Origin: The Luiseño - Payómkawichum
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The Luiseño, or Payómkawichum, are a Native American people who at the time of the first contacts with the Spanish in the 16th century inhabited the coastal area of southern California, ranging 50 miles from the present-day southern part of Los Angeles County to the northern part of San Diego County, and inland 30 miles. In the Luiseño language, the people call themselves Payómkawichum (also spelled Payómkowishum), meaning "People of the West."
The tribe was named Luiseño by the Spanish due to their proximity to the Mission San Luís Rey de Francia (The Mission of Saint Louis King of France.) Known as the "King of the Missions," it was founded on June 13, 1798 by Father Fermín Francisco de Lasuén, located in what is now Oceanside, California, in northern San Diego County. It was the Spanish First Military District.
Today there are six federally recognized tribes of Luiseño bands based in southern California, all with reservations. Another organized band has not received federal recognition.
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