Gran Quivira Mission and Pueblo

May 24,1998
Near Mountainair, New Mexico

Additional photos
Gran Quivira Mission
View from the beginning of the path - The second church

These are the ruins of the Tompiro Indians. This village was known as Pueblo de Las Humanas. It was so named by Onate in 1598 (several spellings:Humanos, Jumanas, Jumanos, Xumanas, and Xumanos). There are the remains of two missions and several housing blocks. The first church was dedicated to San Buenaventura around 1636. The second was started in 1659 but never completely finished.

The village started as a collection of pit houses. Evidence of the pit house village dates from 700's to 1300's. It is believed to be a Mogollon culture and about 1500 people lived here. Later the population included the Anasazi and Plains Indians.

The most interesting thing about this pueblo is the construction of the largest house mound. There is a circular level with a kiva in the center which had 209 rooms in concentric circles. This level dates between 1300-1400's. The second level changed form to become rectangular rooms with a square layout which seems to coincide with the arrival of the Coronado Expidition (1540-1542).

Due to a four year famine in the late 1660's, conflicts with Apaches, and the growing intolerance of the church for local religious rites, the pueblo was abandoned in 1672. The famine is known to have killed well over 450 people from this pueblo.

The Pueblo
Collection of pueblo dwellings. Largest in this complex
Largest Kiva
Central kiva to the housing block. The mounds in the back are unexcavated housing complexes that make up the pueblo.
Right: A view down the nave of the second church. Mission Nave
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