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Encyclopedia > Navajo people
Navajo
(Diné)
Navajo medicine man
Total population

338,443 (2005 census) Download high resolution version (761x1024, 138 KB) Navajo medicine man - Nesjaja Hatali American Memory from the Library of Congress Nesjaja Hatali - Navaho (The North American Indian; v. ...

Regions with significant populations
United States (Arizona, New Mexico, Utah, California and Northern Mexico)
Languages
Navajo, English, Spanish
Religion
Navajo way, Christianity, Native American Church (NAC), other
Related ethnic groups
other Southern Athabascan peoples

The Navajo people (or Diné) of the Southwestern United States are the largest Native American tribe in North America, with 298,197 people claiming to be full or partial Navajo in the 2000 U.S. census.[1] The Navajo Nation constitutes an independent governmental body which manages the Navajo Indian reservation in the Four Corners area of the United States. The traditional Navajo language is still largely spoken throughout the region, although most Navajo also speak English fluently as well. The Navajo people call themselves Diné, which is translated "The People" in English. Official language(s) English Spoken language(s) English 74. ... For other uses, see New Mexico (disambiguation). ... This article is about the U.S. state. ... This article is about the U.S state. ... Reading Adahooniigii — The Navajo Language Monthly Navajo or Navaho (native name: Diné bizaad) is an Athabaskan language (of Na-Dené stock) spoken in the southwest United States by the Navajo people (Diné). It is geographically and linguistically one of the Southern Athabaskan languages (the majority of Athabaskan languages are spoken... The English language is a West Germanic language that originates in England. ... see Navajo mythology for the Navajo creation story. ... Topics in Christianity Preaching Prayer Ecumenism Relation to other religions Movements Music Liturgy Calendar Symbols Art Criticism Christianity Portal This box:      Christianity is a monotheistic[1] religion centered on the life and teachings of Jesus of Nazareth as presented in the New Testament. ... Native American Church Native American Church, a religious denomination which practices Peyotism or Peyote religion, originated in the U.S. state of Oklahoma, and is the most widespread indigenous religion among Native Americans. ... Southern Athabaskan (also Apachean) is a subfamily of Athabaskan languages spoken primarily in the North American Southwest (including Arizona, New Mexico, Colorado, Utah, Sonora) with two outliers in Oklahoma and Texas. ... The Southwest could be defined as the states south, or for the most part west of the Mississippi River, with the qualification of a certain northern limit, such as the 37, or 38, or 39, or 40 degree north line. ... This article is about the people indigenous to the United States and their history after European contact, chiefly in what is now the United States. ... The United States Census is a decennial census mandated by the United States Constitution. ... Map of the Navajo Nation The Navajo Nation (Diné in Navajo language) encompasses all things important to the Navajo. ... This article is about Native Americans. ... The Four Corners region is in the red area on this map The Four Corners Monument, placed by the Interior Department at the exact point. ... Reading Adahooniigii — The Navajo Language Monthly Navajo or Navaho (native name: Diné bizaad) is an Athabaskan language (of Na-Dené stock) spoken in the southwest United States by the Navajo people (Diné). It is geographically and linguistically one of the Southern Athabaskan languages (the majority of Athabaskan languages are spoken...

Contents

History

Early history

The Navajo speak dialects of the language family referred to as Athabaskan. In addition to Utah, Colorado, New Mexico, and Arizona, Athabaskan speakers are also found living in Alaska, through west-central Canada and in a few areas on the Pacific coast. Linguistic and cultural similarities indicate the Navajo and other Southern Athabaskan speakers, known today as Apache, were once a single ethnic group that probably came from the Great Slave Lake area having crossed the Bering land bridge thousands of years previously. In present-day Canada, an aboriginal people known as Diné still live in the far north, centered around Great Slave Lake but also with communities in the far north of adjacent provinces. Despite the thousand years that has elapsed, these people reportedly can still understand the language of their long-lost cousins, the Navajo.[citation needed] Archaeological and historical evidence suggests that the Navajo ancestors (linguistically called Apachean) entered the Southwest after 1000 AD, with substantial population increases occurring in the 13th century. The Spanish noted the presence of a significant population in the 16th century. Navajo oral traditions are said to retain references of this migration.[2] Athabaskan or Athabascan (also Athapascan or Athapaskan) is the name of a large group of distantly related Native American peoples, also known as the Athabasca Indians or Athapaskes, and of their language family. ... This article is about the U.S. state. ... Official language(s) English Demonym Coloradan Capital Denver Largest city Denver Largest metro area Denver-Aurora Metro Area Area  Ranked 8th in the US  - Total 104,185 sq mi (269,837 km²)  - Width 280 miles (451 km)  - Length 380 miles (612 km)  - % water 0. ... For other uses, see New Mexico (disambiguation). ... Official language(s) English Spoken language(s) English 74. ... For other uses, see Alaska (disambiguation). ... Southern Athabaskan (also Apachean) refers to members of the Athabaskan language family (including Navajo) spoken in the Northern American Southwest. ... For other uses, see Apache (disambiguation). ... Mackenzie River drainage basin showing Great Slave Lakes position in the Western Canadian Arctic Great Slave Lake (French: Grand lac des Esclaves) is the second-largest lake in the Northwest Territories of Canada (behind Great Bear Lake), the deepest lake in North America at 614 meters (2015 ft), and... Nautical chart of Bering Strait, site of former land bridge between Asia and North America The Bering land bridge, also known as Beringia, was a land bridge roughly 1,000 miles (1,600 km) north to south at its greatest extent, which joined present-day Alaska and eastern Siberia at...

Present-day primary locations of Southern Athabaskan peoples
Navajo winter hogan, Utah circa 1880
Navajo winter hogan, Utah circa 1880
Navajo cornfield, circa 1880
Navajo cornfield, circa 1880

Francisco Vásquez de Coronado observed Plains people ("dog nomads") wintering near the Pueblos in established camps, who may have included Navajo. In 1540 Coronado reported the modern Western Apache area as uninhabited, yet in the 1580s other Spaniards first mention Apache living west of the Rio Grande who shared corn with them. The early Athabaskan way of life complicates accurate dating, primarily because they constructed less durable dwellings than other Southwestern groups. They also left behind a more austere set of tools and material goods. Sites where early Athabaskans speakers may have lived are difficult to locate and even more difficult to identify firmly as culturally Athabaskan. Image File history File links Download high-resolution version (1173x574, 108 KB) // The present-day primary locations of Apachean peoples (including reservations and cities) Note that here Navajo is included as Apachean. ... Image File history File links Download high-resolution version (1173x574, 108 KB) // The present-day primary locations of Apachean peoples (including reservations and cities) Note that here Navajo is included as Apachean. ... Navajo winter hogan American Memory from the Library of Congress Winter (hogan) house built by Navajos : near Bluff City, Utah. ... Navajo winter hogan American Memory from the Library of Congress Winter (hogan) house built by Navajos : near Bluff City, Utah. ... Navajo cornfield American Memory from the Library of Congress Scene on the reservation : a typical Navajo cornfield. ... Navajo cornfield American Memory from the Library of Congress Scene on the reservation : a typical Navajo cornfield. ... Coronado Sets Out to the North, by Frederic Remington, 1861-1909 Francisco Vázquez de Coronado (c. ... The three chiefs--Piegan, by Edward S. Curtis The Plains Indians are the Indians who lived on the plains and rolling hills of the Great Plains of North America. ... It has been suggested that Pueblo be merged into this article or section. ... Links Western Apache-English Dictionary (White Mountain) White Mountain Apache Tribe (Arizona Intertribal Council) San Carlos Apache Tribe (Arizona Intertribal Council) Tonto Apache Tribe (Arizona Intertribal Council) Yavapai-Apache Nation Official Website Yavapai-Apache Nation (Arizona Intertribal Council) White Mountain Apache Tribe White Mountain Apache photographs map of Fort Apache... “Río Bravo” redirects here. ...


Whenever the Navajo actually arrived, they occupied areas the Pueblos peoples had abandoned during prior centuries. The Navajo people traditionally hold the four sacred mountains as the boundaries of the homeland they should never leave: Blanca Peak (Tsisnaasjini' — Dawn or White Shell Mountain) in Colorado, Mount Taylor (Tsoodzil — Blue Bead or Turquoise Mountain) in New Mexico, the San Francisco Peaks (Doko'oosliid — Abalone Shell Mountain) in Arizona, and Hesperus Mountain (Dibé Nitsaa — Big Mountain Sheep) in Colorado. Blanca Peak (elevation 14,345 ft) is the fourth highest mountain in the U.S. state of Colorado. ... This article is about the volcano in New Mexico. ... The San Francisco Peaks, with the Wupatki National Monument in the foreground Composite image of the mountains, from satellite imagery projected onto an elevation model. ... Hesperus Mountain or Hesperus Peak is a peak in the La Plata Mountains, a small subrange of the San Juan Mountains, which in turn are a subrange of the Rocky Mountains in Colorado, United States. ...


Navajo oral history seems to indicate a long relationship with Pueblo people[3] and a willingness to adapt ideas into their own culture. Trade between the long-established Pueblo peoples and the Athabaskans was important to both groups. The Spanish records say by the mid 16th century, the Pueblos exchanged maize and woven cotton goods for bison meat, hides and material for stone tools from Athabaskans who either traveled to them or lived around them. In the 18th century the Spanish report that the Navajo had large numbers of livestock and large areas of crops. The Navajo probably adapted many Pueblo ideas, as well as practices of early Spanish settlers, into their own very different culture. This article is about the maize plant. ... For other uses, see Cotton (disambiguation). ... Binomial name (Linnaeus, 1758) Subspecies B. b. ...


The Spanish first use the word Navajo ("Apachu de Nabajo") specifically in the 1620s, referring to the people in the Chama valley region east of the San Juan River and northwest of Santa Fe. By the 1640s, the term Navajo was applied to these same people. The Spanish recorded in 1670s they were living in a region called Dinetah, which was about sixty miles (100 km) west of the Rio Chama valley region. In the 1780s the Spanish were sending military expeditions against the Navajo in the southwest and west of that area, in the Mount Taylor and Chuska Mountain regions of New Mexico. Categories: Stub | Colorado rivers | Utah rivers ... Dinetah, or Dinétah, is the traditional homeland of the Navajo tribe of Native Americans. ...


Navajos seem to have a history in the last 1,000 years of expanding their range, refining their self identity and their significance to others. This probably resulted from a cultural combination of Endemic warfare(raids) and commerce with the Pueblo, Apache, Ute, Comanche and Spanish people, set in the changing natural environment of the Southwest. Endemic warfare is the state of continual, low-threshold warfare in a tribal warrior society. ... A raid is a brief attack, normally performed by a small military force of commandos, or by irregulars. ... For other uses, see Comanche (disambiguation). ...


Conflict with Europeans

Navajo conflicts with European invaders spanned over a 300 year period. From a Navajo perspective, Europeans were considered another tribe. Traditionally, different towns, villages or pueblos were probably viewed as separate tribes or bands by Navajo groups. The Navajo Wars were fought during the nineteenth century between the U.S. military and many western tribes. ...


The Spanish started to establish a military force along the Rio Grande in the 17th century to the east of Dinetah (the Navajo homeland). Spanish records indicate that Apachean groups (that might include Navajo) allied themselves with the Pueblos over the next 21 years, successfully pushing the Spaniards out of this area following the Pueblo Revolt of 1680. Raiding and trading were part of traditional Apachean and Navajo culture, and these activities increased following the introduction of the horse by the Spaniards, which increased the efficiency and frequency of raiding expeditions. The Spanish established a series of forts that protected new Spanish settlements and also separated the Pueblos from the Apacheans. The Spaniards and later Mexicans recorded what are called punitive expeditions among the Navajo that also took livestock and human captives. The Navajo in turn raided settlements far away in a similar manner. This pattern continued, with the Athabaskan groups apparently growing to be more formidable foes through the 1840s until the United States Army arrived in the area. Dinetah, or Dinétah, is the traditional homeland of the Navajo tribe of Native Americans. ... 1680-The Pueblo Revolt, by George Chacón, Taos Mural Project The Pueblo Revolt of 1680 or Popés Rebellion was an uprising of many pueblos of the Pueblo people against Spanish colonization of the Americas in the New Spain province of New Mexico. ... The United States Army is the largest, and by some standards oldest, established branch of the armed forces of the United States and is one of seven uniformed services. ...


New Mexico Territory

Manuelito, Navajo chief
Manuelito, Navajo chief

Officially, the Navajos first came in contact with forces of the United States of America in 1846 when General Stephen W. Kearny invaded Santa Fe with 1,600 men during the Mexican American War. The Navajo did not recognize the change of government as legitimate. In September, Kearny sent two detachments to raid and subdue the Navajo. Kearny later took 300 men on an expedition to California from Santa Fe. As they traveled past Navajo homelands, his force lost livestock. He ordered another expedition against the Navajo, and this resulted in the first treaty with the United States government in November at Canyon de Chelly. Download high resolution version (368x640, 26 KB)Manuelito, Navajo chief American Memory from the Library of Congress Manuelito, the once fierce chief of the Navajo CREATED/PUBLISHED [between 1887 and 1901]. SUMMARY Studio portrait (sitting) of Manuelito, a Native American (Navajo) man. ... Download high resolution version (368x640, 26 KB)Manuelito, Navajo chief American Memory from the Library of Congress Manuelito, the once fierce chief of the Navajo CREATED/PUBLISHED [between 1887 and 1901]. SUMMARY Studio portrait (sitting) of Manuelito, a Native American (Navajo) man. ... Manuelito, Navajo chief Manuelito (1818-1893) was one of the principle war chiefs of the Navajo people before, during and after the Long Walk Period. ... Portrait of Stephen W. Kearny Stephen Watts Kearny (August 30, 1794–October 31, 1848) was a United States Army officer, noted for action in the southwest during the Mexican-American War, in particular in the conquest of California. ... Nickname: Location in Santa Fe County, New Mexico Coordinates: , Country State County Santa Fe Founded ca. ... The Mexican-American War was a war fought between the United States and Mexico between 1846 and 1848. ... ...


In the next 10 years, the U.S. established forts in traditional Navajo territory. Military records state this was to protect citizens and Navajo from each other. However the old Spanish/Mexican-Navajo pattern of raids and expeditions against one another continued. New Mexican (citizen and militia) raids increased rapidly in 1860–61 earning it the Navajo name Naahondzood, "the fearing time." They also have to eat other things to survive.


In 1861 Brigadier-General James H. Carleton, the new commander of the Federal District of New Mexico, initiated a series of military actions against the Navajo. Colonel Kit Carson was ordered by Carleton to conduct expedition into Navajoland and receive their surrender on July 20, 1863. A few Navajo surrendered. Carson was joined by a large group of New Mexican militia volunteer citizens and these forces moved through Navajo land killing Navajos and destroying any Navajo crops, livestock or dwellings they came across. Facing starvation, Navajos groups started to surrender in what is known as The Long Walk. James Henry Carleton (December 27, 1814 – January 7, 1873) was an officer in the Union army during the Civil War. ... For other uses, see New Mexico (disambiguation). ... Kit Carson Christopher Houston Kit Carson (December 24, 1809 – May 23, 1868) was an American frontiersman. ... is the 201st day of the year (202nd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1863 (MDCCCLXIII) was a common year starting on Thursday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Tuesday of the 12-day slower Julian calendar). ... The Long Walk The Long Walk of the Navajo, also called the Long Walk to Bosque Redondo, was a 20 day or more foot walk many Navajos made in 1864 to a reservation in southeastern New Mexico. ...

Navajo prisoners of Kit Carson in 1864 forced on what Navajo call "the Long Walk"

Image File history Links Navajo_prisoners_of_Kit_Carson_year_1864_forcet_on_Long_Walk. ... Image File history Links Navajo_prisoners_of_Kit_Carson_year_1864_forcet_on_Long_Walk. ...

Long Walk

Starting in the spring of 1864, around 9,000 Navajo men, women and children were forced on The Long Walk of over 300 miles (480 km) to Fort Sumner, New Mexico. This was the largest reservation attempted by the U.S. government. It was a failure for a combination of reasons. It was designed to supply water, wood, supplies, and livestock for 4,000–5,000 people, it had one kind of crop failure after another, other tribes and civilians were able to raid the Navajo, and a small group of Mescalero Apaches had been moved there. In 1868 a treaty was negotiated that allowed the surviving Navajos to return to a reservation that was a portion of their former range. The Long Walk The Long Walk of the Navajo, also called the Long Walk to Bosque Redondo, was a 20 day or more foot walk many Navajos made in 1864 to a reservation in southeastern New Mexico. ... Fort Sumner was a military fort in De Baca County in southeastern New Mexico charged with the internment of Navajo and Mescalero Apache populations from 1863-1868 at nearby Bosque Redondo. ... Gorgonia, Mescalero Medicine Man This article is about the Native American tribe; for other uses of the word see Mescalero (disambiguation). ... This article is about Native Americans. ...


Reservation life

The military continued to maintain the forts. Some Navajo were employed by the military as "Indian Scouts" through 1895. A Navajo Tribal Police operated between 1872 and 1875 and was used by the Navajo themselves to stop raiders from their tribe; it was created by Manuelito. The U.S. Army employed Navajos as Indian Scouts between 1873 and 1895, which included the Apache Wars. ... Navajo Tribal Police is the law enforcement agency on the Navajo Nation. ... Manuelito, Navajo chief Manuelito (1818-1893) was one of the principle war chiefs of the Navajo people before, during and after the Long Walk Period. ...


By treaty, the Navajo people were allowed to leave the reservation with permission to trade. Raiding by the Navajo essentially stopped, because they were able to increase the size of their livestock and crops, and not have to risk losing them to others. However, while the initial reservation increased from 3.5 million acres (14,000 km²) to the 16 million acres (65,000 km²) of today, economic conflicts with the non-Navajo continued. Civilians and companies raided resources that had been assigned to the Navajo. Livestock grazing leases, land for railroads, mining permits are a few examples of actions taken by agencies of the U.S. government who could and did do such things on a regular basis.

Navajo woman & child
Navajo woman & child

Regional newspapers have many accounts of Navajo and non-Navajo conflicts in this period. These conflicts were often embellished by regional politicians. In some of these accounts, every Navajo was just about to leave the reservation and pillage the country side or worse. While it is probably true that some Navajo strayed, it is equally true that some white citizens clearly strayed from the laws of the land themselves. In their reports, the U.S. Military never seemed to be that alarmed about a Navajo uprising, and they clearly did not want the Navajo stirred up by their neighbors. Download high resolution version (443x640, 43 KB) Navajo woman & child American Memory from the Library of Congress Navajo CREATED/PUBLISHED [between 1880 and 1910]. SUMMARY Studio portrait of a Native American (Navajo) woman with a child in a cradleboard on her back. ... Download high resolution version (443x640, 43 KB) Navajo woman & child American Memory from the Library of Congress Navajo CREATED/PUBLISHED [between 1880 and 1910]. SUMMARY Studio portrait of a Native American (Navajo) woman with a child in a cradleboard on her back. ...


In 1883, Lt. Parker went up to the San Juan River to separate Navajos and citizens who encroached on Navajo land with 10 enlisted men and 2 scouts. In the same year, Lt. Lockett with the aid of 42 enlisted soldiers were joined by Lt. Holomon at Navajo Springs. Evidently the citizens of the surname(s) Houck and/or Owens had murdered a Navajo chief's son and 100 armed Navajos were consequently looking for them.


In 1887, the citizens Palmer, Lockhart, and King fabricate a charge of horse stealing and attack a random home on the reservation. Two Navajo men and all 3 whites died, but a woman and a child survived. Capt Kerr (with 2 Navajo scouts) examined the ground and then met with several hundred Navajo at Houcks Tank. Rancher Bennett, whose horse was allegedly stolen, pointed out to Kerr that his horses were stolen by the 3 whites to catch a horse thief. In the same year, Lt. Scott went to the San Juan River with 2 scouts and 21 enlisted men. The Navajo believed Lt. Scott was there to drive off the whites who have settled on the reservation and have fenced off the river from the Navajo. Scott tells them to wait, and he finds evidence of many non-Navajo ranches. However, only 3 are active, and the owners refuse to leave, wanting payment for their improvements. Scott ejected them.


In 1890, a local rancher refuses to pay the Navajo a fine of livestock. The Navajos tried to collect it, and whites in southern Colorado and Utah claim that 9,000 of the Navajo people are on a warpath. A small military detachment out of Fort Wingate restores white citizens to order.


In 1913, an Indian agent orders a Navajo and his 3 wives to come in, and then arrests them for having a plural marriage. A small group of Navajo use force to free the women and retreat to Beautiful Mountain with 30 or 40 sympathizers. They refuse to surrender to the agent, and local law enforcement and military refuse the agent's request for an armed engagement. General Scott arrives, and with the help of Chee Dodge, defuses the situation.


In the 1930s, the United States government took action against the Navajo that was as culturally and economically devastating as the Long Walk. The United States government claimed Navajo's livestock was overgrazing the land. In another experiment, it decided to immediately kill over 80% of their livestock in what is known as the Navajo Livestock Reduction and start a permit system. The Navajo Livestock Reduction was imposed upon the Navajo Nation by the federal government in the 1930s. ...


Culture

A Navajo boy riding horseback, in 2007, in Monument Valley, Arizona
A Navajo boy riding horseback, in 2007, in Monument Valley, Arizona

The name "Navajo" comes from the late 18th century via the Spanish (Apaches de) Navajó "(Apaches of) Navajó", which was derived from the Tewa navahū "fields adjoining a ravine". The Navajo call themselves Diné, which is translated to mean "the people" (most Native American groups call themselves by names that mean "the people"). Nonetheless, most Navajo now acquiesce to being called "Navajo." Image File history File links Size of this preview: 670 × 600 pixelsFull resolution (1675 × 1500 pixel, file size: 664 KB, MIME type: image/jpeg) File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... Image File history File links Size of this preview: 670 × 600 pixelsFull resolution (1675 × 1500 pixel, file size: 664 KB, MIME type: image/jpeg) File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ...


Traditionally, like other Apacheans, the Navajo were semi-nomadic in the 16th century into the 20th century. Their extended kinship groups would have seasonal dwelling areas to accommodate livestock, agriculture and gathering practices. As part of their traditional economy, Navajo groups may have formed trading or raiding parties, traveling relatively long distances. For the 2006 historical epic set in Kazakhstan, see Nomad (2006 film). ...

A Navajo man working as a tourist guide, in 2007, in Monument Valley, Arizona
A Navajo man working as a tourist guide, in 2007, in Monument Valley, Arizona

Historically, the structure of the Navajo society is largely a matrilocal system in which only women were allowed to own livestock and land. Once married, a Navajo man would move into his bride's dwelling and clan since daughters (or, if necessary, other female relatives) were traditionally the ones who received the generational inheritance. Any children are said to belong to the mother's clan and be "born for" the father's clan. The clan system is exogamous, meaning it was, and mostly still is, considered a form of incest to marry or date anyone from any of a person's four grandparents clans. Image File history File links Size of this preview: 593 × 599 pixelsFull resolution (1787 × 1806 pixel, file size: 408 KB, MIME type: image/jpeg) Template:Information Navajo guide for tourists in Monument Valley, Arizona File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert... Image File history File links Size of this preview: 593 × 599 pixelsFull resolution (1787 × 1806 pixel, file size: 408 KB, MIME type: image/jpeg) Template:Information Navajo guide for tourists in Monument Valley, Arizona File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert... This article needs to be cleaned up to conform to a higher standard of quality. ... Exogamy has two related definitions, both biological and cultural. ...

Navajo hogan
Navajo hogan

A hogan is the traditional Navajo home. For those who practice the Navajo religion the hogan is considered sacred. The doorway of the hogan was opened to the east so they could welcome the sun. The religious song "The Blessingway" describes the first hogan as being built by Coyote with help from beavers to be a house for First Man, First Woman, and Talking God. The Beaver People gave Coyote logs and instructions on how to build the first hogan. Navajos made their hogans in the traditional fashion until the 1900s, when they started to make them in hexagonal and octagonal shapes. Today they are rarely used as actual dwellings, but are maintained primarily for ceremonial purposes. Image File history File links Size of this preview: 800 × 600 pixelsFull resolution (2240 × 1680 pixel, file size: 804 KB, MIME type: image/jpeg) {{Information Le hogan est la maison traditionnelle des Indiens Navajos. ... Image File history File links Size of this preview: 800 × 600 pixelsFull resolution (2240 × 1680 pixel, file size: 804 KB, MIME type: image/jpeg) {{Information Le hogan est la maison traditionnelle des Indiens Navajos. ... many types of hogans any articles owned by family set in or by the house Navajo winter hogan A hogan or hoghan (pronounced IPA or , from Navajo hooghan, ) is the primary traditional home of the Navajo people. ... The Blessingway is one half of the Navajo song ceremonial complexes, the other half being the Enemyway. ...


Arts and craftsmanship

Navajo weaver with sheep
Navajo weaver with sheep

Silversmithing is said to have been introduced to the Navajo while in captivity at Fort Sumner in eastern New Mexico in 1864. At that time Atsidi Saani learned the silversmithing and began teaching others the craft as well. By 1880 Navajo silversmiths were creating handmade jewelry including bracelets, tobacco flasks, necklaces, bow guards and eventually evolved into earrings, buckles, bolos, hair ornaments and pins. Turquoise had been used with jewelry by the Navajo for hundreds of years, but they did not use turquoise inlay. Image File history File links Download high resolution version (527x640, 52 KB)Navajo sheep & weaver American Memory from the Library of Congress Navajo weaver / C Pennington. ... Image File history File links Download high resolution version (527x640, 52 KB)Navajo sheep & weaver American Memory from the Library of Congress Navajo weaver / C Pennington. ... Handmade jewelry is that which is crafted by hand, just as jewelry has been since it was very first created by humans. ... Pairs of earrings for sale at a roadside stand in Costa Rica An earring is an ornament that is worn in the ear. ... Buckles is a comic strip by David Gilbert about the misadventures of naïve dog. ... Bolos can be: An alternate Latin rendition of Volos (Βόλος), a city in Greece The plural of bolo, which has many meanings Category: ... For other uses, see Turquoise (disambiguation). ... Jewelry (the American spelling; spelled jewellery in Commonwealth English) consists of ornamental devices worn by persons, typically made with gems and precious metals. ...


Though some people say the Navajo learned the art of weaving from the Ute Tribe, the origins of Navajo weaving may never be known. The first Spaniards to visit the region wrote about seeing Navajo blankets. By the 18th century the Navajo had begun to import yarn with their favorite color, Bayeta red. Using an upright loom the Navajos made almost exclusively utilitarian blankets. Little patterning and few colors on almost all blankets, except for the much sought after Chief's Blanket, which evolved from the 1st Phase, few wide bands, to the 2nd phase, wide bands with squares on the corners, to the 3rd Phase, which made more and more use of patterns and colors. Around the same time the Navajo people, who had long started traded for commercial wool, often from the uniforms of soldiers, rewove these into intricate multicolored blankets called Germantown. The Utes (; yoots) are an ethnically related group of American Indians now living primarily in Utah and Colorado. ...

Navajo art
Navajo art

Some early European settlers moved in and set up trading posts, often buying Navajo Rugs by the pound and selling them back east by the bale. Still these traders encouraged the locals to weave blankets and rugs into distinct styles. They included "Two Gray Hills" (predominantly black and white, with traditional patterns), "Teec Nos Pos" (colorful, with very extensive patterns), "Ganado" (founded by Don Lorenzo Hubbell), red dominated patterns with black and white, "Crystal" (founded by J. B. Moore), oriental and Persian styles (almost always with natural dyes), "Wide Ruins", "Chinlee", banded geometric patterns, "Klagetoh", diamond type patterns, "Red Mesa" and bold diamond patterns. Many of these patterns exhibit a fourfold symmetry, which is thought by Gary Witherspoon to embody traditional ideas about harmony or Hozh. Image File history File links Metadata Size of this preview: 800 × 539 pixelsFull resolution (2560 × 1726 pixel, file size: 728 KB, MIME type: image/jpeg) Template:Information Navajo - art (peinture) File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... Image File history File links Metadata Size of this preview: 800 × 539 pixelsFull resolution (2560 × 1726 pixel, file size: 728 KB, MIME type: image/jpeg) Template:Information Navajo - art (peinture) File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... Navajo Rugs and Blankets, are textiles produced by Navajo people(or Dine) of the Four Corners area of the United States. ... Navajo Rugs and Blankets, are textiles produced by Navajo people(or Dine) of the Four Corners area of the United States. ... Don Lorenzo Hubbell (November 27, 1853 - November 12, 1930) was a 19th century trader instrumental in promoting the sale of Navajo art. ... A traditional craftsman mending a rug in Isfahan. ... For other uses, see Mesa (disambiguation). ... Gary J. Witherspoon is Professor of American Indian studies at the University of Washington. ...


Healing and spiritual practices

Navajo man in ceremonial dress with mask and body paint, c. 1904.
Navajo man in ceremonial dress with mask and body paint, c. 1904.

Navajo spiritual practice is about restoring health, balance, and harmony to a person's life. One exception to the concept of healing is the Beauty Way ceremony: the Kinaaldá, or a female puberty ceremony. Others include the Hooghan Blessing Ceremony and the "Baby's First Laugh Ceremony." Otherwise, ceremonies are used to heal illnesses, strengthen weakness, and give vitality to the patient. Ceremonies restore Hozhò, or beauty, harmony, balance, and health. many types of hogans any articles owned by family set in or by the house Navajo winter hogan A hogan or hoghan (pronounced IPA or , from Navajo hooghan, ) is the primary traditional home of the Navajo people. ...


When suffering from illness or injury, Navajos will traditionally seek out a certified, credible Hatałii (medicine man) for healing, before turning to Western medicine (e.g., hospitals). The medicine man will use several methods to diagnose the patient's ailments. This may include using special tools such as crystal rocks, and abilities such as hand-trembling and Hatał (chanting prayer). The medicine man will then select a specific healing chant for that type of ailment. Short prayers for protection may only take a few hours, and in some cases, the patient is expected to do a follow-up afterwards. This may include the avoidance of sexual relations, personal contact, animals, certain foods, and certain activities; it is not unlike a doctor's advice.


Possible causes of ailments could be the result of violating taboos. Contact with lightning-struck objects, exposure to taboo animals such as snakes, and contact with the dead are some of reasons for healing. Protection ceremonies, especially the Blessing Way Ceremony, are used for Navajos that leave the boundaries of the four sacred mountains, and is used extensively for Navajo warriors or soldiers going to war. Upon re-entry, there is an Enemy Way Ceremony, or Nidáá', performed on the person, to get rid of the evil things in his/her body, and to restore balance in his/her life. This is also important for Navajo warriors/soldiers returning from battle. Warriors or soldiers often suffer spiritual or psychological damage from participating in warfare, and the Enemy Way Ceremony helps restore harmony to the person, mentally and emotionally.


There are also ceremonies used for curing people from curses. Many people often complain of witches and skin-walkers that do harm to their minds, bodies, and even families. Ailments aren't necessarily physical. It can take any form it wishes. The medicine man is often able to break the curses that witches and skin-walkers put on families. Mild cases do not take very long, but for extreme cases, special ceremonies are needed to drive away the evil spirits. In these cases, the medicine man may find curse objects implanted inside the victim's body. These objects are used to cause the person pain and illness. Examples of such objects include bone fragments, rocks and pebbles, bits of string, snake teeth, owl feathers, and even turquoise jewelry. There are a number of beliefs in traditional Navajo culture relating to practices which, in English, are all referred to as witchcraft. ... In Native American and Norse legend, a skin-walker is a person with the supernatural ability to turn into any animal he or she desires. ...


There are said to be approximately fifty-eight to sixty sacred ceremonies. Most of them last four days or more; to be most effective, they require that relatives and friends attend and help out. Outsiders are often discouraged from participating in case they become a burden to others or violate a taboo. This could affect the turnout of the ceremony. The ceremony must be done in precisely the correct manner to heal the patient. This includes everyone that is involved.


Medicine men must be able to correctly perform a ceremony from beginning to end. If he does not, the ceremony will not work. Training a Hatałii to perform ceremonies is extensive, arduous, and takes many years, and is not unlike priesthood, with the governing body or hierarchy omitted. The apprentice learns everything by watching his teacher, and memorizes the words to all the chants. Many times, a medicine man cannot learn all sixty of the ceremonies, so he will opt to specialize in a select few.


The origin of spiritual healing ceremonies dates back to Navajo mythology. It is said the first Enemy Way ceremony was performed for Changing Woman's twin sons (Monster Slayer and Born-For-the-Water) after slaying the Giants (the Yé'ii) and restoring Hozhó to the world and people. The patient identifies with Monster Slayer through the chants, prayers, sandpaintings, herbal medicine and dance. Sandpainting is the art of painting ritual paintings for religious or healing ceremonies. ...


Another Navajo healing, the Night Chant ceremony, is administered as a cure for most types of head ailments, including mental disturbances. The ceremony, conducted over several days, involves purification, evocation of the gods, identification between the patient and the gods, and the transformation of the patient. Each day entails the performance of certain rites and the creation of detailed sand paintings. On the ninth evening a final all-night ceremony occurs, in which the dark male thunderbird god is evoked in a song that starts by describing his home:

In Tsegihi [White House],
In the house made of the dawn,
In the house made of the evening light
(Sandner, p. 88)

The medicine man proceeds by asking the Holy People to be present, then identifying the patient with the power of the god and describing the patient's transformation to renewed health with lines such as "Happily I recover." (Sandner, p. 90). The same dance is repeated throughout the night, about forty eight times. Altogether the Night Chant ceremony takes about ten hours to perform, and ends at dawn.


See also

Navajo-Churro sheep are descended from the Churra, an ancient Iberian breed. ... Black Indians is a term generally used to describe Americans who have significant traces of both sub-Saharan African and Native American or Indigenous American ancestry. ... It has been suggested that List of Native American tribes be merged into this article or section. ... This article is about the people indigenous to the United States and their history after European contact, chiefly in what is now the United States. ... For other uses, see Navajo (disambiguation). ... Map of the Navajo Nation The Navajo Nation (Diné in Navajo language) encompasses all things important to the Navajo. ... Reading Adahooniigii — The Navajo Language Monthly Navajo or Navaho (native name: Diné bizaad) is an Athabaskan language (of Na-Dené stock) spoken in the southwest United States by the Navajo people (Diné). It is geographically and linguistically one of the Southern Athabaskan languages (the majority of Athabaskan languages are spoken... The Navajo are a tribe of Native Americans who live in the southwestern United States. ... The term Navajo Pueblitos, also known as Dinetah Pueblitos, refers to a class of archaeological sites that are found in the northwestern corner of the American state of New Mexico. ...

Notes

  1. ^ The American Indian and Alaska Native Population: 2000. Census 2000 Brief (2002-02-01). Retrieved on 2007-03-10.
  2. ^ For example, the Great Canadian Parks website suggests that the Navajo may be descendants the lost Naha tribe, a Slavey tribe from the Nahanni region west of Great Slave Lake. Nahanni National Park Reserve. Great Canadian Parks. Retrieved on 2007-07-02.
  3. ^ Hosteen Klah page 102 and others

Also see: 2002 (number). ... is the 32nd day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) was a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar in the 21st century. ... is the 69th day of the year (70th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... The Slavey (comprised of two groups, North and South Slavey) are a native American group indigenous to the Great Slave Lake region, in Canadas Northwest Territories. ... Nahanni National Park Reserve in the Northwest Territories of Canada, approximately 600 km west of Yellowknife, protects a portion of the Mackenzie Mountains Natural Region. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) was a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar in the 21st century. ... is the 183rd day of the year (184th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ...

References

  • Bailey, L. R. (1964). The Long Walk: A History of the Navaho Wars, 1846–1868.
  • Bighorse, Tiana. (1990). Bighorse the Warrior. Ed. Noel Bennett, Tucson: University of Arizona Press.
  • Brown, Dee (1970). Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee. ISBN 0-330-23219-3. 
  • Brugge, David M. (1968). Navajos in the Catholic Church Records of New Mexico 1694–1875. Window Rock, Arizona: Research Section, The Navajo Tribe. 
  • Clarke, Dwight L. (1961). Stephen Watts Kearny: Soldier of the West. Norman, Oklahoma: University of Oklahoma Press a
  • Downs, James F. (1972). The Navajo. New York: Holt, Rinehart, and Winston.
  • Dyke, Walter (1967). Son of Old Man Hat. Lincoln, Nebraska: Bison Books & University of Nebraska Press. LCCN 44-2654. 
  • Forbes, Jack D. (1960). Apache, Navajo and Spaniard. Norman, OK: University of Oklahoma Press. LCCN 60-13480. 
  • Gilpin, Laura. (1968). The Enduring Navaho. Austin: University of Texas Press.
  • Gold, Peter (1994). Navajo & Tibetan Sacred Wisdom: The Circle of the Spirit. Rochester, Vermont: Inner Traditions International. ISBN 0-89281-411-X. .
  • Hammond, George P. and Rey, Agapito (editors) (1940). Narratives of the Coronado Expedition 1540–1542. Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press.
  • Henderson, Richard.(1994). “Replicating Dog Travois Travel on the Northern Plains.” Plains Anthropologist, V39:145–59
  • Iverson, Peter. (2002). Diné: A History of the Navahos. Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press. ISBN 0-8263-2714-1
  • Kelly, Lawrence (1970). Navajo Roundup, Pruett Pub. Co., Colorado.
  • Kluckholm, Clyde & Leighton, Dorothea (1946). The Navaho. Cambridge: Oxford University Press.
  • Loewen, James. W. (1999). Lies Across America. Pages 100–101; The New Press.
  • McNitt, Frank. (1972). Navajo Wars. Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press.
  • Newcomb, Franc Johnson (1964). Hosteen Klah: Navajo Medicine Man and Sand Painter. Norman, Oklahoma: University of Oklahoma Press. LCCCN 64-20759. 
  • Plog, Stephen. Ancient Peoples of the American Southwest. Thames and London, LTD, London, England, 1997. ISBN 0-500-27939-X.
  • Compiled (1973). Roessel, Ruth (editor). Navajo Stories of the Long Walk Period. Tsaile, Arizona: Navajo Community College Press.
  • Compiled (1974). in Roessel, Ruth: Navajo Livestock Reduction: A National Disgrace. Tsaile, Arizona: Navajo Community College Press. ISBN 0-912586-18-4. 
  • Terrell, J. U. (1970). The Navajos.
  • Underhill, Ruth M. (1956). The Navahos. Norman: The University of Oklahoma Press.
  • Witherspoon, Gary. (1977). Language and Art in the Navajo Universe. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press.

Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee (1970). ...

External links

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Category:Navajo


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