Vore Buffalo Jump Site Visitors' Center, Sundance, Wyoming, 2004
Buffalo Hunt by William R. Leigh
The Vore Bufflo Jump Site is the most important archaeological site of its kind in the world.
The collapse of a cave in Northeastern Wyoming thousands of years ago resulted in a sink hole, which is as large as a football field and about eighty feet deep. For more than 500 years the site was used by Native Americans to ceremonially stampede bison over the hole's edge. Injured bison were dispatched by the people using spears and other weapons. Only the skull and certain other bones were left in the Jump--every other part of the bison was put to use by the people. University of Wyoming archaeologist, Dr. Charles Reyer, who directed the Jump Site excavations, estimates there are more than 20,000 remains of bison, along with a large number of native tools and artifacts at the bottom of the sink hole.
The Vore site is unique for its massive bone bed covering an area of more than 8500 sq. ft to a depth of 25 feet. The 20 layers of bone are exceptionally well preserved, which will allow for very precise dating and science, as the excavation continues over the next 20 years. The Vore Buffalo Jump Site with the new Interpretive Visitor Center will communicate to a global audience about the profound physical and spiritual inter-relationship between Plains Indian culture and the great free-roaming bison heards of the Plains.
The design program calls for a Visitors' Interpretation Center, Excavation Interpretive Center, Research Center, Tourist Information Kiosk, and Parking Area. The project will optimize use of passive solar energy heating cooling, and energy conservation building systems. Utlilization of sod-covered roofing will be extensive.
Located a stone throw from US Interstate 90, to the East of Sundance, Wyoming, the site is presently owned by the Vore Buffalo Jump Foundation, which is currently raising funds for the project.
"The plan of the Foundation is to protect the site with a world-class facility, making it accessible to the citizens of the world. Visitors will be able to observe on-going excavation and laboratory analysis at very close range and have their experience enriched by a variety of outstanding museum and eductional programs. The Foundation regards the site as part of humankind's heritage and wishes to share the legacy with you and others."
FOR MORE INFORMATION, MEMBERSHIPS, & CONTRIBUTIONS:
Vore Buffalo Jump Foundation
© 2009, Dennis R. Holloway Architect