By Author [ A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z |  Other Symbols ]
  By Title [ A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z |  Other Symbols ]
  By Language
all Classics books content using ISYS

Download this book: [ ASCII | HTML | PDF ]

Look for this book on Amazon

We have new books nearly every day.
If you would like a news letter once a week or once a month
fill out this form and we will give you a summary of the books for that week or month by email.

Title: The Aboriginal Population of Alameda and Contra Costa Counties, California
Author: Cook, Sherburne Friend, 1896-1974
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "The Aboriginal Population of Alameda and Contra Costa Counties, California" ***

This book is indexed by ISYS Web Indexing system to allow the reader find any word or number within the document.

                         ANTHROPOLOGICAL RECORDS



                               S. F. COOK

                        BERKELEY AND LOS ANGELES

                      THE ABORIGINAL POPULATION OF
                        ALAMEDA AND CONTRA COSTA
                          COUNTIES, CALIFORNIA

                               S. F. COOK

                         ANTHROPOLOGICAL RECORDS
                             Vol. 16, No. 4

                         ANTHROPOLOGICAL RECORDS

 Editors (Berkeley): J. H. Rowe, R. F. Heizer, R. F. Murphy, E. Norbeck

                      Volume 16, No. 4, pp. 131-156
                                 3 maps

                  Submitted by editors November 7, 1956

                          Issued June 21, 1957

                             Price, 50 cents

                     University of California Press
                        Berkeley and Los Angeles

                       Cambridge University Press
                             London, England

              Manufactured in the United States of America


  Introduction                                                     131
  The Fages-Crespi Expedition                                      131
  The Anza-Font Expedition                                         132
  The Cañizares Expedition                                         136
  Exploratory and punitive expeditions, 1776-1811                  138
    Fr. Antonio Danti's expedition                                 140
    Raymundo el Californio's trip                                  141
    Pedro Amador's expeditions                                     141
    Luís Peralta's expeditions                                     143
      The Cuevas Affair                                            144
    Fr. José Viader's first expedition                             145
    Fr. Ramón Abella's expedition                                  145
  Aboriginal Groups                                                146
    Location                                                       146
    Population estimates                                           148
  Bibliography                                                     150

  1. Outline map of Alameda and Contra Costa counties, facing      131
  2. Map of the Port of San Francisco, 1776, by José Cañizares     153
  3. Revised map of the Port of San Francisco, 1781                155

[Illustration: Map 1. Outline map of Alameda and Contra Costa counties,
showing (1) the approximate areas inhabited by the principal tribal
groups and (2) the known archaeological habitation sites.]


                               S. F. COOK


The following pages have a twofold purpose. First, there is extended
to new territory an analysis of aboriginal population and ecology in
California which has already encompassed the San Joaquin Valley (Cook,
1955) and the north coast (Cook, 1956). The area treated here is a
portion of that occupied by the Costanoan linguistic division, which
extended from San Francisco Bay throughout the interior ranges and along
the coast as far south as the latitude of Salinas and Monterey. However,
in view of the many accounts which have been written concerning the
settlement of coastal California and the establishment of the missions,
it seems preferable to devote attention almost exclusively to one
restricted region and to deal with this as exhaustively as possible.
The area selected embraces the east shore of San Francisco Bay and its
hinterland, including what is now Alameda and Contra Costa counties. It
is quite true that some of the tribal groups inhabiting this territory
may not have been members of the Costanoan stock. On the other hand, in
their relation both to the native environment and to the invading white
man their activity conformed in all important ways to that of their bona
fide Costanoan neighbors. Hence it is proper to treat all the aborigines
in the area on a common basis.

Second, emphasis has been placed upon setting forth in detail sources of
knowledge. There are a number of documents describing conditions in the
East Bay from 1770 to 1820. Certain of these, such as the Crespi-Fages
and the Font-Anza diaries, have been made available in excellent
translations, particularly by Herbert E. Bolton, and although they
must be examined and analyzed with care, only a few passages need to
be reproduced verbatim. Other documents, some of them of considerable
general interest, are almost unknown, not only to students of
ethnography, but also to many others concerned with preconquest and
early colonial California. Among these may be mentioned the Cañizares
exploration of San Francisco Bay, and the diaries of Father Danti
and Sergeant Amador. Therefore, although a good deal of the material
contained in these documents does not bear directly upon either
population or ecology, it seems to me worth while to translate and
reproduce them in full. Their intrinsic interest is adequate
compensation for the moderate amount of extra space consumed.


The earliest land explorations to Alameda and Contra Costa counties were
those of Fages in 1772 and of Anza in 1776. Journals were kept of both
these trips; for the first by Crespi, for the second, by Anza himself
and also by Font. All are well known and are easily available in the
excellent translations by Herbert E. Bolton (1927; 1930). Therefore only
the significant points are abstracted and referred to here.

Coming up from Monterey, the Fages-Crespi expedition camped (Bolton,
1927, p. 284) on March 24, 1772, near Milpitas. On March 25 the party
moved north along the plain, which is described as being well-covered
with grass but treeless, as far as San Lorenzo Creek. Five villages of
natives were seen, situated on as many creeks, all concentrated within
three leagues.

On March 26 the region of Fruitvale was reached (Bolton [1927, p. 287]
says Mills College). Many deer were seen and also the tracks of elk. In
the four leagues traversed, five streams of running water were found,
and the vicinity of the Oakland-Alameda Estuary is noted as being
covered with oaks. No Indians were seen. On the 27th, after crossing a
grassy plain, the party reached Strawberry Creek. Seven arroyos were
crossed, but again no Indians were seen. On the 28th the party reached
Pinole. Six arroyos were crossed. At two leagues they reached Wildcat
Creek where "... we found a good village of heathen, very fair and
bearded ... they gave us many cacomites, amoles and two dead geese,
dried and stuffed with grass to use as decoys in hunting others, large
numbers being attracted in this way" (Bolton, 1927, p. 291).

On March 29, Crespi and Fages continued along the shore, reaching the
western end of Carquinez Strait, "traveling by treeless, grass-covered
hills." They continued along the steep bluffs on the south side,
probably nearly to Martinez. "In the whole distance we traveled on these
hills there was not a single tree. The bed of the estuary is very deep
and its shores precipitous; on its banks we did not see so much as a
bush ..." The last statement is interesting in view of the evidence
contained in the accounts of Font and Anza (see p. 133).

Several native villages were seen. "On the banks of the other side we
made out many villages, whose Indians called to us ... and many of them,
seeing that we were going away, came to this side, crossing over on
rafts, and gave us some of their wild food." On the south side: "In this
part of our day's march we came to five large villages of very wild
heathen ..." It is probable that the expression "this part of the day's
march" refers to the first portion, i.e., from Pinole through Rodeo and
Crockett. There the natives had "... pleasant faces, and were of a fair
complexion, bearded and white, all with long hair which they tied with

On March 30 the expedition set out and in two leagues crossed Pacheco
Creek (see Bolton, 1927, p. 295n), which was a "deep arroyo with much
running water" and bordered with trees. This reference to "running
water" raises the question of local water supply, a matter that will be
discussed more fully in connection with the Font-Anza descriptions. The
plain between Walnut Creek and Concord is described as being well
covered with grass and grown with oak trees. In this valley two Indian
villages were encountered. After crossing the low hills northwest of
Concord, Crespi and Fages entered the delta region of the Central Valley
and camped somewhere near Pittsburg or Antioch.

The next day, March 31, it was decided to return. Accordingly, the steps
of the preceding day were retraced as far as the area of Walnut Creek,
whence they turned south to the night's camp near Danville. (This
itinerary has been worked out by Bolton and is no doubt substantially
correct.) On April 1 the party reached Pleasanton via San Ramon and
Dublin, and on April 2 arrived near Milpitas.

The valley at and south of Walnut Creek is described as being covered
with grass with the stream beds overgrown with alders, cottonwood,
laurels, roses, and other shrubs. The same type of land, "covered with
grass and trees," continued as far as Pleasanton. Then: "It is evident
that the land is not so good now, but it all continues full of oaks and
live oaks...." Crossing the hills to the shore of the Bay the same
rough, wooded country persisted--essentially as it is today.

During the three days many signs of natives were encountered. Near
Walnut Creek "we came to three villages with some little grass
houses...." Between Danville and Pleasanton there were "numerous
villages of very gentle and peaceful heathen, many of them of fair
complexion." From Pleasanton to the Bay no new villages or Indians are

From Milpitas north, Crespi saw five villages, as far as San Lorenzo.
In Oakland and Berkeley he saw none. There was one "good village" on
Wildcat Creek and from Pinole to Crockett there were five "large
villages." In lower Walnut Creek Valley there were two more. The
total is thirteen, and it is surprising that no more were encountered.
Possibly the party kept too far inland to see the shell midden sites
along the Bay shore.

With reference to numbers of natives it should be remembered that Crespi
had seen Indian rancherias ranging in size from insignificant to the
semi-cities of the Santa Barbara Channel. Hence a "large village" to him
must have meant a really sizable place. If we ascribe 100 inhabitants to
an ordinary village and 200 to a "large" or "good" village, we get a
total of 1,900 persons.

On the return trip through the interior hills Crespi notes three
villages near Walnut Creek and numerous villages in the vicinity of
Livermore Valley. If we allow "numerous" to be half a dozen, there is a
total of nine villages. The size was likely to be smaller than on the
Bay shore, say 50 persons. Then the total population represented would
be 400-500. For those portions of Alameda and Contra Costa counties
visited a population of at least 2,400 is therefore indicated. Since
Crespi probably did not see all the villages, the actual value was no
doubt considerably greater.


Attention should be directed now to the Anza expedition, which reached
the East Bay in late March, 1776. The three accounts will be considered
collectively for present purposes and will be designated A (Anza's
Diary), F1 (Font's Short Diary), and F2 (Font's Complete Diary). Since
this expedition was--with all deference to the efforts of Fray
Crespi--much more carefully and exhaustively recorded than the Fages
trip of 1772, it merits extended citation and analysis.

If Bolton's reconstruction is correct (1930, III: 133, 263; IV: 352),
the Anza expedition, having come down the peninsula from San Francisco,
halted for the evening March 30, 1776, near Agnew, between Alviso and
Santa Clara. The following day, March 31, they crossed the Coyote River
about two miles south of Warm Springs and moved north and northwest as
far as San Lorenzo Creek.

They remained close to the hills, apparently, for Anza (A) says, "The
road runs close to a small range completely bare of trees, for none are
seen except some which grow in the canyons." After leaving Coyote Creek,
Anza (A) encountered an arroyo, "which has plenty of trees and has water
in abundance ... ," probably Mission Creek or Alameda Creek. Thereafter
they crossed four arroyos "with little water," the last one of which was
San Lorenzo Creek. Font (F2) states that after having passed a "salty
lagoon" (north of Irvington) they crossed five arroyos.

During the day the party saw six villages, says Anza (A), most of whose
habitants had fled. On the other hand, about 40 "heathen" were met along
the road. Font (F2) is much more informative than Anza. All along the
plain they saw "occasional Indians." Those whom they met before reaching
the "first arroyo" (probably Alameda Creek near Niles)

    ... appear to be very poor and miserable, for they have not even
    firewood by which to keep warm, and they go about naked ... and
    eat grass and herbs and some roots like medium-sized onions,
    which they call amole, and in which those plains greatly abound.
    One Indian who carried his provisions on the end of a pole
    invited us to eat some of them.

On or near Alameda Creek they met "about thirty Indians" (Anza says 40),
who greeted them peaceably. Font here notes that "their language is
distinct from all those we had formerly heard and is very ugly; and with
the gobbling which they made, all speaking together, it was very
disagreeable to the ears." Font also comments in another place on the
language: "The Indians whom we saw along here are totally distinct in
language from the previous ones." Since the Spaniards had been in
Costanoan territory for many days, they must have encountered a sharp
dialectic boundary at the southeastern corner of San Francisco Bay. Both
Anza and Font (F2) describe the incidents of this encounter in graphic

Two leagues beyond the creek (somewhere near Alvarado) a village without
people was seen. Then:

    We traveled a league more and crossed another arroyo, where we
    saw an abandoned village, and in a hut many birds stuffed with
    grass, which some Indians had to hunt with. Here the soldiers
    got some wild tobacco of which there was a considerable amount.

Although Font does not mention the exact number of villages seen, his
account in other respects closely parallels that of Anza and does
nothing to refute the statement that there were six villages between
Irvington and San Lorenzo.

On the appearance of these Indians Font and Anza are very positive.
Crespi had said the natives were light-colored. Font says (F2, p. 356),
"They are somewhat bearded, gentle, and very poor, but in color they are
the same as all the rest." Elsewhere he reiterates his opinion that
Crespi was mistaken. Anza adds, regarding appearance (A, p. 136):

    The Indians who have been seen from the first arroyo forward are
    not short haired like those from the Mission of San Antonio to
    the port of San Francisco. These of which we are now speaking
    wear their hair tied upon the very top of their heads where only
    a piece of thread is to be seen.

The journey on April 1 brought Anza's party to camp on Rodeo Creek
(Bolton, 1930, II: 138n). It is noteworthy that these explorers saw
much more timber than had Crespi, or perhaps they were merely more
circumstantial in their account. Font (F2) says:

    The road followed the foot hills of the range which I mentioned
    on the 8th of March. In all its exterior this range has very few
    trees, except a grove of redwoods in front of the mouth of the
    port, although in its interior it has thickly grown groves and
    is quite broken ...

Anza notes also "a large grove of pines of redwoods." Alameda Island is
described as having "a very thick grove of oaks and live oaks on the
banks of the estuary." The same grove is shown on Font's sketch of the
area (Bolton, 1930, IV: 362) with the legend: "Bosque que esta al
estsudeste de la Boca del Puerto."

On some of the streams there is said to be a prolific growth of trees,
on others very little. Thus Font (F2) says that San Leandro Creek
(Bolton's identification) had "a very deep bed grown with cottonwoods,
live oaks, laurels and other trees." The creek near Mills College was
"almost without trees." Somewhere in Oakland the party crossed two
arroyos with "a heavy growth of trees." North of Oakland the vegetation
apparently varied. The general impression one gets is that the larger
streams were bordered by oak, willow, and cottonwood, whereas the
smaller ones were essentially destitute of trees.

The Spaniards had considerable contact this day with the natives. Font
in the Complete Diary makes it clear that Oakland and Berkeley were
crossed and Wildcat Creek reached before the first Indians were seen.
At that point, however, an abandoned village was found. On the banks of
the next arroyo was an inhabited village containing 23 men and 7 women,
others being away foraging. Anza says this was a village of about 100
persons. Font then says that on the next arroyo was a "fair-sized
village." Although Anza does not specifically mention this village, both
he and Font agree that at the camp (on Rodeo Creek) was another town,
which Anza says "is larger than the two mentioned." Font concurs, in
effect, with the statement that when the expedition halted, they were
greeted by 38 Indians--presumably adult males.

Both authors comment on customs. Anza emphasizes the fact that these
Indians are not white, in contradistinction to the reports brought back
by Crespi. He also says the language is different "from that on the
other side of the southern estuary." Font describes the people at the
second inhabited village, who

    ... were very happy to see us and very obliging. They presented
    us with many cacomites, which is a little bulb or root almost
    round and rather flat, and the size and shape of a somewhat
    flattened ball, and likewise with a good string of roasted
    amole, which is another root like a rather long onion, all well
    cooked and roasted ... The amole, which is their most usual
    food, tastes a little like mescal. It is the food which most
    abounds, and the fields along here are full of it.

Font (F2) adds the following description of the natives seen at the
final halt on Rodeo Creek:

    As soon as we halted thirty-eight Indians came to us unarmed,
    peaceful, and very happy to see us. At first they stopped and
    sat down on a small hill near the camp. Then one came, and
    behind him another, and so they came in single file like a flock
    of goats, leaping and talking, until all had arrived. They were
    very obliging, bringing us firewood, and very talkative, their
    language having much gobbling, nothing of which we understood.
    They go naked like all the rest, and they are by no means white,
    but are like all those whom we saw on the other side near the
    mouth of the port. After they had been a while with us they bade
    us goodby and we made signs to them that they should go and get
    us some fish with two hooks which I gave them. They apparently
    understood us clearly, but they brought us nothing and showed
    very little appreciation for the hooks, because their method of
    fishing is with nets.

On Tuesday, April 2, the Anza expedition continued along the southeast
shore of San Pablo Bay, the south bank of Carquinez Strait, and halted
on Walnut Creek, near Pacheco (the place called Santa Angela de Fulgino
by Crespi). Water was scarce; no mention is made of crossing any creeks
during the march until they arrived at Walnut Creek in the evening.

The descriptions of the vegetation along Carquinez Strait are somewhat
ambiguous. It will be remembered that the impression given by Crespi for
this stretch is one of total absence of trees. Anza says (A):

    ... for half a league up the river [by which he means Carquinez
    Strait] we kept very close to the Sierra which we have had on
    our right and which we skirted until yesterday. And we now again
    came to have it on the same side, so improved in abundance of
    firewood, and timber of oak and live oak that all its canyons
    are well provided with one and the other, the very opposite of
    what is seen on the other side of the river [i.e., the north
    shore of the strait], where in four leagues we have not seen a
    single tree.

In describing the strait Font (F2) says:

    In some places its banks are very precipitous, and in others it
    has a narrow beach on which, near its mouth [i.e. the western
    end], there are great piles of fresh-water mussels. The hills
    which form this channel are without trees, but those on this
    side have plentiful pasturage, while those on the other side
    appeared bald, with little grass, the earth being reddish in

During the afternoon the party traveled from the vicinity of Crockett
"two leagues east along the top of the hills close to the water, and one
east-southeast up the canyon which had some oaks and other trees, by
which we again came out at the top of the hills near the water."
According to Bolton (1930, IV: 375n), this point was on the bluffs just
west of Martinez.

The implication of Anza's account and the rather specific statement by
Font seem to support Crespi's description. There was little oak or other
type of woody plant on the south shore west of what is now Port Costa.
From there to Martinez the canyons held a fair growth of oak. In those
areas not bearing oak, the primary plant cover was grass. Neither Crespi
nor Anza nor Font gives any hint of the heavy infiltration of shrubby
vegetation, such as _Baccharis_, poison oak, or other chapparal species,
which now extend down the entire slope of the hills from Crockett to
Martinez. The deduction is reasonable, although strict proof is lacking,
that the modern vegetation has entered the region since 1775.

On this day Anza and Font made the acquaintance of two new species of
fish, the sturgeon and the salmon, good descriptions of which are
recorded by both explorers. Furthermore, the day was notable for
encounters with the natives. Shortly after breaking camp the Spaniards
were met by ten Indians who invited them to the nearby village (which
Bolton says was at Tormey, about 2 miles west of Crockett). This village
was large; Font estimated the population as 400 persons and Anza as 500.
Font's account (F2) of his visit is long and circumstantial, but its
value for ethnographic detail is such that it merits reproduction in

    Their method of welcoming us was like this: at sunrise the ten
    Indians came, one behind another, singing and dancing. One
    carried the air, making music with a little stick, rather long
    and split in the middle, which he struck against his hand and
    which sounded something like a castanet. They reached the camp
    and continued their singing and dancing for a little while. Then
    they stopped dancing, all making a step in unison, shaking the
    body and saying dryly and in one voice, "Ha, ha, ha!" Next they
    sat down on the ground and signalled to us that we must sit down
    also. So we sat down in front of them, the commander, I, and the
    commissary. Now an Indian arose and presented the commander with
    a string of cacomites, and again sat down. Shortly afterward he
    rose again and made me a present of another string of cacomites,
    and again sat down. In this way they went making us their little
    presents, another Indian giving me a very large root of
    chuchupate which he began to eat, telling me by signs that it
    was good.

    This compliment being over, they invited us to go to their
    village, indicating that it was nearby. The commander consented
    to give them this pleasure, and at once we began to travel. They
    followed after us with their singing and dancing.... After going
    a short distance we came to the village, which was in a little
    valley on the bank of a small arroyo, the Indians welcoming us
    with an indescribable hullabaloo. Three of them came to the edge
    of the village with some long poles with feathers on the end,
    and some long and narrow strips of skin with the hair on, which
    looked to me like rabbit skin, hanging like a pennant, this
    being their sign of peace. They led us to the middle of the
    village where there was a level spot like a plaza, and then
    began to dance with other Indians of the place with much clatter
    and yelling.

    A little afterward a rather old Indian woman came out, and in
    front of us, for we were on horseback, nobody having dismounted.
    She began to dance along, making motions very indicative of
    pleasure, and at times stopping to talk to us, making signs with
    her hands as if bidding us welcome. After a short while I said
    to the commander that that was enough. So he gave presents of
    glass beads to all the women, they regaled us with their
    cacomites, and we said goodby to everybody in order to continue
    on our way. They were apparently sad because we were leaving,
    and I was moved to tenderness at seeing the joy with which we
    were welcomed by those poor Indians. Their color and other
    qualities of nakedness, slight beard, etc., are the same as
    those seen hitherto, and the same as those we saw farther on.
    Some wear the hair long, others short, and some have beards
    rather long and heavy.

Font and Anza had an excellent opportunity to observe aboriginal methods
of navigation and fishing. At the western end of Carquinez Strait, says
Anza (A, p. 140), five tule rafts crossed the strait in less than a
quarter of an hour, the tide being slack. Font says, regarding these
craft (F2, p. 320):

    We saw there some launches very well made of tule, with their
    prows or points somewhat elevated. They had been anchored near
    the shore with some stones for anchors, and in the middle of the
    water some Indians were fishing in one.... I saw that they were
    fishing with nets and that they anchored the launch with some
    very long slim poles.

These poles were measured and found to be about 13 varas long (roughly
35 ft.). Font goes on to describe the actual taking of fish:

    Among other fish which they caught the Indians who were fishing
    pulled out two very large ones, about two varas long, and their
    method of catching them was this: as soon as they felt from the
    pull made by the fish that it was in the net, which was tied to
    the two poles, they began gradually to raise one of the poles,
    and as soon as the fish and the net came in sight, without
    taking it from the water they gave the fish many blows on the
    head. Once I counted fifteen blows in succession and in another
    case twenty-odd. Now that it was dead and had lost its strength
    they took it from the net and put it inside the launch.

A soldier traded a piece of cloth for a fish. But the Indians

    ... before delivering it took the spawn from the stomach and an
    intestine like a pocket, and right there on the spot they ate
    the spawn raw and put what was left over in the intestine. They
    then went to eat the other fish, which they dispatched quickly.
    Making a little fire they put it in, and in a short time, almost
    before it was hot, like brutes they ate it as it was, almost

Some war equipment was seen. Near the camp on Walnut Creek at Pacheco,
the party was visited by local Indians with whom there was a little

    Some of them came to see us, carrying bows and arrows, for all
    had very good ones and well made, the bow of good wood, small
    and wound with tendons like those we saw on the Channel, and the
    arrows of little reeds, very smooth, well made, and with flints,
    transparent and very sharp. One came with a scalp hanging from a
    pole. This did not please me, for it suggested war.

Near the camp there were two villages: one, says Anza (A, p. 143),
"which we left behind" and another, "which we have immediately ahead."
Between the large rancheria of Tormey and the two just mentioned there
appear to have been no Indian settlements whatever.

The day of Wednesday, April 3, was spent in crossing the low hills east
of Concord and in traveling along the southern shore of Suisun Bay as
far as Antioch Bridge. Neither Anza nor Font has particular comment
concerning the one and one-half leagues, which brought them to the
summit of Willow Pass, overlooking the area of Pittsburg. Beyond this
point the explorers entered the northwest corner of the San Joaquin
Valley, or the western tip of the delta. They probably had just left
Costanoan territory, although, to be sure, the exact tribal boundaries
are unknown. At any rate it is preferable to limit the present
discussion to the region west and south of the low hills which extend
from Port Chicago southeast to the vicinity of Byron. The rancherias
which were seen near Antioch would therefore be more profitably
considered in a survey of the valley tribes than in one of the East Bay
and adjacent coast ranges.

Thursday, April 4, was spent in the famous attempt to cross the great
tule swamps. In the course of this effort the party bore southeastward
along the margin of the tules as far as the latitude of Bethany (Bolton,
1930, III: 148n). Thence they turned inland over Patterson Pass and, if
Bolton's reconstruction is correct, followed up the ridge to the east of
Arroyo Mocho. No trees or water were encountered until a point was
reached not far southeast of Livermore. In the meantime, no Indians were
seen and no traces of villages observed along the line of march.

The journey of Friday, April 5, took the party into the rough country
due east of Mt. Hamilton as far as the southeastern edge of San Antonio
Valley at the head of the east fork of Coyote Creek. The terrain was
extremely hilly and was covered with oak and coniferous trees, probably
principally digger pine, although Font says he saw "spruce." Great
stretches of chamise (_Adenostema fasciculatum_), which Anza calls
"Mattal," were observed. The descriptions make it clear that the type of
vegetation and the general appearance of the country were essentially as
they are today.

Only a few streams are mentioned: Arroyo Mocho is described merely as an
"arroyo in a canyon." There were several small watercourses near the
upper end of San Antonio Valley, and water in pools was found at the
lower end near the night's camp. These streams may have been Sulphur
Spring Creek and San Antonio Creek.

The area was destitute of natives. The only mention of Indians is by
Font (F2, p. 414).

    In the course of the valley [San Antonio Valley] we saw some
    ruinous and abandoned little huts, but the only Indian seen was
    at a distance and running, for as soon as he saw us he fled for
    the brush of the Sierra like a deer.

Also, referring to the fruit of "a plant like a fig tree" which appears
to be the buckeye, he says that "the heathen eat it, judging from the
piles of its shells which we saw in the abandoned huts." A reasonable
inference from Font's account is that in this area there were no
permanent Indian settlements but in places there were temporary camp
sites, used in the time of maturity of the local tree-crops (buckeye and
perhaps acorns).

On April 6 and the first part of April 7 the party descended Coyote
Creek, through Gilroy Hot Springs to the valley of the Pajaro River. The
country throughout this stretch is described as hilly and rough, but
little further description is given.

    In all this journey we did not see a single Indian, although we
    found some tracks of them, and in places a few signs and traces
    of ruined huts and small villages; for it is known that at times
    they go to the sierra and camp, especially during the seasons of
    the piñon and the acorn.

From the Font-Anza diaries, together with that of Crespi, certain
tentative conclusions may be reached.

1. The distribution of vegetation in 1775 was substantially the same as
described by the American settlers of 1850 and thereafter and, allowing
for the devastating influence of the white man, more or less as it is
today. The exceptions are the removal of forests, such as the redwood
stand on the Oakland hills, and the spread of introduced plants which
has possibly occurred on the southern shore of Carquinez Strait. In the
relatively untouched interior ranges there has been no significant

2. There is some question with regard to water supply. In his trip of
1772, between Milpitas and Pinole, Crespi mentions seeing or crossing 31
arroyos, all with running water. The date was from March 25 to 29. Anza
and Font went at almost the same time of year (March 31-April 1, 1776)
from Warm Springs to Rodeo, and report 20 or 21 arroyos. Of these only 2
or 3 contained abundant water; approximately 10 had only a small amount.
The rest were either not described or were without water. Since there
can have been no profound alteration in climate or geography in the few
years between the two expeditions, the difference must be accounted for
on the basis of relative precipitation during the preceding winters.
Such a theory is supported by Font's statement (F2, p. 418) regarding
the marshes and lagoons in Gilroy Valley: "Since it had not rained much
this year it was quite dry...."

Examination of the modern maps is instructive. The U. S. Geological
Survey quadrangles for the Bay Area were mapped in the decade 1895 to
1905, with subsequent re-editing. Thus the picture presented antedates
the disruption of natural conditions caused by the population expansion
of this century. The USGS sheets now show 20 streams between Milpitas
and Rodeo which were named on the maps, or whose names are otherwise
well recognized. These are, from south to north: Arroyo Coches Creek,
Calera Creek, Scott Creek, Toroges Creek, Agua Fria Creek, Agua Caliente
Creek, Mission Creek, Alameda Creek, San Lorenzo Creek, San Leandro
Creek, the creek flowing past Mills College, the creek flowing out of
Diamond Canyon through Fruitvale, Indian Gulch, Claremont Creek,
Strawberry Creek, Codornices Creek, Wildcat Creek, San Pablo Creek,
Pinole Creek, and Rodeo Creek. In addition there are approximately 12
unnamed creeks or arroyos descending the front slope of the hills onto
the plain. The total, 32, conforms very closely with the descriptions
left by the Spaniards in 1772 and 1776.

It is further to be noted that the government surveys of the period of
1900 showed all these streams as intermittent and therefore dependent
for their flow upon the winter rainfall. Thus it is quite probable that
in late March the amount of water might be copious (as in 1772) or
relatively scanty (as in 1776). The conclusion seems warranted that,
apart from dessication induced by such factors as soil damage,
overgrazing, and diversion for minor irrigation projects, the local
water supplies have not diminished since 1770. It then follows that
under primitive conditions the natives had substantially the same
quantity of water at their disposal as is available in the same area

3. The distribution of Indian population was quite clearly marked.
Crespi (see above) encountered 5 villages from Milpitas to San Lorenzo.
Anza mentions 6 villages in the same distance, most of which were north
of Irvington. Both Crespi and Anza describe seeing no further villages
until they reached Wildcat Creek. Thereafter they saw a village on each
of San Pablo, Pinole, and Rodeo Creeks. Crespi puts 5 villages between
Pinole and Crockett. Anza refers to only one, in addition to the one on
Rodeo Creek, viz., the large village at Tormey. All accounts agree that
there were no settlements between Crockett and Concord Valley, where 2
villages were found by both parties. On the return journey, Crespi
traversed the valley from Walnut Creek to Dublin, Pleasanton, and near
Niles, and noted a scattering of rancherias at least as far as
Pleasanton. The Anza expedition, after leaving the delta, crossed the
hills back of Mt. Hamilton and emerged near Gilroy, all without noting a
permanent habitation site. From these accounts it is clear that the
heavy concentration of population was along the Bay shore, locally
centering on the large arroyos and avoiding the strip where Oakland and
Berkeley now stand. Secondary centers were in the broader and lower
interior valleys, west and north of Mt. Diablo. The narrow canyons and
the brush-covered belts of the main axis of the Coast Range were
destitute of inhabitants.

4. The numerical value of the population was estimated from the Crespi
diary as 2,400. We may assay a comparable estimate from Font and Anza.

The six villages seen on the way from Warm Springs to San Lorenzo were
largely abandoned by the inhabitants, who had fled in terror. Hence no
population estimate is given. However an average of 100 persons each
would be a reasonable assumption.

North of Berkeley an abandoned village was seen, probably on Wildcat
Creek (possibly Strawberry Creek). Then a village of 100 persons was
found on San Pablo Creek and another "fair sized" village probably on
Pinole Creek. At Rodeo Creek was a village larger than the other two.
Allowing 100 persons each for the abandoned village and the "fair sized"
village and 150 for the one on Rodeo Creek, the four sites may be
considered to represent at least 450 inhabitants. The village at Tormey
had a population of 400, according to Font, and 500, according to Anza.
No others are mentioned except the two in Concord Valley to which may be
ascribed 100 persons each. If we use Font's estimate of 400 for the
largest town, the total from Warm Springs to Concord Valley is 1,650.
This is reasonably close to the value of 1,900 derived from Crespi.

For the remainder of the Northern Costanoan territory, since Anza found
no inhabitants south of the Livermore Valley, we have to use the figures
derived from Crespi: approximately 500 for the interior valleys. The
total, then is 2,150 as compared with the 2,400 based upon Crespi's
account alone. In any case, the present estimate is purely tentative and
must be considered in the light of the Mission baptism records which are
subsequently described.


During the period of initial land exploration attempts were made to
secure information by water. The most important such episode was the
voyage, if one may call it that, made by José Cañizares in 1775.
Cañizares was the first mate of the ship, San Carlos, under command of
Juan Manuel Ayala. Ayala was commissioned to survey the entire San
Francisco Bay area, but was unable to complete the task because of
illness. He therefore delegated the interior exploration to Cañizares,
who fulfilled the mission in late August and early September. The
results of the trip are embodied, first, in a series of maps, and
second, in a letter by Cañizares (1775) to Ayala. (For historical
background, the work of Cutter, 1950, may be consulted.)

The maps are three in number, all versions of the same map drawn by
Cañizares, and dated respectively 1775, 1776, and 1781. The first is
very poorly executed and shows little more than the outline of the Bay;
it is not reproduced here.

The second (map 2) is carefully done and gives an extensive list of
localities. The original is in the Ministry of War, Madrid, Spain. It is
an elaboration of, and a very great improvement on, a map drawn by Ayala
in 1775 which showed merely the outline of San Francisco, without
detail. Ayala's map has slight value, hence it is not shown here, but a
copy is available in the Bancroft Library, Berkeley.

Since the present map is itself reproduced from a photograph of a
photograph, the text of the legends in the boxes is very faint and
blurred. To facilitate reading, these legends have been copied, with
translations. The symbols used on the map are the Latin alphabet, using
capitals, for twenty-three items; they then continue as Greek letters,
which are difficult to decipher and do not run strictly in sequence.
Hence, for convenience, I have substituted in the legends numbers for
the Greek letters, number 1 following Z of the alphabetical series. The
use of these numbers in conjunction with the Greek letters on the map
will not be difficult. In the left-hand column is the Spanish text; in
the right-hand column, a literal translation. No attempt is made to
correlate the names given by Cañizares with those applied at the present

The third map (map 3) copies the second, is carefully done, and gives
essentially the same information, but varies in minor points. Cañizares
remained in San Blas for several years after his visit to San Francisco.
During this period his 1776 map was apparently redrawn by Manuel
Villavicencio, in 1781, presumably under the supervision of Cañizares
himself. Whether it is more accurate than the 1776 map is open to
question. Small and capital letters are used for the localities on the
map and in the legends.

The letter describing the survey of the Bay was written by Cañizares and
addressed to "Señor Capitan," obviously Ayala. It was dated September 7,
1775, "en este nuebo Puerto de S. Fran^{co} al abrigo de la Isla de
Los Angeles." This document, which is an account of the first boat
trip throughout San Francisco Bay, has never, to my knowledge, been
published. Its intrinsic interest, consequently, as well as its bearing
upon primitive geography and ethnography, warrants its presentation.
A translation follows herewith. Various matters requiring comment are
discussed immediately subsequent to the translation.

    _Cañizares' Report_

    On the four occasions when I went out to explore this port and
    survey its northeastern and north-northeastern portion I
    discovered what is shown on the map and is set forth here. To
    the north-northeast of the Island of Los Angeles, at a distance
    of one mile, there is a bay which runs north-northwest to
    south-southeast. The distance across between the points which
    form it is about two leagues and its length two and one-half. In
    its northwestern part there are three little islets, forming
    with the coast a narrow channel, which is shut off at its
    southwestern mouth by a shoal. Around all the margin of the bay
    are folded hills, with very few groves of trees and these which
    there are consist in part of laurel and live-oak; there may be
    seen in the interior to the west-northwest a forest of trees,
    which from afar seem to be pines. In the middle of this sound
    there is situated a great high cliff with some submerged rocks
    on the northeast side. As the map shows its depth is sufficient
    for anchorage; it no doubt is a roadstead for such vessels as
    have good cables and anchors, for much trouble would be caused
    by the current which flows here and which would not be less than
    four knots.

    To the north-northeast of the said bay is a gap, the width of
    which might be two miles, in which are four white islands of
    small size, the northernmost forming with those on the southern
    shore a channel of 9 fathoms. These islands form the separation
    from another bay more capacious than the preceding, the diameter
    of which might be about eight leagues and the form of which is a
    perfect isosceles triangle. The above mentioned gap separates
    into two channels. The first, on the southwest shore, turns to
    the northwest a long mile distant, eventually disappearing in
    two big inlets, which are situated on the same shore, four
    leagues away from the opening which communicates with the first
    bay. If one goes a league and a half from the northwestern end
    of the inlet running farthest to the north, he rounds a point
    and discovers toward the west-northwest a spacious sound. I did
    not explore this because the channel which communicates with it
    is so restricted and narrow, there being scarcely three _codos_
    of water. From here a low island, level with the surface of the
    water, runs toward the east-northeast, ending at a point where
    the mountains divide. The second channel, which is quite large
    and capable of being sounded, immediately trends northeast, one
    quarter east, until it reaches the dividing point in the
    mountains where it enters a canyon, following the direction

    All this bay, which is called the round [bay]--although it is
    not such--is bordered by rough mountains without trees except
    two groves in the coves which are situated to the southwest. All
    the rest of it is arid, hilly and of melancholy aspect. Aside
    from these channels, in no part of the bay does its depth reach
    five _codos_; at low tide there are two and a half, and some
    areas are dry. It is not difficult to enter, but it will be
    difficult to get out of, for we found that the prevailing winds
    are from the southwest. Having examined its shores exhaustively,
    I found no fresh water, nor even indication that there had been
    any in former times.

    Starting at the gorge which is at the northeastern end, the land
    forms a strait a mile and a half wide, clear, and capable of
    being sounded. At the eastern part of the entrance there is
    located a rancheria whose population might exceed 400 souls. I
    traded with these people, not to buy anything from them, but to
    present them with the beads which your Excellency has given me
    for this purpose, together with some of my used clothing.
    Contact with them was very useful to me and the crew on account
    of the many gifts they made us of very choice fish (among them
    salmon), seeds, and ground meal. After visiting them on four
    occasions I found them as they were the first time, and observed
    in them an urbane courtesy, and what is more, much modesty and
    neatness among the women. They tend to beg for nothing except
    for that which one gives them freely; without pressing to the
    limit of impertinence, like many others whom I have seen in this
    conquered territory. This rancheria has some rafts, better
    described as canoes, of tule rushes so carefully wrought and
    woven that it caused me admiration of their handiwork. In these
    they embark four men to go fishing, each one rowing with a
    double-ended oar. Using the latter they travel with such
    dexterity, as I found out, that they go faster than the launch.
    These were the first and the last Indians in this part of the
    north with whom I had communication.

    Following the above mentioned channel, at a distance of a league
    from its mouth, the coast forms a cove so spacious, navigable,
    well provided with firewood and watering places, and protected
    from all winds that I judge it to be one of the best interior
    ports which our sovereign possesses, large enough to anchor a
    fleet of warships. I gave it the name of Port of the Assumption
    [Puerto de la Asumpta] on account of having reconnoitred it on
    the day of this festivity. To the southeast of this port the
    passage continues until it merges with the channel of the
    rancheria. Then it continues three leagues in an
    east-northeasterly direction. At the end of this distance it
    enters another bay with a depth of 13 fathoms, the latter
    diminishing until it reaches four. Into this bay flow several
    rivers, as is demonstrated by the fact that, leaving the salt
    water, one is able to drink fresh water from where the rivers
    come as if into a lake. One river comes from the east-northeast
    (this is the largest, the width of which will be about 250
    varas), and the other, which is formed from quite small arms,
    flows from the northeast through a very low-lying region among
    swamps and sand dunes. Its depth does not reach two fathoms.
    These rivers have at their mouths some sand bars (as the
    commotion demonstrated to me) at a depth of half a fathom. The
    reason why I do not consider them navigable is principally that
    the second time I went to explore them I penetrated into the
    interior and ran aground both in the rivers and on the sand
    bars. In the bay into which these rivers discharge is another
    port more extensive than that of la Asumpta in which it is
    possible to moor any vessel whatever, but it would be difficult
    to get wood because of the remoteness of its shores. From the
    rancheria at the entrance which communicates with them, to the
    rivers themselves, all the coast of the east is covered with
    trees and all that on the west is arid, dry, full of locusts,
    and incapable of ever being populated.

    The foregoing is what I discovered in this part of the north,
    and proceeding from the above-mentioned Island of Los Angeles
    the reconnoissance of the estuary to the southeast I describe as

    To the east of this island at a distance of two leagues there is
    another, rough, craggy, and of no value, which divides the mouth
    of the bay into two passages through which the sea penetrates
    about twelve leagues. The width in places is one, two and three
    leagues. The channel of this sound does not exceed four fathoms.
    Its width is adequate but on departing from it the distance of a
    pistol shot the depth does not reach two fathoms. The tip of
    this sound, which faces the east, forms, with a horseshoe-shaped
    headland, a pocket which, at low tide, is mostly dry. In this
    inlet are some logs to which are fastened black feathers,
    bunches of reeds and snail shells, which gave me the idea that
    they are fishing floats, since they are in the middle of the
    water. Beyond three leagues from the entrance of this estuary I
    estimate that nowhere is it possible to anchor, due to the lack
    of shelter. However, if such is the case, position ought to be
    maintained by force of cables because the same current is found
    here as in the northern part of the bay.

    On the northeastern shore this bay is surrounded by high ranges
    of hills. At the mouth there is a luxuriant forest of live oak
    and another even larger at the upper end, together with a heavy
    growth of redwood. On the southwestern shore is a small estuary
    navigable only by small boats, and on the same shore two inlets
    in which anchorage is possible. Another, to the east, has a
    rancheria of Indians like those at Monterey. This coast appears
    to have locations very suitable for missions, although I
    examined them only from a distance.

    All that is set forth in this account is what I have observed,
    witnessed, measured, and sounded during these days when, on
    orders from your Excellency, I went out to explore the interior
    of this port of San Francisco. For the record I am composing
    this account in this new port of San Francisco under the shelter
    of the Island of Los Angeles, today September 7, 1755.

It is clear that Cañizares, starting from what is now called Angel
Island, crossed the Bay south of Point Richmond and proceeded northward
between Point San Pablo and Point San Pedro into San Pablo Bay (Bahia de
Guadelupe or Redonda). He explored Petaluma Creek (Estero de Nuestra
Señora de la Merced) and the sloughs near Mare Island. Except for the
southwest he found this bay surrounded by arid, treeless hills, thus
agreeing with the opinion of the explorers by land. Just before entering
Carquinez Strait, he saw a large rancheria. Although this village is not
shown on the 1776 map it appears on the 1781 map at the southwest side
of the western mouth of the strait. It is no doubt the same site
described by Font.

One league, or perhaps three miles, from the entrance Cañizares
encountered what he regarded as a spacious inlet or cove. Wagner (1937)
and Cutter (1950) both state that this was Southampton Bay, opposite
Port Costa (Puerto de la Asumpta). Cutter (p. 13) also claims that it
has been filled with mud since 1775 and largely obliterated, but gives
no evidence in support of the opinion. Cañizares describes Army Point,
near Benicia (Puerto de los Evangelistas on the maps), and then gives an
account of Suisun Bay which he says contained numerous islands filled
with tules. Toward the upper end of these, on the maps, is shown fresh
water. After attempting to penetrate the rivers, and running aground on
sand bars, Cañizares returned to Angel Island before embarking for a
reconnaissance of the southern area of the Bay. His description of the
lower delta region is too confusing to be of value. He evidently did not
fully understand the relations of the Sacramento and San Joaquin rivers
at their junction.

Cutter (1950, p. 113) states, regarding vegetation, that Cañizares found
the north shore of the Bay covered with trees and the south shore arid
and dry. Cañizares says the vegetated shore was "east" and the arid
shore was "west." Both maps depict trees on both shores, but with the
heavier concentration on the south side. The 1781 map uses for "Bosques
de buenas Maderas" the symbol "Q." The latter appears at the southeast
end of San Francisco Bay, in the vicinity of Oakland and Alameda, on the
south side of the rivers at the head of Suisun Bay, and on the north
side, well above Suisun Bay. Small groups of trees appear on both maps
at each entrance of Carquinez Strait, in the vicinity of Pinole and of
Martinez. There is no real evidence that there were trees on the north
side of Carquinez Strait.

Although the data in the letter are scanty, the distribution of Indian
population indicated by Crespi and Font is substantially confirmed. The
text of the letter mentions only one rancheria, the one at or near
Pinole or Selby, to which Cañizares (on the strength of four visits)
ascribes a population of 400. This is the exact value given by Font, and
seems to constitute very reliable evidence. Other villages are shown on
the 1776 map, under the symbol "q." as "Rancherias de Indios Amigos,"
one on the north side of Southampton Bay, one near Martinez, one
apparently near Bay Point (or Port Chicago), and one somewhere near
Pittsburg. The same number of symbols (here "O") is shown on the 1781
map, but those on the south side of the strait are displaced several
miles to the west. We can be reasonably sure therefore that Cañizares
found four rancherias, including the one described in the letter, three
on the south shore, one on the north. In view of the vague placement on
the maps it is scarcely worth while to insist upon the precise location.
As far as population is concerned, what information can be derived from
Cañizares lends support to the conclusions based upon Crespi and Font.


After the return of Anza to Monterey in 1776 the San Francisco Presidio
was founded. After this a joint expedition was sent out under José
Joaquin Moraga and Francisco Quiros. The latter was to proceed by water
and the former by land to a junction near the mouths of the rivers. The
plan, however, miscarried, and Moraga went off on the earliest and the
least known exploration of the main San Joaquin River. Meanwhile Quiros,
with José Cañizares and Father Pedro Cambon, sailed up the Bay to a
point quite close to that described by Cañizares in his first trip. The
only account we have of this journey is contained in Palóu's New
California (1926, IV: 127-130). No details of ecological interest are
given and there is no mention of natives. For a detailed discussion of
the exploration, reference may be made to Cutter (1950, pp. 24-26).

One further document requires mention at this point: The Historical,
Political and Natural Description of California, by Pedro Fages, as
translated by Herbert I. Priestley (1937). Written in 1775, this little
volume has become a classic for its thorough and sympathetic description
of the Indians of California by one who was in a position to write on
the subject. Unfortunately, however, Fages discusses the Indians of the
San Francisco Mission area and of the Central Valley of the interior,
but he does not specifically refer to the natives of the East Bay. Hence
his essay must be passed over with this brief citation.

Following the series of explorations which culminated in the Anza
Expedition of 1776, little further official notice was taken of the East
Bay counties until approximately 1794. There is an item in the Bancroft
Library Transcript series (hereafter designated Bancroft Transcripts, or
Bancroft Trans.), consisting of a letter from Fages to Moraga, January
23, 1783 (Prov. Rec., III: 83), noting that the latter had pursued the
"indios gentiles Serranos" who had killed 18 head of livestock belonging
to the Mission of San José. It is probable that many other unrecorded
punitive expeditions were being undertaken throughout the two decades
from 1775 to 1795.

In 1793 there was activity along the coast, in the course of which
Lieutenant Francisco Eliza spent approximately two weeks exploring the
Bay, but the documents available (Cutter, 1950, p. 29; Archivo General
de la Nación, Mexico, Ramo Historia, Vol. 71, Expediente on Matute and
the Bodega Settlement, and Account by Eliza, dated November 4, 1793, at
San Blas) include no details of topography, vegetation, or ethnography
worth recording.

Late in the following year, 1794, trouble began with the natives of the
Contra Costa. The immediate cause appears to have been the zeal of the
missionaries to push conversion in the area. On November 30, 1794, the
military commander at San Francisco, Perez-Fernandez, wrote to Governor
Borica (Bancroft Trans., Prov. St. Pap., XII: 29-30) that "the
missionaries of San Francisco have requested an additional two or three
men for the guard in order to go from Santa Clara to the other shore, in
a northerly direction, as far as opposite the port [of San Francisco] to
make conquests of the heathen...." The request was refused for reasons
which in themselves throw light on the status of the East Bay natives:

    1st. Because it is almost unknown country: there are indications
         that the heathen who occupy it are uncooperative.

    2nd. He [the Commandant] does not believe that a priest, with two
         or three soldiers and some Christian Indians, constitutes a
         party sufficiently strong to cross and camp overnight in
         strange territory.

    3rd. Although the Fathers believe this to be a favorable
         opportunity, because the heathen lack food, having lost
         their crop due to the severity of the drouth, and this
         will facilitate catching them, he does not have the means
         at his disposal for expeditions of this type.

Nevertheless, such forays were already in progress, for Perez-Fernandez
reported that the Fathers at San Francisco "sent by sea to the islands
and other shore opposite the mouth of the port some Mission Indians in
rafts of tule on the 4th of this month to capture heathen." One of the
rafts was carried as far out to sea as the Farallones, and two men were

On March 3, 1795, Perez-Fernandez again wrote to Governor Borica from
San Francisco (Bancroft Trans., Prov. St. Pap., XIII: 455-456.). (This,
and many other letters cited here, are also to be found in the Archivo
General de la Nación, Mexico City, Ramo Californias, Vol. 65, Expediente
no. 3, entitled "Sobre la Muerte que dieron los Indios Gentiles a siete
Indios cristianos de la Mission de San Fran^{co}.") He now announced the
murder by the heathen of seven Christian Indians sent across the bay by
Fray Antonio Danti to hunt for runaway neophytes. The culprits belonged
to the rancheria of the Chaclanes, and, says Perez-Fernandez, "these
rancherias of the Chaclanes are in the country where the said Father
Danti wanted to go, and whom I prevented from going, as I told your
Excellency under date of November 29 last."

A lively correspondence ensued, reference to most of which may be
omitted. An investigation was inaugurated and some type of scouting
party was sent out. At least, we have record of a letter dated at
Monterey, June 2, 1795, from Governor Borica to José Perez (Bancroft
Trans., Prov. Rec., V: 56) in which the Governor orders Perez "to tell
Sergeant Amador that he has received the report he sent concerning the
reconnaissance to the Alameda, and that he shall continue this with the
others who went with him." This is no doubt the expedition by Amador
referred to by Danti in his diary (see below).

On June 23, 1795, from Monterey, Governor Borica rendered a full and
final account of the affair to Viceroy Branciforte (Archivo General de
la Nación, Californias, Vol. 65, Expediente no. 3, "Sobra la muerte ..."
etc. Doc. no. 122, MS p. 79). Parts of this document are worth quoting.
One of the survivors was a neophyte named Othon, whose story follows.

    Five old Christian Indians set out from the San Francisco
    Mission, including the alcaldes Pasqual and Rogerio, together
    with nine new Christians of the rancherias from the other shore
    of the bay, with orders from Father Missionary Fray Antonio
    Danti to bring back all the Christians who had run away. On the
    first day they crossed the bay in their boats and slept on the
    beach. On the second day at dawn they set out for the rancheria
    of the Chaclanes where they arrived at noon, and not having
    found any people in it, they kept on all that day and all night,
    travelling without sleep or rest, in spite of the rain, and
    reached the rancheria of the Chimenes at about two o'clock in
    the afternoon. They encountered there a great multitude, as many
    as there are in the mission [perhaps 900, according to Borica].
    The men, armed with bows and arrows, came out of a big temascal
    with such a rush that they broke it to pieces, immediately
    beginning to shoot arrows, shouting, "Kill our enemies." The
    alcaldes, seeing this violence, tried to persuade the natives
    that we had not come to fight or to do harm, but the others took
    no heed and kept on shooting until they killed as many as

Governor Borica goes on to say:

    This Othon and others told me that these Chimenes Indians are of
    a rough and valiant nature. They are at continual war with the
    neighboring villages, and particularly with the Tegunes. They
    live toward the north coast in the vicinity of the Port of
    Bodega. Their food is amole, bellota and pinole and their chiefs
    are called Mule and Yuma.

The identity of these Chimenes is something of a mystery. Certainly the
Christian Indians, after leaving the rancheria of the Chaclanes (i.e.,
Saclanes), somewhere behind the Oakland hills, could not have even
approached the port of Bodega, for they could not have crossed the Bay
and the rivers on foot. Yet they traveled twenty-four hours, if Othon's
account is even approximately correct. Hence they must have covered
fully twenty-five or thirty miles, a distance which would have brought
them to some point on the south shore of Carquinez Strait or Suisun Bay.
If this is true, then they encountered representatives of the Huchiunes,
the Karkines, or the Chupunes, the only tribal groups known definitely
to have inhabited the area. The statements of Othon, as transmitted by
the Governor, regarding the number of Chimenes, as well as their
ferocity, must be heavily discounted (although the smashing of the
temescal is a touch which would hardly be supplied by imagination
alone). One hundred, or even fifty, infuriated warriors would no doubt
have appeared to be thousands to the fourteen terrified Christians, and
the Governor would hardly want to report to the viceroy that his Mission
Indians had been routed by a handful of wild natives. On the other hand,
the incident proves the existence of a sizable rancheria somewhere in
northern Contra Costa County in 1795.


In the late fall of the year 1795, following the reconnaissance of
Sergeant Amador, of which no written record survives, another and more
pretentious expedition covered the lower east side of San Francisco Bay.
There are two accounts available describing this trip. One was written
by Hermenegildo Sal (1795), a soldier from Monterey, and the other by
Fray Antonio Danti (1795). The two documents are very similar in form
and give indication of collaboration in the writing. Sal's "Informe" is
the longer and the more circumstantial but is so badly executed as to be
nearly incomprehensible in some of its passages. Danti's "Diario" is
very succinct but clearly written. Since both accounts cover the same
events, only one needs to be presented in full. Here follows the
"Diario" of Danti, commencing with line 5, page 196 of the Bancroft

    _Diary of Fr. Antonio Danti (1795)_

    22 October: After lunch we set out [from Santa Clara] for the
    place called the Alameda. We arrived by nightfall at the first
    arroyo, which is [the one mentioned by] Sergeant Amador. At
    sunrise of the 23rd we went on our way upstream, as far as we
    could go on horseback, which will be about one league distant
    from the camping place. We wanted to examine the origin of the
    stream but the soldier told us that it emerged opposite the
    town. When the various sections of the arroyo had been explored,
    the water was found to be of the same quantity throughout and in
    my opinion can irrigate two or three ditches of corn at the same
    time because of the slope of the land. The removal of the water
    is not a great problem, for the heathen took it out in two
    distinct places. There is much fine land and easily worked. The
    timber in this place is scarce, as is also the firewood. It is
    to the north of Santa Clara about 6 or 7 leagues. In this arroyo
    are three empty houses.

    Having examined all that has been described, we went along the
    foot of the hills. We encountered [p. 197] another watercourse
    which was dry, and where there is the stone called cantarra [a
    type of clay]. This is not far from the camping place. A little
    farther on is the lime pit, which is no more than caliche
    [crude, soft limestone]. We arrived at the Alameda, but before
    reaching it there are three little creeks, one of which could
    irrigate a garden. The other two, if widened, could serve as
    watering places for cattle. We went on to the river of the
    Alameda, which is filled with many large boulders from floods
    and is heavily overgrown with willow, cottonwood, and some
    laurel. Where the water runs, the stream is half a vara deep and
    4 varas across, and in other places it widens and contains more
    water. We proceeded along it with much effort for about a league
    and a half, at which point it is joined by another arroyo from
    the north, the main stream continuing on to the east. We
    examined the feasibility of removing water and found it to be
    not impossible but very difficult. This is because of the
    gravelly nature of the soil and because several ditches would
    have to be constructed to regulate the floods, and in case these
    occurred annually a dam would have to be built. Following the
    arroyo farther down, we saw where the water disappears, perhaps
    a quarter of a league from the hills. At a distance of a league
    the water comes out again. In all this stretch [p. 198] the bed
    of the river, or arroyo, is deep and the removal of water
    impossible. In this locality the arroyo is covered with a dense
    stand of woods: cottonwoods and willows. A short section through
    which the river flows is reached by the tides of the bay.

    24th day: We left for the north, staying close to the hills.
    There are very fine plains and very good pasturage. We
    encountered several water holes where cattle might drink.

    From the Alameda, which is called San Clemente, to the first
    arroyo northward, which is called San Juan de la Cruz, the
    distance is about three leagues. The latter creek has little
    water and a few cottonwoods. We followed along the hills until
    the Mission of Our Father San Francisco came into view. At this
    point we turned around; the plains run to the parallel of the
    presidio. After eating, we surveyed the shore of the bay where,
    after about a league with no water, we came upon some salt
    marshes which without doubt are those which Sergeant Amador
    mentions in his diary. At the present time they do not contain
    salt, from which I infer that they are marshes like those of San
    Mateo where in dry years the salt crystallizes out.

    25th day: We returned [p. 119] to the first watering place,
    called San Francisco Solano, at which it is possible to
    establish the mission, although there is likely to be much
    damage inflicted by the horses of the town. A cross was placed
    on a small hill, for in all the region we covered there is no
    place more suitable. The unconverted heathen are fairly
    numerous, according to the many trails which are to be seen. In
    the same plain there are three moderate-sized rancherias.

    The above is what I consider adequate for the information of
    your reverence. If anything be lacking you will advise me so
    that your reverence may form an appropriate opinion.

The itinerary may be followed with reasonable precision. The journey of
the 22nd brought the party to a creek 6 or 7 leagues (Sal says 6) north
of Santa Clara. Taking the league as 2.7 miles, this distance puts them
on Mission Creek not far from Mission San José (called by Danti, San
Francisco Solano). On the morning of the 23rd they penetrated to the
headwaters of this creek, approximately 2 or 3 miles into the hills.
The idea that this creek came out opposite the town of San José is
manifestly an error.

Returning to the starting point and then going along the foot of the
hills for 2 leagues, as Sal says in the "Informe," they reached Alameda
Creek very close to Niles. They then went upstream to the junction of
Stonybrook Creek in the hills and then retraced their steps to Niles.
The water disappeared just southwest of the town (1/4 league from the
hills) and reappeared one league below, perhaps a mile southwest of
Decoto and 3 miles east of Alvarado and on the edge of the salt marshes.

On the 24th the party proceeded 3 leagues northward to the stream called
San Juan de la Cruz. From the distances, this can have been no other
than San Lorenzo Creek. If so, they went on out to the shore of the Bay
and saw San Francisco from a point just west of San Lorenzo. A few miles
now to the southward would have brought them to the salt marshes just
southwest of Mt. Eden. The hills they ascended were the Coyote Hills
near Newark. From this point they crossed the plain directly to Mission
San José and thence to Santa Clara.

Danti notes on Mission Creek the presence of three empty houses,
indicating at least transient occupation by a few natives. Toward the
end of the "Diario" he says that the unconverted heathen are "fairly
numerous" and that on the plain there are three "moderate-sized"
rancherias. Actually, therefore, he saw no indigenous heathen, and could
find traces of no more than would inhabit three rancherias of dubious
size. It will be remembered that Crespi reported in 1772 that there were
five villages between Milpitas and San Lorenzo, whereas Anza in 1776
found six. Danti, in a much more exhaustive survey, located only three.
It is evident that during the intervening twenty years the native
population in southwestern Alameda County had been seriously depleted,
reduced perhaps more than half. Accordingly it must be recognized that
the documents relating to the Danti-Sal expedition (and all later ones)
are of little value for estimating the preconquest population of the
East Bay. The reduction was due, of course, to conversion by the
missions and disturbance of the native economy, as well as to introduced


Activity along the Contra Costa was again intensified in 1797. This
time, as in 1795, the reason for attention in the official records was a
minor expedition which got into trouble. Reference to the purely routine
correspondence is here omitted and citation is made only of those
letters containing matter of intrinsic interest.

On June 20, 1797, the commandant, José Arguello, wrote from San
Francisco to the missionaries at San José (Bancroft Trans., Prov. St.
Pap., XV: 213). He had just learned that a Christian Indian, named
Raymundo el Californio, had left the mission at the head of about 30 or
40 other Indians in pursuit of fugitive Christians on the other shore.
He asked for confirmation of this report. Within a few days he had his
answer. In an undated letter, probably subsequent to June 22, from San
Francisco he informed Governor Borica what had happened (Bancroft
Trans., Prov. St. Pap., XV: 216-217).

    The Indians under Raymundo el Californio returned, completely
    dispersed because the winds and high waves swamped many of
    them. Since they did not tell the same story, he [Arguello]
    questioned Raymundo, who declared: having reached the other
    shore he found in three rancherias of the Cuchillones several
    Christians, men, women and children. On retreating to the beach
    with them, he was attacked by the other Indians of the place,
    but he succeeded in embarking in the boats without their having
    started a battle. Two of his group who had lagged behind were
    pursued by the Indians and were forced to jump into the water.
    Soon they were rescued by a boat, one of them having received a
    spear wound in the head, but of little severity. While they [the
    whole party] were all retiring, a storm came up which dispersed
    them widely. When they tried to follow Raymundo, they were twice
    forced back to the territory of the Cuchillones. Seeing that
    their boats were being broken up and thinking themselves lost,
    they abandoned the boats and went by land, without leaving the
    edge of the beach until they arrived opposite San Francisco,
    where they came upon a rancheria of heathen, named Santa Anna.
    The inhabitants made them welcome and furnished them with tules
    from their own houses, with which they constructed other boats
    and crossed to this shore.

The expedition sailed across, apparently to the region of Richmond or
San Pablo. Later, the fugitives followed the beach to the vicinity of
Oakland and San Leandro. The existence of a rancheria of heathen,
bearing the name of Santa Anna, is peculiar. The name was familiarly
applied without church sanction, or it was a village containing
Christian converts rather than heathen. In either event, complete
absorption of the natives into the Spanish Colonial system as far north
as Oakland is implied. Also noteworthy is the casual manner in which the
Mission Indians crossed and recrossed the Bay at its widest point in
tule rafts.


On July 8, Sergeant Pedro Amador reported from San José to the Governor
(Bancroft Trans., Prov. St. Pap., XV: 371-373) that two heathen, or
wild, Indians were trying to stir up a revolt among the Christians of
San José. "These two Gentiles are from the rancherias of the Sacalanes,
from those which committed the offenses against the Christians of San
Francisco. All of them are neighbors of those of the valley of San José
in that part of the shore opposite San Francisco." Since the Valley of
San José was the valley of upper Alameda Creek, extending from Sunol to
above Pleasanton, this statement tends to place the Sacalanes in the
general area west of Livermore and in the hills to the northward.

Two days later, July 10, the Governor answered Amador's letter, from
Monterey (Bancroft Trans., Prov. St. Pap., XVI: 71-72), ordering him to
go with two soldiers and twenty civilians to the rancheria of the
Sacalanes and capture both the chiefs and all fugitive Christians.
Amador carried out the order immediately and, after his return,
submitted a report to the Governor in the form of a diary, together with
a letter, both dated July 19 at San José. The diary in full is to be
found in the Archivo General de la Nación, Ramo Californias, Vol. 65,
Doc. no. 1, MS p. 93. The essential portions are worth reproducing and
are translated as follows.

    _Amador's Diary (1797)_

    [July 6 to 12 inclusive were spent making preparations.]

    July 13. We set forth [from Mission San José] on the campaign in
    the evening. I traveled all that night till dawn and hid with
    the party in a brushy ravine throughout the day,

    July 14. In the evening we arrived at the place where the
    rancheria of the Sacalanes was located.

    July 15. At dawn we attacked the said rancheria. We met much
    resistance from the Indians in it. Although we repeatedly told
    them that we did not wish to fight but only to take away the
    Christians, they admitted to no persuasion but began to shoot so
    as to kill one of our horses and wound two others. Seeing this
    opposition, we used our weapons in order to subdue them so that
    they would surrender. Some were killed, for they refused for two
    hours to give up. Finally, it was necessary to dismount and
    throw them back with swords and lances, for they have some wells
    in the middle of the village which are like walls and which can
    be strongly defended. There may have been about fifty persons,
    men and women.

    There were three rancherias close together, and with the
    destruction of this one, the inhabitants of the others fled. We
    captured only two from the second rancheria, although in the
    first the number captured was thirty, including both Gentiles
    and Christians. Having carried out an investigation and having
    ascertained the guilty ones and the Christians, I made it clear
    to the rest, through interpreters, that we did not wish to do
    them any harm. They said they wanted to obey and that they well
    understood that we had no evil intentions. I liberated the
    Gentiles and we set forth toward the region of the Juchillones.

    We had gone but a short distance when there began to assemble a
    great many Indians, uttering shrieks and cries, so that we had
    to go into line of battle again. Falling upon them, we killed
    one, and with this they all retreated. We followed our course in
    the direction we were going and concealed ourselves in a ravine
    near the beach. It has much timber, water, and firewood, good
    for a settlement. There we spent all the day hidden until
    nightfall when we went on to the rancheria of the Juchillones.

    At dawn [of July 16] we reached the place where were gathered
    all the Christians whom we wanted, together with those Gentiles
    who had participated in the attempt to kill Raymundo and his
    people. We struck the first, second, and third village in the
    same morning. When we reconnoitred the Indians of the last
    rancheria, which is very large, the inhabitants were just about
    to open hostilities, but being admonished by the interpreters
    that we had not come to harm them but to hunt for Christians,
    they were pacified. We pointed out to them that we had punished
    the others because they had fought with us. Then we returned to
    the first village with the Christians and Gentiles and there
    assembled all those who had been concealed in the three
    rancherias. Having separated out all those we had caught and
    were taking with us, we set forth on our return journey. The
    Gentiles had been cautioned, the same as the preceding ones,
    that we did not wish to injure them if they did not harm us. We
    followed our course of retirement along the coast. We reached an
    arroyo with little water and much timber, in which we passed the
    night with sentinels in the camp and at two advanced posts.

    July 17. At night we reached an arroyo which has much water,
    much timber and firewood, and also has nearby redwood, and very
    much good sand and some very long valleys.

    July 18. We reached Mission San José at a distance of six

Amador's diary helps us to estimate the location and numbers of the
tribal groups in question. After leaving Mission San José in the
evening, his party traveled till dawn. Since all the men were mounted,
this means a probable rate of 4 miles an hour for at least six hours, or
24 miles. The following day, "in the evening," they reached the first
rancheria of the Sacalanes. Allowing a ride of three hours, the total
distance would be 36 miles. Since there is no mention of the coast, the
route must have been the well-known inland trail through Pleasanton and
Dublin. Hence the destination was in the Walnut Creek-Lafayette area.
This effectually disposes, I think, of any possibility that the
Sacalanes could have inhabited the Livermore Valley.

Further evidence is provided by subsequent events. After spending
presumably several hours subduing the Sacalanes, Amador went over near
the beach where he spent "all day," obviously meaning the rest of the
day. Probably no more than three or four hours were consumed in the
actual ride, or a distance of 9 to 12 miles. It must be remembered that
now Amador was burdened with captives, who traveled on foot at a likely
rate of no more than 3 miles per hour. Hence he must have reached the
bay shore in the vicinity of Richmond.

At nightfall, the party went on to the rancheria of the Juchillones,
which may have been a few miles up the coast. No indication is given of
distance, except that at dawn they reached their destination. The most
probable guess is that the rancheria was somewhere on the southeast
shore of San Pablo Bay between Pinole and Rodeo. This view is supported
by the account of the return trip.

After having attacked three rancherias, conducted negotiations,
identified and secured several dozen captives, Amador began his retreat
"along the coast." At night they reached a well watered arroyo, which
could have been San Pablo Creek or Wildcat Creek. On the 17th the party
spent the whole day moving down the shore to an arroyo, near some
redwoods, which, according to the notation of the following day, was 6
leagues from Mission San José. The arroyo which best fits the
description and the distance (about 15 mi.) is San Leandro Creek. This,
in turn, is just about a day's journey from San Pablo Creek for a
military party encumbered with numerous prisoners. There are therefore
reasonable grounds contained in Amador's diary for placing the
Juchillones on the shore of San Pablo Bay from Point San Pablo northeast
to Rodeo or beyond.

With respect to numbers, it may first be noted that Amador found three
rancherias fairly close together for each tribal group: Sacalanes and
Juchillones. The only indication of size for the Sacalanes is the
mention of 50 men and women who participated in the defense of the first
rancheria; The other two rancherias had been deserted. Perhaps a maximum
of 300 and a minimum of 100 inhabitants for all three villages is
indicated. For the Juchillones, Amador states only that the third
rancheria was "very large." This may be taken to mean a population of
over 100, and on this assumption the total might be set within the range
suggested for the Sacalanes, i.e., 100-300.

In the letter to the Governor covering his report, dated July 19 at
Mission San José (Bancroft Trans., Prov. St. Pap., XV: 319-320) Amador
says, regarding the Cuchillones [Juchillones] "... it is certain that
there are many rancherias and very big ones; and this is the reason why
they assemble to hold their councils and eat many seeds." This
statement would favor a fairly large population. Furthermore, in
replying to Amador on July 21, Governor Borica (Bancroft Trans., Prov.
Rec., V: 118) notes that the expedition brought back 83 Christians and 9
Gentiles. This fact shows that the two tribal groups, Sacalanes and
Juchillones, had already been able to absorb the losses occasioned by
the missionization of 40 persons per tribe--plus the conversion of
probably many others who were not fugitives or at least were not
captured by Amador, plus the attrition due to disease and disruption of
food supplies--and yet were in a position to maintain a total of 6
rancherias, each of moderate to large size. The preconquest population
per group must have reached at least 300 and very likely was much

After Amador's return in late July a full-scale investigation was
ordered. A great many Indians were interrogated in an effort to discover
the cause, not only of the bitter hostility of the East Bay villages,
but also of the incorrigible fugitivism which plagued the local
missions. Two sets of testimony are on record (Archivo General de la
Nación, Ramo Californias, Vol. 65, no. 3, MS p. 101, and no. 5, MS p.
109, dated respectively August 9 and September 16, 1797) which are of
interest to the student of Indian psychology but of no particular
ethnographic significance.

Meanwhile, more small expeditions were sent out. The records of the
pueblo of San José (Bancroft Trans., Dep. St. Pap., San José, I: 81-82)
show that on July 2 an expedition was ordered to capture and punish
Gentiles who had killed two mares. Later reports indicated that this
objective had been accomplished. Subsequently, in a letter to Governor
Borica dated at San José on September 3, Sergeant Amador described
another expedition (Bancroft Trans., Prov. St. Pap., XV: 317-318). He
says that "he set out at 8:00 p.m. on August 26 in search of the
rancheria Pijugma. First they went to that of Juquili and at dawn fell
upon the first rancheria [presumably Pijugma] where they did not find
the chieftain they sought." However, they afterwards caught this chief,
with three others, all of whom they took to the mission. Amador says the
rancherias "will be about 10 leagues from the mission and are opposite
the beach." The latter statement, together with the fact that the
distance was covered in one night's travel on horseback, suggests the
area of the Livermore Valley.

The Sacalanes and Cuchillones appear again in a letter from Governor
Borica to the Viceroy, dated at Monterey, March 14, 1799 (Bancroft
Trans., Prov. Rec., VI: 443-444). The transcript reads:

    Says that only in serious cases should vigorous measures be
    taken against them [Indians]. The Indians fugitive from the
    Mission of San Francisco, Sacalanes and Cuchillones, are being
    recovered by means of emissaries and parties of soldiers who are
    treating them with the greatest gentleness and humanity. In the
    month of June, last, 18 of all ages and sexes came back to their
    ministers. In the following December the corporal of the guard
    of San José brought in 33 who wished to remain there [Mission
    San José], as they had agreed with the Father President, because
    of the horror with which they regard the Mission of San

A year later there was another attack on these unfortunate people. In a
letter dated at San Francisco, May 20, 1800, the commander, Arguello,
wrote to Governor Arrillaga (Bancroft Trans., Prov. St. Pap., XVIII:
32-33) that, in conformity with orders to investigate the murder of two
Christian Indians at Mission San José, Sergeant Amador went out with a
large party to the "sierra." In another letter of Alberni to Governor
Arrillaga, Monterey, July 2, 1800 (Bancroft Trans., Prov. St. Pap.,
XVIII: 33-34), the people concerned are described as "the Gentiles of
San José called Sacalanes, who were committing depredations." Amador's
own account, dated May 14, 1800, at San Francisco, is contained in
another transcript (Bancroft Trans., Prov. St. Pap., Ben. Mil., XXVIII:
130-132). It reads thus:

    Left Santa Clara on the 7th--arrived at the location of the
    rancheria he sought. It was not there--it had been moved. On the
    9th they found it. The Indians fled to the sierra from which
    they threatened, but did not attack. With the best horses a few
    of the warriors were caught. To hold on to them sword and lance
    had to be employed and a captain was killed. Then the expedition
    retired from the rancheria, and waited about three hours to be
    sure that the Indians were not going to attack, for it was not
    easy to reach the spot where they were.

    The expedition descended to the plains of San José [probably the
    western end of the Livermore Valley], where it awaited the
    corporal and four soldiers sent to take the 10 captive Indians
    to the garrison at San José.

    At 3:00 p.m. on the 10th the corporal and four men returned.
    They traveled all night to reach the rancherias.

    The 11th he fell upon the seven rancherias to gather up the 21
    Christians who were delivered by the chiefs. None of the
    Gentiles wanted to be made a Christian. In two of the rancherias
    the Gentiles almost took up arms.... The 12th the expedition
    arrived at Mission San José....

Since no specific information is given, it may be assumed that this
expedition penetrated the area lying between Mt. Diablo and the
Livermore Valley, perhaps getting as far north as Walnut Creek. It is
stated and implied that the Sacalanes were in a condition of great
disorganization. They had been driven into the hills, apparently widely
scattered and probably seriously depleted in numbers.


The last information we possess concerning this group of natives comes
from the year 1804. In 1803, a letter, dated May 11 at Loreto, from
Governor Arrillaga to the Viceroy (Archivo General de la Nación, Ramo
Californias, Vol. 9, MS p. 433) mentions the fact that 20 Christians,
sent out by the missionaries of Santa Clara, were attacked and routed by
Gentiles who killed their "principal." In connection with this murder,
and with a supposed plot to destroy Mission San José, the testimony of
witnesses was taken a year later (Archivo General de la Nación, Ramo
Californias, Vol. 9, MS pp. 437-439, June 21, 1804, San José, Luís
Peralta in charge). On September 27, 1804, from Santa Clara, in a letter
to an unnamed captain, Luís Peralta (Bancroft Trans., Prov. St. Pap.,
XVIII: 334) advised that the expedition he made against Gentile Indians
had no satisfactory results, because of lack of guides. On September 29,
Arguello, at San Francisco, wrote to Governor Arrillaga (Bancroft
Trans., Prov. St. Pap., XVII: 354) that he had ordered Peralta to go to
the "Sierra de San José" in pursuit of Gentile assassins of Christians,
but Peralta could not catch them.

Peralta went out a second time. Arguello, from San Francisco, on October
26, wrote again to Governor Arrillaga (Bancroft Trans., Prov. St. Pap.,
XVII, 358-359) that Peralta could not catch the killers of the Mission
Indian Jorge, but he did catch 11 Christians, and after leaving the
women and children at the mission, brought 32 "gandules" ("rogues,"
"rascals," a colloquial term for renegade Indians) to the Presidio.
Since the "Sierra de San José" was the coast range behind the East Bay
it is clear that the remnant of the people who originally inhabited the
interior had taken to the hills in a last stand against the invader.
After 1804 all mention of them ceases.

_The Cuevas Affair._--In 1805 occurred what is called the "Cuevas
Affair." This event has significance for the Alameda and Contra Costa
natives, rather than those of the delta or lower San Joaquin Valley,
only if the Indians concerned were bona fide aboriginal inhabitants of
the inner coast ranges, as Cutter (1950) seems to assume. We must
therefore review the evidence.

On January 16, 1805, José Antonio Sanchez wrote from San José to José
Arguello (Bancroft Trans., Prov. St. Pap., XIX: 34-35) that Father
Pedro Cuevas had asked for a guard to visit and confess invalids in a
"rancheria of Christian Indians." The guard was granted. When the party
arrived at the designated rancheria, they did not find the invalids.
Whereupon they continued farther to another rancheria, where they were
attacked and badly mauled. The most reliable account is probably that
of Governor Arrillaga, contained in a letter dated March 11, 1805, at
Loreto, to the Viceroy (Archivo General de la Nación, Ramo Californias,
Vol. 9, MS pp. 452-453). According to him, Father Cuevas was intending
to confess Indians at a "nearby" rancheria called Asiremes. José
Arguello (January 31, 1805, San Francisco, letter to Governor Arrillaga,
Bancroft Trans., Prov. St. Pap., XIX: 36-37) calls it Asirenes and says
it was in the "interior of the Sierra." No other mention of this
rancheria occurs, to my knowledge, in the contemporary documents.

The Governor then recounts the casualties: the major domo and two
Mission Indians killed, Father Cuevas and two Indians wounded, all the
horses killed. He adds that Sergeant Luís Peralta immediately went out
with a punitive expedition.

Peralta's story is told in a diary dated January 30, at San Francisco
(Bancroft Trans., Prov. St. Pap., XIX: 33-34). He left San Francisco
January 19 for Santa Clara to raise personnel. With 18 soldiers and some
civilians he arrived on the 22nd "at the point where the evil doers made
their attack." They found the body of the major domo, and "since, due to
the rain, they could find no trace of the Indians, they camped in the
Sierra." Very clearly there was no rancheria or other habitation at this

Peralta continues that he found two Gentiles who told them where the
rancheria was. Early on January 23 they marched to the place designated.
When the occupants began hostilities, the Spaniards fell upon them and
killed five. The remainder "fired at us from some barrancas, part of
them from a wood [_bosque_] which was located there. Soon all retreated
to the wood." The whites then attacked the wood and cleared it out,
capturing 25 persons, all women and children, and killing another five
"Indios." At dark they retired for the night "to where the horses had
been left," but the following day returned briefly to the wood, where
they found no one. Then all hands returned to the mission.

Despite the fact that at least 40 Indians were encountered, there is no
indication in the Peralta diary of any permanent habitation. The attack
on Father Cuevas occurred at a point where no trace of natives could be
found. The battle in which Peralta was engaged took place among
barrancas and in a forested area--again, no suggestion of houses or of
even a temporary settlement.

With regard to the name of the tribal group concerned there seems to be
no question. In a letter of May 30, 1805, from San Francisco to Governor
Arrillaga (Bancroft Trans., Prov. St. Pap., XIX: 42) José Arguello
speaks of "the rancheria of the Luechas, where the attack against Father
Cuevas took place." Much later, José Maria Amador, writing for H. H.
Bancroft in 1877 (Bancroft Manuscript, Amador, Memorias, translated by
Earl R. Hewitt), referred to "Cuevas, who was going to instruct in the
Christian faith the heathen at the Lochis rancheria...." Here is a
discrepancy, for the contemporary documents state that Father Cuevas
intended to exercise his religious functions at the rancheria of the
Asirenes. However, it is clear enough that the outrage itself was
perpetrated by the Luechas.

The location of the people--wholly apart from the question of where the
attack occurred--is equivocal. That the attack took place in the Sierra
is beyond doubt, but that the home of the offenders was likewise in the
hills is not so sure. Cutter (1950, p. 92) relies upon a statement of
Amador (below) when he states: "The Indians had turned out to be the
Luechas, residents of the hills between Livermore and the San Joaquin
Valley"; and "this would place them at the foothills east of Mount
Diablo at the entrance of the Valley." The pertinent sentence in
Amador's Memorias (MS, p. 13) reads thus: "rancheria de Loechas, como 14
leguas al oriente de la mision, arriba del actual pueblo de Livermore a
4 o 5 leguas de dist^{a}."

Allowing, conservatively, 2.5 miles per league, the total distance from
the mission, if Amador is correct, would be 35 miles. The rancheria
would be from 10 to 12.5 miles from Livermore. The term "above" ("arriba
de....") does not necessarily mean toward the geographical north, but
the direction may be taken as in the quadrant from north to east. The
arc of the circumference of a circle with center at Livermore and radius
of 12 miles passes approximately from San Ramon in the northwest, well
south of Mount Diablo, across the very rough lower spurs of the mountain
massif to the mouth of Kellogg Creek near Byron to the northeast. From
here it runs along beyond Altamont, close to Mountain House and Midway,
as far as upper Corral Hollow to the southeast. This entire stretch is
devoid of any indication of substantial aboriginal occupancy, either in
the eighteenth-century documents or in modern archaeological research.

Let us also note Amador's total: 14 leagues east of the Mission, or
fully 35 miles. The horseback trail of 1805 followed pretty much the
shortest highways of today: from Mission San José to Sunol and thence to
Livermore via Pleasanton or directly across the low hills east of Sunol.
By the first route the distance is 18 miles, by the second 16 miles.
Using the larger value, 18 miles, the rancheria would have been not 12,
but 17 miles beyond Livermore, which would have put it definitely in, or
on the edge of, the San Joaquin Valley.

This conclusion agrees with Cutter's, referred to above, with respect
to the location of the attack, but the theory that these Luechas
actually were "residents" of the inner coast ranges and hence to be
included in the area here being considered is contradicted by the
following points.

1. As indicated above, no contemporary account explicitly states that an
inhabited village was encountered or entered by the Californians during
the Cuevas campaign.

2. There is no other documentary evidence for villages actually in the
hills due west of the San Joaquin Valley floor.

3. In a letter to Governor Arrillaga dated February 28 at San Francisco
(Bancroft Trans., Prov. St. Pap., XIX: 39-40), José Arguello mentions a
second expedition by Sergeant Peralta "to the sierra where the Indians
were who attacked Father Cuevas." In the course of this journey by
Peralta: "A chief of the big rancheria on the river San Francisco,
called Pescadero, came to give Sergeant Peralta the assurance that
neither he nor his people had taken part in the attack against Father
Cuevas and his guard." Since Pescadero was the main rancheria of the
Bolbones, near Bethany, and since the latter were a delta tribe of
either Miwok or Yokuts stock, it is unlikely that the chief would have
feared a confusion of identity with a tribal group which was indigenous
to the hill country to the west. But if the guilty parties were plains
or delta people, he might well have been apprehensive.

4. Amador, in the Memorias (MS, pp. 14-15) says that "Lieutenant Gabriel
Moraga and his troops set out to punish the evildoers. The latter had
already moved to the San Joaquin River and gone to a rancheria called
Pitenis." Pitenis was on the main San Joaquin River above Lathrop.

Here again we see an affinity of the Luechas with the Valley, rather
than the hill habitat, for the refugees, if traditionally and
aboriginally sierran, would have been very unlikely to seek sanctuary in
the depths of the Valley.

5. Schenck (1926) has no hesitation in placing the Luechas (or Leuchas)
in approximately the region of Manteca and says Pitenis was one of their

On the whole, the writer feels that the evidence is insufficient to
warrant placing the Luechas in the coast ranges as a group aboriginally
native to that area. They are preferably to be regarded as a valley
people, of unknown ethnic affiliation, who penetrated the hills from the
east and for some reason got into difficulty with Father Cuevas and his
followers. At all events they cannot be considered Costanoans.


In the years following the Cuevas episode numerous expeditions were sent
out which opened up the interior of California. Most of these are more
appropriate to a consideration of the interior valleys than to a survey
of the coast ranges to the east of San Francisco Bay. Two, however,
contain sufficient pertinent material to warrant their citation. They
are the first expeditions by Father Fray José Viader in 1810 and that by
Father Fray Ramón Abella in 1811. Both these missionaries explored the
delta region and the rivers but on their way to the valley they passed
through the East Bay and left descriptions of considerable interest. A
translation of this portion of the diaries is presented without comment
and a discussion of the native tribes mentioned is deferred until a
subsequent section.

    _Fr. José Viader's Diary (1810)_

    _August 15._ [Left San José Mission and went 6 leagues north to
    the valley of San José.]

    _August 16._ In this day, following the same direction, north,
    we traveled about 6 leagues before noon, and having killed two
    bears and a very large deer, we stopped to rest at the
    headwaters of a stream called Walnut Creek. This stream,
    although it has good water, is running very little. In the
    afternoon, in the same direction, having traveled another six
    leagues, having killed a deer and an antelope, and having
    observed fine country well covered with trees, all without
    water, we arrived at dark at the end of Walnut Creek. This is at
    the beginning of some inlets on the northeast side of a well
    known plain, well covered with trees (among others large

    _August 17._ We passed this day (without moving camp) in
    scouting the plain and adjacent hills, the lands of which belong
    to the Tarquines, most, or almost all, of whom are Christians of
    San Francisco. We have seen the mouth of the two rivers, one of
    which comes from the north and the other from the southeast.
    Uniting, they enter one of the estuaries which reach from San
    Francisco. In all this region, very well known for its climate,
    fine lands, much wood and walnut groves, the only water we found
    was one pool of stagnant water, another with good water although
    its water could not escape, and a spring which flows a little
    and which is next to the willow grove close to the inlet where
    it is said used to be the rancheria of the Tarquines. Granting
    what has been said and that Walnut Creek contains very little
    water, the area seems to me unsuitable for a foundation. In all
    this day we killed three bears and 11 deer....

    _August 18._ We set out early from the above mentioned place,
    and going to the east we crossed the main range and in 7 leagues
    reached the San Joaquin, or, as they say, the Tulare River. This
    is one-quarter of a league wide and appears to be very deep and
    to feel the tides of the sea. Here we stopped to rest between
    the river and a very large oak forest. This is said to be the
    land of the Tulpunes. We saw neither them nor any sign or trace
    of heathen.... In the afternoon we went two leagues further,
    toward the east, in the middle of the oak forest ... and this
    place also belongs to the Tulpunes, who did not let themselves
    be seen.

    _August 19._ [Went on southeast to Pescadero.]


    _Abella's Diary (1811)_

    _October 15._ At 10 o'clock in the morning we left the
    embarcadero at the port and stopped at the Island of Los Angeles
    because the tide was changing. At about 4 o'clock in the
    afternoon when the tide was favorable we set out and arrived at
    the point of the Huchunes, and stopped on the south side of this
    point. All day we went about five hours, all by oar, the sea
    being calm. The Island of Los Angeles and the points of Huchunes
    and Abastos form a double bay. That on the side of the Port
    [i.e., San Francisco], the big one, has eight islands, most of
    which are small. One of them must be passed in sailing to the
    point of the Huchunes. It has a sandbar and must be passed a
    little distant to the west. It is noticeable only at low tide
    and on the western side is entirely covered with trees.

    _October 16._ We left the said point of the Huchunes, which we
    called San Pablo. Where we slept there is a beach good as a
    camping place, with water and firewood. This Point San Pablo has
    opposite it another point which we called San Pedro, and between
    them are two little islands. From one point to the other might
    be twice the distance from the fort to the opposite shore [i.e.,
    across the Golden Gate]. These two points enclose the bay as we
    have said, and form another one, much larger, which we estimate
    to be 4 leagues from the center to the periphery. This bay is
    square in shape. On the north and west it has 5 rancherias which
    are still unconverted. On the western side is a cove which,
    according to the Indians, is quite large. But Alferez Gabriel
    Moraga has explored it twice, on the expeditions he has made to
    those parts.

    At a league and a half we encountered another headland, which we
    called San Andres [i.e., Point Pinole]. Between the latter and
    that of San Pablo, all mainland of San José, is an estuary which
    terminates in a stream [i.e., mouth of San Pablo Creek] which,
    according to those who have been there and to the Indians, is
    like that of the pueblo, except that it is deeper and is well
    wooded. From one point to the other the depth of the water is
    four varas, becoming shallower to two, when one sails close to
    the shore. Farther into the bay conditions would be the same as
    at the port for there is a channel which carries a considerable
    current. This is all the land of the Huchunes. It is quite bare,
    although there are some oak trees.

    As far as the strait of the Karquines, including what we have
    covered yesterday and today, we must have spent about eight
    hours, all to the northeast, one-quarter north from the Mission.
    Here ends the above mentioned bay, estimated at 8 leagues. The
    strait is formed by an island [i.e., Mare Island] and the
    mainland of San José. The island soon ends and is replaced by
    mainland on both sides. The strait runs to the southwest and
    makes a half-turn to the south. It carries a heavy current,
    depending on the rise and fall of the tide. This strait is about
    two and a half leagues long and about a quarter of a league
    wide, in some places somewhat wider. It ends in the land of the
    Chupunes, where it becomes broader. Here we stopped at half-past
    eleven o'clock at a little beach which is dry at low tide and
    where the boats have to retreat 200 varas in order not to be
    stranded. Here at low tide is seen a rock, which otherwise is
    covered with water and which might damage the boats on landing.
    However, a little farther down toward the hill is a sort of
    little valley, which is good. This place we called la Division
    [probably at or near Martinez]. It has a large pool of water and
    plenty of firewood. Here we passed the night without incident.
    The shore of the strait of the Karquines which is opposite the
    mainland of San José is very barren.

    October 17. [The party entered the delta.]


With the Viader and Abella diaries the formal documentary descriptions
of Costanoan people and territory east of San Francisco come to an end.
Nevertheless, there are certain other sources which convey information
of use to the ethnographer. These are, first, some of the accounts left
by travelers, particularly those by Chamisso and Choris in 1816
(translated by A. C. Mahr, 1932); second, the vocabularies and
discussion of linguistics written by Fray Felipe Arroyo de la Cuesta
(1837); third, the transcripts of the Mission baptism books made by
Pinart (no date); forth, the accumulated habitation site records of the
California Archaeological Survey. These sources will be used here for
further examination of the location of the aboriginal groups concerned
and their population.


The subordinate divisions of the natives inhabiting Alameda and Contra
Costa counties can probably be allocated to five primary geographical
areas. Some of these can be associated with reasonably well recognized
names; some cannot. They may be briefly considered.

_Area 1. The Alameda._--From Milpitas north to approximately Richmond,
and west of the hills, the early expeditions (Fages, Anza) found
numerous rancherias, as previously mentioned. The Sal-Danti party in
1795, covering the southern half of this area thoroughly, found almost
no native inhabitants. An originally fair-sized population therefore
must have been dispersed nearly completely in twenty years.

No general, regional name was ever applied to these Indians, but a few
individual rancheria names have been preserved. These are all designated
in the San Francisco Baptism Book as lying on the "otra banda del
estero" (or some similar expression):

    1778:  paraje             Halchis
    1779:  paraje             Chapugtac
           paraje             Tupucantche
    1780:  rancheria          Genau (or Chynau)
           rancheria          Tupine
    1780:  rancheria          Itenau
           rancheria          Tumiamac
    1781:  rancheria          Torqui
    1782:  rancheria          Putnatac
           rancheria          Ocquizara
           rancheria          Tacomui
    1784:  rancheria          Ssichitca
           araje              Cosopo
    1786:  rancheria          Ilorocrochay
           paraje             Guet

These records show, first, that from 1778 to 1786 the missionaries from
San Francisco recognized fifteen inhabited places along the southeast
shore of the Bay. Second, it is very clear that active search for
converts was proceeding during these eight years Finally, the field must
have been substantially exhausted because none of the fifteen localities
are noted after 1786.

Nevertheless, San Francisco did not get all the natives, because Santa
Clara was much closer and was active during the same period
Unfortunately we cannot determine the village of origin for these
neophytes, since the baptism book (according to Pinart's transcript)
allocates the individual converts to rancherias, not according to the
native names of the latter, but by corresponding Saint's names, which
must have been applied, Mexican fashion, by the local missionaries Only
after 1801 did Santa Clara change its system, and of course by this time
no heathen Indians remained locally.

San José was founded and began conversions in 1797. The baptism book
here has the converts identified according to general area, not specific
village. There are six such regions, or categories: "Palos colorados,"
"de la Alameda," "del Estero," "del Norte," "del Este," "del Sur." Of
these the first three are evidently local and in the region now being
discussed: (1) the redwoods back of Oakland and San Leandro; (2) Alameda
Creek and adjacent plain; (3) the shore of the Bay directly west of the
mission. The conversions, 1797-1802 inclusive, from these three areas
were respectively 31, 170, 130, indicating that San Francisco and Santa
Clara had by no means completed the conquest.

_Area 2. The coast from Richmond to Carquinez Strait._--That this strip
was held by the tribal group known as Huchiun (Cuchillones, Juchillones)
has been supported by the accounts of Amador (diary of 1797) and of
Abella (diary of 1811). The latter writer, it will be remembered,
renamed the Point of the Huchines, Point San Pablo, a name which it
retains today. The point of the Abastos or Aguastos became
Point San Pedro. The Abastos, it may be pointed out, were neither
Costanoan nor resident on the east side of the Bay. They lived on the
Bay shore of Marin County, as is abundantly evident from the San
Francisco baptism records.

The Huchiun are mentioned by Chamisso and by Choris (Mahr, 1932) in
1816, jointly with various other North Bay tribes. Chamisso says that
the Utschíun, together with the Guyment, Olumpalic, Soclan, and Sonomi,
all speak the same language, a manifest error. Choris repeats the
mistake. Arroyo de la Cuesta gives a Huichun vocabulary and says (1837;
MS p. 21) "Karquin and Huichun is one language--Saclan is another,
entirely distinct." The Huchiun are noted in the San Francisco records
first in 1787 (Tuchiun) and subsequently repeatedly until 1809, although
they never appear in the San José record. Apparently San José derived
converts from the east rather than from up coast.

The exact limits of the Huchiun are doubtful. Amador spent a night
somewhere near Richmond and then went north to find them. Abella
associates them closely with Point San Pablo, and implies that their
land reached as far as the strait. We may tentatively draw their
boundary between Rodeo and Crockett.

_Area 3. Carquinez Strait and Concord Valley._--We are dealing here with
the shore line from Crockett through Martinez nearly to Pittsburg, and
inland between Concord and Pacheco. The principal Indian name associated
with this area is Karquin, from which the strait takes its name. Just
what group of people is involved is a puzzling question.

Kroeber, in the Handbook of California Indians (1925, pp. 356, 466),
includes the Karkin as a division of the southern Wintun, which would
mean that the principal seat of habitation was north of the strait.
While there is no evidence in the early records to exclude this
completely, there is certainly no question that at least a portion of
the group lived on the south side. Thus the mission records before the
settlement of the north shore report numerous baptisms of Karquines or
Tarquines. Viader (1810) camped near Martinez, where the rancheria of
the Tauquines used to be. Arroyo de la Cuesta says the language of the
Karkin is the same as (or similar to) that of the Huchiun. The latter is
Costanoan: the former could not be Wintun. The name Karkin was said by
Arroyo de la Cuesta to signify "trocar," or "to trade." It has been
supposed that the reference is to the rancheria which traded with
Cañizares and other early explorers.

The Karquines (on the south side at least) probably began near Crockett,
adjoining the Huchiun on the west. The next sure tribe on the east is
the Julpunes, whose western limit is near Antioch and who must be
considered a delta people.

Abella (1811) states that the strait ends on the east in the land of the
Chupunes, and on the strength of this statement Schenck (1926) places
the Chupunes from Port Costa to Martinez. Schenck also cites Father
Narciso Duran who, in 1817, mentions the Chupcanes as holding this
territory. Yet Viader, in 1810, says it was the site of the former
rancheria of the Karquines.

The mission records are illuminating. San Francisco reports its first
baptism of a Karquin in 1787. The statement reads: "natural de la otra
banda del paraje de Turis, ó nacion Karquin." The next reference is in
1801 when eleven of this "nation" were baptized. In the meantime, scores
of Huchiun had been baptized. In 1810, Chupunes or Chupanes (or
Chupkanes) begin to appear, both at San Francisco and San José. This
looks as if missionization moved progressively north and east along
the shore: first the Huchiun, then the Karkin, then the Chupunes, and
finally the Julpunes, who begin to show up at San José in significant
numbers in 1811.

This concept of the original status of aboriginal units in northern
Contra Costa County is at variance with the arrangement postulated by
Schenck, who places the "Tarquimenes" and the "Tarquimes" eastward
across the delta islands nearly to Stockton. There is some reason to
believe that many of these delta islands were aboriginally uninhabited,
but wholly apart from this consideration, another explanation can be
offered, which has been suggested by Schenck (1926) and by the present
writer (1955). It rests upon the probability that many of the delta
tribes had undergone extensive migration, owing to Spanish military
pressure in the period from 1785 to 1810. Thus the Karquines of the
early accounts may have moved east along the south shore of Suisun Bay,
far into the delta, and hence may have been recorded by later visitors
under a series of name variants. In the meantime the Chupunes, or
Chupkanes, may have been pushed southwest, as intimated by Kotzebue
(cited by Schenck, 1926, p. 130). It is pretty clear that the tribal
territories as reported by a succession of explorers from 1805 to 1820
did not conform to the aboriginal pattern. Our best solution, for
present purposes, is to consider the strip from Crockett to Port Chicago
as having been the range of the Karkin.

_Area 4. The interior valleys from Lafayette to Walnut Creek and
Danville._--Part of this region was traversed by Fages and Crespi, who
reported several villages. It is later identified as the home of the
Saclanes. This tribal aggregate first comes into prominence in 1795 in
connection with the murder of the San Francisco Christians, who slept on
the beach and reached the Saclanes by noon. Amador, on his expedition of
1797, reached them in less than twenty-four hours from Mission San José.
Other documents, cited previously, indicate that in spite of terminal
disorganization and scattering the original home of the group was in the
small valleys west of Mt. Diablo.

The linguistic evidence adduced by Arroyo de la Cuesta (1837)
demonstrates that the Saclanes were a non-Costanoan people, perhaps
related to the Plains Miwok. This identification as Miwok, was first
made, on the basis of the de la Cuesta vocabulary, by A. S. Gatschett,
was verified by C. Hart Merriam, and first published by M. S. Beeler
(1955). Kroeber (1925) classes Saclan as doubtfully Costanoan, but shows
the group as Costanoan on his large colored tribal map. Regardless of
their linguistic affiliation, however, historically and ecologically
they must be considered as in the same position as the Costanoans who
surrounded them.

The mission records are explicit. The tribe, at least under the usual
name, was converted at the San Francisco Mission and no other. The first
baptisms occurred in 1794 and the last in 1798.

_Area 5. The interior valleys from Livermore to Dublin and
Pleasanton._--This territory was barely skirted on the west by Fages and
Crespi and on the east by Anza and Font, none of whom left any record of
native villages. In fact, no data in the correspondence or diaries are
of significance except the reference, cited previously, to the rancheria
of the Asirines. We have, on the other hand, some suggestive information
from the baptism books of the mission at San José.

Until 1803 converts were identified in the San José records largely by
direction. Thus three of the categories were "del Norte," "del Este,"
"del Sur." Of these, "del Este" seems to point to the Livermore Valley
and nearby arroyos as the most likely inhabited region. In 1803, the
rancheria, or some other type of ethnic name, is substituted. From 1803
to 1808, all converts were drawn from twelve places having recognizable
names, ending in _-an_, _-en_, _-in_, or _-un_, characteristic Costanoan
word endings. None of these places can be identified as connected with
the foothill or plains area bordering the Bay. None are Saclan--to the
northwest of the Livermore Valley--since that group was extinct by 1798.
None can be referred to the San Joaquin Valley, since no serious
conversions were attempted there, as indicated by the baptism book,
before 1809. Consequently these places must have been in the interior
valleys, east and northeast of Mission San José.

The names are as follows: Saoan, Ssouyen, Seunen, Irgin, Pelnen, Asirin,
Causen (or Cusscun), Tannan (Annan), Caburun (Calenrun, Carurun),
Zuicun, Tuibun, Julien. The first three are clearly synonyms, and refer
to the tribe often called Seunenes. The others might perhaps have been
rancherias subordinate to this tribal group, but such an hypothesis is
negated by the rancheria Asirin, which is referred to in the documents
relating to the Cuevas affair as if it had an independent status.
Therefore, there were apparently several independent villages in the
area as a whole.


Since we have no other information and since there is no obvious tribal
designation associated with the region, the geographical description
will have to suffice to designate the area.

The aboriginal population of the East Bay was tentatively estimated from
the village counts of the Fages and Anza expeditions as 2,400 and 2,150,
respectively. It is possible to arrive at a new and independent estimate
by means of the mission statistics.

The missionaries, or their agents, entered the area in question and
sought converts to Christianity, who were immediately baptized and
entered in the mission archive as Christians. Alameda and Contra Costa
counties, except for the extreme eastern border in the San Joaquin
Valley, were completely Christianized by 1810. Theoretically,
therefore, the total baptisms should equal the population. However,
during the process of conversion a serious population decline was in
progress for other reasons. Disease, fugitivism to the deep interior,
depression of the birth rate, economic and social upheaval, military
butchery, all took such a toll of the nonmissionized, or surviving,
Indians that certainly no more than one-half of the aboriginal number
could have been actually baptized. At all events, the total number of
baptisms represents a subminimal estimate of population.

The baptisms are here tabulated according to the mission and according
to the five areas described previously. No attempt is made to segregate
the entries by year, since we are interested in the total, not the
annual increment. Certain particular problems deserve comment.

The San Francisco record is very precise, since it allocates each
neophyte to his rancheria, or at least to the local region of his
origin. Santa Clara, however, as noted previously, gives no indication
of the origin before 1805. By this time, all the local natives had been
exhausted and only valley tribes are mentioned. It is probable that from
1777 to 1789 the natives in the immediate vicinity were being converted.
From 1790 to 1801, inclusive, 1,392 baptisms of gentiles were recorded.
Some of these came from the south and the southwest, some from the hills
to the east, and probably some represented early conquests in the San
Joaquin Valley. Many, however, must have come from the north and
northeast, in particular, before the foundation of San José in 1797. A
conservative guess for this fraction would be 400, and this figure will
be adopted.

San José, from 1797 to 1802 inclusive, indicates the origin of its
converts only by general area or direction, as previously pointed out.
Some arbitrary allocation is demanded. Hence, as a reasonable solution,
those natives from "Palos colorados," "de la Alameda," "del Estero," and
"del Sur" are assigned to area 1. Those from "del Norte" are considered
Huchiun and those "del Este" are allocated to area 5. After 1802, the
San José records specify the villages, which are all from area 5. The
tabulated totals are shown at bottom of page.

The total for San Francisco and San José equals 1,848 baptisms. Adding
an estimated 400 for Santa Clara makes 2,248. This figure, which has to
be regarded as a minimum for population since it covers only mission
baptisms from the region, is as great as the estimates based on the
expeditions of the first decade of settlement, and proves beyond
question that those estimates were highly conservative. If we assume
that the aboriginal population was twice the value of the baptisms, the
total would have reached 4,496. If it be allowed that conversion close
to the missions was exceptionally rapid and thorough, a somewhat lower
figure may be accepted, say 3,000. This estimate, however, must be
regarded as the lowest consistent with the known facts.

Although little direct information pertaining to population
can be secured, it is nevertheless interesting to consider the
prehistoric sites in the East Bay which have been noted by California
archaeologists. Most of those which can be regarded as habitation mounds
have been recorded by the University of California Archaeological
Survey, and have been plotted on map 1.

                   Area 1   Area 2   Area 3   Area 4   Area 5   Total

    San Francisco    33      206      211      297       15      762
    Santa Clara                                                  400
    San José        347      136                        603    1,086
                    ---      ---      ---      ---      ---    -----
    Total           380      342      211      297      618    2,248

It must not be thought that each site represented on the map by a dot
was inhabited in 1769, or the years immediately preceding, for many of
the mounds are known to have been formed during the Middle Culture
period, which antedated modern times by several centuries. The chief
physical characteristic of these accumulations is the very high content
of mussel, and to some extent clam, shell. From this feature it has been
deduced that at one time a very large population existed along the shore
of the Bay.

The record of known sites, as shown on map 1, is valuable, not as an
indication of the size of population, but rather of its distribution.
Admitting that perhaps the majority of the sites along the Bay shore
from San Leandro to Crockett were abandoned before 1770, it is still
apparent that the areas designated on the map as Alamedan and Huchiun
contained a heavy concentration of inhabited spots. This conclusion is
in conformity with the waterfront habitat and the probable large food
reserves. Along the strait and the southern shore of Suisun Bay the
known habitation mounds are less numerous, but there are enough to
indicate a reasonably high population density. This area on the map has
been ascribed to Karquin.

Through the generally hilly interior of Alameda and Contra Costa
counties there are but two areas of sizable extent in which preconquest
village sites occur with relative frequency. One is the Lafayette-Walnut
Creek-Danville region and the other the Livermore Valley, west to
Pleasanton and Dublin. These provinces were inhabited in the late
eighteenth century by the Saklan and Seunen respectively, and are so
designated on the map. Indeed, the correspondence between archaeological
sites and the occurrence of rancherias in early colonial times is
remarkably close. The conclusion is permissible that the pattern of
occupancy found by the Spaniards had been established long previously
and was fully stabilized at the time of their arrival. This condition
in turn argues a mature balance between the natural environment and the
indigenous population.



  BAE-B    Bureau of Ethnology, Bulletin
  UC       University of California Publications
    -AR    Anthropological Records
    -PAAE  American Archaeology and Ethnology

Abella, Fr. Ramón

MS    Diario de un registro de los Rios Grandes. Oct. 31, 1811, San
      Francisco. Bancroft Trans., Santa Barbara Arch., IV: 101-134.
      Bancroft Library, Berkeley, California

Arroyo de la Cuesta, Fr. Felipe

MS    Lecciones de Indios. Bancroft Library, No. C-C 63a.

      This document is one of several handwritten manuscripts left by
      Arroyo de la Cuesta.

Beeler, M. S.

1955. Saclan. Internat. Jour. Amer. Ling., 21: 201-209.

Bolton, Herbert E.

1926. Historical Memoirs of New California, by Fray Francisco Palóu,
      O.F.M. 4 vols. Univ. Calif. Press, Berkeley, California.

1927. Fray Juan Crespi, Missionary Explorer on the Pacific Coast,
      1769-1774. Univ. Calif. Press, Berkeley, California.

      Crespi's Diary of the Fages Expedition is translated by Bolton
      on pp. 277-303.

1930. Anza's California Expeditions. 5 vols, Univ. Calif. Press,
      Berkeley, California.

      Vol. III contains Bolton's translation of the Anza diary of
      the second Anza Expedition (pp. 1-200) and Font's short diary
      (pp. 201-307).

Cañizares, José de

1775. Letter to Ayala, September 7, 1775, San Francisco. Archivo
      General de Indias, Seville, Spain. Papeles de Estado 20

      Microfilm in the Bancroft Library, Berkeley. Roll II, Reel
      3M715, pp. 24-32 inclusive.

MS    Map, 1775: Piano del Puerto de San Francisco, registrado por el
      Paquebote de S.M. San Carlos al mando el Theniente de Fragata
      de la Real Armada Don Juan Manuel de Ayala en este año de 1775.

      Photostatic copy in Bancroft Library, Berkeley, of a manuscript
      map on file at the Library of Congress. Said by Henry J. Wagner
      (1937, II: 342) to have been drawn by Cañizares.

MS    Map, 1776: Plano del Puerto de San Francisco. Photostatic copy
      in Bancroft Library, Berkeley. Original in Ministry of War,
      Madrid: 9a-2a-2-27. See Wagner, 1937, II: 345.

MS    Map, 1781: Plan del Gran Puerto de San Francisco descubierto y
      demarcado por el alferez graduado de Fragata de la Real Armada,
      D^{n} José de Cañizares, primer Piloto del Departamento de
      San Blas.... y gravido por Manuel Villavicencio Añ. de 1781.
      Photostatic copy in Bancroft Library, Berkeley. See Wagner,
      1937, II: 347.

Cook, S. F.

1955. The Aboriginal Population of the San Joaquin Valley,
      California. UC-AR 16: 31-80.

1956. The Aboriginal Population of the North Coast of California.
      UC-AR 16: 81-130.

Cutter, Donald C.

MS    Spanish Exploration of California's Central Valley. Ph. D.
      diss. (1950), University of California. Two copies on file
      in the University Library, Berkeley. 275 pp.

Danti, Fr. Antonio

MS    Diario de un Reconocimiento de la Alameda--1795. (Bancroft's
      title.) Bancroft Trans., Santa Barbara Arch., Exped. y Cam.,
      IV: 192-199. Bancroft Library, Berkeley.

      A letter, dated December 2, 1795, addressed to P. Fr. Fermin
      Francisco Lasuen.

Kroeber, A. L.

1925. Handbook of the Indians of California. BAE-B 78.

Mahr, A. C.

1932. The Visit of the "Rurik" to San Francisco in 1816. Stanford
      Univ. Press, Stanford, Calif.

Peralta, Luís

MS    Diary, June 30, 1805, San Francisco. Bancroft Trans., Prov.
      St. Pap., XIX: 33-34. Bancroft Library, Berkeley.

Pinart, Alphonse

n.d.  Transcripts of Mission records. C-C66, Bancroft Library,

      Transcripts of the personal names and rancheria names of
      neophytes in certain missions made by, or at the order of,
      Pinart from the originals in the respective missions.
      The date of the transcription was approximately 1880.

      The transcripts are in poor handwriting, frequently difficult
      to decipher. There is no assurance that all pertinent material
      was copied. Because of the arrangement of the names the tribal
      affiliation of the converts is not always clear.

Priestley, Herbert I.

1937. A Historical, Political and Natural Description of California,
      by Pedro Fages, Soldier of Spain. Univ. Calif. Press, Berkeley,

Sal, Hermenegildo

MS    Informe qu el Ten^{te} Don Hermeneg^{do} Sal hace al Sor
      coron^{l}y Gov^{or} D^{n} Diego de Borica de los parajes q^{e}
      se han reconocido en la Alameda conforme a lo prevenido por
      S. S. en Sup^{or} orden de 9 del presente mes, acompañado
      del R. P. F. Antonio Danti, ministro de la mision de San
      Francisco. November 30, 1795. Bancroft Trans., Santa Barbara
      Arch., Inf. y Corr., 2: 24-35. Bancroft Library, Berkeley.

Schenck, W. E.

1926. Historic Aboriginal Groups of the California Delta Region.
      UC-PAAE 23:123-146.

Viader, Fr. José

MS    Diario, ó noticia del viage que acabó de hacer. August 28,
      1810, San Juan Bautista. Bancroft Trans., Santa Barbara Arch.,
      IV: 74-84. Bancroft Library, Berkeley.

Wagner, Henry R.

1937. The Cartography of the Northwest Coast of America to the Year
      1800. 2 vols. Univ. Calif. Press, Berkeley, Calif.

Left-Hand Box

  A  Punta de Reyes                   Point Reyes
  B  Punta de Almejas                 Clam Point
  C  Punta de Santiago                Santiago Point
  D  Punta del Angel de la Guarda     Point of the Guardian Angel
  E  Punta de S. Josef ó Cantil       Point St. Joseph or White
       Blanco                           Cliff
  F  Punta de S^{n} Carlos            Point St. Charles
  G  Ensenada del Carmelita           Carmelite Cove
  H  Ensenada del S^{to} Evangelio    Cove of the Holy Gospel
  Y(I) Bahia de N^{a}. S^{a} la       Bay of Our Lady the Mariner
  J  Punta de Langosta                Grasshopper Point
  L  Bahia de N^{a} S^{a} de          Bay of Our Lady of Guadalupe,
       Guadalupe ó Redonda              or Round Bay
  M  Estero de N^{a}. S^{a} de la     Cove of Our Lady of Mercy
  N  Puerto de la Asumpta             Port of the Assumption
  O  Rio de San Roque                 St. Roch River (Sacramento
  P  Agua dulce entre tulares         Fresh water in the tule swamps,
                                        San Joaquin River
  Q  Rancherias de Indios Amigos      Villages of friendly Indians
  R  Punta de los Quatro              Point of the four Evangelists
  S  Bosques de Palo Colorado,        Forests of redwood, pine, and
       Pino, y roble                    oak
  T  Punta de San Antonio             Point St. Anthony
  V  Remate del Estero del Sueste     End of the southeast bay
  X  Punta de Concha                  Snail shell point
  Y  Ensenada de los Llorones         Cove of those who weep or cove
                                        of the spurs. The former is
                                        Castilian, the latter and
  Z  Primera ensenada del estero      First cove of the Bay
  1  Ensenada de Consolacion          Consolation Cove
  2  Real Presidio                    Royal Garrison
  3  Nueva Mision del Puerto          New Mission of the port, i.e.,
                                        San Francisco Mission
  4  Laguna de los Dolores            Lake of the Sorrows
  5  Laguna del Presidio              Lake of the Garrison
  6  Laguna de la Merced              Lake of Grace
  7  Isla de Alcatraces               Alcatraz Island
  8  Isla de los Angeles              Angel Island

Right-Hand Box

  1  Isla de Carmen                   Island of Carmen
  2  Pico y Cerro de Reyes            Peak and hills of the Kings
                                        [The hills of Marin Co. and
                                        Mt. Tamalpais are included.]
  3  Sierra que mira a la Voca del    Range which overlooks the mouth
       P.                               of the port [i.e., the East
                                        Bay hills]
  4  Cerro de S^{n} Juan              Hill of St. John
                                        [The hills of northeastern
                                        Contra Costa Co.]
  5  Islas Bajas de Tulares           Low islands covered with tules
  6  Estero angosta                   Narrow bay
  7  Agua dulce en baja mar           Fresh water at low tide
  8  Agua dulce en Pleamar            Fresh water at high tide
  9  Remate de lo Reconocido este     End of the reconnaissance this
       año de 1776 por impedirlo        year, 1776, because the tule
       los Tulares y venir el           swamps stopped it and
       agua dulce por entre ellos.      because fresh water was
                                        coming through them
  10 Tulares                          Tule swamps
  11 Laguna de S^{n} Juan             Lake of St. John of Nepomuk
  12 Lugar en que deven fenecar las   Place where ships should be
       embarcaciones para tener a       stopped in order to secure
       mano el agua, lastre, y leña.    water, ballast, and firewood
  13 Fondeaderos p^{a} toda           Anchorage for all ships
  14 Farallones de San Francisco      The Farallon Islands
  15 Entrada del Puerto               Entrance to the port
  16 Lugar en donde desde unos        Place where, from some trees,
       Arvoles se vio no haver         it could be seen that there
       mas vaca que la del Rio         was no river mouth except
       de S^{n} Roque.                 that of the St. Roch River

[Illustration: Map 2. Map of the Port of San Francisco, drawn by José
Cañizares, 1776. The original is in the Ministry of War, Madrid, Spain.]

Left-Hand Box

  Z Punta del Angel de la Guarda      Point of the Guardian Angel
  a Punta de año nuebo                New Year's Point
  b Rio de la Salud                   River of Health
  c Punta de Almejas                  Clam Point
  d Farallones de San Francisco       The Farallon Islands
  e Quantioso canal a la entrada      Sizable channel at the entrance
      del Puerto ^{de} 38 brazaz        of the Port 38 brazes 1 deep?
  f Ysla de Santa Maria de los        Angel Island
  g Ysla de Alcatrazes                Alcatraz Island

Right-Hand Box

  A Punta Recalada                    Recognition Point
  B Punta de Reyes                    Point Reyes
  C Punta de Santiago                 Santiago Point
  D Punta de San Carlos               Point St. Charles
  E Ensenada a del Carmelita          Carmelite Cove
  F Ensenada del S^{to} Evangelio     Cove of the Holy Gospel
  G Bahia de N^{a} S^{a} del          Bay of Our Lady of the Rosary,
      Rosario, la Marinera              the Mariner
  H Gran Bahia Redonda o de           Great Round Bay or Bay of Our
      N^{a} S^{a} de Guadalupe          Lady of Guadalupe
  Y Estero                            Cove
  J Puerto de la Asumpta              Port of the Assumption
  K Punta de los Evangelistas         Point of the Evangelists
  L Yslas Razas entre agua dulce      Flat islands in fresh water
  M Agua dulze entre tulares          Fresh water in the tule swamps
  N Gran Rio sin acabar de            Great river the end of which
      descubrir su fin                  was not discovered
  O Rancherias de Yndios Amigos       Villages of friendly Indians,
      comerciantes en tabaco y          traders in tobacco and fish
  P Punta de San Antonio              Point St. Anthony
  Q Bosques de Buenas Maderas         Forests of wood lumber
  R Remate del Estero y fin           End of the bay and end of the
      reconocide de agua salada         salt water as determined by
      d^{e} Cañizares.                  Cañizares
  S Punta de Concha                   Snail shell Point
  T Entrada del Estero                Entrance to the bay
  V Nueva mision de S. Fran^{co}      New Mission of San Francisco
      fudada en 4 de Oct^{ur}. 1776.    founded on 4 October 1776
  X R^{l} Presidio establecido en     Royal Garrison established 17
      17 de Sep^{re} de 1776.           September 1776
  Z Punta de San José ó Cantil        Point St. Joseph or White
      Blanco                            Cliff

[Illustration: Map 3. Revised map of Cañizares, apparently redrawn by
Manuel Villavicencio in 1781, presumably under the supervision of
Cañizares himself.]


1. Passages in underlines are surrounded by _underscores_.

2. A few punctuation errors have been corrected.

3. The carat character (^) followed by letters inside the curly brackets
indicate superscripted characters.

4. The words with ligature and diacritical marks have been standardized.

5. The following misprints have been corrected:
    "adressed" changed to "addressed" (page 136)
    "minimun" changed to "minimum" (page 142)
    "desended" changed to "descended" (page 143)
    "behing" changed to "behind" (page 144)
    "converion" changed to "conversion" (page 148)
    "enviroment" changed to "environment" (page 149)

6. Other than these, no other changes have been made in the original

*** End of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "The Aboriginal Population of Alameda and Contra Costa Counties, California" ***

Doctrine Publishing Corporation provides digitized public domain materials.
Public domain books belong to the public and we are merely their custodians.
This effort is time consuming and expensive, so in order to keep providing
this resource, we have taken steps to prevent abuse by commercial parties,
including placing technical restrictions on automated querying.

We also ask that you:

+ Make non-commercial use of the files We designed Doctrine Publishing
Corporation's ISYS search for use by individuals, and we request that you
use these files for personal, non-commercial purposes.

+ Refrain from automated querying Do not send automated queries of any sort
to Doctrine Publishing's system: If you are conducting research on machine
translation, optical character recognition or other areas where access to a
large amount of text is helpful, please contact us. We encourage the use of
public domain materials for these purposes and may be able to help.

+ Keep it legal -  Whatever your use, remember that you are responsible for
ensuring that what you are doing is legal. Do not assume that just because
we believe a book is in the public domain for users in the United States,
that the work is also in the public domain for users in other countries.
Whether a book is still in copyright varies from country to country, and we
can't offer guidance on whether any specific use of any specific book is
allowed. Please do not assume that a book's appearance in Doctrine Publishing
ISYS search  means it can be used in any manner anywhere in the world.
Copyright infringement liability can be quite severe.

About ISYS® Search Software
Established in 1988, ISYS Search Software is a global supplier of enterprise
search solutions for business and government.  The company's award-winning
software suite offers a broad range of search, navigation and discovery
solutions for desktop search, intranet search, SharePoint search and embedded
search applications.  ISYS has been deployed by thousands of organizations
operating in a variety of industries, including government, legal, law
enforcement, financial services, healthcare and recruitment.