The Kachina and the Cross
Indians and Spaniards in the Early SouthwestBook - 1999
The Spaniards originally believed their new colony had a wealth of silver and gold. But their mines proved unprofitable, and the region was soon reconstituted as a missionary province. Over several generations, the Franciscans built churches in the various Pueblos and carried out a ruthless attack on the Native American religion and culture. The Indians resisted, at first passively, then with growing activism until the region exploded into war in 1680.
Although the Spaniards managed to regain the New Mexico province after a twelve-year absence, the western portion was never again firmly within the Spanish imperium -- and the Hopi pueblos remained completely outside it.
Even in the Rio Grande Valley, where Spanish political control was securely reestablished, the Franciscans were forced to adopt a more conciliatory attitude toward the Indians and their religion.
Until now, histories of the early Southwest have concentrated on the Spanish presence. Yet a full picture of the period cannot rely primarily on Spanish sources. In addition to those Spanish sources, Riley utilizes archaeological and anthropological research from the past forty years to shed new light on the fascinating and troubled first century of sustained Spanish-Pueblo relations.