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Navajo Long Walk

navajocodetalkersadmin on April 14, 2014 - 10:00 am in Navajo History

The Navajo or called as Dine or the people are considered as the biggest Native American group in the United States. Their tales of appearance and migration are also very common to other tribes like the Hopi, which are also their rival. The Navajo tradition and culture are also very interesting to know.

Navajo History and the Long Walk

Navajo long walk is considered as one of the most important parts of Navajo history. Navajo is one of the oldest tribe in the United States. Navajo long walk is an interesting occurrence that is already part of their rich history.

In 1860, the Americans of European descent starts settling in the Navajo land resulted to conflict between both parties. As a result, the U.S. Army designed a plan to relocate all the Navajos from the homeland.

Causes for This Historic Event

Navajo settlers are forced to relocate in another location in January 1864, which lasted for about 2 months. This is the reason why it is called as the Navajo long walk. As a matter of fact, according to historic descriptions, there are at least 8,500 that consist of men, women as well as children who leave their homes in northwestern New Mexico and northeastern Arizona. During this very cold season they forced to track the 300 mile trek to deserted incarceration camp along the Pecos River situated in eastern portion of New Mexico known as the Bosque Redondo Reservation, wherein the military maintain the outpost. Along their journey, nearly 200 Navajos died of exposure to elements and starvation.

This is not easy because many children died due to starvation. The journey of Navajo settlers is not easy because they have to survive the harsh weather condition just to walk towards their new homes.

After four years, having experienced the miserable and overcrowded situation at the Bosque Redondo, the U.S.-Navajo Treaty of 1868 was signed and approved by the government. This has permitted the Navajo people to return only on a small part of their original New Mexico and Arizona Homeland, The United States government also promised to do the basic services as the replacement of peace. The Navajo long walk started again on June 18, 1868.

Navajo long-walk does not just happen during the outcast of Navajo villagers in the early 18th century. Today, many Navajo are still making long walk for them to earn their dreams in life. As a matter of fact, Navajo musicians are making a long walk in order to fulfill their dreams.

The Continued Traditions of the Navajo

Despite of the technology advancement, Navajo people or dine are still practicing their old customs and traditions. The Navajo is also an interesting topic when it comes to their unique beliefs, folklore and legends. This makes Navajo an attractive topic for many people despite of the computer world we are living today.

In conclusion, the Navajo long-walk is a good story of survival and fighting their right. As one of the oldest and largest tribes in North America they also have the right to be recognized as citizen of the country.

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