Dry Creek Rockshelter

Dry Creek Rockshelter near Boise, Idaho, is an archaeological site showing periodic use over approximately 3000 years. The site is located under a sandstone overhang, roughly 21 metres (69 ft) wide by 4 metres (13 ft) deep. The rockshelter is unique in that no other local sandstone outcrops are large enough for human habitation. The site was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1991, and the site address is listed as restricted.[2]

Dry Creek Rockshelter
Location of Boise in Idaho#Location in United States
Dry Creek Rockshelter (the United States)
Nearest cityBoise, Idaho
Coordinates43°37′N 116°12′W
Arealess than one acre
NRHP reference #910001719[1]
Added to NRHPNovember 22, 1991


The site was excavated under the direction of Gary S. Webster (Boise State University) [3]in 1978, revealing 13 stratigraphic levels, and all but three levels contained cultural artifacts. Seventeen hearths and two burials were uncovered at the site, and excavation found among other tools 125 projectile points. Obsidian materials were found in higher number than basalt and other stone materials, and the site included bone and antler tools and fragments. Radiocarbon dating of cultural material ranged from 3530 years BP to 1410 BP, and researchers have associated the site either with Great Basin Desert Cultures or with Columbia Plateau cultures.[2][4]


  1. "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. November 2, 2013.
  2. Kevin J. Peter; Lorraine S. Gross (June 30, 1991). "National Register of Historic Places Registration Form: Dry Creek Rockshelter" (PDF). Idaho State Historical Society. Retrieved April 15, 2019.
  3. Webster, G. 1978. Dry Creek Rockshelter: Cultural Chronology in the Western Snake River Region of Idaho ca. 4150 B.P. - 1300 B.P , (Tebiwa: Miscellaneous Papers of the Idaho State University Museum of Natural History 15), Pocatello
  4. "Harris Ranch Cultural Resources Survey" (PDF). Boise, Idaho: City of Boise. Retrieved April 15, 2019.
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