Indigenous Cultures Institute in Texas

The Chair of the Indigenous Cultures Institute, Dr Mario Garza, recently issued a letter announcing their new online journal, Nakum. Dr. Garza says “We started this journal not only to promote our mission, but to offer a public forum through which our people can speak with their own voice, from their own perspectives.”

The Indigenous Cultures Institute was founded by members of the Meakan/Garzas Band, one of the over two-hundred bands that resided in Texas and northeastern Mexico when the Spaniards first arrived.

The Institute organized the local Native community to provide education and information about Native Americans, particularly from this area, southern Texas, and northern Mexico. More than 200 Native American groups were populating what is now central and southern Texas and northeastern Mexico when the Spanish conquistadores first arrived. The majority of research about these groups — collectively named Coahuiltecans — is scarce and little is known about their culture and history.