Chetro Ketl

This name defies explanation and translation.  "Rain Pueblo" is offered as a translation by William Henry Jackson who was an explorer and photographer who visited Chaco Canyon in 1877.  Nastl’a kin or "House in the corner," is one of the Navajo names for this site.

The construction of Chetro Ketl has been exhaustively chronicled using tree ring dating.  5000 trees were used in the approximately 500 rooms and 16 kivas of Chetro Ketl.  There were over 15 separate stages of construction.  The first major phase of construction occurred between 945 and 1030 AD.  A change in masonry styles reflects a second major phase of construction lasting about 60 years (1030 - 1090 AD).  Several different styles of masonry were used during the last major phase of construction between 1099 and 1116 AD.

Chetro Ketl measures more than 1,500 feet around and contains approximately 50 million pieces of stone.  The plaza at Chetro Ketl has been elevated 12 feet above the surrounding landscape.  The result must have made this dramatic-looking building even more impressive and imposing when viewed upon completion.


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