Downtown Phoenix, Arizonarises
above the Valley of the Sun in this view looking south-southeast
from a shoulder of Shaw Butte. The picture is taken from
the ruins of the old Cloud Nine Restaurant, which burned down in 1964.
This broad, flat valley was once the homeland of the great Hohokam civilization -- people who built what was most likely the
greatest irrigation system in the prehistoric world.
Until around 1450 CE, there were perhaps 50,000 people living in and around
the valley. Their culture fell apart for unknown reasons, leaving ruins of pueblos,
platform mounds, ball courts, and the canals. Our new city is named appropriately
after the mythical bird that rose from its ashes to live again -- Phoenix.
Shaw is at the northwestern end of the . Next View >>