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Abau Indians

Thomas N. Campbell General Entry

The similarity in the names Abau and Aba suggests that they may be variants of the same Indian group name, but this is contradicted by the fact that both Abau and Aba appear on the same list of Indian groups recorded by Juan Domínguez de Mendoza in 1683–84, when he was in the western part of the Edwards Plateau. If Mendoza's Abas were the same as the Hapes, then it is also likely that the Abaus were the same as the Xiabus, who in other Spanish sources of the same time are identified with the Rio Grande just downstream from the site of modern Eagle Pass, Texas. In both cases it is possible to argue for Coahuiltecan affiliation and conclude that the ethnic identities were lost early in the eighteenth century.

Herbert Eugene Bolton, ed., Spanish Exploration in the Southwest, 1542–1706 (New York: Scribner, 1908; rpt., New York: Barnes and Noble, 1959). Charles W. Hackett, ed., Pichardo's Treatise on the Limits of Louisiana and Texas (4 vols., Austin: University of Texas Press, 1931–46).


  • Peoples
  • Native American
  • Tribes (Other)

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

Thomas N. Campbell, “Abau Indians,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed June 15, 2021,

Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

June 1, 1995