(Dense Bush Covering Mayflower Ruins)
Located along the Silk Grass Creek in the southern district of Stann
Creek, Belize, the Mayflower Maya Ruins complex encompasses two small ceremonial centers called Maintzunun
and T'au Witz.
Maintzunun means "small hummingbird." Ironically Maintzunun is
too big to be considered a residential structure and too small to be a minor ceremonial
Made of artificial construction the second noteworthy structure
at Mayflower site is called Tau Witz which means "dwelling of a local god of the hill." Tau Witz sits on a
raised, flat platform area.
Due to the size and arrangement of the platforms built up of
earth, boulders and sand as well as the careful terracing and construction of retaining walls imply that the
Mayflower Complex was a focal point for some kind of important local activity.
In 1975 areas to the south and west of Mayflower were being planted
with gmelina trees when these ruins were accidentally discovered. The first mapping of Mayflower ruins took
place that same year. Looking from Silk Grass Creek or walking past the site, there is nothing that makes
Maintzunun look like anything other than another small hill or mound in the local terrain as today, the site
is still covered by bush. However, these ruins are centered around a beautiful stream and waterfall which, no
doubt, served as great importance to Mayflower.
When excavation work was done at Mayflower small pieces of
pottery, a small stela and an unknown type of altar were unearthed. Too little information could be gathered
to either make any conclusive comments or even be able to accurately date Mayflower site from these
However, most obvious, was the fact that the first building at
the site must have involved substantial labor and quarrying. Large amounts of sand and boulders were used to
construct a sizable series of platforms on the site. These platforms were then topped with pole and thatch
Excavated evidence further suggests that a large pit had been dug in front of
Mayflower and burnt offerings of food were made to the Mayan gods. Excavation also revealed that a later phase of
occupation of this site had been destroyed by fire. Other excavations have recovered a small cylindrical incised
vessel around which a platform was built to support yet another thatch building.
All of these small details at Mayflower Maya ruins as well as other
minor archaeological sites help to reveal how the ordinary Mayan lived on a daily basis. ~