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Eight Northern Indian Pueblos

wedding vessel horizontalThe Eight Northern Indian Pueblos lie between Santa Fe and Colorado, located in majestic mountain landscape. Learn about the rich history and contemporary cultures of the each of the Eight Northern Indian Pueblos in this section. You'll also find listings of some their feast days and other annual events as well as locations, contact information and links to the websites of pueblos that have them.





Nambé Pueblo
"Mound of Earth in the Corner"

Nambé Pueblo dates to the 1300s, when it played a pivotal role as the Pueblo people's main center of culture and religion. Because of its importance, the Spanish conquerors who began arriving in the late 16th century tried to destroy it and nearly succeeded. Today, Nambé is known for traditional micaceous pottery, jewelry and sculpture and also for its beautiful location in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains, where a spectacular double-drop waterfall is part of the popular Nambé Falls Recreation Area.

The pueblo's annual events include a 4th of July celebration at Nambé Falls; and the Nambe Pueblo's Feast Days: January 6 (Kings Day Celebration), Easter Sunday Dances, October 3 (Evening Firelight Vespers), October 4 (St. Francis de Assisi Feast Day) and December 24 (Buffalo Dance Following Christmas Eve Mass).

Directions and Contact Info
18 miles north of Santa Fe, off U.S. 84/285 and N.M. 503
(505) 455-2036
Nambé Pueblo website


Ohkay Owingeh
"Village of the Strong People"

cliff dwellings ladderWhen Juan de Oñate established the first Spanish capital city in New Mexico in 1598, it was on the land of Ohkay Owingeh Pueblo (formerly San Juan Pueblo). Popé, a medicine man who lived at Taos Pueblo when he led Pueblo Revolt in 1680, was born at Ohkay Owingeh. And the people of this pueblo possessed such strength that only those born there could declare war for all the Pueblo Indians.

Today, Ohkay Owingeh is home to San Juan Lakes, a popular fishing spot, the Eight Northern Indian Pueblos Council and the Oke Oweenge Crafts Cooperative, where art from the eight northern pueblos is exhibited. Pueblo artists primarily produce redware pottery, painting, weaving and willow baskets. Ohkay Owingeh also operates a casino, resort and hotel.

Annual events include the Eight Northern Indian Pueblo Arts and Crafts Show, held the third weekend in July, and numerous feast days, including the Ohkay Owingeh Feast Day with Corn and Buffalo Dances held June 23-24.

Directions and Contact Info
Located 25 miles north of Santa Fe on U.S. 84/285 then five miles north of Espanola off N.M. 68.
(505) 852-4400
Ohkay Owingeh Pueblo casino website


Picuris Pueblo
"Those Who Paint"

basket corn2When Spanish colonist Juan de Onate encountered the residents of this pueblo more than 400 years ago, he named the pueblo Pikuria, for "those who paint." Artistic traditions still flourish at Picuris, which is famous for micaceous pottery as well as young painters who have begun to establish national reputations.

Nestled on the banks of the Rio Pueblo River, Picuris Pueblo sits in a serene spot known locally as "the hidden valley." Residents recently completed by hand a major restoration of their 200-year-old adobe church, San Lorenzo de Picuris. The pueblo honors the church's namesake during the annual San Lorenzo Feast Day on Aug. 10 with dances, pole climbing and a foot race. Local art is displayed and sold at the Picuris Pueblo Museum, and visitors can also view the pueblo's bison herd. The pueblo also is a majority owner of the Hotel Santa Fe in downtown Santa Fe.

Directions and Contact Info
Located in Peñasco, 60 miles north of Santa Fe on N.M. 68 then 13 miles east of the junction at Embudo 75.
(575) 587-2519
Picuris Pueblo website


Pojoaque Pueblo
P'o Suwae Geh
"Water Drinking Place"

War and disease nearly demolished Pojoaque pueblo, but residents who returned in the 1930s wanted to ensure its survival so they evicted squatters and built fences. Today the pueblo is thriving, thanks partly to its Poeh Cultural Center and Museum, which provides a wide range of art classes for Native Americans and exhibits of contemporary and traditional art and culture. The pueblo also operates one of the state's largest resorts as well as a casino.

Annual events include Our Lady of Guadalupe Feast Day on Dec. 12, honoring the pueblo's patron saint, and Three Kings Day Celebration on Jan. 6.

Directions and Contact Info
Located 15 miles north of Santa Fe, on U.S. 84/285.
(505) 455-2278
Pojoaque Pueblo's Poeh Center website


San Ildefonso Pueblo
Po-Who-Ge-Oweenge
"Where the Water Cuts Through"

Between 1200 and 1500 A.D., early residents of San Ildefonso Pueblo left Mesa Verde in Colorado and Chaco Canyon in the Four Corners Area to settle on the Pajarito Plateau in the present-day Bandelier National Monument. They relocated to their current location near towering Black Mesa in the late 1500s or early 1600s, and it was from this mesatop that pueblo residents fought Spanish solders during the Spanish re-conquest of New Mexico in 1694.

San Ildefonso was home to renowned potter Maria Martinez and her husband, Julian, who developed their famous black-on-black matte pottery, introduced to the world by Maria at the 1904 World Fair in St. Louis. Many potters continue to create the black-on-black style and San Ildefonso today remains a major arts community, where visitors can purchase work from artists' homes. Visitors can learn more at the Maria Poveka Martinez Museum and the San Ildefonso Museum.

Annual events include a Feast Day on Jan. 23 with Comanche and Buffalo or Deer Dance and a Feast Day of the Nativity with Corn Dance on Sept. 10.

Directions and Contact Info
Located 23 miles north of Santa Fe on U.S. 84/285 then west on N.M. 502.
(505) 455-3549


Santa Clara Pueblo
KHA'P'O
"Valley of the Wild Roses"

santa clara potBecause of drought, the Puye Cliff Dwellers abandoned their homes in the Rio Grande Valley, relocating to Santa Clara Pueblo circa 1550. Today, Santa Clara artists are acclaimed for their black and red polished pottery, including signature double-necked wedding jars and hand-molded black animal figures, as well as willow baskets, decorated gourds and textiles. The pueblo also owns a 27-hole golf course and casino.

Annual events include the Feast Day of St. Anthony on June 13 and the Santa Fe Clara Feast Day with Buffalo, Harvest or Corn Dance on Aug. 12.

Directions and Contact Info
Located 1.5 miles south of Espanola, via U.S. 84/285 then off N.M. 30.
(505) 753-7326
Santa Claran Hotel & Casino website


Taos Pueblo
Tau-Tah
"The Place of the Red Willows"

taos blue doorsTaos Pueblo, with its world-famous multi-storied adobe architecture, is one of North America's oldest, continuously occupied villages and a World Heritage Site and National Historic Site. Located at the gateway to the eastern plains, Taos Pueblo served as a major trading center for centuries and its Trade Fair drew thousands of mountain men, trappers and other traders. Taos Pueblo artists are known for their micaceous clay pottery, jewelry, paintings and drums.

The pueblo's annual Feast Day of San Geronimo takes place Sept. 30 and the Taos Pow-wow, which brings together Indian Nations from across the country, takes place July 11-13.

Directions and Contact Info
Located in Taos 68 miles north of Santa Fe, then 2.5 miles north of the Taos Plaza on U.S. 64.
(505) 758-1028
Taos Pueblo website


Tesuque Pueblo
Te-Tsu-Geh
"Cottonwood Tree Place"

Tesuque Pueblo has occupied its present location since the 1200s and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Although it is one of New Mexico's smallest pueblos, it spreads across more than 17,000 acres in the Sangre de Cristo Mountain foothills. Tesuque Pueblo artists are known for their pottery, painting and sculpture, particularly rain gods, whimsical figures originally invented for tourists in the 1880s. Many artists sell their work at the pueblo. The pueblo also operates a casino.

Annual events include the Corn Dance and Blessing of the Fields held the first Saturday in June and the San Diego Feast Day on Nov. 12. The pueblo also operates the famous Tesuque Pueblo Flea Market, where visitors can buy an incredible array of new and used items from around the world.

Directions and Contact Info
Located 10 miles north of Santa Fe off U.S. 84/285.
(505) 983-2667/988-3620
Tesuque Pueblo casino website