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Identification:

Preferred Structure Name:
Agate House
Structure Number:
007
Other Structure Name(s):
 
Other Structure Name(s)
No records.
Park:
Petrified Forest National Park
Historic District:
 
Historic District
1. 
Rainbow Forest Historic Designed Landscape
Structure State:
Arizona
Structure County:
Navajo
Region:
Intermountain
Cluster:
Colorado Plateau
Administrative Unit:
Petrified Forest National Park
LCS ID:
001217
 
Historical Significance:

National Register Status:
Entered - Documented
National Register Date:
10/06/1975
National Historic Landmark?:
No
Significance Level:
National
Short Significance Description:
Pueblo w/ layout typical of late Pueblo II period. Illustrates continuing contact & influences during 10th & 11th centuries. 1st site excavated in PEFO. Also contributing structure in the Rainbow Forest Historic Designed Landscape District.
Long Significance Description:
Pueblo w/ layout typical of late Pueblo II period, notable for construction from agatized petrified wood, where most park ruins are sandstone. Illustrates continuing contact & influences during 10th & 11th centuries. 1st site excavated in PEFO.

Agate House was reconstructed by the Civilian Conservation Corps in 1933/34 under the direction of C.B. Cosgrove Jr. from the Laboratory of Anthropology (now the Museum of New Mexico).

Also contributing structure in the Rainbow Forest Historic Designed Landscape District.

Rainbow Forest Historic Designed Landscape is eligible under Criteria A and C for Conservation, Engineering, Entertainment/Recreation, Politics/Government, Architecture, and Landscape Architecture under the category of "district." The period of significance begins in 1929 with the Park Service';s initiation of a planned development project at the park that included the design and construction of a formal plaza surrounded by administrative buildings, residences and service buildings, picnic areas, parking lots, roads, trails, and a water pipeline. The period of significance ends in 1942 when the development project was essentially completed and the CCC camp at the park disbanded.

The Rainbow Forest district is significant under Criterion A as a project associated with the administration and development of Petrified Forest National Monument for visitor use and enjoyment. Additionally, it is significant under work associated with the CCC and the short-lived Emergency Conservation Works Program that made possible the development and improvement of national parks at an unprecedented speed. The CCC and Emergency Conservation Work also developed foot trails, improved roads, and constructed some buildings in the residential area.

The Rainbow Forest district is significant under Criterion C because it embodies the distinctive characteristics of National Park Service building and landscape construction as defined in the historic context of "Historic Park Landscapes in National and State Parks." Park designers at Rainbow Forest employed elements of the "American style of naturalistic landscape design" by blending manmade structures with the natural surroundings. The small, low rectilinear buildings made of graystone, the material also used for the culverts along the road and trails, draw upon the surrounding natural environment and the traditional pueblo building style, as well as the Art Deco style of the period.

The district is formed by a continuity of sites, buildings, and structures united by past events and aesthetically by plan and physical development. There is an important interrelationship between the designed plan and the individual resources (sites, buildings, and structures). The designed plan and the individual resources depend upon the other to convey significance. The spatial relationship of individual resources is important in defining the historic character of a designed landscape.
 
Construction Period:

Construction Period:
Prehistoric
Chronology:
 
Physical Event
Begin Year
Begin Year AD/BC
End Year
End Year AD/BC
Designer
Designer Occupation
1. 
Built
900
AD
1200
AD


2. 
Stabilized
1933
AD
1934
AD
CCC
Other
3. 
Stabilized
1933
AD
1934
AD
Cosgrove, C. Burton, Jr.
Other
4. 
Stabilized
1977
AD
1977
AD
NPS, WACC
Other
5. 
Stabilized
1981
AD
1981
AD
NPS
Other
 
Function and Use:

Primary Historic Function:
Multiple Dwelling
Primary Current Use:
Ruin
Structure Contains Museum Collections?:
No
Other Functions or Uses:
 
Other Function(s) or Use(s)
Historic or Current
1. 
Ruin
Historic
2. 
Exhibit
Current
 
Physical Description:

Structure Type:
Ruin
Volume:
2,000 - 20,000 cubic feet
Square Feet:
1320
Material(s):
 
Structural Component(s)
Material(s)
1. 
Foundation
Not Applicable
2. 
Roof
Wood
3. 
Walls
Stone
Short Physical Description:
8-room linear pueblo on low ridge. Walls are random rubble of undressed petrified wood fragments. No fndn. Largely reconstructed. Room 7 roof of vigas, savinos & latillas, reconstructed w/ rect. entry. Small plaza, possible hearths.
Long Physical Description:
8-room linear pueblo on low ridge. Walls are random rubble of undressed petrified wood fragments. No foundation. Largely reconstructed. Room 7 roof of vigas, savinos & latillas, reconstructed w/ rect. entry. Small plaza, possible hearths.

In 1933/34, Room 7 was completely reconstructed to a height of six feet and roofed using vigas, latillas, tar roofing felt, and a layer of mud with shredded juniper bark. Room 2 was was reconstructed to a height of five feet but not roofed. The rest of the walls were reconstructed to a height or two or three feet.