Judith N. McArthur
Mural of a Native American woman
Mural, Native American woman, Sweetwater, Texas. Courtesy of David Kozlowski. Image available on the Internet and included in accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107.

SANTA ADIVA. Santa Adiva, a Tejas Indian woman of some undetermined high status, was discovered by Fray Gaspar José de Solís during an inspection tour of the missions of Spanish Texas in 1767–68. Father Solís recorded in his diary for April 30, 1768, that in the Tejas village near the San Pedro River he encountered an Indian woman called Santa Adiva, whose name was said to mean "great lady" or "principal lady" and who was accorded queen-like status. She was described as living in a large, multiroomed house, to which other Indians brought gifts. Solís reported that Santa Adiva had five husbands and a large contingent of men and women in her service.


Gaspar José de Solís, "Diary," trans. Margaret Kenny Kress, Southwestern Historical Quarterly 35 (July 1931).

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The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this article.

Handbook of Texas Online, Judith N. McArthur, "SANTA ADIVA," accessed August 21, 2019,

Uploaded on June 15, 2010. Modified on April 11, 2016. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

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