Early History of the Springs Preserve

July 2023 

"From Big Springs to Springs Preserve: 50 Years of Archaeology"

Nathan Harper, Archaeologist for the Las Vegas Valley Water District delved into the history of the preservation of the sites at the Las Vegas Spring's Preserve.

The Big Springs of Las Vegas has served as a waystation for indigenous peoples, travelers, and early settlers for thousands of years. For many years the tall cottonwoods along US 95 were the only indication of the deep history of the site. In 1972 archaeologist Claude Warren of UNLV was tasked with identifying the extent and depth of prehistoric and historic archaeological deposits on the site. This work to protect and preserve the Las Vegas Springs site would continue for over 40 years. Claude and Elizabeth Warren were dedicated to the preservation of the site through development of the “Friends of Big Springs,” leading to the site’s listing on the National Register of Historic places in 1978. In 2007 the Springs Preserve opened, dedicated to the protection and preservation of the birthplace of Las Vegas.

Click here to watch a recording of this Zoom Webinar.

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  • Rayette Martin
    published this page in Activity 2023-07-16 15:50:09 -0700

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