Chaco Canyon, in far northwest New Mexico, was a major center of Puebloan culture between AD 900 and 1250. It is believed two thousand to six thousand people lived, annually, in about one hundred settlements scattered in and around the Canyon. The altitude (the canyon floor is sixty-two hundred feet above sea level) and the arid, desolate setting resulted in unique architecture and living styles. Puebloan masons used local sandstone and adobe mortar to build great houses consisting of fifty to seven hundred rooms. In ""The Great Houses of Chaco"", Jack Campbell's elegant black and white photos explore the intricate structures that have come to define Chaco. David Stuart and Thomas Windes provide essays that place the photographs into historic contexts, and Katherine Kallestad has written captions that explain the images themselves. Together, they detail Chacoan culture and the magnificent ruins that are the primary source of our knowledge about the ancestral people of this region.
John Martin ""Jack"" Campbell is emeritus professor, University of New Mexico, and a research professor at UNM's Maxwell Museum. He is also the author of Magnificent Failure: A Portrait of the Western Homestead Era.