The Nacachau, Nechaui and Nacono Tribes

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Across the Neches from the Nabedache, only a few leagues away, and adjoining the Neche tribe on the north, was the relatively little known tribe called by Jesus Maria the Nacachau, and by Hidalgo the Nacachao. We have seen that Jesus Maria described the Neche tribe as being separated from the Nabedache only by the Neches River. Later he says, “Toward the north, where the above-mentioned Necha tribe ends, is that called the Nacachau.” The Neche and Nacachau villages were thus close together. Near them the second mission of San Francisco was founded in 1716. Ramon says that the mission was founded in the village of the Naiches, and the “Padres Missioneros” say that it was for the “Naicha, Nabeitdâche, Nocono, and Nacâchao.”1

Southeast of the Neche and the Nabedache villages, according to Jesus Maria, were two villages half a league apart, called the Nechaui and the Nacono. Of the Nechaui we do not hear again, but from Pena (1721) we learn that the Nacono village, which he called El Macono, was five leagues below the Neches crossing. This would put the Nechaui and the Nacono villages five leagues down the Neches River, perhaps one on each side.2


  1. Jesus Maria, Relación, 1691, 107-108; Ramón, Derrotero (1716), in Mem. de Nueva Espana, XXVII, 158; Padres Missioneros, Representa-ción (1716), Ibid., 163; Peña, Diario (1721), Ibid., XXVIII, 38-41; Rivera, Diario (1727), leg., 2140; Bonilla, Breve Compendia, 1772, in THE QUARTERLY, VIII, 35, 38. As I have indicated above, the Memorias copy of Ram6n’s itinerary states that the mission was founded in the village of the “Nacoches,” a miscopy for “Naiches.” The map on page 256 was made before I discovered this error in the copy, which I had first used. My opinion now is that, with this correction, the sources would not be violated by placing the Nacachau tribe somewhat farther north than I have there represented it. 

  2. Jesus Maria, Relación, 108; Peña, Diario, op. cit., 36. As the Nacono visited Aguayo on the west side of the Neches, I have represented the village on that side in my map. Of course, the reason is a very slight one. Espinosa in his diary says that the Nasoni mission was founded for the Nacon6, but this seems to be a form of Nasoni, for by others it is uniformly called the mission of the Nasoni or of the Nadaco, or of both. See, Hidalgo, letter to Mesquia, October 6, 1716, in the Archive General. 

MLA Source Citation:

Bolton, Herbert E. The Native Tribes About The East Texas Mission's, Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association, April 1908. Web. 27 January 2015. - Last updated on Jun 27th, 2014

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