The Keres are a native people of New Mexico
. In the 1990 census somewhat over 8000 speakers of Keres, a language isolate
(one not related to any of its neighbours), were reported. They live in seven adobe pueblo
s, two in the west being Acoma
, and those in the east being Cochiti
, Santo Domingo
, and San Felipe
on the Rio Grande
, and Santa Ana
on its tributary the Rio Jemez
Acoma has been called the oldest continually inhabited settlement in the United States, first mentioned by Friar Marcos de Niza, discoverer of the Zuni towns in 1539. (See Zuni for details about him.) It sits on a mesa over a hundred metres above the valley, and is also known as Sky City. It now only has fifty permanent inhabitants, but others congregate there for ceremonies.
They are exogamous and matrilinear. The head shaman of the "Flint" society holds office for life, and appoints the two war chiefs, who have responsibility for ceremonies. Warriors who have taken a scalp a called ope. Some shamans performed magic such as swallowing wooden wands and extinguishing fire in the mouth; there were also rattlesnake handlers. -- This paragraph is distilled from the Curtis website cited below, so is unlikely to apply in the same way to modern Keres society.
As with the Zuni, the owl is respected as a symbol of wise elders who have departed the world. The feathered sky snake Avanyu often occurs on pottery and is associated with storms and change of season.
http://curtis-collection.com/tribe%20data/keres.html has old photographs of them from the Curtis Collection.
http://www.nmmagazine.com/features/acoma.html for more about Acoma Pueblo.