Thursday, July 4, 2013

Arizona's July 4, 1776 Connection

     Arizona has a connection to July 4, 1776 too!   After you read our story below, we hope you will take the time and discover Hopi for yourself.

Note: The Hopi Tribe ask that you not take pictures of their land, their homes and the people when you visit their reservation.  We have always honored that request when we visited the villages of Hopi.  The pictures you see here come from two sources.  Picture #1 is of a pot we bought from the late Hopi potter Pauline Setalla while visiting her and her family in Keams Canyon.  The remaining pictures were provided to us by the Moenkopi Legacy Inn & Suites with permission of the Hopi Tribal Council. 

Please, when you visit Hopi, be a good guest and follow and obey all of their tribal requests.  Remember, you are a guest in their home and will be graciously welcomed.  Here is our July 4th story...

     Father Tomas Garces was moving quickly that hot, summer morning for he had just been kicked out of the Hopi village of Oraibi.   Father Garces and his traveling party needed to get back to their mission near today’s Yuma and they were moving quickly to descend off the heights of Third Mesa so as to comply with the village elders’ demands.
    When they came onto the high desert plains a few miles southwest of the ancient village, Father Garces paused to write in his journal an account of his quick departure from Oraibi.  The date of that journal entry was July 4, 1776.  The final attempt by Spain to establish missions on the Hopi Mesas had come to an end on the very day that the birth of a new nation occurred in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
     The Hopitu, “The Peaceful People” live on a 1.5 million acre reservation in the high desert region of northeastern Arizona.  And with the April 2010 opening of the Moenkopi Legacy Inn & Suites Hotel the people and their mesa top villages are more accessible then ever for visitors to come to their magical land and discover just want it means to be Hopi.
     The Hopi are one of the oldest living cultures in North America.  Their roots in Arizona go back over 2000 years but their genesis as a people goes back many more thousands of years.  The people believe that their ancestors once migrated north from what is now Central America and Mexico.
A traditional agricultural people, the Hopi are closely tied to their matriarchal clans and still today reside in 12 traditional villages.  Each village is self-governing and about 10,000 Hopi live on their northern Arizona reservation.
    The Hopi have perfected a “dry farming” technique that has allowed them for centuries to produce their famous blue and red corn, beans, squash and melons in a land that first appears impossible to cultivate.  They are also known for their amazing arts and crafts, especially their Kachinas and pottery.
    The village of Upper Moenkopi is the western gateway to the land of the Hopi and with the opening of this modern, 100-room hotel, now is the perfect time to discover the culture of Hopi.  From the beautiful traditionally decorated lobby, to the salt-water swimming pool and the high-speed wireless Internet, this hotel speaks of culture and comfort.
    The TUUVI CafĂ© is located just across the street from the hotel in the TUUVI Travel Center.  It is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner and serves both traditional American meals as well as traditional Hopi cuisine.
    Guests can travel themselves to the Hopi villages but if this is your first visit to Hopi, let us suggest you consider a guided tour.   Either way we recommend two “must sees” while in the land of Hopi – the first is the Third Mesa village of Old Oraibi which is believed to be the oldest, continuously inhabited village in North America.  Sometimes Old Oraibi is closed to visitors so be sure to follow any closure signs that you might come upon.
    The second is the First Mesa village of Walpi found some 76 miles from the hotel on Highway 264.  Words can’t adequately describe the history and views that await visitors to this cultural treasure high atop First Mesa.  If time allows, the Hopi Cultural Center is located on Second Mesa between Old Oraibi and Walpi.
    Tour guides know the homes of the Kachina Doll carvers, the best potters and basket makers.  They also know of the “do’s and don’ts” of the Hopi culture.  Photography and drawings are forbidden in most villages of Hopi, so please follow all the cultural rules and guidelines. 
    But with the new Moenkopi Legacy Inn & Suites hotel now open, put a visit to Hopi into your summer travel plans and you will experience a part of Arizona that is both ancient and magical!

Destination Name Moenkopi Legacy Inn & Suites
Address Junction Highways 160 & 264, Tuba City, Arizona 86045
Directions Take I-17 North 110 miles to Flagstaff on merge onto I-40 East.  At Exit 201, take US-89 North toward Page for 62 miles.  Turn right onto US-160 and travel 10 miles to Tuba City/Moenkopi and the hotel.   The Moenkopi Legacy Inn & Suites is 191 miles from Anthem.
Price Room cost vary with style; check hotel’s web site
GPS Coordinates
N 35° 93.240’
W 111° 37.989’

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