Also known as Comcáac, a term that means "the people" in the Seri language, they are an ethnic group of recognized influence in the region for their cultural openness. They stand out for the beautiful fiber, shell, and ironwood handicrafts they make.
The term Seri means "the one who really runs fast" in the Optic language and "men of the sand" in Yaqui; the language of the Comcaac comes from the Hokana family, to which the Coahuilteco (northwest Mexico) and the Tlapaneco belong, but it is also said that they come from the Yuman group of the Sioux-Hokana family.
The Seris have occupied Tiburón Island and San Esteban since archaic times, although at present their camps are concentrated in Desemboque and Punta Chueca, the first beach corresponds to the municipality of Pitiquito and the second to Hermosillo; both are located in front of Tiburón Island.
They call themselves "Tohono O'odham", that is, "people of the desert". The tribe currently inhabits desert areas of Sonora and Arizona.
The O'odham language is closely related to Pima and both constitute the Piman branch of the Ito-Nahua. The Pima make handcrafted carved wooden figures, pottery, and baskets, and in fact, their best and finest handicrafts are baskets. The "coritas", baskets and trays, are made of palmillo and torote (desert plants that the women collect, prepare and weave).
The Papagos claim to be Catholic, have churches, and sometimes require Catholic priests. They celebrate some Christian festivals and have a patron saint for each village, but in reality, their religion revolves around the cult of the "elder brother", a deity who controls the elements of nature.
It is the most representative ethnic group in Sonora; it is estimated that there is a population of 33 thousand representatives distributed in 8 towns with their own governors. Their history is covered with acts of stoic resistance.
They identify themselves and the Mayos as Yoremes, a word that means man or person. The notion of yoris, white men, distinguishes them, in turn, from other indigenous groups. They are part of the Cahita dialect, which is composed of three languages: Mayo, Yaqui, and Tehueco, the latter of which has disappeared. Cahita belongs to the Yuto-Aztecan linguistic group.
The Yaqui group traditionally occupied a long coastal and valley strip in the southeast of the current state of Sonora, stretching from the southern bank of the Yaqui River to the Tetakawi hill, north of the current city of Guaymas.
Known as Yoremes, they come from the ancient inhabitants of Huatabampo. It is the largest group in the state, with a population of approximately 75,000 inhabitants. Their language is alive. Yoreme means "he who respects tradition".
According to an ancient legend of their oral tradition, the word Mayo means "the people of the river"; they currently inhabit the municipalities of Alamos, Quiriego, Navojoa, Etchojoa and Huatabampo.
The history narrates that the Mayos were docile receivers of the Spanish evangelizing teachings, acquiring at the same time knowledge regarding agriculture and the raising of domestic animals. With this acceptance, the inhabitants of the ancient Mayan area were quickly assimilated to the customs of the time, with a gradual loss of their traditional social organization.
They are an ancient ethnic group scattered in the Sierra Madre Occidental; their name means "there is none", "does not exist", "do not have", or probably "I don't understand", an expression they used when questioned by Spanish missionaries.
The Pima language belongs to the Yuto-Aztecan stock, composed of the subgroups Taracahíta (Cora-Huichol), Nahua, and the Pima branch. The Pima call themselves O'ob, which means "the people", "the people".
The O'ob in pre-Hispanic times were divided into 3 groups: the Uros, the Nebomes, and the Yécoras. The first two are now extinct and the latter still prevail, with their own cultural traits, and live in a dispersed manner in the Sierra Madre Occidental, in Maycoba, in the municipality of Yécora.
The Guarijíos were born as a link between the Tarahumara and the Cahíta, and their evangelization began in 1620 by Jesuit missionaries. According to historical data, in 1632 the Chinipas, Guarijíos, and Guazaparis tribes rebelled due to their discontent with the work of the missionaries and other Spanish colonizers, mainly because of the strong repression of the indigenous people and their beliefs.
The Guarijíos were divided into two groups that are still preserved today: those of Chihuahua, linguistically more closely related to the Tarahumara language, and those of Sonora, more dependent on the Cahíta language, represented by the Yoreme Mayo.
They are the result of a pilgrimage from the Great Lakes region of Michigan, in North America, to northern Mexico. Today, they are dedicated to making "tehuas", which are deerskin moccasins tanned and embroidered with “chaquira.”
They currently live on reservations in Kansas and Oklahoma, United States, and in the communities of El Nacimiento, Coahuila, and Tamichopa, municipality of Bacerac, in the highlands of Sonora.
The Kikapú language is part of the North American Algonkinian linguistic family. The Sonora group does not practice its ancestral language, since it was replaced by Spanish; its last speaker died in 1996.
It is a binational ethnic group linguistically related to the Pai Pai, Kiliwa, and Kumiai groups of Baja California; and to the Javasupai, Hualapai, Yavapai, Mojave, and Maricopa of the United States. Their name translates as "coming".
They are an ethnic group linguistically related to the Pai Pai, Kiliwa, and Kumiai groups, inhabitants of Baja California, and to the Javasupai, Hualapai, Yavapai, Mojave, and Maricopa of the United States. Together they make up the Yumana family, which arrived in northwestern Sonora and the northern Baja California peninsula around 6,000 years ago.
It can be considered that the ancient self-designation of the group was kuapak, which translates as "that comes" or "that arrives", because due to the constant variation of the course of the Colorado River, the families possessed two or more houses, since they practiced agriculture in lands near or dislodged by the river.
Currently there are some museums in Sonora dedicated to native villages, such as the Comcáac Museum in Kino Bay, the Schuk Toak Museum in Puerto Peñasco dedicated to the Tohono O'odham, the Museum of Popular and Indigenous Cultures of Sonora and the Yaquis Ethnic Museum (both in Hermosillo), the Ópatas Museum in Arizpe, the Mayo Blas Mazo Culture Center Museum in El Júpare in Huatabampo; the Hu-Tezzo Community Didactic Museum dedicated to the Mayo culture, the Agua Azul Eco-Museum of the Tehuelibampo Site and the Regional Museum of Mayo Profr. Lombardo Ríos Ramírez, these last three in Navojoa.
If you come to vacation in our State and you are interested in knowing first-hand about this topic, you can consult with tourist guides which places and which ethnic groups are open to visits, learn about the culture of the original peoples that gave rise to what we know today as Sonora or visit one of our museums.