Navajo-Churro sheep are a heritage breed descended from the Churra sheep brought to North America by Spanish colonists in the late 1400’s. It is thought the sheep were first brought by Christopher Columbus’s second visit to the Americas to provide food. It was soon realized by the local people that these sheep provide high quality wool. The indigenous people of the American southwest were harshly treated by the Spanish colonists which eventually led to the Pueblo Revolt in 1680. Settlers left the area and abandoned their sheep when they fled.
These sheep were taken by the native peoples and became an important part of the Navajo life, in particular, supplying fiber for clothing and rugs. Over the centuries the Navajo have continued to develop the breed, refining the quality of the wool to the level of durability and lustrousness that is prized in weaving and other fiber arts today.