The Pueblo of Taos are a federally recognized indian tribe that has lived in Taos Valley for at least 800 years.
Official Tribal Name: Pueblo of Taos
Recognition Status: Federally Recognized
Traditional Name / Traditional Meaning:
Common Name / Meaning of Common Name:
Alternate names / Alternate spellings:
Name in other languages:
State(s) Today: New Mexico
Treaties: None of the Pueblo tribes signed any treaties with the United States.
The Taos Indians have lived in the Taos Valley of New Mexico for more than 800 years. When the Spanish arrived in the Taos Valley in 1540, they believed that they had found the fabled golden city of Cibola.
Reservation: Taos Pueblo and Off-Reservation Trust Land
Population at Contact:
Registered Population Today:
Tribal Enrollment Requirements:
Name of Governing Body:
Number of Council members:
Dates of Constitutional amendments:
Number of Executive Officers:
Language Classification: Tiwa
Number of fluent Speakers:
Bands, Gens, and Clans
- Hopi Tribe of Arizona
- 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
- Kewa Pueblo (Pueblo of Santo Domingo )
- Ohkay Owingeh (Pueblo of San Juan)
- Pueblo of Tesuque
- Pueblo of Zia
- Ysleta Del Sur Pueblo of Texas
- Zuni Tribe of the Zuni Reservation (Pueblo of Zuni)
Attacks by neighboring Ute and Navaho tribes and battles with the whites killed many of the Taos.
Ceremonies / Dances:
Modern Day Events & Tourism:
Several seasonal feasts and ceremonial dances are open to the public. Photography and sketching is generally discouraged in all the Pueblos.
Before drawing the area and its people, or taking pictures, you should inquire if it is allowed, and if so, what the rules are. Some pueblos charge a fee for picture taking, depending on what you plan to do with your pictures. Your camera may be confiscated and you may be fined or asked to leave if you take pictures without following their procedures. They take this VERY seriously.
The Pueblo and surrounding houses are private homes and should be treated as such. Do not enter any buildings unless invited, or clearly marked as open to the public.
Chaco and Mesa Verde: Southwest parks with similar history but different visitor experiences
Legends / Oral Stories:
Art & Crafts:
The people of Taos Pueblo are farmers. With the coming of the Europeans the Taos got involved in the raising of horses and cattle. They have also been hunters of the land. In the mountains and plains surrounding Taos Pueblo game was plentiful, including buffalo, deer, bear, elk and birds. Gathering parties would occasionally leave the village in search of wild vegetables, which could be added to the food supply. Parties were periodically also sent out to the saline lakes in the Estancia Valley for salt supplies.
Religion & Spiritual Beliefs:
The people have a tradition of secrecy which has kept many of their sacred beliefs and customs from the outside world.
They have for centuries enforced a strict policy that forbids marriage outside of the Pueblo.
The Taos people played a prominent role in the great Pueblo Uprising of 1680. The leader of the rebellion, a warrior by the name of Pope, was headquartered at Taos Pueblo. The two missionaries stationed at Taos Pueblo were murdered. Fifteen years later the land was retaken by the Spanish and the missions were re-established.
After the Mexican War, the Taos people resisted the occupation of the Americans. They killed the newly appointed Governor, Charles Bent. The result of this was the invasion of Taos, Pueblo by the United States Army. About 150 Taos Indians were killed. Later 16 more Taos were executed for their part in the rebellion. Another rebellion threatened in 1910, when United States troops were again called to Taos Pueblo. This time, however, bloodshed was avoided.
Pueblo Revolt of 1680
New Mexico’s pueblos have a history with the federal government unlike any other American Indian tribe
In the News: