Saturday, September 13, the Paskenta Band of Nomlaki Indians and
the Mendocino National Forest will co-sponsor a traditional Native
American gathering in Paskenta to commemorate the 140th anniversary
of the Nome Cult Trail, the forced relocation of Indians from Chico
across what is now the Mendocino National Forest to Round Valley.
on Sept. 13, the Round Valley Indian Tribes will sponsor a gathering
in Covelo to mark the completion of the eighth annual reenactment
of the 100-mile trek.
of Native Americans who took part in the original relocation and
other supporters will walk all the way from Chico to Covelo starting
September 7, descending down into Round Valley on September 13.
The theme for this year's walk and gathering is "Honor Their
Memory ... A Path Not Forgotten."
events are free and open to the public.
Paskenta gathering will begin at 11 a.m. on that day at the Paskenta
Community Park, with a program of historical and cultural presentations,
followed by musical performances and a lunch. During the afternoon
there will be performances by Native American dancers, demonstrations
of basketweaving, working with clay and soapbrush, acorn soup preparation,
and artifacts discovered during excavations of sites on the Mendocino
American arts and crafts will be on display. This year's event is
dedicated to Carlino "Bud" Swearinger, who died in July.
He was instrumental in organizing the partnerships that resulted
in the memorial walk and gatherings in 1996, 1998 and 2000, and
always participated actively.
the Covelo event, there will be presentations by the walkers and
a meal, starting at about 3 p.m. at the Tribal Building, 77826 Covelo
Road. From Sept. 7-13, walkers will retrace the original trail,
camping out each night along the way. The National Forest staff
requests that people traveling the forest roads along the trail
route be careful of the walkers to ensure their safety.
removal of Indians from Chico to the Nome Cult Reservation in 1863
is one of the many forced relocations following the establishment
of reservations in Northern California in the 1850s. Several different
tribes were moved to the Nome Cult Reservation after it was established
in Round Valley in 1856.
September 1863, 461 Indians were marched under guard from Chico
to the Nome Cult Reservation, nearly 100 miles across the Sacramento
Valley and rugged North Coast ranges. Only 277 Indians completed
the journey. Some were killed, a few escaped, and others were left
behind, too sick to go on.
the path itself has disappeared, this route is now called the Nome
Cult Trail. The most grueling part of the trail passed through what
is now the Mendocino National Forest. In 1996, the Forest Service
marked places where the Indians and their military escorts camped
by placing signs along the route. The Forest Service has also prepared
a free interpretive brochure and trail map which is available from
Mendocino National Forest offices for persons who may want to travel
further information on the Sept. 13 Paskenta event, contact Phebe
Brown at the Mendocino National Forest, (530) 934-3316, TTY (530)
934-7724; or Kim Freeman-Robles at (530) 864-3405 or (530) 867-1768.
further information on the Covelo event and the re-enactment walk,
contact Leslie Azbill at 983-8008 or Rema Lincoln at 983-6188.