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Native Americans in Larimer County, Colorado
12,000 y.a. - 1878


This paper will provide a framework for human occupancy of the area currently designated 'Larimer County, Colorado' by indigenous peoples from prehistory until dispossession in 1878. Larimer County includes the drainages of the Big Thompson and Cache La Poudre rivers to the west and extends east to present day to Interstate-25, demarcations on the North and South are equally arbitrary based on modern politics (see Figure 1). Today the area is primary Plains grasslands but also includes foothills, mountains, and river habitats. Archaeological evidence indicates that the area has been used almost continuously from Paleo-Indian times up to the modern era by Paleo-Indians, by Archaic groups, and by Ceramic cultures. This paper will look at each of the major occupying peoples, the climate and resources available to them during their occupancy, their history before coming into the area, and explore why they left.


[Paleo-Indian Occupancy 12,000 - 7,500 BP]

[Archaic Occupancy 7,500 - 1,800 BP or 150 AD]

[Native American Occupancy Ceramic, 150 AD - 1850]



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