North Fork Rancheria of Mono Indians

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The Western Mono People: Yesterday and Today.

Mun a hoo e boso

Mun a hoo e num

Mun a hoo to e hun noh pa teh’

This translates roughly into “Hello to my friends. Hello to the Mono people. Hello to the people from all over” in the native language of our people, whom we refer to as “Nim.”

Our tribal ancestors have been known to Euro-Americans by a variety of names throughout recorded history, including “Mono,” “Mona,” or “Monache.” In the 1910s, ethnographer E. W. Gifford re-labeled a group of Native people he studied who were then living along and north of the San Joaquin River as the “Northfork Mono.” By the early twentieth century, non-Native acquisition of the plains and foothills that comprise the San Joaquin Valley, including the flat plain and foothills, had resulted in Tribal citizens concentrating around the town of North Fork in Madera County. This is how our Tribe became known as the North Fork Band or the North Fork Mono. However, the Tribe is just one of several in the Valley composed of people of Northfork Mono ancestry and ancestors of the Tribe include members of Yokut tribal and linguistic groups. Futher, the town of North Fork is only one place among many of significance to our Tribe, as our use and occupancy of lands in the San Joaquin Valley is extensive and well documented.

Today, the North Fork Mono Rancheria is among the larger tribes in California with more than 1,900 citizens. Most tribal citizens continue to live and work in the foothills and floor of the Valley in Madera and Fresno Counties. Additional information about the North Fork Mono people can be found in the History & Culture section of this web site.

Photograph: Mono Home (The North American Indian; v.15) Northwestern University Library, Edward S. Curtis's 'The North American Indian': the Photographic Images, 2001. http://memory.loc.gov/ammem/award98/ienhtml/curthome.html

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