Pueblo Grande de Nevada

Pueblo Grande de Nevada is Nevada State Historic Marker number Forty One and located in Clark County, Nevada. The ruins become to be known as Nevada’s “Lost City”. The marker is located about two miles south of Overton along State Route 169.

Nevada State Historical Markers identify significant places of interest in Nevada’s history. The Nevada State Legislature started the program in 1967 to bring the state’s heritage to the public’s attention with on-site markers. Budget cuts to the program caused the program to become dormant in 2009. Many of the markers are lost of damaged.

Pueblo Grande de Nevada - Source National Park Service
Pueblo Grande de Nevada – Source National Park Service

The site dates back to before the year 500 A.D. and the Basketmaker Indians and later the Ancestral Pueblo people in 1150 A.D. Archeological studies show signs of human activity and occupation as far back as 8,000 B.C.

The ruins become known to American Settlers in 1827, when Jebediah Smith found artifacts while exploring the region. The Pueblo Grande a complex of villages, was first seen by white settlers forty years later in 1867. There is little interest in the area, the ruins or the story they had to tell, until 1924. John and Fay Perkins of Overton, Nevada, discovered the ruined complex. The “Lost City” captured the imagination of Nevada and soon became a tourist spot.

To the south of Overton Beach are prehistoric salt mines. Early inhabitants in the area mined salt from these caves. The mined salt is used for trade, survival and food preparation. During excavations in 1925 and 1926, many artifacts are discovered in the caves, including pottery, stone clubs, sandals and other items. These artifacts offered a limited glimpse into the daily lives of the people who worked the salt mines.

Flood Waters

Rising waters of Lake Mead swallowed some of the ruins, with the construction of Hoover Damn. The waters flooded the “Lost City”. The area has been the subject of numerous archeological studies which allow us to better understand the ancients peoples of the land. Today, the Lost City Museum of Archaeology in Overton continues to tell the story of the area and preserve the various artifacts discovered over the past two hundred years.

Nevada State Historic Marker Text

Indians of a highly developed civilization lived throughout Moapa Valley from 300-1100 A.D. Several hundred ancient pithouses, campsites, rockshelters, salt mines and caves of Anasazi people make up what is commonly known as “Lost City.” These people cultivated corn, beans and squash in fields irrigated by river water. They also gathered wild seeds and fruits and hunted widely for deer, antelope, desert bighorn sheep, small mammals and birds. They wove fine cotton cloth, fired beautifully painted and textured pottery and mined and traded salt and turquoise to coastal tribes for seashells. Early dwellings were circular pithouses below ground; later dwellings above ground were single-story adobes having up to 100 rooms.

Lake Mead, created by Hoover Dam, flooded the most intensively developed portion of Lost City.

Trail Map

Nevada State Historic Marker Summary

Nevada State Historic Marker No.41
NamePueblo Grande de Nevada
LocationClark County Nevada
Latitude, Longitude36.525, -114.4338


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