San Carlos Apaches

Mailing Address

San Carlos, AZ 85550

Contact Information




Cultural History

The San Carlos Apaches Tribe is said to be one of the last few remaining indigenous tribes who are still active today. The tribe has been subject to many idealists and historians. They have also been the subject for arguments. Some historians say that the tribe has been in the region since the 11th century A.D. However, some other historians argue that the tribe has settled in the place earlier and has always found their habitat in the area. The growth of the tribe has been regarded to intermarriages between Salado and other tribes. Their control over their area was very much visible that during the 1500, they were said to have had the complete authority towards the whole of the Eastern Arizona, the Western New Mexico as well as that of Central North Mexico. 

The San Carlos Apache People like to maintain a distinct culture. They identify themselves as either Nnee or Indeh which literally means 
"the people". Their native tongue is related to the Navaho that is, their vowels are commonly labeled as "continental" with a mixture of Spanish and European accent. Their vowels are likewise nasal characterized by ogonek which comes from Polish people. Their consonants, on the other hand, are pronounced in English. Their dialect is still used today. There are still approximately 9,000 native speakers of the dialect both in the San Carlos Reservation and the White Mountain Reservation.

Some of the San Carlos Apaches settled in the Pinal Mountain Region. These people are the ones who were originally from the Cibecue. Many emigrants have also traveled towards the Sierra Acha and the Pinal Creek. Having settles in the Eastern and Northern Slopes of the Pinal Mountain, some of them have started calling themselves as the grey cottonwood people. While others contented themselves on the slopes, still, some other groups decided to breakaway and settle in the south known as the Aravaipa Creek. This started the little groupings between the tribe. Those who lived in the north were dubbed as the Pinal Apaches while those in the south were to be known as Aravaipa Apaches. There were also the Apache Peaks Band who were in the further north of the Pinal, the San Carlos Band who are found along the San Carlos River and the Tonto Band who settled in the Tonto Basin area.

However, during the late 19th century, most of these bands came together to focus on what is now known to be the San Carlos Reservation. The San Carlos Reservation is found at the junction of the San Carlos River and the nearby Gila River. Today, the tribe now believes that they are as one, and not to be known by their former groupings. 

Their economy is currently at its peak having been able to establish their very own business venture known as the Apache Gold Casino. The Casino is what is currently keeping the tribe busy. The casino and resort is a result of their desire to be known in the business. It is located 5 miles East of Globe on Highway 70. It is truly fascinating how their culture has evolved. Today, they still live by their culture but in perfect harmony with modern times.

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