Should you ever find yourself in Denver, Colorado, the History Colorado Center gives you a great view of local history. One of the treasures on display is a beautifully produced miniature diorama of life in the Balcony House cliff dwelling in Mesa Verde. That being said, the diorama was built in the late 1930s (funded by Depression-era public works projects) — so we’ve learned a thing or two about Mesa Verde life since then.
Here you see scantily clad men and women hard at work — the men working on pottery while the women are upstairs weaving. It’s a beautifully rendered miniature, but we now know that the scene depicted has 3 things wrong with it:
- The residents of Mesa Verde wore much more clothing than this, given the worn-out pieces of attire found in the site’s rubbish dumps
- Based on modern-day pueblo life and archaeological discoveries, pottery work was primarily done by the women of Mesa Verde
- Similarly, weaving was a man’s job back in the day