Southern Ute Tribe

By: Jade Prochaska

Get to know the Ute Tribe Reservation

The southern Ute indian tribe is located in Colorado, near the New Mexico state line. The reservation has a land area of 1,058.785 square miles. The reservation has a population of 11,259 people. It was established in 1873. The government of the reservation is led by a tribal council.


The Ute tribe people are the oldest inhabitants of Colorado. The Ute people lived off the land. They would eat berries, and other plants that they've found. They also hunted buffalos. They would move from place to place following well known routes. They spoke in the language called Shoshonean. The Utes settled in Utah, while other groups spread out North and East. Once they split up, each tribe took different names. Some of the names of the tribes were Shoshone, Comanche, and Kawaiisus. Other tribal people that weren't with a specific tribe made up loose groups called bands. The Utes lived off the land. They would hunt deer, and other animals. They also used basic wooden tools. When Spanish explorers came to the United States, they brought many things such as horses that helped the Utes, but they also brought many diseases that ended up killing a lot of them. During the 1700's they began to make peace treaties with other powerful tribes. In the late 1860's the United States tried to make treaty that would take away their land. The Utes refused to sign it. Later in 1874, they signed the treaty, but only after the United States made false claims about what they were going to do with the land. The government left them land to live on, but it wasn't much at all.

Famous Ute Chiefs

Ute Tribal Dances

Traditional Clothing

Women would wear long dresses made of deer skin, and basket hats. While, the men would wear buck skin shirts with breechcloths. They would also wear leather leggings to keep warm. Men and women had the same style of hair. Their hair would either be in braids, or just left down. For shoes, they would either wear moccasins, or sandals. Some people would even go barefoot.