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Casa Malpais Archaeological Park

Casa Malpais, which means “House of the Badlands”, was occupied from 1240A.D. to 1350A.D. by the Mogollon culture who then mysteriously disappeared. The name, Casa Malpais, was not the name given this place by the ancient peoples. Both Hopi and Zuni have their own names for this place. The Great Kiva is the centerpiece of the site and is constructed of volcanic rock.

A steep basalt staircase set into a crevice of the high basalt cliff wall leads to the top of the mesa. From this vantage point, at an elevation of over 7,000 feet, you'll experience a dramatic overview of the entire pueblo. Natural fissures are located throughout the site. Evidence shows that these fissures were used for religious ceremonies as these people of the mountains struggled with the complexities of life and death in their harsh environment. The Hopi and Zuni peoples claim an affinity to the site, and they had consulted with the museum and archaeologists to assure that work was conducted with sensitivity toward Native American beliefs and customs. Some aspects of the site are closed to tours due to their sacred nature. The first visit to the Casa Malpais by a professional anthropologist was in 1883, when Frank Cushing, an anthropologist living at Zuni, visited a site "at El Valle Redondo on the Colorado Chiquito" and was impressed by what he termed "the fissure type pueblo" he found there. In his journal he sketched dry masonry, bridging fissures, upon which the pueblo is constructed. Formal work on the site did not occur until the late 1940's. In 1964, Casa Malpais was designated a National Historic Landmark. In 1991, the Town of Springerville purchased the site and has supported it ever since. Tours of the site originate from the museum, located at the Springerville Heritage Center. The site is by guided tour only. Tour times are Tues-Sat, at 9am, 11:30am,and 2pm. weather permitting. For reservations at 928-333-5375. The museum is open Mon-Sat 8am to 4pm.

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Contact Information

418 E. Main Street
Springerville, Arizona 85938

Phone: (928) 333-5375
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