Santa Clara Pueblo

Santa Clara Pueblo

Santa Clara Pueblo, also known as Khaʼpʼoe Ówîngeh or “Singing Water Village” and “Village of Wild Roses,” is a federally recognized tribe of Native American Pueblo people situated in Rio Arriba County, New Mexico. The Pueblo is a member of the Eight Northern Pueblos, and its residents are part of the Tewa ethnic group, speaking the Rio Grande Tewa language. This area is renowned for its hand-crafted pottery, particularly blackware and redware with intricate engravings, contributing to its listing on the National Register of Historic Places​1​.

The history of the Pueblo is ancient, with the Tewa people residing in the area for millennia before Spanish contact. The region has been inhabited since as early as 1200 BC by Ancestral Puebloans. The Pueblo was one of the participants in the Great Pueblo Revolt of 1680, a significant uprising against Spanish colonial rule. The original chapel at the Pueblo was destroyed during the revolt, but subsequent ones were rebuilt, with the current church dating back to 1918. A smallpox outbreak in 1782 drastically reduced the population, but the community’s rights to their lands were eventually protected by the U.S. government following the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo in 1848​1​.

Today, Santa Clara Pueblo offers a variety of activities for visitors. The Pueblo boasts a large land base with diverse geographic features, allowing for recreational activities such as tours of the prehistoric Puye Cliff Dwellings, sightseeing, fishing, and camping in the nearby canyon​2​. Additionally, Santa Clara Pueblo is the site of cultural events open to the public, including St. Anthony’s Feast Day with Comanche Dances in June and Harvest and Corn Dances in August to honor the patron saint, St. Clare​3​.

Moreover, Santa Clara operates the nationally acclaimed Black Mesa Golf Course, known for its challenging play. For those seeking entertainment, the Santa Claran Casino in the city of Española provides additional recreational options, along with the Big Rock Bowl, a popular bowling center​3​.

These activities embody the rich cultural heritage and the natural beauty of the Santa Clara Pueblo, inviting visitors to experience both the historical significance and the contemporary vibrancy of this unique community.

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