“Never marry a man from Mexico,” Margaret’s grandmother advised her. Grandmother pressed her early on in life to marry only within their tribe, and to keep the language and traditions of the family alive. Margaret is a natural mischief-maker, and she remains unmoved by her grandmother’s tales of ghosts or devils who would come and take her away. Typically ignoring grandma’s advice, Margaret fell in love with a Mexican…
There are many cultures in the world with defined guidelines that determine whether one is an adult or still a child. From that determination, the law and society will treat one as an adult with adult responsibilities. Native American tribes signify one’s adulthood in a variety of different ways depending on specific tribal traditions. Ernestine grew up on a small reservation where her family made a home. On the peaceful reservation, Ernestine was allowed to wander and play. She and her family were involved with their tribes traditions that had been handed down for generations…
Sometimes Francisco Cardenas felt tense growing up, but he always found peace at a Mother Lode retreat—the tribal roundhouse in Volcano. He remembers people dancing and talking, but also leaving him space to stop and think. “It was a calm, soothing place,” he recalls. He could leave school and work behind. Outside this sanctuary, however, being an adolescent was a challenge. He craved independence, but he also wanted recognition from his family and community…
Robert P. Corral did not live on an Indian reservation; he grew up speaking both English and Spanish. The federal government would ration one buffalo a year for meat requiring Robert to hunt for his family’s food; he would use his bow and arrow to kill wildcat, bear, deer and beaver. Robert also traded animal hides for additional staples…
Margaret Sanchez has spoken two languages for as long as she can remember, Spanish and English. This allowed her to appreciate her dual cultural heritage from a young age. She was born in French Camp in 1952 and raised in Stockton. She was the third oldest of eight children. Her father, a mechanic, had Northern Valley Yokut, Ohlone, and Miwak ancestors while her mother was of Mexican decent. Her grandparents on both sides of the family, were strong influences on her childhood; the family spoke both English and Spanish at home and served cuisine from both cultures...
Robert Corral began his life in French Camp in 1979. He is of mixed ancestry—Caucasian, Mexican and Native American, but feels he identifies most with his Native American heritage. Robert feels his interests, beliefs and personality are similar to those of other Native Americans. He is very proud to consider himself a part of the Northern Valley Yokut/Ohlone/Me-Wok tribe and the California Indian culture.
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