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Special Collections & University Archives: Coahuiltecan

This is the webpage for UTRGV Special Collections & University Archives.

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Coahuiltecan Research Guide

Summary: Coahuiltecan

This research guide aims to help students interested on researching the Coahuiltecans of South Texas. Provided are a list of useful primary and secondary sources offered by the UTRGV Special Collections and Archives via online or on campus. Listed with these sources is what information you can expect to gather from that source that could be considered useful or relevant to the research topic, Coahuiltecans. Also included is a general background or topic description of the Coahuiltecans to provide an idea of what the student should be looking for.

Background: Coahuiltecan

Coahuiltecans were one of the indigenous groups that occupied the Rio Grande delta area of South Texas. Unlike most native groups, there is no set example of Coahuiltecan culture. This is because the Coahuiltecans are actually multiple native groups placed into a larger group which was labeled the Coahuiltecans after the Mexican state of Coahuila. Most sources on this list can provide examples of what types of food were eaten, how they obtained food, how they would move, and even how they would fight. What sources will lack is the ability to describe the distinct cultural identities of the groups that made up the Coahuiltecans.

Map of Native Peoples in Texas

Primary Sources: Coahuiltecan

External Resources

Bexar Archives

The Bexar Archives are described on the Briscoe Center for American History website as “the official Spanish documents that preserve the political, military, economic, and social life of the Spanish province of Texas and the Mexican state of Coahulia y Texas. Both in their volume and breadth of subject matter, the Bexar Archives are the single most important source for the history of Hispanic Texas up to 1836.” Included with these documentations of the past of Spanish Texas are the interactions between the Spanish settlers and the indigenous peoples of Texas. These sources can be quite useful for getting a sensed of how the Spanish settlers interacted with natives, what they thought about them, and over all how they treated them. The Bexar Archives contents can be viewed translated or in their original form online or through the UTRGV Special Collections and Archives microfilm collection.

Secondary Sources: Coahuiltecan

Daily Review, December 7, 1952 Centennial Edition of local newspaper, The Daily Review, regarding 100 years of history for Hidalgo County, Texas (1852-1952). Published December 7, 1952.

Research Compiled by William D. Bennett

William Bennett is pursuing a Bachelor of Arts degree in mass communication at the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley (UTRGV) with minors in history and anthropology. William hopes to pursue a career in either broadcast or print journalism in the future, but he still has an interest in history. During his time with Special Collections & Archives, William has collaborated and assisted with the creation of several exhibits and events. In so doing, he as gained experience planning and installing displays as well as processing archival materials, including photographs and manuscripts. William’s continues to grow his interest in research, history, and helping others continues in his work in the department.