Special Report

This Is the Oldest City in America

3. Taos Pueblo, New Mexico
> Founded in: C. 1400

Taos Pueblo is a UNESCO World Heritage site, a National Historic Landmark, and one of a handful of continuously-inhabited cities founded by Native American peoples before the arrival of Europeans to North America.

Based on archaeological evidence, researchers believe that Native Americans inhabited the Taos Valley of New Mexico beginning around 900 A.D. They would go on to construct the first Taos Pueblo, which is now a ruin, around 1325. The tribe relocated to its present location around 1400.

Source: JannHuizenga / iStock via Getty Images

2. Acoma Pueblo, New Mexico
> Founded in: C. 1200

Acoma Pueblo has been inhabited since at least 1200, making it one of the oldest continually inhabited cities in America. Though today it is largely used as a historical site and tourist attraction, there are still a few dozen members of the Acoma Tribe who maintain residences in the old city.

Sometimes known as “Sky City” because of its elevation, Acoma Pueblo is just a few miles west of Albuquerque. The Acoma name has several suspected definitions, including “white rock people” and “a place that always was.”

Source: Public Domain / Wikimedia Commons

1. Oraibi, Arizona
> Founded in: C. 1100-1150

Oraibi, a Hopi pueblo in northeastern Arizona, is believed to be the oldest continuously occupied settlement in the United States. Estimates place the founding of the village around the years 1100 or 1150.

While many of the oldest Native American villages have become historical sites featuring tours and other activities, Oraibi is relatively isolated from the outside world. The people of Oraibi still adhere to a traditional way of life, and photography is prohibited.

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