- from Southwest Peoples
A Spanish friar – a member of a religious brotherhood – visited the Zuni pueblo in 1539. He was probably the first European to have contact with the Southwest peoples.
A year later, Spanish explorer Francisco Vásquez de Coronado and his men encountered the Hopi, Zuni, and Rio Grande people. Coronado was searching for the legendary Seven Cities of Cíbola, which was rumored to be rich with gold and other treasure. After he failed to find gold, Coronado returned to Mexico. Soon after, however, Spanish settlers and soldiers arrived. They enslaved some Pueblo people and forced others to pay tribute in the form of crops and other goods. They also insisted that the Pueblo people convert to Christianity. It was truly a clash of cultures, and it set the stage for almost 500 years of mistreatment of the people of the Southwest by Europeans and their descendants.