The Navajo Nation spans across Utah, New Mexico and Arizona and is comparable in size to West Virginia. The main Navajo reservation (13,989,222 acres) body completely surrounds the Hopi Nation. The Navajo Nation is also made up of three separate land masses from the main Navajo reservation. They are the Alamo Navajo Chapter (63,109 acres), Ramah Navajo Chapter (146,953 acres) and the Canoncito Navajo Chapter (76,813 acres) now known as the Tohajiileeh Chapter. These three chapters are all in the state of New Mexico. The Navajo Nation capitol is at Window Rock, AZ.
Though not a part of the Navajo Nation, a large community of Navajos can also be found on the Colorado Indian River Reservation that spans the adjacent border of Arizona (225,995 acres) and California (42,696 acres). This reservation is shared with members of the Mohave, Chemehuevi and Hopi tribes. The Colorado Indian River Navajos have relations with the Navajo Nation and its 3 separate chapters and travel great distances to stay in touch.
By Native American race, Navajos are one group of the Athapaskan race that settled around the four-corners area. They call themselves "Diné", a slightly different spelling to what Athapaskans of Canada call themselves (Dene) and to what Apaches call themselves, (Nde and Tineh). Navajos make up a large subset of Athapaskan (or Athabascan) community of tribes that have inhabited North America (Canada, U.S.A., northern Mexico). Some other Athapaskan tribes are the Jicarilla Apache, Mescalero Apache, Chiricahua Apache, Lipan Apache, Aravaipa Apache, Kiowa-Apache, Western Apache, Chasta Costa, Tutuni, Galice, Hupa, Kato, Eyak, Athapaskan, and Dene. Genetically, Navajos are more closely related to the Apache and culturally more closely related to the Pueblo tribes (specifically Hopi). Navajos use to be know as "Apaches Du Nabahu" then later spelled as "Apache de Navajo". Because of time, distance, climate and landscape, a wide range of cultures now exist for the Athapaskan people.
Across Navajo country (Diné bikéyah) are many scenic wonders that few non-Navajos ever see. Most of these have a legendary or mythical story associated with it, and because of this, have a sacredness viewed by the Navajo. Please view any of the landforms to the left and find out how beautiful our Dinétah really is.
I have also included some interesting photos that Mormon missionaries had taken while proselyting on the Navajo Nation from the Arizona Holbrook Mission of 1975-1978.
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