Published on September 21, 2013 by Amy
The Fort Mojave Indian Reservation is an Indian reservation along the Colorado River, currently encompassing 23,669 acres (96 km²) in Arizona, 12,633 acres (51 km²) in California, and 5,582 acres (23 km²) in Nevada. The reservation was originally established in 1870 and is now home to approximately 1,100 members of the Mohave Tribe of Native Americans.
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Occupancy on Fort Mojave Indian Reservation lands, unlike that of many other Indian reservations in Arizona, is less than 50% Native American. The Mohave people have leased much of their land to cotton, corn, and soybean farming companies, which employ a large population of resident white people and Mexican Americans.
The site of the former Fort Mohave and the eastern terminus of the Mojave Road are situated on the present-day Fort Mojave Indian Reservation.
On October 20, 2003, the reservation government announced an agreement between the reservation and California Governor Gray Davis to allow the operation of an off-reservation casino west of Needles, California (directly across the Colorado River from the Tribe’s Arizona Reservation Lands). If the deal is ratified, the Fort Mojave Reservation will be the first to have casinos in three states; the reservation operates the Avi Resort & Casino in Nevada and the Spirit Mountain Casino in Arizona.
As of 2012, The Center for Indian Education at Arizona State University “has facilitated workshops for both learners and speakers at the Fort Mojave Indian Reservation in northwest Arizona, California and Nevada. Fort Mojave has about 22 elders who speak some Mojave.” The project is also bringing elders together with younger people to teach the traditional Mojave “bird songs.”
The language preservation work of poet Natalie Diaz on the reservation was featured on the PBS News Hour in March 2012.