Excavations in Mexico uncover acequia history
Excavations of a long-buried arroyo and four acequias are giving Santa Fe more information about its historic ditch system and what the community was like hundreds of years ago.Updated: Jan 12, 2006 12:40 IST
Excavations of a long-buried arroyo and four acequias are giving Santa Fe more information about its historic ditch system and what the community was like hundreds of years ago.
“In 1610, when they first started colonizing this place, the first things they did were build a church and start digging acequias,” said Chris Wenker, project manager with the state Office of Archaeological Studies.
“It created this spider web of canals on both sides of the river a vast web of canals that is almost completely lost now.”
Wenker believes the acequias and arroyos being excavated were part of the acequia madre, Santa Fe’s historic main irrigation ditch, and of arroyo Tenorio, a natural waterway that was channelled and diverted sometime before 1812.
Archaeologists have unearthed Tewa pottery and cow and sheep bones from the era. Crews also will explore the foundation of a cobble-and-adobe building dating from the 1920s.
“We are just trying to do our best in giving these remains – a scientific excavation to try to record what is here before the development happens,” Wenker said.
First Published: Jan 12, 2006 12:40 IST