Chicken Ranch Rancheria of Me-Wuk Indians

Mailing Address

P.O. Box 1159
Jamestown, CA 95327


Cultural History

The Chicken Ranch Rancheria of Me-Wuk Indians is a group of Native Americans who were formerly composed of various groups. These groups that comprise the now stable tribe are those who are the first inhabitants of the central California and those from the Sierra Nevada foothills. These people also reached up to the San Francisco Bay area, and it is still unusual that there are still a small number of the present-day descendants who are still thriving in the same region. The tribe is divided into several rancherias that are untied by one blood that of which is the Miwok or Me-wuk. 

The Chicken Rancheria of Me-Wuk Indians is also known as the Miwuk, or the Mi-Wuk. This tribe has been residing in the Northern California for several years now and can speak the Miwokan languages coming from the Utian family. The Utian family is composed of fifteen different dialects interrelated together. These languages are spoken by those who are settled on the portions of California. Aside from the Miwok people, the Ohlone also speak the language. The Miwok people have divided the language into two namely the Eastern Miwok and that of the Western Miwok. From the divisions, the Bay Miwok is already extinct as well as that of the Coast Miwok. These two have already been lost by the tribe and so there are no more speakers of these. 

The tribal name means that of "people". There are said to be four geographically and culturally diverse ethnic sib divisions of these people. These people are well known for their skills in hunting and gathering. The tribal people hunted small games while they also gathered wild berries, fruits and some vegetables. They did not have a political authority prior to the arrival of the European Americans in the year 1769. the tribe, though, had their own version of mythologies but were said to be similar to those of the other natives of Northern California. These people believed in the animal and the human spirits. The tribe is said to have seen the animal spirits as their first people. The coyote is one animal that they believe is their ancestor and creator god.

The Chicken Rancheria is one of the other nine Mi-Wuk recognized bands. The other tribes which are federally recognized are the Buena Vista, the California Valley Miwok tribe, the Ione, the Jackson Rancheria, the Single Springs band of Miwok Indians, the Tuolumne band of Me-Wuk Indians, the Middletown Rancheria and the Federated Indians of Graton Rancheria.

The tribal enterprises include those of the gaming and non-gaming enterprises. The tribe is on its way towards economic success. There is little information as to the tribal enterprises but there are proofs that they have entered business ventures which are for the betterment of the tribe. They are after self-sufficiency through a number of investments and tribal cooperation.

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