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Most People Have No Idea That This Ancient Village Is Hiding In New Mexico

In the 1970s, archeologists discovered a site known as Blue J. This 1000-year-old village is located 43 miles south of Chaco Canyon, in New Mexico. Over the years, partial excavations have taken place, but not much was known about the village. It wasn’t even clear whether Blue J was actually Chacoan, because there were no obvious signs of a great house or a kiva.

During the course of several 11-minute long flights, the drone picked up many structures hidden beneath the ground at Blue J, including the remains of what appeared to be a kiva. It also identified clumps of rooms opposite a courtyard. The village was significantly bigger than archeologists had previously believed.

In a matter of hours, the survey revealed information that would have taken possibly decades of manual labor to uncover.

Check out this video, which includes an interview with Professor Kantner.

While some drone applications are controversial, this usage could provide us with a fast, cost-effective way to see below the ground and into the past.

What do you think about using drones as archeological tools?

Juliet White
New Mexico staff writer for Only In Your State and freelance writer. A committed travel junkie, Juliet has lived on two continents, but believes that the sunsets in New Mexico are the best. She can be reached on Twitter @JulietWrites.