Sycuan Band of the Kumeyaay Nation

Mailing Address

5459 Sycuan Road
El Cajon, CA 92109

Contact Information




Cultural History

The ancient Sycuan Band of the Kumeyaay Nation has been living in San Diego for centuries. They are considered as the native "San Diegans" because of their long term residence in the area. They have settled in the place for almost 12,000 years. In it, they have built a community ion which they cultivated their own culture and history. However, the recorded first settlers in the area are the San Dieguito Paleo-Indians who are said to have thrived in San Diego for since 10,000 B.C. Soon enough, various groups branched out from the original tribe. One of the groups that stood out was the Southern Diegueño. The Southern Diegueño group is what is now said to be the direct ancestors of the Sycuan Tribe. The group emerged about 3,000 B.C and since then, their culture has evolved. In the present times, the Sycuan Band is now living in the Dehesa Valley in San Diego. It is one of the 18 Indian tribes in the area.

The tribe has lived a peaceful and prosperous life thanks to the temperate climate San Diego has to offer. The tribe’s territorial properties include the east of El Centro, north of Escondido and the south extending up to Baja. These tribesmen are said to be good hunters and inventive agriculturists. Up to know, the tribe has retained its rich and wonderful traditions.

Upon the arrival of Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo in 1542, the tribe came in close contact with the Europeans. In 1769, they were reached by the missionaries like Father Junipero Serra who is the founding officer of the Mission and the Presidio of San Diego. The lives of the Kumeyaay people have changed since then. Their lands were stolen, their tradition was destroyed and the tribe experienced diseases such as measles and smallpox which threatened to eradicate their population. After the turnover of the lands to the Republic of Mexico, the lives of the people have only become worse. They found themselves being nomads and strangers to the land they used to have. They were brought to slavery, human rights have been ignores and so were the treaties that could have protected their land. From 30,000, only 3,000 survived. 

In 1875, President Ulysees S. Grant took the first step towards the attainment of peace among the Native American Indians. HE passed an Executive Order stating that lands in San Diego will be set aside for the use of the Kumeyaays. Today, a 640 acre, one square mile Sycuan Reservation now lies as part of the Exective Order. The granting of land did not do any better for the Indians because the land was not useful for farming. Good thing, in 1891, the tribe was formally acknowledged by the Federal Government through the Act for Relief if the Mission Indians. 

Today, the community is developing its casino by giving away several prices including the latest Toyota Prius Hydrid Car. The casino has a 2,200 parking space garage, and has won several awards. They also have their own golf academy under the Sycuan Resort. They are currently one of the wealthiest tribes in San Diego today because of their numerous investments that gained success.