Thursday, November 3, 2011


All photos are mine, and I did my best to collect some of the most interesting inscriptions. In no way could I capture the total amount of these inscriptions, but I did my best to reflect the concept of this monument. Some inscriptions did not photograph very well, however if you would click on the photos you can enlarge them and should be able to make out most of the writings. I want to thank the Western National Parks Association for almost all the information I added on this blog. If you are ever out in New Mexico, try to take time to visit this interesting monument. It is on Interstate 40 west of Albuquerque about 2 hours, close to Gallup..


This is El Morro, which is Spanish for "the headland" or "the bluff". From 700 year old pueblo bricks to hundreds of ancient inscriptions, this sandstone bluff holds much history. What brought all these travelers and inhabitants here is just a simple pool of water; sometimes the only water for over a fifty mile radius. Unlike some historians say, this pool is not spring fed. The pool is fed largely by rainfall in July through September, and in the springtime, by melting snows. The water from the top of these bluffs funnel down to the pool. When the pool is full it is about twelve feet deep and holds about 200,000 gallons of water. The pool never empties but evaporation can shrink it from its banks until refilled by precipitation. When the pueblos on the bluff were at peak population at approximately 1,500 people, back around 1275-1350 A.D., the water was life-sustaining. Within 300 years the Spanish made many a visit through this area, with the Americans coming along 200 years after that. El Morro was designated a national monument in 1906. In the 1920's, the first superintendent decided to erase any inscriptions added to the wall after 1906 because they were graffiti and unlawful. Numerous spots on the wall you can see large smooth areas where the inscriptions were removed. Now the chalkboard is rather historic, unblemished by man of our modern world.


Just a couple more Spanish inscriptions.....


The vast majority of inscriptions were made by men which history only knows of them by their simple marks upon this sandstone walls. This post is made up of a collection of English and Spanish names, and  a few petroglyphs from the original settlers.