Marc Simmons: Navajo community was long shunned as outcast

"There is a hidden story lurking in the shadows of Navajo history that has never been fully told. Some pieces of the tale are missing, yet enough remains, allowing a brief sketch to be drawn.

The matter begins with a Navajo headman known to the Spaniards as Joaquín. It is uncertain how he acquired that name, but it may have been borrowed from New Mexico Gov. Joaquín del Real Alencaster (1803 to 1805).

Joaquín, the Navajo, first appears on the scene in mid-July 1818, when he showed up at Jemez Pueblo. This was at the tag end of the colonial period, just three years before Mexico’s independence from Spain.

According to records in the State Archives, Joaquín sought out the Spanish alcalde, Ygnacio Sánchez Vergara, serving at Jemez. He informed the official that the Navajo nation was making preparations for war against the Spaniards."

Get the Story:
Marc Simmons: Trail Dust: Defection created long-lasting rift in Navajo tribe (The Santa Fe New Mexican 7/14)

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