This blog explores the history of Phoenix, Arizona and a little bit of Los Angeles and San Francisco, California

Accidental erasing of the history of Indians in Arizona


Since I've begun my study of the history of Indians in Arizona, I've discovered an unintended result of the renaming of tribes, the accidental erasing of their history.

No, it's not a conspiracy, man. It's just that if you rename a tribe from Pima to Akimel O'odham, you will make it impossible for future researchers, if they don't know the original name, to find original history, in old books.

And that's why, although I'm embracing the new names of the tribes, and learning them, I am still making a note of the names that they were known by for hundreds of years. There's enough intentional erasing of history, and re-writing of history, going on nowadays, adding accidental erasing just makes it worse.

The Akimel O'odham, or the Pima people, have been a major force in the history of Arizona for hundreds of years. Walk into any library and you will find a lot of information on them, going back to the days of Father Kino. The Pimas are woven into the history of Phoenix so tightly that the city just wouldn't have been able to survive without them.

Now don't get me wrong. There are some really terrible things that have happened in the history of Arizona, especially with regards to Indian people. But I want to know the whole story, and I'm willing to take the time to do the research. And if that's you too, please walk with me. I'm a man in a maze, and I don't know where the next turn will take me, but I'm willing to make the journey.

Thank you for walking with me.

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