Following this sequence, the names and locations of the villages and camps are as follows:
ON THE NORTH (OR GRIZZLY-BEAR) SIDE—OO-HOÓ-MA-TAT KO-TÓ-WAHK
1. Hoo-ké-hahtch'-ke.—Situated at the extreme upper end of the valley between Merced River and Tenaya Creek, and just below the mouth of Tenaya Cañon. A summer village inhabited up to about twenty years ago.
2. Hol'-low', or Lah'-koó-hah.—Indian cave, immediately under Washington Column at the mouth of Tenaya Cañon; a low, broad, and deep recess under a huge rock. Said to have been occupied as a winter shelter, and also when attacked by the Mono Lake Piutes. The overhanging rock is black from the smoke of ages, and far back in the cave large quantities of acorn-shells have been found. The word Lah-koó-hah, often applied to Indian Cave, is a call meaning "come out."
3. Wis'-kah-lah.—A large summer camp on a northward bend of Merced River, a little west of Royal Arches. Western part of site now occupied by a small settlement known as Kinneyville.
4. Yó-watch-ke (sometimes nicknamed Mah-chá-to, meaning "edge" or "border," because of its position on the border of the valley).—Large village at mouth of Indian Cañon; still occupied. The slightly sloping gravel and sand "fan" on which this village is situated is the warmest place in Yosemite Valley, having a southwesterly exposure and receiving a maximum of midday and afternoon sunshine. Several species of shrubs belonging to the Upper Sonoran zone—the one next below the Transition zone, in which Yosemite Valley lies—thrive on this hot sandy plain among and outside of the scattered ponderosa pines and black oaks. These are Ceanothus divaricatus, Rhus trilobata, Lupinus ornatus, Eriodictyon glutinosum, Pentstemon[sic] breviflorus.
5. Ah-wah'-ne.—Village on Black Oak Flat, extending from site of Galen Clark’s grave easterly nearly to Yó-watch-ke. As in the case of most of the villages, the village name was applied also to a definite tract of land belonging to it. This area, in the case of Ah-wah'-ne, was a piece of level ground of considerable size, beginning on the west along a north and south line passing through Sentinel Hotel and reaching easterly nearly to the mouth of Indian Cañon. The cemetery was on this tract, as was also the barn formerly belonging to J. B. Cooke. This being the largest tract of open level ground in the valley, the name Ah-wah'-ne came to be applied by outside Indians to the whole valley.
6. Koom-i-ne, or Kom-i-ne.—The largest and most important village in the valley, situated on the north side of the delta of Yosemite Creek just below Yosemite Fall (Ah-wah'-ning chú-luk-ah-hu, slurred to Chó-luk), and extending southwesterly at the base of the talus-slope under the towering cliffs for about three-quarters of a mile, reaching almost or quite to Three Brothers (Haw'-hawk). Old Chief Tenaya had a large earth-covered ceremonial-house (hang-e) by a big oak tree in this village. The Government soldiers stationed in the valley took possession of the site and established their camp there in 1907, forcing the Indians out. (Occupied by Indians during all my earlier visits.)
7. Wah-hó-gah.—Small village about half a mile west-southwest of Koom-i-ne, on or near edge of meadow.
8. Soo-sem'-moo-lah.—Village at northwest end of old Folsom bridge (now the ford), less than half a mile south of Rocky Point.
9. Hah-ki-ah.—Large village only a short distance (less than one eighth mile) below Soo-sem'-moo-lah, and likewise south of Three Brothers (Haw'-hawk). A roundhouse, or hang-e, was located here, not far from old Folsom bridge. The three villages, Wah-hó-gah, Soo-Sem'-oo-lah, and Hah-ki-ah, were inhabited up to about twenty years ago.
10. Kotm'-pom-pá-sah, or Pom'-pom-pá-sah.—Small village only a little below Hah-ki-ah, and also south of Three Brothers, or under the talus slope of the cañon immediately west of Three Brothers.
11. Aw'-o-koi-e.—Small village below and slightly east of the tall pine growing in a notch on the broad south face of El Capitan. The native Indian name of the gigantic rock cliff which we call El Capitan is To-tó-kon oo-lah, from To-tó-kon, the Sandhill Crane, a chief of the First People.
12. He-lé-jah (the mountain lion).—Small village under El Capitan a little west of Aw'-o-koi-e.
13. Ha-eng'-ah.—Small village under El Capitan, and only a little west of He-lé-jah.
14. Yu-á-chah.—Still another village under El Capitan, and only a short distance west of Ha-eng'-ah.
15. Hep-hep'-oo-ma.—Village where present Big Oak Flat road forks to leave the main road, south of the steep cañon which forms the west wall of El Capitan, and near west end of the big El Capitan Meadows (To-tó-kon oó-lah' i-e-hu). The five villages, Aw'-o-koi-e, He-lé-jah, Ha-eng'-ah, Yu-á-chah, and Hep-hep'-oo-ma, were summer villages occupied from April to late October or early November.
16. Ti-e-té-mah.—Village only a short distance below Hep-hep'-oo-ma, and close to El Capitan bridge.
17. Ho-kó-nah.—Small village a little below Ti-e-té-mah, and near site of old (shack) house.
18. Wé-tum-taw.—Village by a small meadow a short distance. below Ho-kó-nah, and east of Black Spring.
19. Poot-poo-toon, or Put-put-toon.—Village in rocky place on north side of present road at Black Spring, from which it takes its name.
20. Ah-wah'-mah.—Lowermost (westernmost) village in Yosemite Valley, a short distance below Black Spring and above Til-til'-ken-ny, where the mail-carrier’s cabin is located.
VILLAGES ON THE SOUTH OR COYOTE SIDE—AH-HÁ-LEET KO-TÓ-WAHK
21. Sap-pah'-sam-mah.—Lowermost (most westerly) village or camp on south side of the valley, about half a mile east of Pohono Meadows.
22. Lem-mé-hitch'-ke.—Small village or camp on east side of Pohono (or Bridal Veil) Creek, just below a very large rock.
23. Hop'-tó-ne.—Small village or camp at base of westernmost of the lofty cliffs known as Cathedral Rocks, and close to south end of El Capitan bridge across Merced River.
24. Wé-sum-meh'.—Small village or camp at base of Cathedral Spires near the river, with a small meadow below; not far above Hop'-tó-ne.
25. Kis'-se, or Kis'-se-uh.—Large village near the river, nearly opposite Hah-ki-ah. Kis'-se was the westernmost of the large villages on the south side. From it easterly they occurred at frequent intervals.
26. Chá-chá-kal-lah.—Large village just below old Folsom bridge (ford). Formerly a sweat-house (chap-poó) here.
27. Ham'-moo-ah.—Village on Ford road, nearly opposite Three Brothers (Wah-hah'-kah).
28. Loi-ah.—Large village in open pine forest below Sentinel Rock (on ground now occupied by Camp Ahwahnee) and reaching down toward river. Occupied during my earlier visits-to the valley.
29. Hoó-koo-mé-ko-tah.—Village a little above Galen Clark’s house; looked out easterly over big meadow. Occupied during my earlier visits. (Hoo-koo-me is the great horned owl.)
30. Haw-kaw-koó-e-tah (Ho-kok'-kwe-lah, Haw-kaw'-koi*).—Large and important village on Merced River, where Sentinel Hotel and cottages now stand. Home of the band called Yo-ham'-i-te (or Yo-hem'-i-te), for whom the valley was named. The old woman Callipena was a Yo-ham'-i-te.
[*Named from How-kaw'-met-te, or How-wah-met-te, a rocky place.]
31. Ho-low.—Village on or near Merced River where the schoolhouse used to stand.
32. Wah'-tahk'-itch-ke.—Village on edge of meadow on south bend of Merced River near forks of road west of Le Conte Memorial. The wild pea (wah-tah'-kah) grows here.
33. Too-yú-yú-yu.—Large village on south bend of Merced River due. north of Le Conte Memorial and close to the bridge between Le Conte Memorial (or Camp Curry) and Kinneyville.
34. Too-lah'-kah'-twh.—Village or camp on open ground now occupied by orchard on east side of meadow north of Camp Curry.
35. Um'-ma-taw.—Large village on present wagon-road between Camp Curry and Happy Isles; was some distance from the river; water was fetched from a spring.
36. Ap'-poo-meh.—Camp on Merced River below Vernal Fall.
37. Kah-win'-na-bah'.—Large summer camp in Little Yosemite, whose name it bears.
Indian Village and Camp Sites in Yosemite Valley*
[Editor’s note: This information is historical. Select this link for current Yosemite campgrounds.]
By C. Hart Merriam [Clinton Hart Merriam, 1855 - 1942]
[Sierra Club Bulletin 10(2) (January 1917), pp. 202-209.]