The Blue Wash site is very unique for several reasons. It had stone masonry houses, unlike the houses found at Pueblo Grande, and in one of the houses, archaeologists found a petroglyph on the cornerstone of the structure. This is the only time in domestic Hohokam architecture that a petroglyph has been found. The artifacts from the site are also unique and mostly include ceramic pieces and stone tools like projectile points.
Many of the pieces being considered for the new expansion of the exhibit are stone tools. Young showed me a variety of quarter grooved stone axe heads. It is believed the Hohokam used these tools for heavy woodworking or collecting firewood. The axes are made of very hard stones and were polished from years of chopping wood. They were not particularly sharp, which made it even more impressive to me that the Hohokam used them to fell trees. As one who has difficulty chopping firewood with a sharp ax, I cannot imagine frequently trying to chop down a tree with a dull stone ax in order to build and cook. Other interesting potential pieces for the exhibit included clay balls, stone balls, a stone shaft straightener, and tabular knives/stone hoes used to dig or cut agave. These tools were particularly intriguing because they have serrated edges.
Young had not decided which objects she will send to the museum when I spoke with her. She still needed to speak with the museum about the logistical aspects of the exhibit, like case sizes, and the personal aspects, like what story or purpose the museum hopes to convey through the exhibit. A lot of thought and planning goes into every exhibit a museum displays, and there is a specific reason behind every single artifact that is shown. It is not as easy as picking out the most intact or most colorful objects. Sometimes a seemingly, boring brown pot shard can reveal more than the most beautiful, whole bowl. To find out what pieces were chosen, go visit the Cave Creek Museum.
Posted by Heather, Pueblo Grande Museum Summer Intern