Manuel Archuleta collection of Pueblo Indian, Navajo and Hopi music
Scope and Content
Circa 1964, Archuleta’s oldest daughter, Elizabeth Archuleta, donated or loaned additional recordings by her father to the UNM Fine Arts Library, which were copied to 7 reels. These reels contained 232 songs recorded by Manuel Archuleta. All of the 24 songs that Archuleta recorded on Tom Toms and Super Chiefs were included on these reels. The remaining songs were apparently never recorded commercially. Some of them have no titles, but are Native American in origin. Some of the songs were composed by Archuleta.
In 2011, the Archuleta family located an album with Manuel’s yellow label - Songs of the Redmen, Super Chief Indian Records. They are similar to the Tom Toms but with different descriptions. For posterity, these were copied for the Library to CDs and returned to the family. Hence the duplication of titles in the inventory.
The family also located two descriptive handouts that Archuleta had produced to promote his recordings. These have been scanned, attached to this inventory and returned to the family.
The Manuel Archuleta collection contains the only known recordings of some of the outstanding Native New Mexican singers of the past. Featured are performers from San Juan, San Felipe, Laguna, Taos and Zuni Pueblos, as well as the Navajo and Hopi. They include vocals in the native languages performed by individual singers or by choruses, ceremonial songs and dance songs. Most performers are accompanied by drummers and occasionally by musicians with other native instruments. Song No. 187 is identified as being performed by an Indian child.
- ca. 1940-1970
Biography / History
Archuleta realized that the native people of New Mexico were reluctant to have him record their songs, but once they listened to his recordings and understood that he was helping to preserve their heritage, they began urging him to record their songs. He captured as many authentic Native American songs as he could, always knowing that when old men die they take with them the songs that others had failed to learn. To further this cause he donated his recordings to the University of New Mexico. Musicologists researching Native American songs have found Manuel Archuleta's recordings useful. For example, in Music and Dance of the Tewa People, authors Gertrude Prokosch Kurath and Antonio Garcia have used these recordings along with ethnographers’ film recordings, to combine transcriptions of the music with dance glyphs.
Archuleta worked for the United Pueblos Agency. He sang native songs that he had learned from the old men of his village and started collecting New Mexico Native American songs at the Indian School and various pueblos in 1939. Archuleta’s wife, Alyce Pinno of Laguna, graduated in 1936 from Haskell Indian School with a commercial associates’ degree. She worked for the U.S. Corps of Engineers. Archuleta recorded Alyce's father, George Pinno, known as one of the best song makers of his day. Archuleta lectured at UNM and taught Indian dances and lore in the local schools. He died in November 1963.
Sources: Archuleta, Manuel. “The Chants of my People," The Desert Magazine, October 1949, Vol. 12, No. 12, pp. 12-14
Kurath, Gertrude Prokosch, with Antonio Garcia, Music and Dance of the Tewa Pueblos. Museum of New Mexico Press: Santa Fe, NM. 1970. p. 164;
Levine, Victoria Lindsey. Ed. Writing American Indian Music: Historic Transcriptions, Notations, and Arrangements. Published for American Musicological Society. A-R Editions, Inc.: Middleton, Wisconsin. 2002
Szasz, Ferenc M. Larger Than Life: New Mexico in the Twentieth Century. University of New Mexico Press: Albuquerque. 2006.
1 box containing 10 CDs (.2 cu. ft.)
Language of Materials
- Hopi Indians -- Music
- Indian dance -- Southwest, New
- Indians of North America -- Southwest, New -- Music
- Navajo Indians -- Music
- Pueblo Indians -- Music
- Pueblo of Laguna, New Mexico -- Music
- San Felipe Pueblo (N.M.) -- Music
- San Juan Pueblo (N.M.) -- Music
- Taos Pueblo (N.M.) -- Music
- Zuni (N.M.) -- Music
- Finding Aid of the Manuel Archuleta collection of Pueblo Indian, Navajo and Hopi music, ca. 1940-1970
- Edited Full Draft
- N. Brown-Martinez
- © 2009, ©2011
- Description rules
- Describing Archives: A Content Standard
- Language of description
- Script of description
- Language of description note
- Finding aid is in English
- Monday, 20210524: Attribute normal is missing or blank.
Part of the UNM Center for Southwest Research & Special Collections Repository
University of New Mexico Center for Southwest Research & Special Collections
University Libraries, MSC05 3020
1 University of New Mexico
Albuquerque NM 87131