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Tewa Tribe

Posted By Dennis Partridge On In Native American,New Mexico | No Comments

Tewa (‘moccasins,’ their Keresan name). A group of Pueblo tribes belonging to the Tanoan linguistic family, now (1905) occupying the villages of San Ildefonso, San Juan, Santa Clara, Nambe, Tesuque, and Hano, all except the last lying in the valley of the Rio Grande in north New Mexico. The pueblo of Hano, in the Hopi country of north east Arizona, dates from the time of the Pueblo revolt of 1680-92. Pojoaque was inhabited by Tewa until a few years ago, when intermarriage with Mexicans and the death of the few full-bloods made it practically a Mexican settlement. It had been supposed that the Tano, an offshoot of the Tewa in prehistoric times, spoke a dialect distinct from that of the Tewa, but recent studies by John P. Harrington show that the differences are so slight as to be negligible. In 1598 Juan de Ciliate named 11 of the Tewa pueblos and stated that there were others; 30 years later Fray Alonzo Benavides reported the population to be 6,000 in 8 pueblos. The population of the present 6 villages is about 1,200, San Juan, the largest, having 419, and Tesuque, the smallest, 86 inhabitants.

Each village of the Tewa is divided into two sections, the Winter people and the Summer people. According to Bandelier, “the dignity of chief penitent or cacique belongs alternately to each of these two groups. Thus the Summer cacique serves from the vernal equinox to the autumnal, and the Winter cacique from the autumnal to the vernal equinox. On very important occasions, however, the Oyiké or Winter cacique is inferior to his colleague.” Little is yet known of the social organization and religious institutions of the Tewa people, but there is evidence that at Nambe and Tesuque, at least, descent is reckoned in the male line, and that at the latter pueblo the law prohibiting marriage of persons belonging to the same clan is no longer strictly enforced.

Following are the villages formerly occupied by the Tewa, so far as the names have been recorded or applied:

  • Abechiu
  • Agawano
  • Analco
  • Axol
  • Camitria
  • Chipiinuinge
  • Chipiwi
  • Chupadero
  • Cuyamunque
  • Fejiu
  • Fesere
  • Homayo
  • Houiri
  • Ihamba
  • Jacona
  • Junetre
  • Kaayu
  • Keguayo
  • Kuapooge
  • Kwengyauinge
  • Luceros (partially)
  • Navahu
  • Navawi
  • Otowi
  • Perage
  • Pininicangwi
  • Pojiuuingge
  • Pojoagne
  • Ponyinumba
  • Ponyipakuen
  • Poseuingge
  • Potzuye
  • Pueblito
  • Pueblo Quemado (?)
  • Puye
  • Sajiuwingge
  • Sakeyu
  • Sandia (not the Tigua pueblo of that name)
  • Santa Cruz
  • Sepawi
  • Shufinne
  • Teeuinggee
  • Tejeuingge Ouiping
  • Tobhipangge
  • Triapi
  • Triaque
  • Troomaxiaquino
  • Tsankawi
  • Tsawarii
  • Tseweige
  • Tshirege
  • Yugeningge

The following extinct villages were either Tewa or Tano:

  • Chiuma
  • Guia
  • Guika
  • Peñas Negras

The following were inhabited by either the Tigua or the Tewa:

  • Axoytre
  • Camitre
  • Paniete
  • Piamato
  • Quioyaco

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