The Superstition Mountain Historical Society was awarded an Arizona Humanities grant in September to build a public outdoor exhibit of an authentic Apache wickiup village.
The village exhibit at Superstition Mountain Museum will include two wickiups, a cooking area and hide-drying rack. Educational text will introduce visitors to the Apache culture with an emphasis on the Apache home and family.
The Apache Tribe consider this region’s mountains sacred and the Superstition Mountains are one of four mountains that mark their ancestral territory. This display experience is intended to help enlighten the community about their rich culture, the release states.
Given the temporary nature of the original structures, most evidence of past village sites exist only as round clearings. But there is an ample photographic record provided by photographers in the 1880s through 1910s.
Superstition Mountain Historical Society Board member Ken Duncan, an enrolled member of the San Carlos Apache Tribe, will serve as curatorial consultant and humanities scholar on the project.
The planned project schedule is for a ground breaking and land preparation to begin in October 2021. A harvest of construction materials (red willow, yucca, bear grass and thatch) will begin in March 2022 and construction will start soon after. The museum plans to open the exhibit, made possible by a grant from Arizona Humanities, in April 2022.
Superstition Mountain Museum, 4087 N. Apache Trail (State Route 88) in Apache Junction, is open 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Tuesday-Sunday. Go to superstitionmountainmuseum.org.
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