July 8 – Taos Pueblo Pow Wow

Posted on July 8, 2016

Singing and dancing, arts and crafts vendors, plenty of food, a fun run, contests...all the usual sorts of festivities, in this case in a beautiful setting in the mountains of New Mexico.

In this case, in the fascinating historic Taos Pueblo, one of the oldest continuously inhabited communities in the United States. 

St. Augustine, Florida, bills itself as the nation's oldest city, having been founded by Spaniards in 1565, and Jamestown, Virginia, is considered the first permanent British settlement in the New World, having been founded in 1607...But the main portion of Taos Pueblo was built somewhere between the year 1000 and 1450!! Perhaps twice as long as those other "oldest"s and "first"s!

The people who built and live in Taos Pueblo are Tiwa-speaking Puebloan people. Today, about 150 people still live in the historic pueblo full-time.

The multi-storied housing is built from reddish-brown adobe, or mud rock. Adobe is created by mixing soil, water, and some sort of organic material, such as straw. Although buildings built from adobe can be damaged by earthquakes if they are not reinforced with steel, in dry climates they are extremely durable. They tend to keep warmth inside in the winter AND keep heat outside in the summer, because the thick walls act like a thermos, protecting the inside from the temperature fluctuations outside.

(By the way, when I say “thick” – I mean THICK! Some of the adobe walls of the Taos Pueblo are several feet thick! Get two rulers and a yard stick – and see how thick 2-to-3-feet thick walls really are!)

The north-side structure of Taos Pueblo (above) is one of the most photographed and most painted buildings in the country. Ansel Adams, one of America's most respected photographers, loved to take photos of Taos Pueblo (including the one seen below).

Of course, the pow wow itself offers a lot of great images to photograph, as well:

Also on this date:

Math 2.0 Day

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