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Notes on Historical Juaneno Villages and Geographical Features


The founding of Mission San Juan Capistrano in 1776 was responsible for deriving the term Juaneno for the Takic speakers associated with that mission (Bean and Shipek 1978: 550). Although White's (1963:91) study indicated that the Juaneno and Luiseno Indians were ethnologically and linguistically one ethnic nationality, the Juaneno portion of their territory is traditionally described separately. Juaneno territory, which extended from the Pacific Ocean inland to encompass the eastern slopes of the Santa Ana Mountains in southern California, contained a wide range of ecological zones and resource features. Boscana (Harrington 1934:62) noted for the Juaneno that ". . . these Indians never lived fixed in a single place, but moved from time to time from one place to another depending on the seeds . . ." He was referring to his observation that ". . . there were always some unoccupied rancherias". Nevertheless, delineated hunting, collecting, and fishing areas in various ecological zones belonged to sedentary and autonomous village groups (Bean and Shipek 1978:551).

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