FS 3 ruins

In the Jemez language “FS 3” means “Place of the three FSs”. Oh wait…I just made that up. There isn’t an official name for the FS 3 ruins, that’s its Santa Fe National Forest designation. Sorta poetic in an official sort of way.

This ruin was only officially recorded in recent years. It was noted by Michael Elliot, an archaeologist who has done work for the Santa Fe National Forest, while flying over the area in a small plane. He then visited the site and recorded it.

Based upon his estimation, it was an establishment of about 250 rooms, and perhaps up to three stories based upon the size of the rubble mounds. Elliot says the occupational period was around 1350 AD to 1650 AD, based upon the type of ceramics present.

This was a friggin’ remote place to get to! A very long and convoluted 4wd crawl, then a substantial hike into the middle of nowhere. The annoyance of this was lessened a bit by stumbling onto four field houses along the hike in. Field houses are just small dwellings that would have been used during farming or hunting times by a family or other small group.

It turned out to be a surprisingly pleasant ruin to visit, with large quantities of ceramic sherds to gawk at. It’s in a very nice setting and highly pastoral. Despite it being in the middle of nowhere, there was evidence of pothunters hitting the site. So far, these yahoos have performed the only “excavations” on the site.

FS 3 Ruins (Adapted from “Overview and Synthesis of the Archeology of the Jemez Province”, New Mexico, by M. Elliot, 1986

A real interesting sherd scatter. Some pieces are on eroded mud pillars. I later found a fieldhouse about a hundred meters away.

Field house 03-728 (numbering from tag on adjacent tree)

Interesting collection of sherds in the rubble at 03-728. Not sure how they got collected like this, as the place is far too remote for tourists, who are usually the perps in this sort of thing.

It can’t be a worthy ruin unless there’s a tree growing in the middle of it. This is field house 03-3607

No, it not a rock pile, it’s field house 03-3592

Wow! Standing walls at field house 03-3591. A wild sight to see in the distance through the trees.

Remains of adobe plastered walls of 03-3591

Finally arriving at FS 3, a panorama

A roomblock mound at FS 3

A pothunted corner of FS 3

More pot hunted areas of FS 3

Yet more pot hunting. Busy little bastards aren’t they? Especially impressive considering this site’s remoteness.