Pima Indian Woman Grinding Corn


Francis Hartwell, Photographer, Phoenix, Arizona Unknown inpi1305pb.jpg IN-PI-1305 B&W 1507-1305-0002 inpi1305pb Print 5x7 Historic Photographs 1900s Reproduction requires permission. Digital images property of SHM Library & Archives


Pima Indian woman grinding corn in a wooden mill with children and home in background.

The Pima tribe were peaceful farmers who lived in southern Arizona and northern Sonora, Mexico. The Pima tribe were descendents of the ancient North American Indians called the Hohokam.

The food that the Pima tribe ate included meals made from the crops they cultivated including corn (maize), kidney beans, sunflower seeds, pumpkins and squash.  Small game, such as rabbit was a staple part of their diet together with meat from their livestock such as sheep and goats. Larger game was also available such as deer, elk and bear. As they were in close proximity to rivers, fish, duck and many different types of shellfish were major elements of their diet which was also supplemented with herbs, acorns and roots. The acorns were ground into acorn meal which was used to make bread. The Pima women gathered wild plants such as cactus fruit and mesquite seeds. The edible fruit of a giant cactus, called a saguaro, was a typical cactus fruit eaten by the Pima people.


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