Yontoket massacre

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The Yontocket massacre or Burnt Ranch massacre was an 1853 massacre of Tolowa people at the village of Yontocket (Tolowa: yan’-daa-k’vt [1]), northwestern California.

One Tolowa man said that more than 450 people were killed in the attack. The massacre was conducted by a "company" organized by American citizens of Crescent City.[2]

At the time of the attack, the Tolowa had been engaged in a prayer ceremony. After the initial massacre, a Tolowa man reported that those responsible for the attack started a bonfire, in which they burned sacred ceremonial clothing and feathers, as well as babies, some of them still living.[2]

Little or no loss of life was reported on the American side.[2]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Siletz Talking Dictionary". Retrieved 2012-06-04. 
  2. ^ a b c Norton, Jack (1979). Genocide in Northwestern California: When Our Worlds Cried. San Francisco: Indian Historian Press. pp. 54–56. ISBN 0-913436-26-2.