“The number of bowls, the highly ornate vessels that we are getting, tells us this was a major site,” Harl said. A backhoe stripped away thin layers of dirt while half a dozen archaeologists watched. When the backhoe uncovered something intriguing, the archaeologists waved their hands in the air and began carefully sifting through the dirt.
Late last year, city crews had excavated this parcel for soil to build a retention reservoir. Work crews cut in to the ruins, exposing thousands of artifacts. Rains washed some clean, revealing pieces of decorative pottery, ear spools, arrowhead and tool fragments, and the beads that used to make up necklaces.