Tule Springs Archaeological Site

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Tule Springs Archeological Site
Nearest city Las Vegas, Nevada
NRHP Reference # 79001461
 # 86
Added to NRHP April 20, 1979

Tule Springs Archaeological Site is an archeological site listed on the National Register of Historic Places that is located in the Las Vegas Valley of Nevada, United States. It is one of a few sites in the United States where humans were once thought to have lived alongside, and potentially hunted, extinct Ice Age megafauna,[1] although this view is not supported by the available scientific data and is no longer generally accepted.[2][3][4]

The archeological site is marked as Nevada Historical Marker 86[5] and is located within the Floyd Lamb Park at Tule Springs which is operated by the City of Las Vegas.


In 1933, the Tule Springs Expedition, led by Fenley Hunter, was the first major effort to explore the archaeological importance of the area surrounding Tule Springs. Hunter and his team identified an unworked obsidian flake in apparent association with extinct Pleistocene faunal remains at Tule Springs[6]

The Nevada State Museum explored the springs area in 1962 and 1963 confirming that the area was home to Ice Age species as well as early North American Paleo-Indian peoples. Richard Shutler directed the project, and Vance Haynes studied the sedimentary layers, using radiocarbon dating to determine their ages.[7] Animals discovered include ground sloths, mammoths, prehistoric horses, American camels and the first giant condors found in Nevada.[1]

The springs site was listed on the National Register of Historic Places on April 20, 1979.[8]


  1. ^ a b "Tule Springs". Nevada State Historic Preservation Office. Retrieved 2010-06-30. 
  2. ^ Shutler, R., Jr. (1967). Archaeology of Tule Springs. In Pleistocene Studies in Southern Nevada (ed. H.M. Wormington and D. Ellis). Carson City: Nevada State Museum. pp. 298–303. 
  3. ^ Springer, K., J.C. Sagebiel, C.R. Manker, E. Scott (2008). "Paleontologic investigation and geologic mapping of the Rancholabrean age Las Vegas Formation, Las Vegas, Nevada". Geological Society of America, Cordilleran Section (104 Annual) and Rocky Mountain Section (60 Annual) Joint Meeting, Abstracts with Programs. 
  4. ^ Scott, E. (2010). "Extinctions, scenarios, and assumptions: Changes in latest Pleistocene large herbivore abundance and distribution in western North America". Quat. Int. 217: 225–239. doi:10.1016/j.quaint.2009.11.003. 
  5. ^ Nevada Historical Marker 86
  6. ^ Fowler, Don D. (1986). "History of Research". Handbook of North American Indians: Volume 11, Great Basin. Washington: Smithsonian Institution. p. 18. ISBN 978-0160045813. 
  7. ^ Margaret Lyneis (2007-07-17). "Tule Springs Archaeology and Paleontology". ONLINE NEVADA ENCYCLOPEDIA. Retrieved 2008-09-28. 
  8. ^ "Nevada Entries in the National Register of Historic Places". Retrieved 2009-01-15. 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 36°19′20.84″N 115°16′9.6″W / 36.3224556°N 115.269333°W / 36.3224556; -115.269333

Preceded by
Nevada Historical Markers
Succeeded by
Savage Mansion