It could be our history of Native American's here in Utah is wrong. 

The Anasazi were an ancient group that inhabited the four corners area as well as parts of Utah. According to the Smithsonian, these people where the ancestors of the Pueblo Indians that live there today. It says the Anasazi started around 1500 BC and thrived until the 13th century when they unexpectedly disappeared. But this is not the story the Navajo people report. 

Navajo historian Wally Brown has a website named navajotraditionalteachings.com. He says the early Pueblo people are the forebears of today's residents, but the Anasazi were a people that came from the south and enslaved the people living there. "They prayed to the darkness," he said.

“The way that our old people tell of the Anasazi, that they were not very good people,” said Brown. “They were here for a very short time, less than 300 years.” According to Brown they enslaved local populations forcing them to work for the Anasazi. He even describes human sacrifice rituals that would take place. 

Photo by Russ McCabe on Unsplash
Photo by Russ McCabe on Unsplash
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“They did things very differently than our people,” said Brown. “Their principal economy being slave trade.” He describes how they were eventually destroyed by those they had enslaved and consequently these formerly abused people did their best to destroy anything related to the Anasazi. Brown says the piles of smashed pottery are evidence of this. 

“All of these people that were cliff dwellers and the pueblo people, predate those known as the Anasazi,” said Brown. “When people see any kind of cliff dwelling or any type of pueblo structure they want to say immediately, Anasazi. That is so very wrong.” 

It seems there are two versions of the early history of this area. I have done a little bit of study on both, and no offense to the people in Washington, but I’m going to listen to those whose ancestors lived here. In fact, I think we have gone far too long ignoring what Native people have to say about their own history. 

 

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