Mud, considered a nuisance in several areas of the globe, has been considered to be a chief building in different areas of the world. Clay soil is found in abundance on this planet, providing its inhabitants with sturdy homes. The remarkable thing about mud brick structures is their durability, with some mud brick buildings lasting for a thousand years.
Taos Pueblo is an ancient home in New Mexico, continuously inhabited for about 1,000 years by the Pueblo native folks. The mud brick homes are made from sun dried mud bricks, that are coated with an adobe plaster. Southwestern adobe is created of clay soil referred to as caliche, mixed with straw for additional strength. The walls are thick, and are re-plastered annually, as a part of a village ceremony. The roofs are made from cedar trees, and ladders aree used from the surface of the dwellings to reach the second flood.
Bam had its beginnings as a prosperous trading center on the famous Silk Road, during the Sassanian period (224-637 AD). Bam produced silk and cotton garments for trade. Located in southeastern Iran, Bam was constructed entirely of mud bricks made of clay soil and palm tree trunks. Thick walls, with 38 watchtowers protected the citadel, which covered 6 square kilometers, and contained a series of underground water canals, supporting about 12,000 people. Unfortunately, the 2003 earthquake in Bam destroyed more than half the city’s houses and the historic mud-brick citadel.
Earning its name for being tough to access, Timbuktu is placed in Mali, West Africa. The Djinguereber Mosque was made in 1325, and boasts unusual looking minarets with timbers poking out, reminiscent of American southwest’s Viga structures. Because Mali gets such sparse rain, the Djinguereber , made of mud and straw, maintains its kind and strength from its constant sun baths. As are several of the world’s mud buildings, this one once sat on a busy camel-traveled gold and salt route.
Another desert sanctuary, Khiva is actually a collection of mosques and madrasahs, found in the Kyzylkum desert of Uzbekistan. First constructed 2,500 years ago, purportedly by Shem, Noah’s oldest son, the ancient city was called Ichon-Qala (meaning within the wall). Ichon-Qala is encompassed by Khiva’s Wall, a 10 meter (33 ft) high rampart made of high quality clay. The clay was mined from a lake shore in Ghovuk Kul. It is said that Mohammed built Medina using clay mined from the same location.
Chan Chan, located in the Moche Valley of Peru may be a fascinating advanced of adobe mud buildings, supposed for the Chimu kings. Eleven citadels and a pyramid are enclosed within a 8 meter (26 ft high wall. Several of the structures seem to be absolutely preserved. In its heyday, Chan Chan contained large walk in wells. The Chimu were adept metallurgists, potters and woodworkers. Lower class peoples lived outside the walls of Chan Chan, reserving the living accommodations within the wall for royalty and their servants. In 2006 archaeologists discovered warrior statues carved into the wall of the Sea Palace.