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HIABU INDIANS. The Hiabu (Xiabu) Indians are known from a single Spanish encounter near Laredo at the close of the seventeenth century. It has been assumed that they ranged over both sides of the Rio Grande and that their language was Coahuiltecan. If this band survived into the eighteenth century, it must have been known by some other name. Juan Domínguez de Mendoza's list of 1684 (bands expected to arrive at the temporary San Clemente Mission at a site east of that of future San Angelo) contains the names of several identifiable Coahuiltecan bands of northern Mexico. It is possible that Mendoza's Abau may be the group known as Hiabu along the Rio Grande about twelve years later.


Herbert Eugene Bolton, ed., Spanish Exploration in the Southwest, 1542–1706 (New York: Scribner, 1908; rpt., New York: Barnes and Noble, 1959). Frederick Webb Hodge, ed., Handbook of American Indians North of Mexico (2 vols., Washington: GPO, 1907, 1910; rpt., New York: Pageant, 1959). J. R. Swanton, Linguistic Material from the Tribes of Southern Texas and Northeastern Mexico (Washington: Smithsonian Institution, 1940).

Thomas N. Campbell


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

Thomas N. Campbell, "HIABU INDIANS," Handbook of Texas Online (, accessed November 27, 2015. Uploaded on June 15, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.