Navajo Nation Postpones Considering Proposal To Change Name

By Al Macias
Published: Friday, January 27, 2017 - 5:35pm

The Navajo Nation will not be changing its name, at least not for a while. Tribal lawmakers have postponed consideration of a proposal that called for changing the name.

Spanish settlers in the 17th century originally gave the name Navajo to Native Americans living in what is today northern Arizona and New Mexico.They called themselves Dineh. The Dineh name means "the people."

A measure to formally change the Navajo name was made during the Tribal Council's winter session.

A decision was postponed on the session’s last day to allow more time for the Navajo people to discuss and consider the change. The measure will likely be brought up again during the spring council session.

Under the legislation, the name of the Navajo Nation would change to Dine Nation, and the tribal president and all departments, divisions and agencies would use the phrase Dine Nation in describing the lands and people.

The Navajo tribe is the largest Native American tribe in the U.S.