History of the Kumeyaay Indians
The Kumeyaay and their ancestors have lived on the Baja-California border at least 10,000 years in accordance with a recent excavation near Jacumba. Their descendants are probably the Yuman speaking Tipai. The striking red, black and white pictographs were painted in caves and on rocks along the southern California border, up the Gila River and along the Colorado River, ranging from the lower Grand Canyon to the Sea of Cortez. This tradition of ancient art is called La Rumorosa, after a site in northeastern Baja, Mexico.
The Kumeyaay Indians Today
There are twelve surviving North American Kumeyaay bands in the United States that are recognized by the federal government as sovereign tribal governments. Four Kumeyaay tribal communities survive south of the border in Baja California, Mexico.
One of the more successful tribal ventures are the San Diego County Kumeyaay Indian casinos, resorts, hotels, restaurants, entertainment, and golf courses.
Movie of Rock Art at Echo Rock in the In Ko Pah Mountains
This movie shows some of the rock art at Echo Rock in the In Ko Pah Mountains. This very isolated rock shelter is unique in all of the Southwest. Nowhere else are there two orange beings and lots of accompanying rock art pertaining to the heavens and cosmology of the Kumeyaay Native Americans. When we go to one of the more than 200 La Rumorosa rock art sites, this is what we see and this remarkable short film will let you experience perhaps the finest rock art in the San Diego region. If you want more, please purchase one of our books. Your support goes directly to Kumeyaay education.
In the deepest part of Wikwip also known as Echo Rock looking out into the ordinary world. In this darkened chamber is where the shaman artist sat painting his vision in a metaphoric painting. These symbols may have preceded the European invasion of Kumeyaay land and the genocide that followed. Here, in a vision of the spiritual world, a holy person sought guidance and wisdom, then to honor the experience painted what we see here.
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Basketry of the Mission Indians
A photo from 1924 by Edward S. Curtis from The North American Indian (1907-1930) v.15, Southern California Shoshoneans. The Dieguenos Plateau Shoshoneans. The Washo ([Seattle] : E.S. Curtis ; [Cambridge, Mass. : The University Press], 1926), plate no. 509
Kumeyaay Bands of the United States
- Campo Band of the Kumeyaay Nation
- Viejas Band of Kumeyaay Indians
- Barona Band of Mission Indians
- San Pasqual Band of Indians
- Inaja Cosmit Indian Reservation
- Capitan Grande Indian Reservation
- Santa Ysabel Band of Diegueño Indians, aka Iipay Nation of Santa Ysabel
- Ewiiaapaayp Band of Kumeyaay Indians aka Cuyapaipe
- Manzanita Indian Reservation
- La Posta Indian Reservation
- Jamul Indian Village A Kumeyaay Nation
- Mesa Grande Indian Reservation
- Sycuan Band of the Kumeyaay Nation
The Baja California, Mexico, Kumiai Bands
- San Jose de la Zorra
- La Huerta
- Juntas de Neji
- San Antonio Necua
- Santa Catarina (Kumeyaay-Pai Pai)
Campo reservation is only a few miles from the Mexican boundary.
A photo from 1924 by Edward S. Curtis from The North American Indian (1907-1930) v.15, Southern California Shoshoneans. The Dieguenos Plateau Shoshoneans. The Washo ([Seattle] : E.S. Curtis ; [Cambridge, Mass. : The University Press], 1926), plate no. 525