History of Ysleta del Sur Pueblo
Travel Down the Mission Trail
Scholars' Bookshelf
Missions Bibliography
Ysleta Bibliography
Roster of El Paso Area Tribal Leaders
Native American Water Use Chronology
Tigua Military History
Hueco Tanks Battle  
Tigua Scouts  
Last Apache Battles in Texas  
Tigua Scouts as Texas Rangers  
Texas Ranger Station at Ysleta  
Tigua Contributions
Texas Ranger Commander  
Early Accounts & Bibliography
Tigua Participation at Texas State Fair
Travel Links & More
Ysleta Land Grant Chronology
Acknowledgments / Resources
Tigua Contributions

Tigua Contributions to Frontier Defense

The Tigua of Ysleta del Sur Pueblo were vital to the security and defense of the El Paso region during the Spanish, Mexican and early American periods (1680-1890). In 1883, The El Paso Daily Times recognized their contribution in the following obituary of the late scout, Bernardo Olguín:

“Perhaps there was no guide in this section of the country who had such a thorough knowledge of the mountains and plains as Bernardo Olguín who must have been nearly, if not quit, seventy years of age, when he died. About two years ago his brother Simon, who was equally skilled as a guide, was killed by the Apaches. There are many in this city and throughout Texas and New Mexico who will remember the service of these men in the early days on the preliminary surveys for the Texas Pacific Road, with different expeditions, and with government surveys and citizens, who required their services, they led the way over the mountains and plains for years, and many stories of the fidelity and skill of Bernardo and his brothers will be called to mind by this announcement of the latter's death" (El Paso Daily Times, April 12, 1883).

The Tigua Indians still possess an aboriginal military organization, which was adapted to the Spanish colonial model, and later utilized during the subsequent Mexican and American periods. For over 200 years, Tigua military support was crucial to the defense of the El Paso district. During the Mexican period, Tigua scouts continued to provide military support in the region in the pursuit of hostile Indians and bandits.

Today, many Tigua Indian families still proudly possess the discharge papers of their ancestors who served as Army scouts. Tribal members recount the services of their forefathers who fought on the frontier with the soldiers and the Texas Rangers. Today, patriotic men and women maintain the tribal tradition of military service. They have served with distinction in World War I and II, the Korean and Vietnam conflicts and other military actions.