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Native Americans were the first people to live in America. Learn more about the Pueblo tribe.

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Pueblo Tribe

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The Pueblo Indians are a group of many separate Native American tribes living in central to northern New Mexico today. Their ancestors were the ancient Cliff Dwellers and impressive designers of major stone scripting. Pueblos have left behind magnificent stone cities and villages on the plateaus and in the rugged sandstone cliffs of the Four Corners region of New Mexico, Arizona, Colorado and Utah. Many of the mythologies, ceremonies and cultural values of today's Pueblo Indians are direct descendants of the ancient Anasazi and Cliff Dwellers, carrying on into the 21st century a unique world view and peaceful way of life celebrated for generations.

The Pueblo landscape is made up of dry lands, twisty rivers, tall mesas and hills. Native men and women were experts in corn and squash, turquoise jewelry, woven blankets and beautiful fired earthen clay pottery. They have shared this corner of the world after a long migration many, many years ago. The people there today are called the Hopi, Santa Clara, San Idelfonso, Taos, Acoma, and live among other tribes sharing a similar reverence for their sacred land and ways of life.

Culture

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Cultural labels such as "Anasazi" (Hisatsinom), Hohokam or Mogollon are used by archaeologists to define cultural differences among prehistoric people. It is important to remember that culture names and divisions are assigned by individuals separated from the actual cultures by both time and space. This means that cultural divisions are by nature arbitrary, and are based solely on data available at the time of analysis and publication. They are subject to change, not only on the basis of new information and discoveries, but also as attitudes and perspectives change within the scientific community.

Archaeological research focuses on items left behind during people's activities; fragments of pottery vessels, human remains, stone tools or evidence left from the construction of dwellings. However, many other aspects of the culture of prehistoric peoples are not tangible. Languages spoken by these people and their beliefs and behavior are difficult to decipher from physical materials. Cultural divisions are tools of the modern scientist, and so should not be considered similar to divisions or relationships the ancient residents may have recognized.

The story we have chosen for The Eagle Expedition has been gathered from a group of stories illustrated and published by one of the most famous Native American Indian Woman Artists of this century, Pablita Velarde. In hoe book, Old Father the Storyteller; she shares a collection of stories from her native Santa Clara Pueblo, and provides paintings to illustrate their lessons. Dale Stuart King published old Father in 1960. The story we have selected is an excerpt from a longer story, and we call it The Journey Home.

Ancient Pueblo or Ancestral Puebloans is the preferred term for the group of people often known as Anasazi, who are the ancestors of the modern Pueblo peoples. Their descendants do not prefer the term "Anasazi", though there is still some controversy amongst them on a native alternative. The modern Hopi use the word "Hisatsinom" for the Anasazi. The word Anasazi is Navajo for "Ancient Ones" or "Ancient Enemy." The Ancestral Puebloans are also known for their unique style of pottery, today considered valuable for their rarity. The Ancestral Puebloans disappeared for as yet undetermined reasons. Many have speculated that a change in local climate and resulting agricultural failures may be the reason.

Taos Pueblo

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Taos Pueblo is the ancient town of the Northern Tiwa speaking tribe of Pueblo people, Native Americans. It lies about one mile north of modern Taos, New Mexico on the Rio Pueblo, a small stream that flows from the Sangre de Cristo Range. 95,000 acres (384 km²) are attached to the pueblo; about 2000 people live there. In their own language, the name of Taos is Tua-tah that means "our village." Taos' most prominent architectural feature is a multi-storied residential complex of reddish-brown adobe divided into two parts by the Rio Pueblo.

 

Books on the Pueblo

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Links to other sites on the Pueblo

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Ancestral Puebloans of the Southwest http://www.thefurtrapper.com/anasazi.htm
Anasazi and Pueblo Indians http://teacher.scholastic.com/researchtools/
researchstarters/native_am/
Tigua Indians of Texas http://www.texasindians.com/tigua.htm
Pueblo Indian Sign Language http://www.flagler.edu/about_f/gal/kelleymcgregor.html
Pueblo People http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pueblo_people
Pueblo - Leslie Marmon Silko http://www.blitz21.com/creativeweb/silko.html
 

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