Arizona Fire Threatens Hundreds of Ancient Sites
Some of the Native American archaeological sites date back 2,000 years.
Within that vast expanse are large swaths of Arizona's Apache and Sitgreaves National Forests and New Mexico's Gila National Forest, parts of which have already burned.
Both forests contain thousands of known prehistoric and historic archaeological sites, from Native American stone ruins to remnants of 19th-century mines and mills.
The majority of the threatened sites once belonged to the Mogollon culture, a Native American farming civilization that occupied the region between around the year zero and A.D. 1500, said Bob Schiowitz, the U.S. Forest Service archaeologist for the Gila National Forest.
Schiowitz estimates there could be up to a thousand known Mogollon sites that could be affected by the Wallow Fire.
However, "not all of those are incredibly significant,"