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"the mystery of the anasazi"
by elizabeth you

mesa verde cliff dwellings

in 700 bc, a civilization settled in north america in the areas now encompassed by new mexico, colorado, utah, and arizona. they were called the anasazi, a prehistoric tribe of native american indians. they grew corn, squash, and beans. they wove baskets and baked pottery. they were the first recorded indian tribe to use bows and arrows. they built huge, architectural wonders, in the sides of mountains until their lands were covered with cliff cities and sprawling farms. suddenly, 650 years ago, their entire civilization vanished, leaving behind a few mumified bodies, all of their earthly possessions and a mystery that is out of this world.

the anasazi civilization was more advanced than any other tribe of indians. their pueblo style of house is reflected in modern architecture. they may be the ancestors of the hopi people and their name is a navajo word meaning "ancient people who are not us." their agricultural society and permanant houses and cities are in sharp contrast to all other tribes in the american southwest. they developed no written language but left stone paintings and carvings throughout the region. they left pottery and tools but no explanation of where they were going or why. there are many theories about their dissapearance from scientists and laymen alike, and they all fit into three basic categories.

the drought theory

around 1100 ad, there were great droughts in the area where the anasazi lived. these droughts either killed off the entire population or drove them to migrate out of the region. tens of thousands of anasazi left their homes without taking even tools or food. when the remaining anasazi resettled in a different area, they changed their appearance, their art, their culture, and their religion. tens of thousands of anasazi left their homes without taking even tools or food. recent findings by climatologists suggest that the great drought was no where near as severe as scientists believed ten years ago, certainly not severe enough to drive a nation of people to abandon their homes.

hand prints on stone
anasazi pottery

the conflict notion

another great warring tribe may have attacked the anasazi, killing off their entire population that was scattered over several modern-day states. they left no signs of battles large enough to destroy a nation of people. the winners did not loot and desecrate the cities of the conquered. they did not disturb the bodies that were buried peacefully inside the cities, and carried off thousands of bodies of the warriors and their wives and children that were killed in battle. no evidence of a war that drove the anasazi to extinction has ever been discovered. the cities show no sign of a seige and mass graves have never been unearthed.

the alien connection

scientists scoff at any explanation involving extraterrestrials, but their theories are no less far-fetched. the anasazi were not the only ancient civilization to disappear without a trace, they are joined in infamy with the mayans, a race of egyptians, the fabled atlantians, and the builders of easter island. could aliens have abducted an entire population? or could the anasazians have been aliens themselves, living on the land for generations before returning to their home world? their advanced society proves that they were vastly different from any other inhabitants of the planet, and their mysterious exodus may be evidence that they didn't abandon their homes, but rather returned to them.

mysterious anasazi cave painting

so how did an entire civilization vanish off of the face of the earth, leaving behind evidence of their culture but no explanation of where they went or how? you be the judge.


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