Culturally, our people are known as great fishermen, eelers, basket weavers, canoe makers, storytellers, singers, dancers, healers and strong medicine people. Before we were given the name ” Yurok ” we referred to ourselves and others in our area using our Indian language.
Acorns were the main food for the Yurok. Fish (mostly salmon) was also important to them. There were plenty of deer caught with snares.
Traditional Yurok religion was concerned with an individual’s effort to elicit supernatural aid, especially through ritual cleanliness, and with rituals for the public welfare. The tribe did not practice the potlatch, masked dances, representative carving, and other features typical of their Northwest Coast neighbours.
1a: a Ritwan people of northern California. b: a member of such people. 2: the language of the Yurok people.
Yurok Tribe Language Program Aiy-yue-kwee’ Nee-kee-chue! ( Hello Everyone!)
The Incas were agriculturally the most advanced. Through highly sophisticated crop selection techniques, they developed corn, potatoes, peppers and tomatoes into the crops they are today. Crops developed by the Incas currently provide a significant percentage of worldwide food consumption.
Following encounters with white settlers moving into their aboriginal lands during a gold rush in 1850, the Yurok were faced with disease and massacres that reduced their population by 75%. In 1855, following the Klamath and Salmon River War, the Lower Klamath River Indian Reservation was created by executive order.
The Yurok houses were made out of redwood planks. The houses were also made with a slanted roof to help drain the rainwater off the roof. The houses were made from split redwood logs which supported the houses’ frame. To hold the house up they used square poles and grape vines.
Changes to river hydrology, rising sea levels, increased frequency of storm events, and a loss of culturally significant species have all altered the manner in which Yurok people are able to maintain cultural, economic, and spiritual ties to their sacred lands.
Yurok (also Chillula, Mita, Pekwan, Rikwa, Sugon, Weitspek, Weitspekan) is an Algic language. It is the traditional language of the Yurok people of Del Norte County and Humboldt County on the far north coast of California, most of whom now speak English. The last native speaker died in 2013.
The Navaho Indians (the “ Dine,” or “ Navaho People,” in their native language), indigenous to the American Southwest, comprise the largest Native American tribe in the United States today.
The hunting of waterfowl, such as geese and ducks, was also of major importance. The subsistence pattern of the Southern Valley Yokuts focused on lake and river fishing with nets, basket traps, and spears, hunting waterfowl from tule rafts, and gathering shellfish and tule roots.
The Yurok tribe used canoes to travel up and down the Klamath River and the coast of California for trading, fishing and hunting. Today, of course, Yurok people also use cars and non-native people also use canoes.
Weapons. The bow among the Yokuts took two forms, the self bow and the sinew-backed bow, both made of mountain cedar. Houses. Apparently several types of shelters were built by the hill Yokuts adjoining Sequoia Park. Clothing. Yokuts men wrapped a deer skin around their loins or went naked.
Within the U.S., there are 562 Native American tribes. The largest are Navajo, Cherokee and Sioux. More than 3 million people in the U.S. are Native people.