"Pueblo Indians" is the generic label for American Indian groups of the Southwest who are descended from the Anasazi peoples who inhabited the American Southwest continuously from the eighth century A.D. Prior to Spanish arrival in and settlement of the Southwest beginning with Francisco Vásquez Coronado's expedition of 1540-1542 there were ninety or more Pueblo groups in northern Arizona and New Mexico. Today, twenty-one groups still exist, with all but two (the Hopi in Arizona and the Tigua in Texas) in northern New Mexico. Among distinguishing features of the Pueblo culture are long-term occupation of the region, permanent villages, distinctive stone or adobe pueblo dwellings built around central plazas, semisubterranean ceremonial chambers ( kivas), a traditional subsistence economy based on the irrigated cultivation of maize, squash, and beans, and extensive use of highly stylized coiled pottery. Of the extant Pueblo groups, seven speak Keresan, six speak Tewa, five speak Tiwa, and one each speak Hopi, Towa, and Zuni languages. For the purpose of discussion, the Pueblo groups are categorized on the basis of location: Eastern (near the Rio Grande in New Mexico) or Western (in mesa and canyon country in western New Mexico and eastern Arizona). Cultural variations among groups, however, do not conform neatly to these linguistic and geographical divisions.
Extensive archaeological research indicates that ancestors of some contemporary Pueblo groups had moved north from Mexico by at least 1000 B.C. Descendants of these groups then progressed through a series of cultural traditions culminating in the distinctive Anasazi culture, whose most notable feature was the cliff dwellings found in canyons in northern Arizona and New Mexico and southern Utah and Colorado. The contemporary cultures of the surviving Pueblo groups are an amalgam of the traditional culture as modified by Mexican, Spanish, Roman Catholic, Protestant, and European-American influences. Despite centuries of external influence, however, each group has maintained its identity as a distinct people. There are important differences among groups and sometimes within groups as regards adherence to traditional beliefs and practices, degree of integration into European-American society, and economic well-being. Today, Pueblo groups and manifestations of their culture, such as pottery, jewelry, dances, and so on, are an important tourist attraction and a major element in the New Mexico State economy. Pan-Pueblo interests are represented by the All Pueblo Council, though each group retains and emphasizes its cultural and political autonomy.
Acoma. There were 2,681 Indian inhabitants of the 245,672-acre Acoma Indian Reservation in 1980. The Reservation is located about sixty-five miles west of Albuquerque, New Mexico. Acoma Pueblo, located atop a 350-foot mesa, has been occupied for as long as a thousand years, making it, along with Oraibi, a Hopi village in Arizona, the two oldest, continuously occupied settlements in North America. Acoma is a western Keresan language and is still spoken, along with English. The current economy rests on cattle raising, tourism, the sale of pottery and other craft items, and mining on reservation land. The Acoma have retained much of their traditional culture.
Cochiti. There were 613 Indian inhabitants of the 28,776-acre Cochiti Indian Reservation in 1980. The reservation is about thirty miles southwest of Santa Fe, New Mexico. Cochiti is an eastern Keresan language and is spoken today, along with Spanish and English. Much of the traditional Culture is still followed, including the traditional form of government, religious and other ceremonies open only to the Cochiti, and the wearing of traditional-style clothing. At the same time, attempts have been made at economic development to take advantage of mineral wealth on reservation land.
Laguna. There were 3,564 Indian inhabitants of the 412,211-acre Laguna Indian Reservation in 1980 (the Reservation is actually in three parcels). It is located about forty-five miles west of Albuquerque, New Mexico. The major segment of the Acoma Reservation borders the Laguna Reservation on the west. Their name for themselves is "Kawiak," and Laguna is a western Keresan language. Laguna was settled by migrants from a number of other pueblos in 1697. Unlike other groups who live primarily in or near one village, the Laguna live in more than a half-dozen villages on the reservation. The group derives much income from royalties on uranium ore-mining leases and has invested strongly in economic development. Although more assimilated into Anglo society than most other Pueblo groups, the traditional language, religion, crafts, and ties to other groups are maintained.
San Felipe. There were 1,789 Indian inhabitants of the 48,853-acre San Felipe Indian Reservation in 1980. It is located twenty-five miles north of Albuquerque, New Mexico. Their name for themselves is "Katishtya." The San Felipe speak an eastern Keresan language. The contemporary Culture represents a mix of the traditional culture, modern Anglo culture, and Roman Catholicism.
Santa Ana. There were 407 Indian inhabitants of the 45,527-acre Santa Ana Indian Reservation in 1980. It is located twenty-three miles north of Albuquerque, New Mexico. The Santa Ana name for themselves is "Tanava," and they speak an eastern Keresan language. They now live mainly in the village of Ranchos de Santa Ana on the reservation, Returning to the traditional village for religious ceremonies.
Santo Domingo. There were 2,139 Indian inhabitants of the 69,260-acre Santo Domingo Indian Reservation in 1980. It is located about twenty-five miles southwest of Santa Fe, New Mexico. The Santo Damingo name for themselves is "Kiua," and they speak an eastern Keresan langauge. Despite regular contact with outsiders and participation in the Regional and national pottery and silver jewelry market, Santo Domingo remains one of the most conservative of the Pueblo groups. Their adherence to tradtional ways is manifested in the strength of the traditional religion, the regular use of the native language, the retention of traditional clothing, and the maintenance of traditional kin ties.
Zia. There were 524 Indian inhabitants of the 112,511-acre Zia Indian Reservation in 1980. It is located about twenty miles southwest of Santa Fe, New Mexico. Their name for themselves is "Tseya," and they speak an eastern Keresan language. The Zia are known for their distinctive pottery and for the accommodation they have forged between their traditional culture and Roman Catholicism.
Nambe. There were 188 Indian inhabitants of the 19,073-acre Nambe Indian Reservation in 1980. It is located fifteen miles northeast of Santa Fe, New Mexico. The Nambe speak Tewa, a Tanoan language. The Nambe were much influenced by neighboring Spanish communities, and much of the traditional culture has disappeared.
Pojoaque. There were 94 Indian residents of the 11,599-acre Pojoaque Indian Reservation in 1980. It is located fifteen miles north of Santa Fe, New Mexico. They speak Tewa, a Tanoan language. Almost extinct in the late 1800s, the Pojoaque have slowly increased in numbers, although they are largely assimilated into Anglo society.
San Ildefonso. There were 488 Indian inhabitants of the 26,192-acre San Ildefonso Indian Reservation in 1980. It is located eighteen miles northwest of Santa Fe, New Mexico. The San Ildefonso name for themselves is "Poxwogeh," and they have lived in their current location for seven hundred years. They speak Tewa, a Tanoan language. San Ildefonso was the center of the rebirth of American Indian arts and crafts in the 1920s, primarily through the world-famous black-on-black pottery of Maria Martinez. The modern pueblo combines traditional beliefs and practices with integration into the local economy and modern, adobe-style Community buildings.
San Juan. There were 851 Indian inhabitants of the 12,232-acre San Juan Indian Reservation in 1980. It is located twenty-four miles northwest of Santa Fe, New Mexico. The San Juan name for themselves is Okeh," and they speak Tewa, a Tanoan language. They are closely related to the neighboring Santa Clara. The San Juan have intermarried more with the Spanish than any other Pueblo group, though the traditional culture and language remain strong.
Santa Clara. There were 1,839 Indian inhabitants of the 45,744-acre Santa Clara Indian Reservation in 1980. It is located thirty miles northwest of Santa Fe, New Mexico. The Santa Clara name for themselves is "Xapogeh," and they speak Tewa, a Tanoan language. Although the language is still spoken and the traditional religion is practiced, the Santa Clara have been much involved in the external economy, Primarily through tourism and the sale of Santa Clara pottery.
Tesuque. There were 236 Indian inhabitants of the 16,810-acre Tesuque Indian Reservation in 1980. It is located ten miles north of Santa Fe, New Mexico. Their name for themselves is "Tetsugeh," and they speak Tewa, a Tanoan language. The Tesuque have lived in their current location for over seven hundred years. Roman Catholicism is followed, though it exists alongside the traditional religion. The Tesuque operate a large bingo hall and campground for tourists.
Isleta. There were 2,289 Indian inhabitants of the 210,937-acre Isleta Indian Reservation in 1980. It is located fifteen miles south of Albuquerque, New Mexico. Their name for themselves is "Tuei," and they speak southern Tiwa, a Tanoan language. The Pueblo was built around 1709 and counts as its current residents descendants of a number of Pueblo groups including the Hopi, Laguna, Acoma, and Isleta. Despite the closeness to Albuquerque, the Isleta have managed to maintain much of their traditional culture.
Picuris. There were 125 Indian inhabitants of the 14,947-acre Picuris Indian Reservation in 1980. It is located forty miles northeast of Santa Fe, New Mexico. Picuris Pueblo was founded nearly seven hundred years ago. The Picuris were Influenced by the Spanish, Plains Indians, and Apache and have been attempting to maintain the traditional culture. They speak northern Tiwa, a Tanoan language and are closely related to the nearby Taos.
Sandia. There were 227 Indian inhabitants of the 22,884-acre Sandia Indian Reservation in 1980. It is located fifteen miles north of Albuquerque, New Mexico. The Sandia name for themselves is "Nafiat," and they speak southern Tiwa, a Tanoan language. Although much of the traditional culture survives, it is under increasing pressure since the Sandia are much involved in tourism.
Taos. See Taos
Jemez. There were 1,504 Indian inhabitants of the 88,860-acre Jemez Indian Reservation in 1980. It is located forty-five miles northwest of Albuquerque, New Mexico. The Jemez name for themselves is "Walatowa," and they speak Towa, a Tanoan language. Jemez is also the home of the descendants of the people of Pecos Pueblo, southeast of Santa Fe, which was abandoned in the late 1880s. The Jemez were active participants in the Pueblo Revolt of 1680 amd subsequent Revolts. The Jemez maintain ties to the Navajo, which can be traced back to their alliance in the 1696 revolt against the Spanish.
Hopi. See Hopi
Zuni. See Zuni
Tigua. There were 365 Indian inhabitants on or near the three small (73 acres in all) state reservations near El Paso, Texas, in 1980. The Tigua migrated from Isleta in 1862 and are therefore not considered a distinct group by some experts. The Tigua have been much influenced by the nearby Mexican society and have retained less of the traditional culture than the other Pueblo groups to the north.
See also Keres ,
Ortiz, Alfonso, ed. (1979). Handbook of Indians of North America. Vol. 9, Southwest. Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian Institution.