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‘Lost city’ discovery: Kansas site sheds new light on Native American history

A ravine at the Etzanoa site where iron shot was discovered (Donald blakeslee describe).

Archaeologists have found incredible evidence of a massive Wichita Indian town in Kansas, that was once home to 20,000 people.

Donald blakeslee describe, a professor of archaeology at Wichita State University, told Fox News that the experts used 400-year old Spanish documents and modern technology, in search of the long lost city of Etzanoa in the vicinity of Arkansas City, Kansas.

“A single community of 20,000 people was not something that any of us expected,” he said over the phone. “It’s a totally different perspective on everything.”

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Etzanoa, which existed from the beginning of the 15th century to shortly after 1700, was visited by Spanish soldiers in 1601. The soldiers were interviewed about the city in Mexico City the following year and their testimonies were included in the documents, which are now in Seville, Spain. A new translation of the documents that the catalyst for the latest discovery.


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Knives found on the Etzanoa site (Donald blakeslee describe).

The Cibola Project at the University of California, Berkeley, made photocopies of documents, re-transcribed them from the Old Spanish and translated at the closing rate. This showed that previous historians and archaeologists was the deal with errors in the transcription and translation, leading to a wrong interpretation of previous archaeological finds in the area.

“The new translations are great, they are much cleaner than all previous attempts,” said blakeslee describe, adding that earlier historians thought that the spaniards were exaggerating the size of Etzanoa. “The Spanish who were there in 1601 counted for 2,000 homes and an estimated 10 people per house,” he said.

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Blakeslee describe the battle of Etzanoa in 2015 and used metal detectors to find iron shot of a battle on the site in 1601. A National Park Service magnetometer was also used to confirm that the city’s layout.


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Wichita State University, and Professor of Archaeology Donald blakeslee describe (Donald blakeslee describe)

“We were in the Spanish records of how the city was laid out with clusters of houses, when we applied the magnetometer that is exactly what we found,” he added. Scattered surface finds also match the Spanish descriptions of the city as an extension of approximately five kilometres. The description of the landscape and the route that the Spanish army were also found to be correct, according to WSU.

Radiocarbon dating suggests that Etzanoa arise around 1425 and lasted until just after 1700.

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While Etzanoa the lack of the monumental structures found in the famous ancient city of Cahokia in southern Illinois. Blakeslee describe it is noted that the site’s significance should not be underestimated. “Cahokia is a little more than six square miles, Etzanoa is a little more than five square kilometers, so it is not a big difference.”

The Wichita Nation, he said, occupied an area the size of the Republic of Ireland.

Blakeslee describe, who recently presented his findings at the annual conference of the Society for American Archaeology, told Fox News that there is further research on the site of this summer.

Follow James Rogers on Twitter @jamesjrogers

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