Native American Tribes Nations and Confederacies: Pima

Southern Arizona is home to the Native American Pima tribe who speak the Pima language of the Uto-Aztecan branch of the Aztec-Tanoan linguistic family.

Despite the fact that there were often conflicts with the Apache, the Pima befriended both the Spanish and the pioneers from the Eastern States who used the Pima villages as a stop-over on the way to California.

Living in dome-shaped huts built of poles and covered with mud and brush, the Pima farmed a variety of crops including beans, corn, cotton, quash, and wheat. Known for their beautiful baskets, the Pima were also experts with the bow and arrow and were in possession of war clubs and rawhide shields.

In 1775 the Pima numbered approximately 2,500, in 1990 it stood at 15,500. Today the Pima dwell in Arizona with the Maricopa on the Gila River and Salt River reservations, and with the Tohono O'Odham on the Ak-Chin reservation. Their economy is based on agriculture, crafts, and leasing land for mineral development.




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