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Grandfather is speaking of the time when he was a boy growing up at a very hard time for his people. They lived their Chumash tradition as best they could in California.

I’ll tell you about the Chumash family. You were born into your mother’s clan not your father’s. My Mother was Owl so I belonged to the Owl Clan. My father was Roadrunner

Some of our people belonged to the Owl, Dolphin, Wolf, Bear, Coyote, or Firewolf Clans. There were a lot of people who belonged to the Firewolf Kinu Clan and a society of warriors went through a lot to be called Kinu. They were guardians similar to the Dog Soldiers of the Eastern Tribes. Some of our people belonged to the Pine Tree Clan We called the Pine Tree, Tomolo.  These Pines were used to make the sea going boats that went across to the Channel Islands. We called the boats Tomol. Carpenteria was one of the places they made the boats. They were Plank Boats.  Back of the Mountains is a place along the side of the Mountain where the People used to gather the Tar, we called it pismol. They used this to hold the Planks together and used Shark skin to tie with, the Shark Skin being water proof.

You can see the Channel Islands from Santa Barbara. Long ago when the People traveled to the Islands the Dolphins led them through the currents. Going north along the Coast there is a town called Cayucos which means Man in a Boat this was one of the places my People went out to sea, we called the ocean Sameon.

Some of the people lived on the sand dunes by the shore. They used the Ribs from the Whales for the doorways of their brush huts. There were a few people that built their brush huts away from the village. There were villages inland and in the mountains. I was told there were flowers that covered the meadows and mountains as far as you could see.

To go on about my Chumash family, all the Indians had several names. I don’t remember what my mother’s name meant. She was born in 1865 and her mother was Cahuilla. I don’t know anything about my Mother's Father except he was Chumash. My Father was Chumash from Santa Barbara. My Father wanted to be independent. We worked all over just so we could stay away from the mission.

At different times, we lived in Ojai, Pomona, Claremont, Santa Paula, Fillmore, Ventura and other places. We camped in Brawley, up through the San Jacinto Mountains, from the Mojave Desert to back of the Sespe River (Sespe means Turtle). We camped by the Ventura River when the River used to flow, until they put the dams in.

We lived in shacks and tents. I remember having to get up early in the morning. My brothers and I had to run to the river, jump in that ice cold water, run back, and the women would rub us down with towels. We got dressed, then sat down to eat Pinole, that was a corn mush, nice and hot. Then we went out to do our chores.

We traveled in wagons. I remember one place we lived, my mother made tortillas that night so there would be plenty for morning.  In the morning most of the tortillas were gone. This happened a lot, so my Mother told my Dad we are going to have to move...the little People keep taking the tortillas. So we packed everything up, put it on the wagon. My Mother said, “Oh, I forgot the broom”, at that moment I heard a little voice say, “We put it in!” Everyone looked at each other with surprise and started laughing. We were moving, but so were the Little People, they were coming too. The Little People look like us only they are "one foot high", sometimes they can be seen, most of the time they can't.

Later on, in 1914 my Dad bought a Model T Ford. He had a hitch on it and he would haul a little trailer with a tent and all of our belongings.

The home belonged to the woman. The wife and the sister owned the house. The men would meet under a tree or in the barn, or they’d sit around the patio and talk.

In those days, most of the Indians were cowboys or farmers. They like to dress like cowboys. To this day, Indians dress western with a Stetson hat. Some kept their hair long when I was growing up.

The men were always by themselves but when it was time to eat, they would come into the house. As a rule, there would be a long room with a long table and bench. The head man (the owner of the house) and the elders sat at the head of the table. Then the children sat, males on one side, females on the other. On the other end was the Clan Mother who was the wife or the Mother of the house. We had a system where there was no conflict in the house. No one fought for a chair because each child knew where they belonged. Everything was done for unity and for peace in the family.

While we were eating, the Elders could speak but the children couldn’t. We couldn’t interrupt to say anything. We knew our place, so we ate and listened. What was important was the unity of the family and the Mother Clan.

I had six brothers and six sisters. We worked from the time we were very little. We were under control of the women until we were around twelve.  We did a lot of bringing wood and kindling. We brought in the wood that had already been chopped because we were too young to chop it ourselves. We brought in buckets of water; there were rivers then. We were the ones who raked the yard and gathered the eggs. I remember my friend and I would go into the chicken pen, knowing when the chicken was going to lay an egg; the hen would stand up to lay the egg so just as the egg came out, we would squeeze the egg, being the egg was soft it would make a dent in the egg, then it would harden that way. This we did at the neighbors Ranch! Well the word got around, he said he had very special chickens, they laid special shaped eggs. Well! After that, we stayed away from the neighbors hoping they wouldn’t find out it was us doing it. I had a sence of humor and sometimes it would get me into trouble.

During those days the women boiled the clothes. If the women had a fire, we kept it going. These chores taught us to be responsible and keep busy.

We had a big room with chairs several feet away from the wall in a circle. The adults sat in chairs talking and the children had to walk around the back behind the chairs, we didn’t cross in front. That was terrible to have the old people around talking and some child walk in front! But, they wouldn’t get after the child, they’d get after the parents.

I remember a child of one woman walked through the center of the room when the Elders were speaking. The clan Mothers stood up and told the mother to leave and not come in there and sit around the circle until she learned how to behave, because when she learned, her child would too. It taught respect!

There were different ways of raising boys and girls. We called all the girls Mamas. When we called them Mamas they knew they were loved and respected because they were women, the future of the race. When they were out there helping in the kitchen we praised them: you’re going to be a good mama when you get big, and you’re so clean!

The boys had to be men. We’d say, “You’re going to be a man, a good provider, a good protector, a good husband, and a good father. That’s all that’s required of you!” From the time they were little, we’d tell them that. “Before you get married, you’re going to have to have a nest, just like the birds! Once your wife moves into that home, then it belongs to her not to you. That’s what they were told. In case of divorce, the woman would put the man’s clothes outside, his saddle and boots and everything outside and he’s the one who goes home to Mama! Hey!

My Mother knew when we were going to have company. (It was common knowledge that a lot of people knew this type of thing in those days.) She would get up in the morning and wake everybody up. Some of the boys had to chop wood and some had to kill the chickens. The girls cleaned the house. When everything was cleaned and finished, and just as the food was ready, here came the wagons and we never thought anything of it. The men sat outside under the shade trees and smoked their pipes and talked about politics. In the evening, they’d have “rattle” songs. This was in Claremont. It was wild country then. Indian Hill was a camp.

My mother also knew when the phone was going to ring and when she would receive a letter. She'd say, “Go answer the phone because so-and-so’s going to call.” The phone would ring and it was that person. Or, she’d say, “Go wait for the postman!” It didn’t matter that she couldn’t read or write! Sure enough, the postman would ride up in his buggy with a letter for her.

Primitive people had mental telepathy because they needed to depend on this kind of other knowledge. They could sense danger or if there was going to be a raid. They used to know everything ahead of time, so they were prepared. That’s the way we were raised. Everybody was born with natural talent.