass, slabs or rocks, and mud. Basketmaker II houses were somewhat more sturdy than those of their Archaic predecessors, being rather like a Paiute winter wickiup or a *Navajo hogan. Very few have been excavated.

By A.D. 500 the early Anasazi peoples had settled into the well-developed farming village cultural stage that we know as Basketmaker III. Although they probably practiced some seasonal traveling and continued to make considerable use of wild resources, they primarily had become farmers living in small villages. Their houses were well-constructed pit structures, consisting of a hogan-like superstructure built over a knee-or waist-deep pit, often with a small second room or antechamber on the south or southeast side.

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