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Discuss the Cultural Orientations Native American Tribes (Pueblo) in Northern New Mexico and How These Cultural Values Impact the Tribal Economy

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Native American groups have inhabited the region of New Mexico for thousands of years — many centuries before Europeans reached the Americas. When the Spanish came to New Mexico in the 1500s, they brought with them their Roman Catholic religion

The missionaries traveled to this new territory to bring their faith to the Native American peoples, and they converted many. However, Native beliefs and customs persevered and became intertwined with those brought by the Spanish colonists.

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Ancestral Pueblo culture, also called Anasazi, prehistoric Native American civilization that existed from approximately AD 100 to 1600, centring generally on the area where the boundaries of what are now the U.S. states of Arizona, New Mexico, Colorado, and Utah intersect. The descendents of the Ancestral Pueblo comprise the modern Pueblo tribes, including the Hopi, Zuni, Acoma, and Laguna. As farmers, Ancestral Pueblo peoples and their nomadic neighbours were often mutually hostile; this is the source of the term Anasazi, a Navajo word meaning “ancestors of the enemy,” which once served as the customary scientific name for this group. They created this hypothetical period in anticipation of finding evidence for the earliest stages of the transition from hunting and gathering economies to fully agricultural societies. By the late 20th century archaeologists had concluded that Basketmaker II peoples had actually filled that role. Rather than renaming Basketmaker II and III to reflect this understanding of the evidence, Basketmaker I was generally eliminated from regional time lines, although some scientific discussions about its role in regional chronologies continued in the early 21st century. The Basketmaker II and III periods are named for the fine basketry often found in the habitation sites of these people. Like other Archaic cultures in North America, the Basketmaker II economy combined hunting, gathering wild plant foods, and some corn (maize) cultivation. These people typically lived in caves or in shallow pithouses constructed in the open

They also created pits in the ground that were used for food storage. Storage pits were often lined and capped in order to aid in food preservation, to prevent vermin infestation, and to prevent injuries. The Basketmaker III period (also called the Modified Basketmaker period) is marked by the increasing importance of agriculture, including the introduction of bean crops and the domestication of turkeys. To support their agricultural pursuits and increasing population, the people built irrigation structures such as reservoirs and check dams, low stone walls used to slow the flow of rivulets and streams in an area, increasing soil moisture and decreasing erosion. Hunting and gathering continued, although in supplementary roles; an increasingly sedentary way of life coincided with the widespread use of pottery. Basketmaker III people resided in relatively deep semisubterranean houses that were located in caves or on mesa tops.

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Most western states allocate state‐governed water under the doctrine of prior appropriation, with senior water rights being the last to be cut off in times of shortage. Tribes are typically senior water right holders because water rights of tribal nations date back to the date their land reservation was established (Brougher, C. 2011). This seniority gives tribal water entitlements a higher degree of reliability during drought and an added financial value in water leasing. Irrigation is an important method of farming in the arid western U.S., and crop irrigation accounts for a large share of the nation's water use (Schaible and Aillery ; USDA Economic Research Service ). In order to focus on agriculture as part of tribal economies, this study only includes those tribes in the U.S. which had agricultural data available in the 2010 and 2015 USDA Agricultural Census Surveys. Economic data were collected from the Census Bureau and gaming data were collected from the National Indian Gaming Commission

Geographic and water data were collected from various sources to create a unique data set across selected western U.S. tribal nations.Differences between the Midwest and the Southwest related to casino operations are statistically significant at a one percent level. The Midwest region, which has no tribes in this study with quantified water rights, has the highest rates of casino operations. These regional differences likely involve political and economic factors not analyzed in this study. For example, higher rainfall in the Midwest leads to less dependence on securing irrigation water to sustain reservation agriculture, hence less pressure to quantify water rights. Tribal nations in different regions have faced different political dynamics with respect to both gaming and water rights (Chief, K., A.).

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Generally speaking, the major economic occupation on the Fort Berthold Reservation is cattle ranching and farming for a number of tribal operators. Commercial business by private operators includes convenience stores, gas stations, restaurants, a laundromat, an auto repair shop, a video arcade/fast food shop, arts and handcrafts, and other service and commercial vendors. The major employment on the reservation is provided by the tribal government, Fort Berthold Community College, tribal businesses, the BIA, and IHS.

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Brougher, C. 2011. Indian Reserved Water Rights Under the Winters Doctrine: An Overview. Congressional Research Service. Available at: Accessed February 28, 2018.

Chief, K., A. Meadow, and K. Whyte. 2016. Engaging southwestern tribes in sustainable water resources topics and management. Water 8(8): 350. DOI: 10.3390/w8080350. Accessed February 28, 2018.

Colby, B.G., J. Thorson, and S. Britton. 2005. Tribal Water Rights: Negotiating the Future. Tucson: U of Arizona Press.

Davis, J.J., V.J. Roscigno, and G. Wilson. 2015. American Indian poverty in the contemporary United States. Sociology Forum 31(1): 5– 28.

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