You may have noticed a lot of circles in the rock art recorded
at Montezuma Creek. Circular shapes and spirals often represent
places and stories of migrations where "our people" have
We learn a lot about what these repeated shapes may mean from
talking with modern-day descendants of ancient Pueblo peoples. Hopi
Indians, for example, still carry on many of the oral traditions
of their ancestors, and stories get passed down from generation
to generation. Today Hopi women use the spiral symbol in weaving
Did you discover all the different kinds of animal tracks shown
in the drawing?
Some of the tracks have sharp claws similar to a bear, badger,
or raccoon. According to Hopi Indians, bear tracks and badger tracks
were, and are, important ancestral "clan" symbols of Pueblo peoples.
The tracks may represent ancient peoples who belonged to the Bear
and Badger clans.
Can you find tracks with three claws resembling the track of a
If you look closely you will find many of these tracks. Birds
were also an important part of ancient Pueblo mythology. The tracks
may represent the Crow, Crane, Eagle, or Hawk ancestral clans. The
cross was sometimes used to indicate the four cardinal directions.
So, if you first thought that the drawing looked like a map, you
may be closer to the Hopi understanding of the ancient site. Generations
of different Pueblo clans appear to have recorded their movements
and migrations at this special place.