New Mexico Indian Tribes

Federal List Last Updated 5/16

Jicarilla Apache Nation
Mescalero Apache Tribe of the Mescalero Reservation
Navajo Nation (Arizona, New Mexico and Utah)
Ohkay Owingeh (formerly the Pueblo of San Juan)
Pueblo of Acoma
Pueblo of Cochiti
Pueblo of Isleta
Pueblo of Jemez
Pueblo of Laguna
Pueblo of Nambe
Pueblo of Picuris
Pueblo of Pojoaque
Pueblo of San Felipe
Pueblo of San Ildefonso
Pueblo of Sandia
Pueblo of Santa Ana
Pueblo of Santa Clara
Pueblo of Taos
Pueblo of Tesuque
Pueblo of Zia
Ute Mountain Tribe of the Ute Mountain Reservation (Colorado, New Mexico and Utah)
Zuni Tribe of the Zuni Reservation

(Not recognized by the Federal Government)

In New Mexico, the State Constitution authorizes the State to recognize tribes other than those with federal recognition.

Genízaro was a specialized ethnic term current in New Mexico during the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries.

Fray Agustín Morti, referring to the Genízaro Indians of Analco in Santa Fe in 1779, gave a precise and correct definition of them: “This name is given to the children of the captives of different [Indian] nations who have married in the province.”

In 2007, the Genízaros received legislative recognition as an indigenous group.

One form of state recognition may consist of “merely acknowledging that a particular tribal group constitutes the Indigenous people of a particular area in the state.”

Of the 16 states that host state-recognized tribes, 5 have recognized tribes through joint resolutions, suggesting legislative recognition is an appropriate means for granting recognition.

These resolutions to recognize are the first steps in attaining legally binding State tribal recognition apart from the Federal recognition process.


Canoncito Band of Navajos, petitioned for independent federal recognition 07/31/1989.Note: this is a Chapter (governing unit) of the Navajo Nation.

Piro/Manso/Tiwa Indian Tribe of the Pueblo of San Juan de Guadalupe. Letter of Intent to Petition 01/18/1971.

Piro/Manso/Tiwa Tribe of Guadalupe Pueblo (aka Tiwa Indian Tribe).[6]. Letter of Intent to Petition 12/17/2002.

? Ramah Navajo Chapter



c. 25000 B.C. – Sandia people left the earliest evidence of human existence in what is now New Mexico.

c. 10000-9000 B.C. – Clovis hunters roamed the area in search of mammoth, bison and other game.

c. 9000-8000 B.C. – Folsom people flourish throughout Southwest at the end of the last Ice Age.

c. 10000-500 B.C. – Cochise people are first inhabitants to cultivate corn, squash and beans, the earliest evidence of agriculture in the Southwest.

300-1400 A.D.– Mogollon culture introduces highly artistic pottery and early architecture in the form of pit houses.

1-700 A.D.Anasazi basket makers elevate weaving to a high art, creating baskets, clothing, sandals and utensils.

700-1300 A.D. – Anasazi culture culminates in the highly developed Chaco Civilization.

1200-1500s A.D.Pueblo Indians establish villages along the Rio Grande and its tributaries.

The Clovis-Paleo Indians later discovered the eastern plains of New Mexico, the same expansive romping grounds of the dinosaurs around 10,000 B.C.

The river valleys west of their hunting grounds later flooded with refugees from the declining Four Corners Anasazi cultures.

Sometime between A.D. 1130 and 1180, the Anasazi drifted from their high-walled towns to evolve into today’s Pueblo Indians, so named by early Spanish explorers because they lived in land-based communities much like the villages, or pueblos, of home.

Culturally similar American Indians, the Mogollón, lived in today’s Gila National Forest.

The Anasazi occupied the region where present day Arizona, New Mexico and Colorado meet. They were among the most highly civilized of the Native American cultures.

They raised corn and cotton, and tamed wild turkeys, using the meat for food and the feathers for clothing. In the winter, the Anasazi wore garments fashioned from turkey feathers.

The Anasazi were cliff dwellers and built many apartment houses out of closely fitted stones. One such building, the Pueblo Bonito, had nearly 800 rooms.

Around 1500 A.D., the Navajo and Apache tribes came to the New Mexico region from the north. Utes and Comanches entered the area a few years later.

Genealogy:Sources of records on US Indian tribes New Mexico American Indian Boarding Schools New Mexico Tribal Colleges


Article Index:

A visit to Acoma Pueblo in New Mexico is a sacred journey

The ancient pueblo of Acoma is aptly nicknamed. Known as the Sky City, it commands the most exotic location of any inhabited place in the United States — the top of a 370-foot-high mesa in New Mexico, a natural citadel of golden rock, an island in the sky.

It’s also amazingly well-disguised.

Old ones spirit still palpable at Bandelier National Monument

Bandelier National Monument’s 90th birthday is a triumph of history, preservation.

Bandelier National Monument once home to the Anasazi

Cecilia Shields walks in the footsteps of her ancestors.
An interpretive park ranger at Bandelier National Monument for the past seven years, she sees and feels things that casual visitors miss.

Walking the Main Loop Trail, Shields, who is Picuris, Ohkay Owingeh and Mescalero Apache, pointed to the remains of walls that at one time were part of the teeming Tyuonyi Pueblo.