Sunday, November 15th, 2009
The site known as Apache Wells is located north of Hwy 10, about mid-way between Las Cruces and Deming. About one mile north of Apache Wells is the old route of the Butterfield Overland Stage. The Apache Wells site is marked here:
As a source of water, the site was used by Native Americans and later visitors and settlers.
A scratched stone at the location memorializes the killing of Jon Faulkner in 1894. It is known that this stone is not at its original location, which is presumed to be nearby, so it does not mark an actual grave site. A search of various sources reveals no information about the killing of a Jon (or more likely John) Faulkner in 1894 (anyone know more?).
At the top of the stone is scratched “MAID 29 DE 96,” i. e., made 29 December 1896.
Also at the site are many Petroglyphs. Here are a sampling:
Figure and horse. The horse may have a saddle.
The wide stride and the over-the-shoulder stick with the bag strongly suggests a soldier.
A beautiful Petroglyph, evidently a man cat. Behind it is a much smaller animal, which could be canine or feline:
Here we have a Petroglyph and a modern scratching:
The Petroglyph is made by tapping with a rock, the letters by scratching. You can see the clear difference in making technique here:
A mysterious petroglyph, partially buried:
Also in the area are many grinding (mortar) holes:
These holes were used by to grind various seeds into meal. The longer the period of use, the deeper the hole. One interpretation of the size variation is that different seeds ground better or easier in different sized holes. So many holes together might also be a sign that grinding was often a group activity.