- Perfect Paperback: 360 pages
- Publisher: BenchMark Publishing of Colorado; 1st Edition edition (March 1, 2010)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0964582422
- ISBN-13: 978-0964582422
- Package Dimensions: 11.1 x 8.4 x 1.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 2.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 5 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,002,027 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Cliff Dwellings Speak Perfect Paperback – March 1, 2010
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About the Author
Bill and Beth Sagstetter have been exploring the backcountry of the Greater American Southwest for over forty years. They are a researcher/photographer/writer team. They were a photographer/correspondent team for the Denver Post for two years. The Sagstetter byline has appeared on hundreds of magazine articles to date. They are the authors of the best-selling book, The Mining Camps Speak. This is their fourth book. They produced four prime-time documentary films for television. The Mystery of Huajatolla (Wah-ha-toy-ah) went on to win an award at the Aspen Arts Film Festival. Bill has taught Colorado history and filmmaking at the college level as an honorarium instructor. Their home is in Denver.
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Naturally, I'd heard of cliff dwellings before, so I wasn't shocked to discover the concept. I WAS shocked, however, to learn that there are many of them within a few hours of where I live (Evergreen, CO). Before speaking with Bill, I would have thought I'd have to travel to some far off, exotic location to find remnants of pre-history civilizations. I couldn't have been more wrong. "The Cliff Dwellings Speak" offers a well-written, easy to understand historical overview & on-site guide for the North American cliff-dwelling cultures & their ruins. Even if you know nothing about the topic, after reading this book you'll feel like you've been studying it for years!
Especially exciting is the subject of "Barriers to Entry" where the Sagstetters were compelled to crawl along narrow ledges only inches wide with hundreds of feet of exposure to reach a cliff dwelling. And this was only after a number of attempts at trying to figure out how these ancient people got to their home. In the book, they provide logical explanations for the location of cliff dwelling such as proximity to water and a defendable location. Another fascinating subject is granaries where food was stored and of how they kept them sealed from rodents. In the photographs, they show the visitor what to look for and how that feature was used as part of daily life be it a door or steps carved into a sandstone cliff.
Most North American Indians were nomadic and followed the migration of game. It is extraordinary that these Indians, unlike their brethren, constructed elaborate buildings adopted to a desert climate and sandstone cliffs and that many of these structures remain standing after the passage of centuries.