- Associated Press - Friday, August 5, 2016

CARLSBAD, N.M. (AP) - Crews conducting archaeological excavations for an electrical transmission line project southeastern New Mexico have uncovered 26,000 artifacts.

Xcel Energy said this week the team found ion Eddy County the American Indian items dating back 5,000 years.

The historic finds are believed to include a rare shallow basin pit house which was a form of shelter from the archaic period. Final testing is being conducted on the items.

William Whitehead, the lead archaeologist with SWCA Environmental Consultants, says scientist hope to use the items to analyze human behavior including diet and their environment.

After being examined the artifacts will be turned over to the Museum of Indian Arts and Culture in Santa Fe to be curated.

Xcel Energy is currently expanding infrastructure in southeastern New Mexico through 2020.

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