Navajo tribe is the largest tribe of North American Indians. Over 1,000 years ago they began to travel south and reached the southwestern United States. Long ago the ancestors lived in Northwestern Canada and Alaska. Navajo people call themselves Diné, a term from the Navajo language that means people.
Until contact with Pueblos and the Spanish, the Navajo were largely hunters and gatherers. The tribe adopted crop farming techniques from the Pueblo peoples, growing mainly corn,beans, and squash. When the Spanish arrived, the Navajo began herding sheep and goats.
In addition, a small group of Mescalero Apaches, longThe Long Walk enemies of the Navajo, hadBeginning in the spring of1864, around 9,000 Navajo been relocated to the areamen, women and children wereforced to embark on a trek of over resulting in conflicts.300 miles (480 km) to FortSumner, New Mexico forinternment at Bosque Redondo.The internment at Bosque Redondowas a failure for many reasons asthe government failed to providean adequate supply ofwater, wood, provisions, andlivestock for 4,000–5,000people. Large scale crop failureand disease were also endemicduring this time, as well as raids byother tribes and civilians.
The name “Navajo” comes from the late 18th century via the Spanish (Apaches de) Navajó "(Apaches of) Navajo", which was derived from theTewa navahū "fields adjoining a ravine". The Navajo call themselves Diné. Traditionally, like other Apacheans, the Navajo were semi-nomadic from the 16th through the 20th centuries.
Silversmithing is an Navajo came to the important art form among southwest with their own Navajo. Atsidi Sani (c. 1830– weaving traditions; c. 1918) is considered to be however, they learned to the first Navajo silversmith. weave cotton on upright He learned silversmithing looms from Pueblo peoples. from a Mexican man The first Spaniards to visit called Nakai Tsosi ("Thin the region wrote about Mexican") around 1878 and seeing Navajo blankets. By began teaching other the 18th century the Navajo Navajos how to work with had begun to import Bayeta silver. red yarn to supplement local black, grey, and white wool, as well as wool dyed with indigo.