Achumawi Tribe

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The Achumawi was a group of Indians located in the northeast corner of California. It was estimated in 1770 that there were 3,000 Achumawi but the estimate included the Atsugewi who happen to be great friends with Achumawi but are a different tribe entirely. Later on, in the 1910 Census, there is only about 1,000 Achumawi. Achumawi means River people. They were also called Pit River People because of their hunting habits of digging pits to trap deer. The Achumawi spoke the Palaihnihan Language which is a subdivision of the Hokan Language Family which the Atsugewi also spoke.

The Achumawi were located in the northeast corner of California just north of the Atsugewi. They lived along Pit River and rivers and streams that branched off of it. There were parts full of mountains these parts were full of trees like fir and pine, but some were covered in hardening lava from eruptions from Mt. Shasta and Lassen where nothing grew. They also had swampy areas. Villages and tribelets, which are small clusters of villages ruled by one headman, were spread all over the Achumawi territory.

The Achumawi mainly built one type of house where they would dig hole usually by 15-foot and would then proceed to frame it with wood and laid grass, tule reeds, bark, and earth over the top of
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To make these traps they would use fibers from dogbane, milkweed or tule reeds. They could also make mats for sleeping or bundle them to make a raft to get across the river with. The Achumawi would dig out logs and make cannons from them. The Achumawi used bows for hunting. The bows were made of wood and sinew. Arrow tip were coated in rattlesnake posion to make then more useful. Baskets were made from twining. Young willow shoot and planet fiber were used to make these and were sometimes decorated with ferns, roots and redbud bark. Baskets could be used to carry or store food, a cradle for a baby or a hat for a

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