Jornada Mogollon artifacts found at White Sands

Artifacts have been found near White Sands Missile Range of the Jornada Mogollon, who lived mostly in the Tularosa Basin more than 650 years ago.

The archeological find was discovered last year during preliminary site preparation for construction of facilities for the 2nd Engineer Battalion, which was activated at White Sands in October. Archaeologists consider the artifacts "a significant discovery" because they suggest that the Jornada Mogollon temporarily occupied the site two separate times, first around A.D. 1150 and the second from about A.D. 1250 to 1350.

"It's very significant because it's one of the first sites that has the kind of structures and artifacts we've been looking for," said Stan Berryman, stewardship archeologist for the Environmental Branch of White Sands' Public Works Directorate. "When a project like this comes around the construction of the engineer battalion facilities, it gives us an opportunity to do some research we wouldn't otherwise be able to do. We typically leave White Sands Missile Range pretty much in its pristine state so as not to disturb possible archeological sites. But in this instance, it gave us a wonderful opportunity we could take advantage of."

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