The Ballcourt

The Ballcourt (HMRY2)

Location: Flagstaff, AZ 86004 Coconino County
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Country: United States of America
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N 35° 31.369', W 111° 22.333'

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A Mexican Idea at Wupatki

Ballcourts were common in southern Arizona from A.D. 750 to 1200, but relatively rare here in the northern part of the state. This suggests that the people of Wupatki intermingled with their southern Arizona neighbors - the Hohokam - who may have borrowed and modified the ballcourt idea from earlier contact with the Indian cultures of Mexico.

There is continued speculation about the uses of the ballcourts. Because of the work involved in building a ballcourt and the numbers that have been found (over 200 in Arizona), ball games may have been an important part of life for the people of Wupatki and their southern neighbors.

The Wupatki ballcourt is 78 feet wide, 102 feet long, and had a 6-foot-high wall. Excavated and stabilized in 1965, a large part of the interior wall has been reconstructed.


[Illustration inset captions]
Located along major natural drainages and travel routes, ballcourts may have provided opportunities for social exchange between villages. They were often within a one-day walk of a neighboring village.

This depiction of a ball game is based on descriptions of games played by the Mayan and Aztec cultures of Mexico and speculations on the Hohokam games in southern Arizona.

The Hohokam balls - found at archeological sites containing ballcourts - were made of carefully shaped rock and perhaps covered with pine pitch or other material. One form of the game might have involved moving the ball toward a goal using a curved stick.
HM NumberHMRY2
Placed ByNational Park Service
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Friday, September 26th, 2014 at 3:47am PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)12S E 466251 N 3931087
Decimal Degrees35.52281667, -111.37221667
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 35° 31.369', W 111° 22.333'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds35° 31' 22.14" N, 111° 22' 19.98" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)928, 602, 520
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 4849 Unnamed Road, Flagstaff AZ 86004, US
Alternative Maps Google Maps, MapQuest, Bing Maps, Yahoo Maps, MSR Maps, OpenCycleMap, MyTopo Maps, OpenStreetMap

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