Ohlone Costanoan Esselen Nation (OCEN) is historically known
as the Monterey Band of Monterey County as the results of the
Congressional Homeless Indian Acts of 1906, 1908 and later years. Both
Special Indian Agent Charles E. Kelsey (1905-1913), and Reno
Superintendent, James Jenkins (Reno Agency Annual Report 1923)
identified our tribe as the Monterey Band of Monterey County. Charles
Kelsey specifically identified on the 1905-1906 Special Indian Census,
Thomas Miranda and family living on the Sur Rancheria. Before that in
1883 Special Indian Agent Helen Hunt Jackson identified our tribe as the
"San Carlos Indians, living near the old San Carlos Mission at Monterey"
and she wrote to the Commissioner of Indian Affairs notifying him about
placing our tribe along with the Santa Ynez Chumash directly under her
jurisdiction [see Heizer, ed 1979 Federal Concern About Conditions of
California Indians 1853 to 1913: Eight Documents Ballena Press
Publications No. 13 page 88.]
Under the 1928 California Indian Jurisdictional Act our Tribal Elders and
their families enrolled with the BIA and we identified ourselves as either
"Tribe: Mission San Carlos" or as Esselen." Our families again enrolled with
the BIA during the second (1948-1955) and third (1968-1970) enrollment
periods. Our direct ancestors served as linguistic consultants to Alexander
Taylor (1856), Alfred Kroeber (1902-1910), C. Hart Merriam (1902-1922),
and John P. Harrington, Field Ethnologist for the Smithsonian Museum's
Bureau of American Ethnology (1930-1939), as well as other linguists.
To date OCEN has completed all the standards and requirements under the
current administrative process 25 CFR Part 83 for reaffirmation as a
Federally Recognized Tribe. Our Tribe was never legally "Terminated" by
any act of Congress, but instead suffered neglect by those BIA agents
charged to purchase home sites under the Congressional Homeless
California Indian Appropriation Acts. Agency Superintendents such as
Lafayette A. Dorrington who was responsible for the Sacramento Agency
from 1918 to 1930, was derelict in his duties and argued as his personal
belief that land should not be purchased for California Indians. It was due
to his "gross negligence" and crass indifference" that our tribal band as well
as one hundred and thirty four other California tribes were removed from
the list of Recognized tribes by 1927.
We have also demonstrated that our Tribe was never legally "Terminated"
by any act of Congress, Executive action or Federal Court Order. In fact,
Recognition is for perpetuity, until the Tribe notifies Congress of its desire to
"Terminate" itself and abandon its tribal status as a tribe.
Presently Ohlone Costanoan Esselen Nation represents over 600 enrolled
tribal members of both Esselen and Carmeleno descent from at least 19
villages from a contiguous region surrounding Monterey Bay. We often
hear why does Esselen Nation claim so many village homelands? The
answer is, "The descendants of these villages comprise the historic
Monterey Band of Monterey County and they chose to enroll in
OCEN/Esselen Nation as their legal tribal government representative."
Photograph by Louise J. Miranda Ramirez
|OCEN TRIBAL MEMBERS
PLEASE GO TO CONTACT US
PAGE - PLEASE BE ADVISED
THAT ENROLLMENT IS
CLOSED NO APPLICATIONS
WILL BE PROCESSED.
Ohlone/Costanoan-Esselen Indians of the Greater Monterey Bay Area
Photo by: Louise J. Miranda Ramirez
Pacific Grove, CA - June 2012