Native Americans of Arizona

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This entry was originally written by Dwight A. Radford and Nell Sachse Woodard for Red Book: American State, County, and Town Sources.

This article is part of
the Arizona Family History Research series.
History of Arizona
Arizona Vital Records
Census Records for Arizona
Background Sources for Arizona
Arizona Maps
Arizona Land Records
Arizona Probate Records
Arizona Court Records
Arizona Tax Records
Arizona Cemetery Records
Arizona Church Records
Arizona Military Records
Arizona Periodicals, Newspapers, and Manuscript Collections
Arizona Archives, Libraries, and Societies
Native Americans of Arizona
Arizona County Resources
Map of Arizona


Arizona is home to a large population of Native Americans. These include the Apache, Chemehuevis, Cocopah, Havasupai, Hualapai, Hopi, Kaibab-Paiute, Maricopa, Mojave, Navajo, Pascua Yaqui, Pima, Quechan, Southern Paiute, Tohono O’odham (Papago), and Yavapai. Many tribes belong to the Inter Tribal Council of Arizona: 2214 N. Central Ave., Ste. 100, Phoenix, AZ 85004. The website has links to the various tribes, historical sketches, current status, and contact information. They are not, however, a research facility.

Scores of records were generated through governmental agencies that had jurisdiction over these tribes. However, records about Arizona Native Americans may be found in agencies outside of the state. For example, the Navajo are a very large tribe and the Navajo Nation covers parts of Arizona, New Mexico, and Utah. Therefore, Navajo-related records may be found in agencies based in these three states. Continuing with the Navajo example, records are deposited at the National Archives regional branches in Denver, Los Angeles, and Washington, D.C. (see pages 11-12). The Navajo records are also scattered between the Western Navajo, Eastern Navajo, and Northern Navajo. Sometimes records will be found in more than one of these offices for the same family; thus, it is important to consider them all. As there is so much crossover between the Arizona and New Mexico Navajos, some New Mexico records are also being listed such as those for Shiprock, New Mexico. Other Navajo records will be found in the records of the Santa Fe Agency (1890–1935) and the Leupp Training School (1915–35), both at the NARA Denver; the Albuquerque School (1890–1960) at the NARA in Denver and Fort Worth; and the Pueblo Bonito (1909–26) at the National Archives in Washington, D.C.

In addition to records under the auspices of the NARA, a large collection of the National Archives Indian agency records is on microfilm at the FHL.

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