Last updateFri, 13 Mar 2015 5pm

The forest ‘paved’ with obsidian, teeming with old mines, workshops

Recently, archaeologist Rodrigo Esparza gave a talk at Guadalajara’s City Museum on natural resources of indigenous peoples in this area before the Conquista. He mentioned to his audience the “Magic Circle” I have often written about, the confluence of all five of Mexico’s ecosystems within a radius of 250 kilometers around Guadalajara. 

While I have pointed out the advantages of this strategic location for ecotourism, Rodrigo Esparza noted that indigenous tribes were “cashing in” on Jalisco’s convenient location for at least 2,000 years. “Each ecosytem,” he said, “brings with it different plants and trees, animals and minerals and the native peoples living here could obtain whatever they wanted by means of trade, because they controlled the most valuable commodity in Mesoamerica: obsidian.”

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