Come visit the only Mimbres culture archaeological site open to the public.


The Mimbres Culture Heritage Site, a world famous archaeological site, is now open to the public daily from 11 am to 3 pm. Mattocks Ruin is a collection of large pit houses and pueblo villages superimposed as the Mimbres people rebuilt their homes from 550 to 1140 CE. The main site has approximately 200 rooms.

About 1,000 years ago, this Mimbres pueblo, which may have been home to as many as 200 individuals, was built on top of an earlier pit house village. The Mimbres people produced the distinctive black on white pottery, which is the hallmark of this occupation period. Items recovered from the Mattocks Ruin are recognized worldwide as some of the finest examples of Classic Mimbres artwork.

The Gooch House dates to the early 1890s, was built by Benjamin Gooch and was later the residence of Bert Mattocks. Robert Floyd died in 1889, leaving the property to his wife Kate. Kate Floyd married Ben Gooch at the end of 1889. Gooch quickly became a successful businessman, profiting from the produce of fruit trees, alfalfa fields, garden and livestock. Gooch moved his family to Silver City in 1901, where he opened a green grocery and meat market. He leased part of his Mimbres property to J.D. Ross. During a confrontation in 1902, Mr. Gooch shot and killed Mr. Ross. Gooch was later declared insane. The property was sold in 1922 to the Mattocks family.

The Wood House, the older of the two adobe houses on the property, was built by Dr. Granville N. Wood in the early 1880s during the Apache Wars. With gun ports, a second story and steeply pitched roof, it is one of only a few surviving structures in the Mimbres valley from this period. After establishing an orchard with apple, peach, cherry, pear, apricot and plum trees, 40 acres of alfalfa, a large vegetable garden and a pasture for livestock, Dr. Wood sold the homestead to Robert Floyd in 1887.

Robert Parker with cache of 50 "hoes". A rare copper bell was also found.

1929 Nesbitt Excavation.

The Mattocks Ruin, named after the owners of the property during the first scientific excavation in 1929- 30 by Paul Nesbit of the Logan Museum, has long attracted the interest of archaeologists. Beginning with a visit by Adolph Bandelier in 1883, through the extensive work in the 1970s by the Mimbres Foundation, the site has been at the center of extensive research. The result has been a greater understanding of these remarkable people and their culture.

Imogene F. Wilson Education Foundation

The funds to acquire the Mimbres Culture Heritage Site were a generous donation from the Wilson family. The site Interpretative Sign Project and pathway were provided by a grant from the Trail of the Mountain Spirits National Scenic Byway.

In 2011, the Silver City Museum Society gave the property to the Wilson Education Foundation, which now owns and manages the Mimbres Culture Heritage Site, located on the Trail of the Mountain Spirits Byway and near Gila Cliff Dwellings National Monument.

The Mimbres Culture Heritage Site represents a fragile and irreplaceable part of southwest New Mexico's exciting past and the only Mimbres site open to the public and visitors to our area.

To make a donation: make checks to The Imogene F. Wilson Education Foundation

Send to: MCHS C/O J Ransom, HC 68 Box 79 Z, Silver City, NM 88061

For more information: Email Us Here

Mimbres Culture Heritage Site 14 Sage Drive, Mimbres, NM 88041

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The Mimbres Culture Heritage Site is located on Highway 35 east of Silver City and south the Gila Cliff Dwelling National Monument.


Funded in part by the Federal Highway Administration.


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2011 Imogene F Wilson Education Foundation