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Title: Turquoise Mining in the Southwest

Author(s): Southwest Crossroads Spotlight

Turquoise mining among the Pueblos, Spanish, and Americans

Archaeologists have also found turquoise mines throughout Mesoamerica. One of the largest mines is in a mountain south of Santa Fe called Cuwimi Kai or Chalchihuitel—“a house inside which turquoise is found.” The Zuni often obtained...

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Title: Who Is Chakwaina?

Author(s): Southwest Crossroads Spotlight

Origins of the Chakwaina katsina.

In 1529, Spanish explorer Alvar Nuñez Cabeza de Baca and three companions survived a shipwreck at the mouth of what is now known as the Mississippi River. Esteban, a black Moorish slave, was among the survivors. For seven years, the four Spaniards w...

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Title: Acoma

Author(s): Southwest Crossroads Spotlight

An introduction to the history and culture of the people of Acoma.

Tribal elders say that Acoma (sometimes spelled Akome, Acuo, Acuco, Ako and A’ku-me) means “a place that always was.” Archaeologists have found artifacts at digs on Acoma Mesa that speak of prehistoric times. Like its near neighbors Hopi and Zu...

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Title: Declaration of Status

Source(s): Don Juan de Oñate, Colonizer of New Mexico, 1595-1628

Author(s): Isabel la mulata (Author); George Hammond (Editor); Agapito Rey (Editor)

Isabel, a woman of Indian and African descent, obtains proof of her freedom before traveling to New Mexico in 1600.

In the town of Querétaro in New Spain, January 8, 1600, there appeared before Don Pedro Lorenzo de Castilla, his majesty's alcalde mayor in this town, a mulatto woman named Isabel, who presented herself before his grace in the appropriate legal mann...

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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: How the Spaniards Came to Shung-opovi, How They Built a Mission, and How the Hopi Destroyed the Mission

Source(s): Truth of a Hopi

Author(s): Edmund Nequatewa (Author)

It may have taken quite a long time for these villages to be established. Anyway, every place was pretty well settled down when the Spanish came. The Spanish were first heard of at Zuni and then at Awatovi. They came on to Shung-opovi, passing Walpi....

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Title: Laguna

Author(s): Southwest Crossroads Spotlight

People from neighboring Acoma and other pueblos established Laguna Pueblo in the last years of the 1600s. In 1699, Governor Cubero of Nuevo México formally named the pueblo San José de la Laguna (“Saint Joseph of the Lake”). The name refers to ...

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Title: The Old Spanish Trail

Author(s): Southwest Crossroads Spotlight

A brief history of the Old Spanish Trail that traders traveled on between California and New Mexico.

Less well known today than the Old Santa Fe Trail, the Old Spanish Trail was a dynamic feature of the early days in the Spanish American Southwest. Long before the explorers and missionaries from Spain worked their way up from Old Mexico into Alta Ca...

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Title: The Utes

Author(s): Southwest Crossroads Spotlight

A brief history of the Utes.

The Utes call themselves Nunt’z, “the people.” In former times, the Utes roamed in eleven bands across much of Colorado, Utah, and parts of Arizona and New Mexico. Today they live on reservations in southern Colorado and eastern Utah. As many a...

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Title: Trading in the Americas

Author(s): Southwest Crossroads Spotlight

A brief overview of trading in the Americas.

For hundreds of years, indigenous people of the American Southwest, whether on the move or in permanent settlements, traded among themselves. Archeologists have found shells from the Pacific Ocean, parrot feathers from Mexico, and turquoise from dist...

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