"This hill, located just north of "A" Mountain, means "horned lizard" in the Tohono O'odham language. In an O'odham legend a giant horned lizard suddenly began eating people. The O'odham prayed to their god I'itoi to help them. I'itoi heard them and turned the lizard into a rocky hill. Now Tumamoc is the home of the University of Arizona's Desert Laboratory, founded in 1903. This hill is the site of the longest continuous botanical monitoring plots in the Sonoran Desert. In additon, the hill was used by indigenous people for farming and other purposes for several thousand years and is an important archaeological site."
The City of Tucson lies in the shadow of a major Early Agricultural period village, which is visible to anyone with a clear view of Tumamoc Hill.
At least 2,000 years ago, the top of Tumamoc hill was—literally—remodeled by ancient Tucsonans. Stones were piled along the upper crests of the slopes, creating what archaeologist David Wilcox calls “revetments.” Brush houses were then constructed on the top of the hill. This kind of settlement is called a trincheras. It represents a type of ancient Sonoran village site that is particularly common in northern Mexico. This Google Earth Model places the ancient pithouses back upon the landscape.
The Center for Desert Archaeology uses three-dimensional modeling to understand and share information about the places of our shared past. Google Earth is one way that we can share 3D models in a real-time desktop virtual reality browser.
Because Google Earth is still in a “Beta” stage of development, we cannot guarantee that all possible combinations of computer hardware, web browsers, and operating systems will function with our digital models and Google Earth.
You must download and install Google Earth to view this model!