Contrary to popular belief, the true name for the Pascua Yaqui Tribe is Yoeme: which means "The People" in our native language. Our ancestral homeland is along the Rio Yaqui in Sonora, Mexico.
Like all indigenous tribes throughout the New World, ours is a long and bloody history. Our fertile river valley in Mexico was sought after by Mexican and white settlers alike. We trained ourselves to fight, withstand pain, and die if necessary to protect our lands and family life. As a result, Yoemes were repeatedly selected for extermination, slavery and deportation by first the Spaniards, then by the Mexican Government.
While many have scattered throughout Mexico, some of us fled to Southern Arizona where we remain today in small communities. The Pascua Yaqui Tribe did not become federally recognized in this country until 1978. We are the only Indian tribe that has never officially surrendered to either the government of Mexico or the United States.