Skip to main content

Fremont Local History Resources: Ohlone or Coastanoan

Use this guide to find resources for the history of Fremont from prehistory to the present day.

Ohlone

For thousands of years until the arrival of Spanish settlers in the late 1700s, Ohlone people (also referred to as Costanoans) lived in and around the area known as Fremont. Living in small villages, they took advantage of the abundant natural resources, including acorns from oak trees and shellfish in the bay.

The Spanish established Mission San Jose in 1797, one of twenty-one missions in what is now California. The missionaries required the Indians to move to the mission, and this disruption as well as new diseases the Spanish brought destroyed the Indian way of life even before the influx of gold seekers in the mid-1800s. Pockets of the Ohlone community did survive and have led to the current day petition for Federal Recognition Status as well as language reclamation projects.

On this page, you will find recommended sources of information about the local Ohlone people.

Note on Archaeology

To protect and preserve an archaelogical sites' integrity, state and national laws are in place to combat misuse.

For more information on the topic of laws and ethics for archaeology please visit the Society for American Archaeology website, at the public page for information on laws, or at the ethics page for a professional ethical standards.

For more information online about archaeology visit the SAA website for links to Archaeology Magazine, and other resources.

Museums

•Replica of Ohlone home at Tule Ponds

1999 Walnut Ave, next to the Fremont BART Station Fremont, CA 94536 (510) 790-6284

The Ohlone Indians, who settled this area before the Spaniards, used this marshy area to hunt and harvest the tules to make homes, baskets, boats, and toys. The lagoon was probably larger and connected to the marshy area that we now refer to as Stivers Lagoon.

•Ohlone Archaeological Site and Exhibit at Coyote Hills Regional Park

8000 Patterson Ranch Road, Paseo Padre exit off Highway 84 Fremont, CA 94555-3502 (510) 544-3220

Programs at the main shellmound site allow visitors to see a reconstructed tule house, shade shelter, pit house, and sweat lodge.

Online Resources

• Official Website of the Muwekma Ohlone Indian Tribe This site offers overviews and links to resources on:

·History of the Muwekma Ohlone in surrounding regions ranging from San Francisco Bay, Alcatraz & Angel Island to San Francisco county as well as Santa Clara Valley.

·Chochenyo Language Revitalization Project

·Federal Recognition Process provides a description of the tribe's petition status up through 2004 as well as recent status updates.

·Present-day enrolled Muwekma lineages. A brief description of present day lineages may be useful for anyone wishing to identify or trace ancestral lines by family names.

 •The Museum of Local History The section of the website titled "A brief history of Washington township, Alameda county, California" contains a brief overview of the Ohlone people.

Resources

Searching the Catalog - For many searches, searching by subject will generate more relevant results than keywords. Start your search by trying these subject headings first:

Ohlone Indians

Ohlone Indians - History

Indians of North America - California - Alameda County

Indians of North America - California - San Francisco Bay Area

DVD

Celebrating Fremont's 50th: The Founding of Mission San Jose & the End of Tribal Life in the San Francisco East Bay

 DVD Speech y Andrew A. Galvan, Ohlone Indian Descendant and Curator, Old Mission Dolores, San Francisco (2006).

 Call Number: DVD 979.465 Celebrating

Books

Multiple copies of certain books may be available for checking out at various local branches. Some books also have additional copies for in library use only at the Maurice Marks Center in the Fremont Main Library. Check location and availability by clicking on the book titles below.

Online Resources

Official Website of the Muwekma Ohlone Indian Tribe

This site offers overviews and links to resources on:

·History of the Muwekma Ohlone in surrounding regions ranging from San Francisco Bay, Alcatraz & Angel Island to San Francisco county as well as Santa Clara Valley.

·Chochenyo Language Revitalization Project

·Federal Recognition Process provides a description of the tribe's petition status up through 2004 as well as recent status updates.

·Present-day enrolled Muwekma lineages. A brief description of present day lineages may be useful for anyone wishing to identify or trace ancestral lines by family names.

 •The Museum of Local History

The section of the website titled "A brief history of Washington township, Alameda county, California" contains a brief overview of the Ohlone people.

 

For more information try these serch terms in your favorite web browser:

Ohlone Indians history Fremont

Ohlone Indians history Alameda County

Muwekma Alameda County

Costanoan Alameda County

Chochenyo language History

Student and Teacher Online Resources

•Teachers’ Resources (Library card or eCard required for access) Alameda County Library's guide to some of the best online educational resources. Find general education sites, directories, curriculum guides, new teacher helps, lesson planning, technology, professional development and more.

Ohlone Education Project: Native American Cultural Center (NACC) Listed here are a variety of educational resources to help students and teachers who wish to focus on the First Nations cultures of the San Francisco Bay Area. Although the much of the site does not appear to be actively maintained, many links are still worth exploring. Of particular interest are various maps:

Ohlone Tribal Regions Map

Ohlone Languages Map

Social Studies Fact Cards On-Line (Library card or eCard required for access) Accessed through the library's Kid's Place Homework Help website, Social Studies Fact Cards link to quick information sources on subjects studied in California schools related to California, Missions, United States and World history for grades 4 and up. Browse through a list of Indian groups under the the topic heading Indians. Search Tip: The Ohlone are listed as Costanoan.

Grolier Multimedia Encyclopedia (Library card or eCard required for access) Accessed through the library's Kid's Place Homework Help website, Grolier Multimedia includes the Grolier Encyclopedia (Grade 6+), America the Beautiful (Grade 4+) and New Book of Knowledge (Grade 3+). America the Beautiful has comprehensive information on any of the U.S. states and territories. The New Book of Knowledge is an encyclopedia and current events information. Search Tip: Type "Ohlone" into the search box.

To search further using Google or your favorite Internet search engine, we suggest using: Ohlone Indians lesson plans