Ysleta del Sur Pueblo

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La Mision de Corpus Christi de San Antonio de la Ysleta del Sur

Ysleta del Sur Pueblo (also Tigua Pueblo) is a Puebloan Native American tribal entity in the Ysleta section of El Paso, Texas, comprising a formerly Southern Tiwa-speaking people who were displaced from New Mexico in 1680 and 1681 during the Pueblo Revolt against the Spaniards.


In Spanish the people and language are called Tigua (pronounced Tiwa). They have maintained a tribal identity and lands in Texas.[1] Spanish replaced the indigenous language since around the early 1900s.

For almost 40 years the Pueblo has owned and operated tribal businesses that provide employment for its members and the El Paso community. These businesses include the Speaking Rock Entertainment Center, Big Bear Oil Co., Inc., and the Tigua Indian Cultural Center.[1] The tribe employs approximately 400 individuals.

As part of the Indian termination policy followed by the federal government from the 1940s through the 1960s, the Tigua became the last tribe formally terminated. On 12 April 1968, under Public Law 90–287 82 Stat. 93 the United States Congress relinquished all responsibility for the Tiwa Indians of Ysleta, Texas to the State of Texas. The Tiwa Indians Act specified that tribal members would be ineligible for any services, claims or demands from the United States as Indians.[2]

Public Law 100-89, 101 STAT. 666 was enacted 18 August 1987 and restored the federal relationship with the tribe simultaneously with those of the Alabama-Coushatta Tribe. The restoration act renamed the tribe to the Ysleta Del Sur Pueblo,[3] repealed the Tiwa Indians Act, and specifically prohibited all gaming activities prohibited by the laws of the state of Texas.[4]

The legislation of the United States Congress restored eligibility to received services from the federal government to this group, the southernmost tribe of the Pueblo peoples.[5] In addition, the state of Texas recognized the tribe. Two other tribes in Texas also have federal and state recognition.[5] In April 2008, the Tribal Census Department reported 1,615 enrolled members.[6]

Carlos Hisa is the current Governor of Ysleta del Sur Pueblo.

See also[edit]

Indigenous peoples of North America portal



  • Bartlett, John R. (1909). The language of the Piro. American Anthropologist, 11 (3), 426–433.
  • Diamond, Tom. (1966). The Tigua Indians of El Paso. Denver: National Congress of American Indian Funds.
  • Fewkes, J. Walter. (1902). The Pueblo settlements near El Paso, Texas. American Anthropologist, 4 (1), 57–75.
  • Harrington, John P. (1909). Notes on the Piro language. American Anthropologist, 11 (4), 563–594.
  • Houser, Nicholas P. (1970). The Tigua settlement of Ysleta del Sur. The Kiva, 36 (2), 23–39.
  • Houser, Nicholas P. (1979). Tigua Pueblo. In A. Ortiz (Ed.), Handbook of North American Indians: Southwest (Vol. 9, pp. 336–342). Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian Institution.

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 31°41′09″N 106°19′32″W / 31.68583°N 106.32556°W / 31.68583; -106.32556