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Piro Pueblo

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Piro Pueblo /ˈpɪr/: The Piros (not to be confused with the Piros of the Ucayali basin in Peru) are a Native American Pueblo people whose ancestors lived in a number of pueblos in the Rio Grande Valley around modern Socorro, New Mexico, USA. The now extinct Piro language is in the family of Tiwa languages. Whether voluntarily or not, some Piros were hospitable to the first Spanish colonists who arrived in 1598. As a result, the Spanish gave first one, then another, Piro pueblo the name Socorro, which means aid or help (in case of problems or difficulties).

In later years, however, the Piros like most other Pueblo groups suffered increasingly from the strains of colonial rule. Local rebellions broke out on several occasions in the 1660s and 70s, but the Spaniards always retained the upper hand. By the time of the Pueblo Revolt of 1680, the Piro communities had declined to such an extent that the famous rebellion took place without them. Several hundred Piros (and Tiwas) accompanied (again voluntarily or not) the fleeing Spaniards south to El Paso del Norte (present-day Ciudad Juárez, Mexico); others scattered and joined other Pueblo groups. None of the Piro pueblos were ever resettled by the original inhabitants.

Today, the Piro people are part of the Piro-Manso-Tiwa Tribe of San Juan de Guadalupe Pueblo in Las Cruces, New Mexico.

Currently, there is a long-term archaeological project at the Piro pueblo of Tzelaqui/Sevilleta north of present-day Socorro.

Piro pueblosEdit

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Further readingEdit

Bletzer, Michael P., 'The First Province of that Kingdom': Notes on the Colonial History of the Piro Area. New Mexico Historical Review 88(4): 437-459 (2013) / Bletzer, Michael P., A House for Fray Alonso: The Search for Pilabo Pueblo and the First Piro Mission, Nuestra Senora del Socorro. El Palacio 120(3): 34-37 (2015) / Marshall, Michael P., and Henry J. Walt, Rio Abajo: Prehistory and History of a Rio Grande Province (Santa Fe: New Mexico Historic Preservation Division, 1984.)