Excavations at Future CNM Rio Rancho Campus

The Office of Contract Archeology has recently conducted an archeological excavation for the proposed site of the CNM Rio Rancho campus. The project took place between August and December 2008. Five excavates sites indicate that the area was sporadically occupied by native cultures during the various prehistoric times including the Middle and Late Archaic, Basketmaker II, Pueblo I and Pueblo IV periods. The most extensive occupation was found at a Middle Archaic component located on the south side of an incised arroyo. This area consisted of a small shallow pit structure with a nearby cluster of thermal features suggesting the site was a probable seasonal residence focused to procure locally available plant and animal resources. The remaining occupations are typified by isolated hearths or small clusters of thermal features and likely reflect short term camps.


OCA archeologists excavate Middle Archaic thermal features and a structure located along the south edge of an arroyo

 


Excavated Middle Archaic features


Excavated Late Archaic hearth with nearby scatter of groundstone fragments

 


Excavated Pueblo I period activity area with a large basin metate