What happened to the Hohokam and Mogollon people and where are the Ball Courts of Snaketown located?

By about 1500, the Hohokam had abandoned their large villages.

Although no one knows why for sure, a drought probably made it impossible to grow enough corn to feed large village populations.

The Hohokam likely broke into smaller groups who became the ancestors of the Akimel O’odham and Tohono O’odham (also known as the Pima and Papago), two tribes that still live in the Southwest. The Mogollon culture disappeared at about the same time. The Mogollon were probably absorbed into the Anasazi.

Near present-day Phoenix, North Arizona, are the ruins of the village known as Snaketown, where as many as 1,000 Hohokam people lived.

Like other Hohokam villages, Snaketown features great shallow oval pits in the ground. Sculptures of ballplayers found at the village suggest the pits were ball courts, where teams came together to play a game similar to soccer.

About Karen Hill

Karen Hill is a freelance writer, editor, and columnist. Born in New York, her work has appeared in the Examiner, Yahoo News, Buzzfeed, among others.

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