ture—even the Spanish language andrnWestern dress. The Papagos were militarilyrnallied at the beginning of the 19thrncentury with the Spaniards against thernApaches. In 1775 the government ofrnNew Spain transferred its presidio northrn50 miles from Tubac to the O’odham villagernof Tucson, which lost immediatelyrnand forever its character as an Indianrncommunity. The Gadsden PurchasernTreaty between the United States andrnMexico catastrophically divided thernPimeria Alta in 1853. The Americansrnleft their Papagos in legal limbo untilrn1924, when the federal government extendedrncitizenship to all Indians; thernMexicans simply added theirs to the restrnof the people of Mexico. In 1874 PresidentrnGrant gave the Mission San Xavierrndel Bac and 71,000 acres surrounding itrnto the Papagos for their sole use andrnbenefit. To this were added in 1882 thernGila Bend Reservation, a tract of 48,600rnacres on the Gila River, and, in 1916, thernPapago Indian Reservation, created byrnexecutive order. The three reservationsrntogether comprise about 2,800,000rnacres, second only in size to the NavajornReservation. “For three centuries,” ProfessorrnFontana has written, “Papagosrnhave been encouraged . . . to becomernSpaniards, Mexicans, and Anglo-Americans.rnThe results to date have been veryrnuneven; the process continues and perhapsrnalways will. What is remarkable isrnthat there remains a people, the ‘Papagos,’rnwhose constituents go right onrnthinking and behaving in ways that arernuniquely their own.”rnToday, San Xavier del Bac on the SanrnXavier reservation immediately south ofrnTucson is the only mission founded byrnFather Kino that is still in the possessionrnof the Indians. Though the church is arnPapago parish, the Indian women acrossrnthe road tending their cook fires andrnselling fry bread to the tourists in a sweetrnhaze of mesquite smoke are Navajos; sornare those displaying jewelry laid out inrnglass cases stickered with Visa, Mastercard,rnand American Express labels. Besidernthe church, which was completed inrn1798, the simple homes of the Papagosrnthemselves stand on bare dirt lots by thernSan Xavier School. At the top of thernlava hill beside the mission the Grotto ofrnthe Blessed Virgin, made a shrine by thernBishop of Tucson in 1908 fifty years afterrnOur Lady’s appearance there, yawns.rnThe hill, covered by pancake pear, barrelrncactus, and trash, is surmounted by arnsimple white-painted cross. Beyond thernflat brown fields divided by irrigationrnditches the commercial jets lift off fromrnthe runways of Tucson International Airportrnwhile the Indians, oblivious to thernthunder of the engines, pray on theirrnknees before the holy shrine.rnMike Rios was a handsome stronglookingrnman in his 50’s, like most Papagosrnstocky and of relatively short stature.rnFrom his desk at tribal council headquartersrnin a doublewide trailer betweenrnthe school and the mission, he spoke bittedyrnof the water-rights case he was busyrnwith involving the Tohono O’odham (asrnthe Papago tribe is officially known), thernCity of Tucson, and the State of Arizona,rnbut when I asked him what thernchief problem today on the reservationrnis, he folded his arms on his stomachrnand gave me a look. “I’m trying to thinkrnwhat you’re going to do with it,” he saidrnafter a long pause. “I didn’t come herernto put anybody on the spot,” I told him.rnWe grinned at one another and wentrnout to eat a late lunch together.rnWe drank iced tea and ate chimichangarnwhile Mike talked of the reservationrnand its troubles. “I remember thernwater situation being bad in 1974-75, sornthe problem we’re having today is not arnmatter of Tucson’s development. Waterrnhas to be trucked out to the cattle; manyrndie every summer. We need to developrna range management plan, but it’s allrntalk so far. The cattle people understandrnthat it is a question of livestock reduction,rnbut for them that is the equivalentrnof bank-account reduction andrnstatus reduction. Alcoholism and teenrnpregnancy are the greatest problems onrnthe reservation. Pregnancy amongrnunwedded girls used to be a stigma asrnrecently as when I was a boy; today it’srnan acceptable thing. Also the tribe isrngradually losing its language. Communityrnbonds are breaking down. Neighborsrnno longer take potluck dinners,rnbeans and so forth, to bereaved families,rnwho receive little mental and spiritualrnsupport. In fact, somebody might bernholding a dance that afternoon. In religion,rnI see clashes. I myself have my ownrnway of believing. At the same time, yourntry to accommodate to being a Catholicrnor to other religions that have surfaced.rnI’m one of them. Nobodv asked me tornbe baptized, to be a Catholic. People arernalways asking me why I don’t go tornchurch. When they ask me I say, ‘No religion.’rnI even tell them that when I gornto St. Mary’s Hospital in Tucson. Theyrnlook at me as if to sav, ‘Then what arernvou doing here?’rn”I spent 20 years living off the reser’ation,rnin Cleveland. If I could survive inrnCleveland, I could survive anywhere.rnWhen I was in Cleveland, out of curiosityrnand for self-education I went to 16rndifferent churches. When I got backrnhome I found Protestantism and otherrnreligions that weren’t there before, includingrnthe Native American Church—rnyou know, sweat lodges. Papagos didn’trnuse to do any of that. Even those ritesrnaren’t being performed correctly by thernstandards of the Native AmericanrnChurch. But anyway: I’m one of the fewrnfortunate Papagos. I’ve really seen therngood and the bad. People that have neverrnbeen away will condemn things thatrnthey see going on that are not traditionalrnwith us. People here who never leave, gornto church, it’s hard for them. Put themrnin Cleveland, I think they’d go crazy.”rnWhen I asked if the tribe were notrntrapped between the two sides in therndrug-smuggling situation, he counteredrngruffly, “Are we? Drugs may be a problemrnto Customs, Immigration, andrnWashington—not necessarily to the Papagos.rnSo what if you make a few bucksrnhauling pot across the border and haulingrnit out, and handling illegal aliens?rnSo be it. There are no industries on thernreservation, government benefits only.rnPeople have to do it. The money’s notrntaxable, or reportable to social services.rnGreat. Anyway, the trouble is over here,rnthe American addicts. We need thernmoney on the Indian reservation, not forrnthe president of Nicaragua.” I wanted tornknow what he thought ought to be donernwith the aid money, and Mike replied,rn”Find something that’s manufaeturablernand put people to work; find a marketrnfor what they manufacture. But all thisrnSBA paperwork is impossible.”rnWe had taken my Land Cruiser to thernrestaurant because Mike Rios’s pickuprntruck was inoperable, awaiting majorrnrepair work. I drove Mike back to headquarters,rnand spent the rest of the afternoonrninspecting the old mission church.rnI stayed until evening, when an elderiyrnMexican couple rehearsed their weddingrnceremony while outside the Navajornwomen packed up their wares and extinguishedrnthe cook fires. In the smallrnchapel beside the church, votive candlesrnfluttering in green, red, and yellow glassesrnrepeated the colors of the western sky,rnand eave them movement. On thernshadowed summit of the lava hill, thernghostly cross glowed palely. crn58/CHRONICLESrnrnrn