LEGEND OR LIE: “A” Mountain crater


TUCSON, Ariz. — A well-known Tucson landmark is the supply of a legend which is origins are explained to go back thousands and thousands of many years.

“We live in an exciting place with countless numbers of many years of record,” claimed Homer Thiel.

Tucson Archaeologist Homer Thiel is familiar with Southern Arizona’s heritage very very well. But does it incorporate a meteor hitting the foundation of “A” Mountain and leaving a crater that still exists there to this working day?

That is the legend, but just before we clarify what seriously transpired to cause that crater on “A” mountain, we also have to handle a separate legend about how the mountain was initially formed.

"A" Mountain with crater on north side

Pat Parris

Thiel is a task manager with Desert Archaeology and claims there was no volcanic explosion that made Sentinel Peak, what we call “A” Mountain, but he claims the mountain was fashioned by volcanic activity amongst 10 and 20 million a long time in the past.

“It just pushed up from underneath. Most of the Tucson Mountains are volcanic in origin, as are the mountains up in Flagstaff,” Thiel explained. “So, millions of years ago there ended up volcanoes that had been erupting below in Tucson.”

And the meteorite that supposedly created the crater… that is a lie too.

To understand what actually took place, we will need to go back thousands of many years. The Tohono O’odham men and women founded a settlement at the base of “A” Mountain termed Stjukson or black foundation. The black base arrives from the volcanic rock. The name Stjukson sooner or later morphed into Tucson.

“In 1879, the Sisters of St. Joseph determined to build a healthcare facility. That is the St. Mary’s Healthcare facility,” Thiel discussed. “They essential a resource of rock for their foundations. So, they proven this quarry up on the facet of Sentinel Peak or “A” Mountain as it can be known as today. The basalt rocks are really weighty and pretty dense. They make wonderful basis stones.”

Thiel states rocks taken from this quarry also crafted the foundations of a lot of of the residences around UArizona as effectively as the rock wall encompassing areas of the College campus.

Rock inside the quarry on "A" Mountain

Pat Parris

“All those had been built in the 1910s. All-around the similar time that the college learners set the major “A” up on the facet of “A” Mountain,” Thiel reported.

The quarry just about led to the demise of “A” Mountain. In the mid-1920s, a couple attained the mineral rights to 200 acres of the mountain.

“They planned on in essence having the best of “A” Mountain off,” recalled Thiel. “The city of Tucson made a decision that was not a superior idea. So they asked the bureau of the inside to reverse that decision. Which is how we acquired the park up there.”

“A” Mountain was saved and the quarry shut. Over time a legend grew that a meteor made the crater on the side of “A” Mountain. A legend we now know is a lie.


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