I am currently working on a book
on legal systems very different from ours, one chapter of which deals with the Plains Indians. One of my sources is an account by someone who was captured by Comanche, spent three years as their slave, and eventually escaped. It contains a description of some elaborate ruins that he claims to have observed.
saw, with infinite astonishment and surprise, the dilapidated ruins of a large
town. In the midst of the falling walls of a great number of buildings, which,
in some remote age, beyond doubt, had lined spacious streets, was what appeared
to have been a church or cathedral. Its walls of cut stone, two feet thick, and
in some places fifteen feet high, included a space measuring two hundred feet
in length, and, perhaps, one hundred in width. The inner surface of the walls
in many places was adorned with elaborate carved work, evidently the labor of a
master hand, and at the eastern end was a massive stone platform which seemed
to have been used as a stage or pulpit.” (Nelson
Lee, Three Years Among the Comanches, Baker Taylor Company, Albany, N.Y. 1859.)
was captured at a location that he describes as about 350 miles northwest of
Eagle Pass, which would put him at about the southeast corner of what is now
New Mexico, but traveled a substantial distance with his captors thereafter.
I am not aware of any ruins in the area that come close to fitting his description. It occurred to me that one of my readers might be. If, as I suspect, the description is fictional, intended to make a better story, that casts some doubts on other elements of his account more relevant to my interest in it.