that place where stonefish sandbox happen
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Item #: SCP-4000

Object Class: Neutalized Keter pending

Special Containment Procedures: [Paragraphs explaining the procedures]

Description: SCP-4000 is the collective designations for various Pre-Colombian pueblo ruins located within the Chaco Canyon, New Mexico. SCP-4000 is currently contained within the boundaries of Chaco Culture National Historical Park.The site has been preserved by the US Government since 1907, and it is well known within archeological circles as a frequently studied site. It is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is believed that at this time SCP-4000 was the site of anomalous religious practices, and there are still a number of mysteries surrounding the culture that lived there.

SCP-4000 primarily consists of a number of pueblo complexes, known as Great Houses, located within the canyon and on surrounding mesas. Each complex contains between 89 and 650 rooms, and at one point most were multi-story buildings after their construction in the 11th and 12th centuries. Many are built in a D-shape, and the largest have various plazas and circular pits1. Each of these pits contains a small cistern known as a sipapu. All of the sipapus within the Chaco pueblos lead down to a central, massive underground chamber beneath the ditch in the center of the canyon, commonly assumed to be a long-drained aquifer.

Archeological evidence indicates some structures were used as places of trade, and artifacts ranging from Alaska to South America to Quebec were discovered within the Great Houses. This theory can also be confirmed by the presence of large roads extending from the canyon outwards, known as the Great Chacoan Roads. Certain Great Houses may have had specific industrial functions; Pueblo Alto may have been used to process beads and turquoise, Kin Kletso may have been used to process obsidian, Casa Rinconada may have been used to process human bones.

Aside from evidence of massive trade, it is mostly still unknown what these structures were used for.
Professor Stephen Lekson of University of Colorado Boulder, and Foundation archeological liaison states "What was Chaco? Opinions vary widely, perhaps wildly. Interpretations range from a valley of peaceful farming villages to the monumental capital of an empire." This is the primary idea amongst civilian archeologists. Foundation archeologists, however, have determined that the nature of SCP-4000 was as a regular gathering place for individuals throughout the Four Corners region, coming together for religious purposes.

Analysis of pot sherds and artifact fragments located within the kivas has determined that the majority of the structures located within SCP-4000 were only inhabited at very specific points of the year, likely the equinox, something which can be confirmed with civilian archeology of petroglyphs and structures. 12 Chacoan complexes were sited and aligned in coordination, and each is oriented along axes that mirrored the passing of the Sun and Moon at important times. The Great Houses of Pueblo Bonito and Chetro Ketl are situated along a precise east-west line capturing the passage of the equinox sun. Additional religious artifacts include evidence of prayer sticks decorated with beads, fur, and feathers, relics belonging to children who acted as priests, and petroglyphs depicting the Sun and Moon, various Kachina2 spirits, and a large spider.

There is still substantial oral tradition concerning this religion within the First Nation groups who hold SCP-4000 to be sacred. These groups include the Taos, Hopi, Zuni, Acoma, and especially the pueblos of Santa Clara and San Il Defonso, established 1300 and 1555 respectively. From interviews with some of the oldest members of these communities, the nature of the religion practiced at Chaco Canyon was a variant on the Pueblo religion, with greater emphasis placed on the Puebloan deity known in the Teresan Pueblo language as Sussistanako. Sussistanako is known as the creator of humans, identified as an earth goddess. In Puebloan mythology she is described as a large elderly female spider and is one of the most prominent gods. A similar figure is worshipped by groups as diverse as the Ojibwe Chippewa people of southern Canada and the Choctaw of Tennessee and Mississippi.

Beneath the central Great Kiva of Pueblo Bonito, Foundation archeologists discovered a small chamber adjacent to the sipapu. In it were 15 male skeletons, all well preserved. The remains of 14 genetically identical children were found lying in a circle with their heads facing the central skeleton Scraps of cloth nearby suggested they were dressed in ceremonial robes. The central skeleton is an adult male with gross physiological differences, including eight additional limbs. It appeared to have died from blunt force trauma to the skull.

Though some theorize that the canyon was abandoned due to overpopulation and expanding cultivation, it is unknown why the ancestral Puebloans abandoned SCP-4000 for the nearby dwellings at Mesa Verde.

Interviewed: Michele Rosenblum, a retired archeologist living in Pennsylvania

Interviewer: Dr. Theodore Christopher, Department of Archeology

Foreword: Rosenblum was contacted at her home in Pennsylvania after the Department of Archeology noted an article she published 40 years ago detailing inconsistencies in the popular academic interpretation of spider motifs throughout the Great Houses.

Interviewer: [speech]

Person: [speech]

[Repeat as necessary]

Closing Statement: [Small summary and passage on what transpired afterward]

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