“Tucson and Marana Yoeme (Yaqui Indian) Communities” Tour
October 7 @ 8:00 am - 1:00 pm
On Saturday, October 7, 2023, join Old Pueblo Archaeology Center’s “Tucson and Marana Yoeme (Yaqui Indian) Communities” car-caravan cultural sites tour with Yoeme traditional culture specialist Felipe S. Molina. This tour will begin at 8:00 a.m. starting in the Santa Cruz River Park ramada at 1317 W. Irvington Road, Tucson (on south side of Irvington just west of the Santa Cruz River), and will end around 1:00 p.m.
Felipe S. Molina was taught the indigenous language, culture, and history of the Yoemem (Yaqui Indians) by his maternal grandfather and grandmother, his grandmother’s cousin, and several elders from Tucson’s original Pascua Village. A steady stream of Yoeme migrated into southern Arizona to escape the Mexican government’s war on and deportations of the Yoeme in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. By 1940 there were about 3,000 Yoeme in Arizona, mostly living in the well-established villages of Libre (Barrio Libre) and Pascua (Barrio Loco) in Tucson, Yoem Pueblo and Wiilo Kampo in Marana, and others near Eloy, Somerton, Phoenix, and Scottsdale. Mr. Molina will lead this tour to places settled historically by Yoeme in the Tucson and Marana areas including Bwe’u Hu’upa (Big Mesquite) Village, the San Martin Church and plaza in the 39th Street Community (Barrio Libre), Pascua, Ili Hu’upa, Wiilo Kampo, and his home community of Yoem Pueblo including its San Juan Church and plaza.
There is a requested $35 donation ($28 for Old Pueblo Archaeology Center and Friends of S’edav Va’aki Museum members) helps cover Old Pueblo’s tour expenses and supports its education programs about archaeology and traditional cultures. Donations are due 10 days after reservation request or by 5 p.m. Wednesday October 4, whichever is earlier: 520-798-1201 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Caption: Typical home in Yoem Village, Marana, Arizona, in 1936: Homes were built with railroad ties, saguaro cactus ribs, metal roofing and mud; R. B. Spicer photo courtesy of Felipe Molina.