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The Southwest Region Native American tribe that is discussed in the following focuses on the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community The Pima-Maricopa Indians have struggled and endured a constant hardship of events in its background history and location Thomas Dobyns the author of The Pima and Maricopa stated they have suffered through their worst years at the hands of ruthless investors and land grabbers and the fight to undo the damage will never end Descendants of the regions original inhabitants are however gaining skills in law business farming and community organization that they are utilizing to win back the water and land that was once theirs The Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian community is in-fact two Indian tribes made up of the Pima tribe and the Maricopa tribe According to the Gale Encyclopedia of Native American Tribes these two tribes joined together between 1740 and 1780 in a federation and would be governed by a single tribal council although they would follow their own tribal traditions Although speaking distinctly different languages the Maricopa and Pima have since dwelled in harmony The Pima Indian tribe is believed to be the ancient ancestors of the Hohokam The Hohokam were a farming tribe that mysteriously vanished centuries ago The Pima attributed their decline to the rapacity of foreign tribes who came in three bands and killing or enslaving many of their inhabitants destroying their pueblos devastating their fields and killing or enslaving many of their inhabitants It is speculated the Hohokam people may have suffered from plague and disease after physical contact with the Spaniards The ancient Hohokam villages can still be seen today at different archaeological sites in the southwest The Pima had abundance of water from the Gila River that gave the Pima a distinct agricultural advantage over other Indian communities Therefore they had less need to wander in search of wild foods and were able to live a settled life in villages near the river
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