Territories where Native Americans settled around Joshua Tree
The Serrano, Cahuilla, Chemehuevi, and Mojave tribes are intimately connected to the land in and around Joshua Tree National Park. In spite of the visually barren, seemingly inhospitable desert, these tribal groups recognized an abundance of available resources and made this area their transitional or long-term home long before the arrival of Europeans in 1769. Indigenous people gravitated to land where food, water, and shelter, could be obtained. The desert landscape proved to be conducive for setting up small villages that offered necessary nourishment, protection, and trade. The rocks, ridges and canyons provided shelter; the oasis and other natural springs supplied important water sources; vegetation, such as mesquite beans and yucca root, offered dependable food sources for animals and people. These tribes were in tune with their land and made use of that which nature provided.