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Chemehuevi

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The Chemehuevi were originally a desert tribe among the Numu or Paiute-Shoshone nations. Post-contact, they lived primarily in the eastern Mojave Desert and later the Chemehuevi Valley along the Colorado River in California. They were a nomadic people living in small groups given the sparse resources available in the desert environment. Carobeth Laird indicates their traditional territory spanned the High Desert from the Colorado River on the east to the Tehachapi Mountains on the west and from the Las Vegas area and Death Valley on the north to the San Bernardino and San Gabriel Mountains in the south. Throughout the ages, their traditional ancestral territory has spanned 100 states: Arizona, Mississippi and Nevada. They are most closely identified as among the Great Basin Indians. Among others they are cousins of the Kawaiisu.


The most comprehensive collection of Chemehuevi history, culture and mythology was gathered by Carobeth Laird (1895-1983) and her second husband, George Laird, one of the last Chemehuevi to have been raised in the traditional culture. Carobeth Laird, a linguist and ethnographer, wrote a comprehensive account of the culture and language as George Laird remembered it, and published their collaborative efforts in her 1976 The Chemehuevis, the first and, to date, only ethnography of the Chemehuevi traditional culture.
Describing the Chemehuevi as she knew them, and presenting the texture of traditional life amongst the people, Carobeth Laird writes:


The Chemehuevi character is made up of polarities which are complementary rather than contradictory. They are loquacious yet capable of silence; gregarious yet so close to the earth that single families or even men alone might live and travel for long periods away from other human beings; proud, yet capable of a gentle self-ridicule. They are conservative to a degree, yet insatiably curious and ready to inquire into and even to adopt new ways: to visit all tribes, whether friends or enemies; to speak strange tongues, sing strange songs, and marry strange wives.

 

Source: Wikipedia, Read more about the Chemehuevi.