In 1880 people from Cochiti Pueblo brought fledgling anthropologist Adolph Bandelier
here to see the place they consider their ancestral home.
Looking at Frijoles Canyon he was impressed by the sight of the empty cave dwellings and crumbled stone houses along
the base of these cliffs. The early people who lived here, (often called the Anasazi) were the ancestors of
present-day Pueblo Indians.
Frijoles Canyon is a small part of the extensive area once inhabited by the ancestral Puebloans. Villages were scattered throughout the surrounding Pajarito (pah-hah-REE-toe, meaning Little Bird) Plateau and Rio Grande Valley; at various times members of this far-flung culture inhabited parts of Colorado, Utah, Arizona & New Mexico. Their ancient homes can be seen in places like Mesa Verde National Park, Chaco Culture National Historical Park, and Canyon de Chelly National Monument. While the people shared a common culture, each group developed their own language, art and architectural styles.
The entrance to the park is 48 miles by road northwest of Santa Fe.
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Text from Southwest Parks & Monuments Association Bandelier Monument Guide - SPMA/100M/10th printing/9/99