Structure 5-S, subterranean kiva

About this Structure

General Location

East side of pueblo; east of main drainage.

Specific Location

Rests in flat area on talus slope; west of a rock alignment visible at modern ground surface.

Interpretive Type

Not assigned.

Structure Use

Kiva-type use; the edge of a possible hearth was observed at the south end of the excavation unit; floor-associated artifacts and roof fall artifacts include two partial, reconstructible vessels, several projectile points, and a metate and indicate the kiva was used for a variety of domestic activities during its final use.


A moderate amount of artifacts were left on the floor. At least ten individuals were intentionally placed in the kiva at the time of or soon after the abandonment of this structure. Most of the individuals appear to have been placed in the kiva at relatively the same time. After the remains were interred, it appears that most of the primary beams were salvaged and the small timbers were burned. This inference is based on the presence of small beam fragments in roof fall. Only one large burned timber was encountered; it is possible that more are present outside of the excavation unit. The excavation unit rested in the center of the kiva, an area where beams are typically scarce. If more burned primary beams are present, it could be inferred that the entire roof was burned. There may be evidence of a closing ceremony that took place after the roof was burned, however, this is not conclusive.


Kiva filled with natural deposits, primarily collivium, and some wall collapse.

Excavation Details

Groups to Which This Study Unit was Assigned

See The Archaeology of Woods Canyon Pueblo (specifically the chapters on architecture, chronology, and artifacts) for more information on study unit groupings at Woods Canyon Pueblo.

Type ID Description
area 4 Area of east talus slope
section E East side (east talus slope)
subperiod 9 Late Pueblo III (A.D. 1225-1280)