A group of young women and a tribal leader from the Ute tribe stand in the History Colorado Center in traditional garb.

Native American History & Heritage


History Colorado documents and shares the living history of Indigenous peoples who originally inhabited this state. Through a rich collection of experiences—exhibitions and publications, lectures and lesson plans, events both online and in-person—the history and heritage of Native Americans is available for all Colorado communities. These experiences are created and curated in partnership with Tribal government, and are offered statewide and year round.

History Colorado is committed to continued work with Tribal partners to ensure that we are aligned with both the law and spirit of the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (NAGPRA). Learn more by clicking here.

Photo of Amache Ochinee Prowers
Three people observe a projected image of an antique photograph, depicting a seated Native American man in western dress.
This Jackson photo is one of the first photographs ever shot of the cliff dwellings in the Mesa Verde region
An exhibit space at Ute Indian Museum. On the walls are panels featuring landscapes and labels. In the center of the space are traditional clothing in glass cases. On one wall is a television screen providing additional information about the exhibit.
Art by Gregg Deal
120818 WOTL, Ryan Erickson, History Colorado
group of Southern Ute men on horseback
Tribal VIP reception
Ute woman carrying her baby in a traditional hide cradleboard, 1895-1905.
Duncan and Patterson

NAGPRA is the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act, a federal law that was enacted in 1990. History Colorado operates in full compliance with this act to return sacred objects, funerary items, objects of cultural patrimony, and other cultural items to the Indigenous peoples from which they were taken, as well as to work with tribal consultants to protect indigenous sacred sites and graves.

The guiding philosophy of History Colorado's NAGPRA program is to establish a relationship of cooperation and partnership with Native American communities and lineal descendants.  To learn more about NAGPRA and how History Colorado is working to meet these standards, please visit the following pages:

From the Colorado Magazine