History •  Southwest and American Indians

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Four Square Leagues: Pueblo Indian Land in New Mexico

Malcolm Ebright
Rick Hendricks
Richard W. Hughes

Winner of the 2015 Fray Francisco Atanasio Domínguez Award from the Historical Society of New Mexico

Winner of the 2014 Southwest Book Award from the Border Regional Library Association

This long-awaited book is the most detailed and up-to-date account of the complex history of Pueblo Indian land in New Mexico, beginning in the late seventeenth century and continuing to the present day. The authors have scoured documents and legal decisions to trace the rise of the mysterious Pueblo League between 1700 and 1821 as the basis of Pueblo land under Spanish rule. They have also provided a detailed analysis of Pueblo lands after 1821 to determine how the Pueblos and their non-Indian neighbors reacted to the change from Spanish to Mexican and then to US sovereignty.

Characterized by success stories of protection of Pueblo land as well as by centuries of encroachment by non-Indians on Pueblo lands and resources, this is a uniquely New Mexican history that also reflects issues of indigenous land tenure that vex contested territories all over the world.


Malcolm Ebright is the director of the Center for Land Grant Studies, Guadalupita, New Mexico. He is also the author of Land Grants and Lawsuits in Northern New Mexico.

Rick Hendricks is the New Mexico State Historian.

Richard W. Hughes is an attorney in Santa Fe specializing in Indian law. He is a partner in the Rothstein law firm.


“A readable, engaging history of the New Mexican Pueblos’ work to maintain their land holdings over the last four hundred years.”


True West

“A superior treatment of a vitally important, highly relevant subject in New Mexico’s past—and present.”


New Mexico Historical Review

6 x 9 in. 464 pages 12 drawings, 6 halftones, 5 maps, 3 tables