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Title: Reies López Tijerina and the Tierra Amarilla Courthouse Raid

Author(s): Southwest Crossroads Spotlight

A description of conflicts over land ownership in northern New Mexico. In the 1960s, Reies Lopez Tijerina organized the descendants of the original land grantees in a series of protests and demonstrations to recover their lands.

When the Spaniards claimed northern New Mexico as Spanish land in the 1600s, settlers from Spain and present-day Mexico formed ranching and farming communities on land long occupied by Native Americans. The Spanish authorities awarded land grants to ...

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Title: Navajo Painting: Trading through Paint, Pencil, and Paper

Author(s): Southwest Crossroads Spotlight

Use of sand paining and other art materials to depict ceremonial and daily life among the Navajo.

Navajo sand painting is a unique union of ceremony and art. Sand paintings, accompanied by healing songs, can restore a person to hozho. Hozho refers to balance, harmony, universal beauty, and health. A healer creates a sand painting on a hogan floor...

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Title: Zuni Salt Lake through the Lens of Time

Author(s): Southwest Crossroads Spotlight

Introduction to Salt Lake and its meanings.

In 1598, when Juan de Oñate colonized New Mexico, he sent Marcos Farfán to explore Zuni Salt Lake. Farfán reported that the lake was a marvelous thing; the entire surface was encrusted with salt, except for a place in the center where water bubble...

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Title: Villagrá’s Cantos

Author(s): Southwest Crossroads Spotlight

A brief introduction to Gaspar Pérez de Villagrá’s cantos describing the battle between the people of Acoma and the Spanish in 1598.

Gaspar Pérez de Villagrá accompanied Juan de Oñate on the Spanish expedition into Nuevo Mexico in 1598. Luckily for history, Villagrá was a poet who recorded the details of the adventures in the rhyming verse of his day. Villagrá modeled his His...

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Title: Who Were the Lipan and the Kiowa-Apaches?

Author(s): Southwest Crossroads Spotlight

An introduction to the Lipan and Kiowa-Apache peoples.

Two small Apache tribes, the Lipan and the Kiowa-Apache, lived on the western Great Plains during the early 1600s. Today they have become part of the other Apache tribes. Very few of those living today remember the Lipan and the Kiowa-Apache tribal ...

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Title: Navajo

Author(s): Southwest Crossroads Spotlight

Navajo history: early migration from Alaska and Canada to encounters with the Spanish and war with the United States; concludes with an account of contemporary Navajo life.

Traditional Navajo, or Diné, stories tell that First Man, First Woman, the Holy People, and all the animals had to pass through three different worlds before emerging into the Fourth or Glittering World. Here, the People saw four rivers bounded by f...

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Title: Zuni Silver

Author(s): Southwest Crossroads Spotlight

Introduction of silversmithing to the Southwest and Zunis.

The introduction of silver and silversmithing among the Indians in the Southwest dates from the middle of the 1800s. Mexican traders first introduced the Navajo to silver. Like pottery, migrations and trade among peoples spread jewelry-making designs...

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Title: Zuni

Author(s): Southwest Crossroads Spotlight

Introduction to Zuni

The Zuni, who call themselves A'shiwi, tell the story that long ago their gods cut off the peoples' tails, split the webs between their toes with stone knives, and led them from the underworld to seek their home in the center of the universe. When at...

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Title: The Churro

Author(s): Southwest Crossroads Spotlight

The introduction of churro sheep by the Spanish and their resulting importance to Navajo culture.

During the sixteenth century, the Spanish brought flocks of churro sheep to the Americas. The churro was an old and hardy breed originating in Spain. It could survive in rugged, dry terrain. Early Spanish, Pueblo, and Navajo weavers prized the long, ...

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Title: Hopi

Author(s): Southwest Crossroads Spotlight

An introduction to and overview of the Hopi material in Southwest Crossroads.

The villages of Hopi are the oldest continuously inhabited settlements in North America. Oraibi, the oldest village, dates back to about 1125 A.D. Present-day Hopis live in thirteen villages on and around three mesas in northern Arizona. For hundr...

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