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First inhabitants

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First inhabitants

Post by Guest on Thu Sep 30, 2010 9:46 pm

Several groups of ancient nomadic people, descended from Uto-Aztecan speakers, sparsely populated the Colorado Plateau thousands of years ago. In about 6,000 B.C., the Hisatsinom, predecessor of the Puebloan peoples, emerged near the Four Corners region around the San Juan River, while about 500 B.C., people of the Fremont culture began to populate the area around the Green River and the eastern part of the Great Basin.[14] It was not until about 700 A.D. that the ancestral Puebloans began to cultivate crops for food, and the famous cliff dwellings for which they are best known did not come into being until past 1000 A.D.[15]
Native American groups such as the Anasazi, Navajo, Pueblo and Hohokam Indians later lived on the arid lands of the Colorado Plateau, using water from the Colorado and its tributaries for irrigation. These two native groups formed large agriculture-based societies which each only lasted for a few hundred years, starting from around 200 B.C.[16] The Anasazi inhabited the northern part of the Plateau and the foothills of the Rockies, in areas such as Chaco Canyon near the San Juan and Green Rivers, while the Hohokam lived in present-day central Arizona in the Gila River valley around the confluence with the Salt River. Both the Anasazi and Hohokam utilized extensive systems of canals to water their farmland, with over 220 miles (350 km) utilized by the Hohokam alone.[17]

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