One of America’s first women scientists, the anthropologist Matilda Coxe Stevenson stated: “This Zuni was one of the tallest (at six feet) and strongest members of her tribe.
Early in 1886 Stevenson “introduced” this amazing person to the country's leaders in Washington DC.
No one in Washington doubted that the visitor from Zuni was a woman. There was no mention of the fact, We’wha was born a man. The European views did not accept the concept of a third gender.
That such an individual could be a representative for the Zuni tribe shows the extent to which they were accepted by the First Nationers. In most tribes the ability to combine male and female qualities was viewed as a gift. It came as no surprise to the Zunis that We’wha would travel thousands of miles, to a strange language and culture, to mingle with the leaders of a powerful nation. We’wha was expected to be extraordinary.
Read more in the book “The Zuni Man-Woman” by Will Roscoe.