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Gila River Indian Community History

The Gila River Indian Community is an alliance of two tribes, the Akimel O'odham (Pima) and the Pee Posh (Maricopa). The Community was established by Executive Order in 1859 and formally established its own Constitution in 1939. The Gila River Indian Community covers more than 600 square miles and is the largest indigenous community in the Phoenix metropolitan area. The Gila River Indian Community borders such cities as Phoenix, Avondale, Mesa, and Casa Grande. In the last few years, with concentrated economic developments that led to a continuing increase of agricultural, industrial, and recreational activities, the "People of the River" significantly moved the Community from federal reliance toward greater self-sufficiency.