Due to the lapse in appropriations, Department of Justice websites will not be regularly updated. The Department’s essential law enforcement and national security functions will continue. Please refer to the Department of Justice’s contingency plan for more information.

Recovery Of Zuni War Gods

 Library of Congress

IRS | Other Case Examples That Involve Indian Rights, Lands or Resources, or Tribal Authority

In the late 1980s and early 1990s, the Indian Resources Section worked with the Interior Department’s Solicitor’s Office to help recover many Zuni war gods, or Ahayuda, from private art dealers (including the estate of Andy Warhol) and museums for repatriation to the Zuni Tribe. The New York Times described this recovery effort as a “rare story of American Indians getting back what was taken from them.” The war gods, carved by Zuni priests and left to deteriorate in the elements at secret shrine sites across the reservation, are believed to be living deities and guardians of the Tribe.


Updated May 14, 2015

Was this page helpful?

Was this page helpful?
Yes No