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The Southern Paiutes, Band Names, Meanings, Territories

It is difficult to draw a boundary between Southern Paiute and Ute homelands since both groups speak the same language, have a very similar culture and religion, and call themselves by the same name. A controversy often develops on this subject which will be avoided as information given here is from Paiute and Ute informants.

The Kanosh and Koosharem bands were considered Utes in the last century. Some families of the Koosharem band were moved to the Uintah basin as was the entire group that was gathered on the reservation at Spanish Fork, Utah. The remaining Kanosh and Koosharem bands affiliated more with the Cedar City, Kaibab, and Shivwits bands and consequently were called Paiutes by the whites. According to a Shivwits informant the Utes, or Yoo 'taw as they were called by the Shivwits, included the Indians at Cedar City and Gunlock.

In the old days the Paiutes and Utes only referred to themselves as Nengwoonts or Noonts signifying People and in more recent times Indians. They also distinguished each other by band names. The Utes and Paiutes had no clan system nor priest class as found among many tribes.

To help understand the difference between Paiute and Ute let us study the derivation of both of these names. William Palmer says that Paiute, "Pahute" as he spells it, means "Water Ute." Not only did he err in his translation, but because he was hard of hearing, he even pronounced it wrong. He pronounced the "a" in pah water as the "a" in hat. The correct pronunciation of the "a" is as in saw. This was once brought to his attention by  Mr. Martineau  and that it should be pronounced as explained above. He replied "Yeah, that's right, pah," pronouncing it exactly as he did before, as in hat.

A quick perusal of his English interpretation of his Paiute words shows that he didn't put much effort towards accuracy in his meager Paiute dictionary in the back of his book "Why the North Star Stands Still." When it comes to pronunciation, many of his Paiute words are in a much worse shape.

He claims that the word Pah means "water" so the Paiutes are "Water Utes." This seems a little out of character since the bands he was best acquainted with were desert Paiute during much of the year when the mountains were snow covered. The Old People that Martineau questioned have never accepted this interpretation and have always said that they really didn't know what it meant. When asking the Utes there were a couple of plausible explanations, that if true, would account for the Paiute silence on this word.


Following are six quotations from Utes all of which agree with the two possible linguistic explanations of the word Paiyuh, one of which is to callback and the other poor:


"Paiute means to call after from the word Paiyoo because the Paiutes did not like to fight and always had to be called to help." (James Murray, Northern Ute.)


"Paiute means poor, having nothing, or with worn-out shoes. Paiutes were named this after they left the Blanding, Utah, area because of too much fighting there. They migrated to central Utah and when they arrived their shoes and clothes were all worn out and so they received the name Paiyuhch." (Harriet Taveapont, White River Ute.)



"The Paiutes never quite did things right or complete. They were always a little lazy, therefore the Utes called them Paiutes." (Dick McKuen, Northern Ute.)



"Paiute (Paiyoots) means simple people who often have to be told how to do things." (Vincent Sireech, White River Ute.)



"The word Paiute comes from the Ute and Paiute word Paiyuh, to return or go back, because the Paiutes always did everything backwards from the way the Utes told them. They were mischievous so the Utes told them to leave." (Glen Jenks, Northern Ute.)


"The Paiutes are the 'poorest' of the Utes. Paiyutch means poor." (Robert Chapoose, Northern Ute.)


It seems plausible that the Anglos could have picked up the word Paiute from the Utes and applied it to all the Southern Paiutes which then spread even to the Northern Paiutes. This Northern group doesn't even speak the same language, however they do dress similarly, look similar, live in a similar type of environment, and consequently fit the Ute category of being poor and simple. This would explain why the Southern Paiutes wouldn't want to admit what Paiute means even though it's one of their words.                               

A similar comparison of a tribe not understanding what their tribal name means, or not wanting to admit the meaning, may be made with the linguistically related Comanche People. Ask a Comanche what Comanche means and most of them won’t be able to tell you. Comanche is a Ute and Paiute word meaning strange or different that was applied to them by the Utes. Somewhere along the line, either the whites or Spaniards, picked up this word and it soon became the household name for the Comanche. It was not their name for themselves. 


In 1776, Father Escalante called the Paiutes in southern Utah "Payuche" with the distinct Southern Ute ending of "eh" as opposed to the Paiute dialect of "ts." Also, in the following quotation the Paiutes are mentioned as being in New Mexico in the 1700s: "Four nations in New Mexico: Utes, Chaguaguas, Payuches, and Moaches." (Thomas 1940, p. 131.) This would lend evidence that the word Paiute originated there with the Utes living in northern New Mexico and spread westward with civilization.          


The linguistically related Hopis shed a little more light on this subject. The Hopis call the Paiutes Paiyoot'see (singular) and Paiyoot'seem (plural). To the Hopis these words refer to anyone "Not initiated into any of the Hopi societies," a meaning similar to the Ute description calling the Paiutes "poor" and "simple." The Paiutes were certainly very simple in religious structure, compared to the Hopis, thus representing a good example of being uninitiated from the viewpoint of the Hopi. It was uncertain at the time of this writing if the Hopi example is a pure Hopi word or a Ute word that they used for the Paiutes and then extended it to refer to the uninitiated. If it is a Hopi word then it is similar enough in meaning to cause no conflict since both tribes are linguistically related although their languages are not mutually intelligible.        


The Navajos call the Paiutes Bayoh-tseen which is probably a takeoff from the Ute or Hopi word. The linguistically related Shoshonis from Idaho call the Paiutes "Paiyooch." The above collaborations from surrounding tribes plus the early New Mexico quote indicate the word Paiute is a long-standing Indian word for certain bands of Southern Paiutes.                          

It is common for different tribes and bands to use derogatory names for each other. The Wee'mee Noonts band at Towaoc, Colorado is a good example. This word means Humping Indians, a name given to them by the Capote Band at Ignacio.                               

The Hualapai’s have a word that might also describe the Paiutes. This word is pawyoot which refers to "a man sneaking up to spy on someone" such as a scout would do. They also have a dance by this name where the men dance with staffs. The Hualapai’s normally call the Paiutes Suveech after the Shivwits band which was basically the main Paiute band, they had contact with other than the Chemehuevi’s. Their word Pawyoot being applied to the name Paiute is only speculation on the part of some Hualapai’s.                           


The term Ute has several possible derivations. One might be an Anglo corruption

of their own word for themselves "Noonts" signifying People and could easily be mis-pronounced by whites to "Utes." The Hopis call the Utes Utaw (singular) and Utawm (plural); another possible explanation. The Navajos call the Utes "Notah" which is similar. The Shoshonis call the Utes Yoo'tawtch (Clifford Duncan, Northern Ute.)

What does the word "Paiute" Mean?

Southern Paiute-Ute Band Territories

The band territory lines drawn on the following map are drawn arbitrarily as in most cases the exact boundary lines are not known. The list of bands is far from complete and come only from information given to Martineau a long time ago.

William Palmer gives a good list of band names, some of which wasn't recorded here, that extends from Kanosh to Parowan. There is no disagreement on his list as there were no conflicting comments at that time. The weakness of his band names is his mispronunciation and failure to explain what the Paiute names mean. Some were difficult to recognize and interpret, so to avoid confusing the issue there will be no attempt. However, when discussing certain bands, there will be comments here to clarify some of the bands he named.

The materials given in the list here all comes from the mouths of the Paiute informants (list of informant names can be found in "About Nuwu" page)  unless noted otherwise. The main informant on bands in central, northern, and eastern Utah came from Jimmy Timmican of the Koosharem band. Southern information came from Archie Rogers, Shivwits, Jim Chili, Chemehuevi, and a couple of others.

In the following list it will become apparent that some bands had several names and that band names changed when the band moved to a different area. Band names originated from such things as the type of country they lived in, what they ate, a peculiar physical characteristic, derision, and other things that will become evident when the following band list is studied. Some band names were often just nicknames for a small group who actually belonged to a larger group.

The list will not be including all that is written by others about the boundaries of these bands since that information is available in other publications. The intent is to keep to statements of Indians and thus preserve their information in this compilation as their record rather than one compiled from books not in their words.

Recorded are a few other names and information of interest, or for the sake of clarification. Corrections of known mistakes, particularly in the mispronunciation of Indian names, made by Anglos in recording band territories will be noted and corrected here. Included is the Ute Bands from Colorado since Martineau had recorded Information from them that deserves to be preserved, and that often has a bearing on clearing up misconceptions.

Band territories were not exclusive of other bands. At certain times of the year several bands would camp together, share the natural animal or plant harvest, and participate in sports, gambling, dancing, foot races, and horse races. Indian horse racing tracks can still be seen at Panguitch Lake and west of Modena, Utah. Places where gatherings occurred, were recorded in Panguitch, Fish, and Rush lakes, Utah, the Kaibab Mountains for hunting deer, and Indian Peak, and Frisco Mountain for harvesting pine nuts.

These encampments lasted until within this century and at Fish and Panguitch Lakes they had Fish Chiefs who gave permission to fish and supervised the visitors. At Kaibab and Shivwits, they also had hunting Chiefs. There were other areas also but the above were all that were recorded. These visits to other band territories were on an exchange basis where the granting band would also be allowed to harvest within the territorial limits of the bands they allowed within their lands. 


From this information it becomes evident that the Paiutes weren't strictly desert people, always digging for roots, as portrayed by early pioneers and present-day readers who seem to think the early Paiutes never had enough sense to avail themselves of the beautiful and rich mountains. The Paiutes did take advantage of the nearby mountains and spent the summers there where food was abundant. In this respect most Paiute bands were really Mountain Indians as noted by early observers about the Utes. Even the Shivwits, Kaibab, and Nevada Bands had their pine-covered mountains.   

The suffixes -eev'w and eng at the end of a band name are plural and represent a group of people. Eng is sometimes slurred to een. An example of singular and plural concerning a band's name is as follows: Suhuh' Vawn Tuhnts is one person from the Squawbush Water Band and Suhuh' Vawn Tuhtseev is several from that band.    




3 SUHUH'VAWDUTSENG Squawbush Water People


5 UNGKAW KAWNUH'GUTSENG Red Foot of the Hills people



8 YUHNGUH' KAWDUHTS 'ENG Porcupine Sitting People

9 TUH'DUVAW DUHTS 'ENG Barren Valley

10 AWVO'UTSENG Semi-circular Cliffs People

11 O-AW 'TUHUTS 'ENG Yellow Mouth of Canyon People

12 KAWNAW' DUHTS 'ENG Willow Mouth of Canyon People

13 KAI'VAHV EETSENG (Kaibab) Mountain Lying Down People

14 YOOVEEN'KAWDUHTS 'ENG Ponderosa Sitting People

15 SEE'VEETS ENG (Shivwits) East People

16 YOOVEEN'TUH (Uintah) Ponderosa People

17 KOOMU' UMPAW'HAW (Cumumba) Talks Different

18 OU'VAW' TUHTSEEV Salt Water People

19 PAHGOO'U NOONTS Lake Shore People


21 TOOWEE' NAWAIP'UHTSEEN Earth Burnt People

22 TOAOYV'UHTSENG Cattail people

23 PAHAWVAWN'TUHTSEEVW (Pahvant) By the Water People


25 PAHDOOS 'UTS White Water People

26 TOO' NOOKWEENTSENG (Tonoquint) Black Flowing People


28 PADUN'UGUTS (Pahrangat) Sticking Feet in the Water People

29 MOU' PAW (Moapa) Mosquito Water





Paiute Band Names Meanings

The following band names represent both Ute and Paiute bands. Most of the information in this chapter was given to Martineau by Paiute informants. The names of Ute bands originating in Colorado are listed in a later section in this chapter. The number in front of each band name corresponds to the numbers on the foregoing map of Band Territories to give an approximate location of each homeland.




1. UNGKAW’ PAHGUH’U VUTSENG Red Fish People. This is the band that lived at Fish Lake, Utah, during the summer. According to Timmican, other bands would come here and camp during the summer and share in the abundant fish and wildlife. In the late 1800s they had a Fish Chief here who took charge of this large summer encampment. His name was Pawguh'u Neahv meaning Fish Chief. Timmican says his band would make a yearly migration from Fish Lake, that would include the Henry Mountains and the Escalante area, as they followed the seasons for harvesting certain food products. This route was through the territories of other bands.

2. UNTAW’DUHEUTSENG Untaw'duhee is the name of the Henry Mountains but Martineau could never obtain a translation of this word.

3. SUHUH’ VAW DUHUTS, SUHUH’VAWDUTSENG (Sheberitch) Squawbush Water People. This band's name has been Anglicized to Sheberitch. This band was described by Florence Kanosh as the largest in the State of Utah covering the area from Wellington through Moab, to Monticello, Utah, including Canyonlands and the area of the confluence of the Green and Colorado rivers. Writers state that most of this band died out from a smallpox epidemic in about 1873. Florence Kanosh relates an interesting story about the demise of this band due to the quarreling of two women. See the story "Medicine Power Destroys an Indian Band" on War and Historical Stories on this website.

A Paiute informant from Willow Springs, Arizona, says some of the Paiutes there are remnants of this band. See band number 32 for more information.

4. PAH GOOSAWD'UHMPUHTSENG (Koosharem) Water Clover People. This is the name from which the word Koosharem is derived. This is also the name of the band once living in the Koosharem valley. According to Jimmy Timmican "This entire band is now dead." Most were killed by the white men in the Grass Valley massacre of 1865. Later, when the Wayne County Band from Fish Lake was moved to the Koosharem valley, and given a reservation there, they took the Reservation name of the valley and became known as The Koosharem Band. None of them came from the original Koosharem Band living there during the coming of the whites.

5. UNGKAW' KAWNUH'GUTSENG Red Foot of the Hills People. Sapir says that a band of this name formally lived in Long Valley near Orderville, Utah. (Sapir 1930, P. 549.) This band name doesn't fit the description of Long Valley as well as it does the Richfield area where most of the west mountains consist of red sandstone. Long Valley lacks much of this red. Jimmy Timmican was more familiar with this area than Sapir's informant Tony Tillahash (see Oaw' Tuhuts'eng in this chapter). The aged Minnie Kanosh gives the following information about the Richfield Band:       

"The Indians in Sevier Valley near Richfield used to live along the foot of the hills from Monroe to Annabella and on the big hill between. They also lived in the foothills just west of Richfield."

6. TOSAW' KAWDUHD NENGWOONTS'ENG White Sitting People. Tosaw Kawduhd is the name of the snow-capped peaks of the Tushar Mountains. Tushar is Anglicized from of the Paiute word Tosaw Kawduhd. Timmican said this band lived around Marysvale.

7. TOOGOO'VUHTSENG Sand People. This is the band that lived around the Circleville, Utah, area including the surrounding mountains. Jimmy Timmican said the word means Sand Indians, however this isn't the common name for sand as used by other bands nor do younger Paiutes any longer recognize this word. This is true of many words that died out with the older Paiutes who spoke poor English. Timmican was of this older group. The Paiutes had several words for sand depending on its coarseness and other mixtures. The word toogoo, therefore, most likely represents a peculiar type of sand in the Circleville valley. This area isn't known for the type of sand most people are familiar with. Years later his daughter Vera, not knowing the actual name, said the word sounded like it meant "swampy" to her, referring to the wetlands along the Sevier River.

This band was massacred, without just cause, by the settlers of Circleville, Utah (Gottfredson, 1969, p. 144). For the Paiute version of this massacre see "Slaughter of Indians at Circleville" on War and Historical Stories in this website.

8. YUHNGUH' KAWDUHTS'ENG Porcupine Sitting People. This band lived near the Widtsoe area in Garfield County, Utah. Their band name comes from a nearby mountain called Porcupine Sitting. No known survivors of this band remain.

9. TUH’DUVAW DUHTSENG Barren Valley People. This band lived around the Escalante, Utah, area. Tom Amnisky better known as "Tom Mix" was from the Escalante area. Two of his sisters never left the area and were buried there in a town cemetery. The sisters and Tom were the last of this band.

10. AWVO’UTSENG Semi-circular Cliffs People. Awvo'uv is the name for Bryce Canyon, Utah, and refers to the semicircular type cliffs found there. This band inhabited this area including Tropic and Cannonville.

11. 0-AW’ TUHUTS'ENG Yellow Mouth of Canyon People. This band lived around the Mount Carmel area near a canyon with a yellow mouth. Perhaps it was from this name that Tony Tillahash confused this band's name with the Red Foot of Hills People near the Richfield area.

12. KANAW’DUHTSENG Willow Mouth of Canyon People. Kanaw'tuh is the correct pronunciation for Willow Canyon Mouth. The town of Kanab takes its name from this locality and band name. This is the band that lived in Kanab Creek and the Kanab area. This area is attributed to the Kaibab band by Isabel Kelly, but according to Timmican, a different but related group lived at Kanab.

13. KAI'VAHV EETSENG (Kaibab) Mountain Lying Down People. This band lived on the Kaibab Mountains, in House Rock Valley, and on the Paria Plateau.

14. YOOVEEN’KAWDUHTS ENG (Uint-karets) Ponderosa Sitting People. This band lived around Mount Trumbull and on the Colorado River on the Arizona Strip. Morris Jake of Kaibab includes Kanab Creek in their area. This band took their name from the Indian name of Mount Trumbull, Yooveen Kawduh, Ponderosa Sitting. The word sitting is used to signify mountain. Palmer calls them Uint-karets.

15. SEE'VEETS ENG (Sivitsingwɨ) Shivwits (Sɨvínts). East Peoplesivi means east. The Desert Nuwu of Nevada and Chemehuevi called the Shivwits band "People to the East". Shivwits belong to the Desert Nuwu family group, their homelands included the northeastern part of the Mojave Desert and along a large portion of the Colorado River before they were re-located into Utah. They owned territorial songs of the mountain sheep and deer song group. Sa-ap, (Old Snow), correctly pronounced Sawup’ meaning Mush, was the owner of the deer and mountain sheep in his area and helped people be more successful by telling them where to go hunt them. Mountain sheep song owners had the power to heal just as Sa-ap did. These territorial songs went to the boundaries of the Virgin (Nevada side) and Muddy River into what is now Lake Meade.

The Shivwits fought in the Mojave war with the Nevada and Chemehuevi Paiute.

Chief Kweetoos referred to themselves as Sipicimi, or the “People Who Live to the East.” When they went to get Baptized on March 20, 1875 in St. George Utah.

Archie Rogers, a member of the Shivwits Band, gives the following explanation of this band name: The Shivwits comes from the territories  called: Seeveen' Tooweep which is a name for a soft whitish area of earth someplace down in Shivwits country on the Arizona Strip. 

The word Shivwits is correctly pronounced See'veets. This band ranged on the Shivwits Plateau and in the Grand Canyon with the Colorado River being a loose boundary between them and the Hualapai’s and Havasupai's. The Shivwits often crossed the river to get red ochre from Diamond Creek and visited the Hualapai’s. The Hualapai’s themselves state that the Shivwits came to visit them, often staying for some time. They also fled across river for safety when they had troubles in Utah with the whites (Walapai Papers." Published by the United States Senate 1936.)

The Shivwits were called Haawp'ukunt To Have Horns by the Moapa band. (Shivwits, Archie Rogers.)

16. YOOVEEN’TUHTS (Uintah) Ponderosa Pine People. This was a band of Utes living in the Uintah Mountains before the coming of the white men. When the U.S. Government moved many of the Indians from the Spanish Fork Reservation and other places to the Uintah Basin they then became known by the same name of the band once inhabiting this area.

17. KOOMU’ UMPAW’HAW Talks Different. This band lived north of Salt Lake City, Utah (Clifford Duncan.) This name appears in books as "Cumumba." In Paiute it would be pronounced Koomu' umpaw'haw talks different. They were probably Shoshones with a Ute mixture to account for this name.

18. OU’VAW' TUHTSEEV Salt Water People. This was a band living along the shores of the Great Salt Lake. No specific locations were given by the informant.

19. PAHGOO'U NOONTS Lake Shore People. This name comes from the words pah water and koong-wawv' or koo-waw' edge. Pah Koo'wu Nuhwuhnt'see is the pronunciation at Kanosh. This was the band that lived at Utah Lake. Some writers refer to this band as Tumpanawach an Anglicized name that probably comes from the name of the Timpanogas River correctly pronounced Tuhmpaw Nookweent Rock Water Running. Rock Water People could well have been another name for this band.

20. SAWMPEE’TUTSENG, SAWMPEETS'ENG (San Pitch) Tule People. This band lived in the valley and mountains between Mayfield and Nephi, Utah. The Indian words have been changed by the whites to San Pitch and San Pete. This valley had plenty of water and an abundance of tules (Scirpus) therefore the name Tule People. The Paiutes tell a story of how this band was annihilated through poison by the early settlers. See "Poisoning of Indians at Manti" on War and Historical Stories in this website. The whites say this band died of smallpox.

21. TOOWEE ' NAWAIP 'UHTSEEN Earth Burnt People. This band lived near Scipio, Utah.

22. TOAOYV’UHTSENG Cattail People. This band is named after the abundance of cattails growing in the lakes near the Delta, Utah area. Palmer has them living further south. Jimmy Timmican only mentioned that this band lived around the Delta area.

23. PAH AWVAHN 'TUHTSEEVW (Pahvant) By the Water People. Pah' awvahnt means by the water. Kanosh pronounces it pah uvahntuhsee'wu. This name has been changed by the whites to Pahvant. The following Indian quotes pertain to this


"The Sevier River, west of Kanosh, used to be the boundary between the Utes in the area and the Goshutes to the west. The Pahvant Band would go out to the desert area and gather duck eggs during the season then return and camp at Corn Creek. There used to be many Goshutes out west of Delta but the soldiers killed many of them off. When the government wanted them all to come in to sign a treaty the Goshutes at lbapah wouldn't come in out of fear of being killed." Kanosh, Earl & Verna Pikyavit and Koosharem, Douglas Timmican

"The Pahvant Indians have all died out. The Levi and the Pikyavit families were not originally from there. The original Indians near Delta weren't Paiutes, they were Goshutes. In the Gosiute language they were called Paw 'ugunt. They lived near the Delta area by a lake. The Gosiutes also lived near Baker Nevada, Garrison and all over that way. The Goshutes used to plant gardens on a piece of land near Baker that was given to them; maybe they sold it." Shivwits, Archie Rogers


24. PAH DOOGOO'NUNTSENG (Pah-ra goons) Water Up People. This name has been Anglicized to Paragoonah. This band is also referred to as the "Parowan Band." An Indian Peak informant added this statement, "Paiyoo’koots is another name for the general locality and also this band; “they had great power" Indian Peaks, Johnny Jake.

Isaac Hunkup, who died in Cedar City in the 1950s, claims that he saw the first white man arrive in the Parowan Valley on a white horse. Hunkup also claims to have sold Parowan Valley to a white man for half a pig Cedar City, Arthur Richards.

Most of the members of this band were massacred by soldiers from Camp Floyd, Utah, while the Paiutes were encamped with some Goshutes near the Utah-Nevada border. E.N. Wilson tells of the Soldiers from Camp Douglas and their planned sneak attack on the Goshutes and Parowan Band. He witnessed the massacre and gives this account:

"I could see little children not over five or six years old with sticks fighting like wildcats.... This was the worst battle and the last one I ever saw. It lasted about two hours, and during that short period of time, every Indian, squaw, and papoose, and every dog was killed." (Wilson 1919, p. 165.)


A different Anglo version of this massacre seeks to take the heat off the citizens of Utah, as a planned attack as stated by Wilson, by stating that the soldiers:


"..were members of the California Volunteers forces commanded by Gen. Patrick Edward Conner stationed at Camp Douglas. Perhaps it was the nasty water they had to drink, or the invariable bilious diet of bacon and sour-dough bread which made them evil-dispositioned. At any rate they wanted to kill somebody." (Sharp & Bennion 1936.)

This is the same massacre referred to by Juicy, the lone Goshute child survivor of this battle. See "Massacre at Spring Valley" on War and Historical Stories  in this website for the Indian versions of this battle which was an unprovoked attack on peaceful Indians. If the Parowan Band was on the war path, it is doubtful they would have taken their women and children with them thus giving credence to the truthfulness of the Indian versions. It was often the policy of the army to kill innocent Indians to intimidate the warlike ones. The massacre of most of the members of this band would account for Isaac Hunkup's ability to sell Parowan Valley for "half a pig" as mentioned above. He was one of the few that stayed behind.           

This band ranged from Parowan Valley to the Panguitch Lake area. They were friendly to the Goshutes and one Southern Paiute informant, who is one fourth Goshute and has a grandfather from Panguitch, states that the name of Panguitch is Goshute rather than Paiute:           

The word Panguitch is a Goshute word Pahngweets meaning fish. Some Goshutes used to come down here and catch fish and dry them to take back with them. Indian Peaks, Johnny Jake.

The Paiute word for fish (pahguh'uts) is similar to the word Panguitch, but the Goshute word Pahngweets is even closer. Once an Indian word has been Anglicized it sometimes becomes difficult to determine its true derivation. Since it is on record that the Parowan Band was massacred while visiting the Goshutes there is no reason to doubt that the Goshutes would also visit the Paiutes in the Panguitch Lake area.

The Congressional Record of the Fifty-Ninth Congress states that twelve thousand five hundred and twenty-five dollars was appropriated for the support and education of seventy-five pupils at the Panguitch Indian School in 1906. Today it would take two or three bands to total 75 children. At this time the Panguitch Lake area was still a favored summer encampment for many of the surrounding Paiute Bands which made up this number, even though the Parowan Band had been annihilated. These large encampments died out sometime in the 1930s due to alcohol and the killing of one Indian by another at Panguitch Lake.

Information was not obtained on a distinct Panguitch Band as listed by others. There might have been one, as Kelly indicates, but the Panguitch area is very cold in the winter suggesting that it was best utilized during the summer months. Many bands gathered each summer at Panguitch Lake and there was much intermarriage between all the bands. Jimmy Timmican extended the Parowan Band to Panguitch Lake. Palmer states that "In time they became so intermixed that the Pah-ra-goons virtually absorbed the Pa-gu-its and they became as one." There are only one or two families living at Cedar City today who are descended from the Parowan band and from the Panguitch Lake area.

Father Escalante in his 1776 journey through Cedar Valley mentions the "Huascaris" living there. Martineau had made attempted to find out what this means: The valley around Rush Lake, just north of Cedar City, was called Wuhsuh'goont or Wuhsuh'goom. Informants weren't sure of the meaning of this word. One suggested wawseev' signifying the fine stickers found on certain types of cacti. Escalante's name of Huascaris would then mean Fine Stickers Sitting referring to a hill of this name. Another suggestion is wesee'vee, an unidentified plant.

Rush Lake was a favorite gathering place for several bands, at certain times of the year, just like Panguitch and Fish lakes. Informants state that the Indians didn't live at the present site of Cedar City until the white men settled there:

"There never was a Cedar City, Utah Band of Indians, but after Cedar was settled some moved there on the northwest outskirts of town. Later one Paiute traded this land off for a wagon and team plus other items, without the consent or knowledge of the other Paiutes. From there they moved up near Squaw Cave just south of Cedar and from there to the east side of Cedar where the baseball parks are now. From there the Mormons moved them down to the present Indian Village at the northeast corner of Cedar City. During one of these moves the Mormons told all the Indians to burn all their possessions and shacks before moving to their new locations." (Ibid)

25. PAHDOOS'UTS (Pa-roos-its) Water Going Under People or White Water People. This was the band that lived along the Virgin River in Washington County, Utah, referred to by Escalante as Pahrusis, and by Palmer as Pa-roos-its. The name is pronounced "Pahdoos'uts" by both the Kaibab and Shivwits Bands. The word pahdoos' can have two meanings: One is water going under from the words pah and udook (Kaibab, Morris Jake 4) and the other is white water from the words pah and tosaw'kawd. The word white is often slurred to "doos" within a sentence structure. White Water would then refer to the white foaming water as caused by the many small rapids as this river traverses Zion Canyon.

The Pahdoos'uts were farmers to a certain extent and were also known as Uhu' Nuhwunts'eng Farm People. This name was also applied to their neighbors the Too’nookweent band living along the Santa Clara River. An early pioneer estimated that one thousand Indians lived along the Virgin River when the white men first arrived. Today there are no survivors or known descendants of this band. They were among the ill-fated early bands to have first contact with the white man causing their extinction through disease and other causes. The only Paiute Bands surviving today, like the Kaibab, Wayne County, Shivwits, and Indian Peak bands, were the last to live side by side with the white men. This makes a statement that most whites would rather not hear especially when many claim that they seek to save the Indian.

26. TOO’ NOOKWEENTSENG (Tonoquint)Black Running People. This band of Paiutes lived along the Santa Clara River from Santa Clara to some distance above Magotsu. They took their name after the Santa Clara River which is called Too Nookweent Black Running and spelled Tonoquint by the whites. They were also known by one of the same names as the Virgin River Band, Uhu' Nuhwunts'eng, because they were also farming Indians. A Shivwits informant gives the following statement about this band and its last survivor:    










"Peter Harrison living at the Shivwits Reservation was the last survivor of this band. They talked like the Indians at Kaibab and not like the Shivwits. Some of this band used to live and have orchards above the Shem dam and at Magotsu." Shivwits, Smith Bushhead.


Like the Pahdoosuts Band, this band has now become extinct. Jacob Hamblin estimated that in his time "800 Indians were living in Santa Clara Valley" (Palmer 1951-54). Another writer states that "When the Mormons in 1855 helped the Indians dam the Santa Clara near its juncture with the Virgin, five hundred Indians gathered to watch the work." (Wilkerson, Cragun, and Barker 1963, p. 55.)

27. TUHNDUH'ESU Jim Chili, a Chemehuevi who has one parent from Furnace Creek in Death Valley, and the other from the Banning California area gave the above name of a Southern Paiute band living near Panaca, Nevada. He didn't give a translation of this


28. PADUN'UGUTS (Pahranagat) Sticking Feet in the Water People. This name comes from the word pandun'uh meaning to stick your feet in the water. The name has been Anglicized to Pahranagat. There are several springs and lakes in the area that would account for this name.

This band lived in the Pahranagat Valley near Alamo and Ash Springs. Johnny Jake, a son of Minnie Jake from Eagle Valley, Nevada, states that the Pahranagat Band extended to Eagle Valley and that his mother was of this band. There is a good chance that Eagle Valley had a strong mixture of Shoshoni as indicated by Minnie Jake. She spoke both languages and said her grandfather Pete was Shoshoni. She also mentioned that "Many of the old timers in the Indian Peak and Eagle Valley area died of smallpox.”

An Anglo informant presently living in the Pahranagat Valley claims this band was massacred by the whites with Bill China being the only survivor. See the story "Paiutes Massacred in Pahranagat Valley" on War and Historical Stories in this website. A Shivwits informant also mentions the lack of descendants from this band and a move of some of them to Moapa although he didn't state whether this was before or after the Massacre:


"Some were moved to the Moapa Reservation and there are only two Indians left from this band, one in Las Vegas and one at Moapa." (Ibid)


29. MOOU’PUHTS (Moapa) Mosquito Water. This band takes its name from the words Moou' Pah Mosquito Water. The Paiutes pronounce this name Moou'puhts. The Shivwits called the Moapa Band Pawuhn'kao Smooth Forehead. This name comes from the word pawung'kuhee to be smooth. Archie Rogers states that "The Moapa People used to be called Pawuhn'kao by the Shivwits because they had big flat bare foreheads."

30. LAS VEGAS (TUH'DU NINGWU)Desert People. The Las Vegas Band called themselves Tuh'du Ningwu and also Tuhdu Nu Desert People. They ranged from Cottonwood Island on the Colorado to Mount Charleston. Johnny Domingo of Las Vegas said, "The Indians on Cottonwood Island killed their agent and were moved to Las Vegas so they could be more closely watched." Powell calls the Cottonwood Island Band "Mo-vwi'-ats" (Powell and Ingalls, 1874 p. 10-11). The word Mo-vwi'ats probably comes from the Paiute word moogwee'uts "a brown lizard with a long tail." Lizards are identified with the desert by most Indians so the name would be appropriate.

Martineau never did get a Paiute name for the band living at Pahrump, Nevada. The name Pahnimp could come from the Paiute word pawhump' Common Reed, Phragmites, or from the words pah and tuhmp rock and water. Many members of this band had moved to Las Vegas.

31. NAVAJO MOUNTAIN. Arizona People. Back when these place names were recorded the Paiutes called these Paiutes, Awdu'so Nengwoonts'eng. Awdu'so is the Ute way of saying Arizona so these Paiutes are called "Arizona Indians." One informant includes some of the Paiutes at Bluff, Utah, in this category.

Molly Deer a Ute Mountain Ute mentions a band of Paiutes called "Tuhyuh'wepuhtseng who lived somewhere in Arizona in the Navajo Mountain area, all of whom died." Koosharem Paiutes pronounce this name "Toyo'wepuhts'eng." Today all the Southern Paiutes from Koosharem, Kanosh, Cedar City, Shivwits, and Kaibab refer to all Arizona Paiutes in and around the Navajo reservation as Nengwoo' Pawhawng'weets meaning Indian Navajos, or Paiute Navajos. This is because so many of them have intermarried with the Navajos and are trilingual speaking Paiute, Navajo, and English.

32. WILLOW SPRINGS (SHUHUH' VAW DUHUTS). Squawbush Water People. Mark Owl, a Paiute from the Navajo Mountain area, gives information that suggests that some of the Paiutes at Navajo Mountain and Willow Springs, Arizona, are remnants of the Sheberitch Band. He gives the name of Shuhuh' Vaw Duhuts for his people there and says it means Squawbush Water People. A member of the Kanosh Band gives the following information that would seem to substantiate the above statement since the Henry Mountains are adjacent to the homelands of the Squawbush Water People: "My father told me that some of the Paiutes near Willow Springs, Arizona once came from somewhere near the Henry Mountains." Kanosh, Earl & Verna Pikyavit (15.)

33. BLANDING (WEUM'PEE NENGWUHT)Wiggling Lizard People. A Ute informant states that "The Blanding Utes are a break-off from the Moowhuch Band from Ignacio.” Some Utes call them Weum'pee Nengwuht Wiggling Lizard People. There is a mixture of Paiutes among them from Posey's Band and some Arizona Paiutes. Posey and his band along with some Utes fought the last official Indian war in the United States in 1915.         

Annabelle Eagle from Ignacio, Colorado, makes the following statement concerning the Blanding or White Mesa Band:


The White Mesa Band was originally Southern Utes (especially the White family). They once lived near the Cimarron River with Southern Utes as part of the Moache Band (Pronounced Moowhuch'yu by her). However, they had to flee to avoid retaliations for something one of the family did to a tribal member. They moved because their chief advised he could not be responsible for what anyone did in retaliation.

Many words in the White Mesa and Southern Ute language have changed since this split. One is the phrase maawtudu going up a hill. Some Paiutes from the south later joined the White Mesa Southern Ute group. They have mixed with the Paiutes there and now are all called Utes. Old man White from there once asked me about many Old People he once knew before they left Ignacio.


Harriet Taveapont, a White River Ute from Whiterocks, Utah, gives the following statement:


Paguh' (Fish) was a short man with long hair. He was a fighting Indian from Blanding who made his last stand at Crescent Junction, Utah, by the red rock east of the highway and windmill. He died a natural death. Paiutes left Blanding to get away from him. They went to the Teas Valley, Utah, area.


34. INDIAN PEAK. Martineau got a name for this band. Mable Yellowjacket who was born at Minersville, Utah, and who was a daughter of Coal Creek John says that "Some of the Indians living in Cedar Valley near Cedar City moved to Indian Peak." Indian Peak could also have been within the boundaries of the Panaca or Pahranagat bands.

35. CHEMEHUEVI (TAWNTUH'VAITS). Southern Tawn. Tawntuh'vaits is the Southern Paiute name for the Chemehuevi. It means Tawn Below or Southern Tawn. The word tawn is probably an old name for both the Southern Paiutes and Chemehuevi before they split up. The Chemehuevis call the Southern Paiutes Tawntuhts or Upper Tawn. James Marble, a Mojave, gives the following information concerning Chemehuevi territory:

The Black Mountains in Northwestern Arizona were inhabited by the Chemehuevi’s. The Chemehuevi’s and Mojave’s used to fight at the sand dunes west? of Fort Mojave. The mountain due west of the dry lake (7 miles south of the junction of U.S. 95 and 93) southeast of Las Vegas is a sacred Spirit Mountain. Old People used to leave offerings to it when passing through there. It's also sacred to the Chemehuevi. Their songs turn around there.

36. PAWNOWEENTS (Panamint). This is a Southern Paiute Band mentioned by Jim Chili as living in the Tahatchapi Pass area. No details given.

37. WEE'SEGEE YOOTAWTS. Large Two Point Deer People. This band was mentioned to Martineau by Richard Mallen a Northern Ute from Fort Duchesne, Utah. He states, "My mom's dad came from the other side of Las Vegas, Nevada someplace. His band was called Wee'segee Yootawts which comes from the word Wee'segeets a two point deer with large horns." McKuen uses the Ute word Yootawts in denoting people.


Peter Harris demonstrating planting, Photo by Isabel Kelly, 1933.

Paiute Names for Other Tribes

APACHE. The Chemehuevis called both the Tonto Apache and the Yavapai "Yawveep'ai" and also "Moowhee Nungkuuhng" Nose Earring. The lack of distinction arose because the Yavapais in north central Arizona lived adjacent to the Apache, dressed like them, intermarried with them, raided with them, and even looked like them to the point that General Crook said they were "all Apache." Pioneers, writers, and even Mojave, Hualapai, and Havasupai Indians have referred to the Yavapai as Apache. They have also been designated as Mojave-Apache and Yavapai-Apache. This tribal confusion carried over to the Chemehuevis.

The Yavapai-Apache reservation at Camp Verde consists of about half Apaches and half Yavapai. Their languages are not mutually intelligible. Morris Jake from Kaibab calls the Apaches Too-oo’ kunt meaning Wanting to fight or Mean. This term again probably refers to both Apache and Yavapai.

ARAPAHO. The Arapahos were called Sawdeets' Eekuts Dog Eaters by the Northern Utes and the Koosharem Band.

BANNOCK. This name is correctly pronounced Punai'teh and Punai'kee. Martineau did not get a translation.

COCOPAH. They were called Wekuhup'aw by the Chemehuevis.

Diegueño. They were called Kawmai'u by the Chemehuevis.

GOSHUTES. They are called this name by the Paiutes. The name is spelled Gosiute and Goshute. A Koosharem informant claims that:


The Goshutes derive their name from the fact that they live in an area where there is a lot of gray clay. When the wind blows, they become covered with this gray dust and so they are called Gosiutes referring to their gray color when covered with this gray dust. Koosharem, Douglas Timmican.      


HOPI. The Hopi were called Moo'kweech or Mookeech by all Ute and Southern Paiute

bands. It is from this Paiute word that the word Moqui is derived.

HUALAPAI. They were called Oaw'duhpaiuts which sounds like a Paiute attempt at

pronouncing this foreign word.

MARICOPA. The Chemehuevi, Jim Chili, says they were called Awt'awpaw and


MISSION. The Mission Indians of California were called Koomu' Nengwuh Different


MOJAVE. The Mojaves living along the Colorado River were called Aiut', meaning

unknown, and also Mawuhkaw' Uhveetch. Jim Chili says there was a Mountain Mojave Band that the Chemehuevis exterminated. They were called Tuh'du Aiut which literally means Desert Aiut. The desert area they inhabited consists of both mountains and desert. The Informant translated the term as "Mountain Mojave." The Paiute word tuhdu can refer to anything barren, desolate, or even outside. This word certainly describes the type of mountains found in the area being discussed as opposed to the Colorado River banks farmed by the other Mojaves living there.

NAVAJO. Puh-hawng' Weets. Jimmy Timmican says this term means Cane Knife People. Kaibab 4 said that the Kaibab band called the Navajos Wee' Kwuseets, Knife Tail.

NORTHERN PAIUTE. Mawtuh'suts. This is the Paiute name for Northern Paiutes and

also the Nevada Shoshoni. Palmer gives a similar name Ma-tis-ab-its for a band living at Panaca and Meadow Valley, Nevada. This was an area where Southern Paiutes and Shoshonis came together and because of intermarriage, boundary distinctions often become difficult. Jim Chili gives a name for the Southern Paiute Band at Panaca as Tuhnduh'esu. Palmer's informant was probably referring to the Shoshonis who ranged close to this area.

SHOSHONI. Some Utes and Paiutes call the Shoshonis of Idaho and northern Nevada

Koomunt'see. This name means Different or Strange and is the same name that is applied to the Comanches. The Wyoming Shoshonis and other bands are generally called Soahots'. The Las Vegas Band calls the Nevada Shoshonis Koahoyts.

UTE. The Paiute name for the Utes is Yoo'taw. A Shivwits informant also referred to the

Indians at Cedar City and Gunlock as "Yootaw Indians."

YAVAPAI. They are called Yawvee'pai after the Yavapai word Nyahv'kopai East


YUMA. They were called Kweechun after their own name for themselves.




KAWPOOTAW. This name appears in books as Kapota and Capota. They are now on the Southern Ute Reservation at Ignacio, Colorado. An Ignacio informant hinted that this name had a derisive meaning given by the Ute Mountain Band. It might come from the Spanish word puta meaning whore. This name could also come from the Spanish word capote, a kind of cape, cloak, or coat. Many tribes were noted for wearing this type of garment. This band was the southernmost of the Ute bands. (Annabelle Eagle, Southern Ute.)


KUMOO’TUHKUTS Rabbit Eaters. A recent name given to Utes living at Randlett, Utah in Reservation days. Johnny loupe, Northern Ute.

MOOWHUCH’ This name appears in publications as Moguache and Moache. Moowhup' means cedar bark. Moowhuch' is Cedar Bark People because they spent a lot of time living in the cedars and utilizing the bark. Some now reside at the Southern Ute Reservation at Ignacio, Colorado, and the rest in northern Utah.

MOOWHU’ TAWVEE’WAWCH Cedar Bark Sunny Slope People. The Moguache and Tabeguache bands once lived on the eastern and southern slopes of the Rockies in Colorado. The name Moowhu' Tawvee'wawch came when the two Ute bands, Moowhuch and Tahvee'wawch, came together in Utah. This includes some of the Uncompahgre. Annebelle Eagle of Ignacio said, "When I was young, we referred to the Moowhu Tawveewach as some of the Utes who moved to Utah." According to Ouray McCook, this name is a combination that means Cedar Bark Sunny Slope People. This seems to be the most accurate translation since these two bands were once separate bands having the two separate names.

Other less reasonable translations of this combined name have arisen such as "Walking Moguache" and "Those Who Walk in a Silly Manner" or "Copycats" from the words moa-hup silly and tavee'wai which can mean to walk.

PARIANUCHE. This name is correctly pronounced Pawduh'ee Noonch Elk People. They lived south of the White River Utes in Colorado with their area extending into eastern Utah. Clifford. Duncan, Northern Ute.

PAWGOO'AWVEETCH. This is a recent name given to the Utes living at Whiterocks Utah, in Reservation days. Pawgoo' Awveetch (Pawgoo'u Nengwoonts) means People Living by Water. Johnny loupe, Northern Ute.

PAHGUH'UTUHKUTS Fish Eaters. A recent name applied to Utes living at Ouray, Utah, in Reservation days. Johnny loupe, Northern Ute.

SEE'VEDO NOONTS. The following statement comes from Ouray McCook: "I once heard of a band called See'vedo Noonts. I know nothing about them." Francis McKinley mentions hearing of a band south of the Uintah Basin someplace with a name similar to this. He said it meant "Silver People because their arms were chaffed and silvery looking." The word silver is of English extraction.

Martineau personally wondered if this name might refer to the Sheberitch or Suhuh'vawduhuts eng Squawbush Water People who lived to the south. The Indian names are similar and he doubts that the word "silver" would be an ancient name. Utes do have a different word for chaffed arms.

TAVEEWAWCH. This name appears in publications as Tabeguache. Francis McKinley and Ouray McCook said this name means "Sunny Slope People." This name comes from the word tawvee' meaning to hit or alight and refers to the suns rays that strike the eastern slope of the Rockies. Annabelle Eagle of Ignacio says the Taveewach band was the northernmost Ute band living in Colorado.

UNCOMPAHGRE. This name is correctly pronounced Ungkaw' Pah Kawdee Red Water Sitting or Red Lake. They received this name from the reddish-colored waters found in the mountains south of Ouray, Colorado. Ed Wyasket a Uncompahgre makes the following statement about this band:


The Southern Utes and other Utes used to all live together. Trouble caused them to leave. They moved to Red Lake and became the Uncompahgres. From there they moved to Pueblo, Denver, and eventually to Utah.


Ouray McCook said, "The Uncomphgre Band once lived in the Alamosa Valley with other Southern Utes. When they left there, they moved west and became the Uncompahgre. The Moowhuch who stayed became Southern Utes. Those coming to Utah later became Moowhu Tawyee'wawch."

WEEMINUCHE. Pronounced Wee 'me Noonts by Utah Indians. This name means Humping Indians from the word wayno'mee meaning to wiggle in sex. This is the band now living at Towoac, Colorado on the Ute Mountain Reservation. This name was applied to them in derision by other Utes. They are also called Segoo' Nengwoontch and Seguh' Noahoytch meaning Lizard People.

A Ute from Towoac, Colorado makes the following statement:


The band term Kawpoo 'taw and Wee’me Noonts are more recent band names arising over enmity and fighting between the two bands. Both names are derogatory. Wee 'me Noonts means Humping Indians and my band, which is now stuck with this name, claims it really belongs to the Kawpoo 'taw Band. The Ute Mountain Band is really called Segoon Nengwoonts Lizard Indians because of the lack of water where they live. Molly Deer.


YAMPARIKA, WHITE RIVER. This name is pronounced Yumpaw' Tuhkuts Wild Caraway Eaters. A Northern Ute informant, Russell Root states that they lived around Craig and north of Meeker, Colorado. Johnny loupe, he further states that, "In Utah Reservation days the White River Utes were called Koohoo'uts Conical People from the Reservation type white men's conical hats they got in Pine Ridge, South Dakota."




Tribes that the Utes are not very familiar with are generally called Guhmuch or Kuhmuch Different or Strange.


ALASKA INDIANS They were called Pawdus'u Nengwoonch Ice Indians.

APACHE Awvach Shadow.

BANNOCK Punai'kee.

BLACKFEET Koochoo' Tuhku Buffalo Eaters.

CHEYENNE They were called Saiu'nu and Shaiah-nu after the word Cheyenne.

COMANCHE They were called Kuhmuch'ee meaning Different or Strange.

DELAWARE Yooaw Guhmuch Plains Different.

HOPI Moo'keech.

KIOWA They were called Kaiowu after the word Kiowa.

OTO Pah' Guhmuch Water Different.

PAIUTE Paiyuhch Poor, Simple.

POTAWATOMI Yooaw Guhmuch Plains Different.

PUEBLO One Ute informant called them Poo-oo'vuh Duch Hairy Arm People.

Francis McKinley thought this name referred to either the Taos or Jicarilla Apache. A

Northern Ute informant gives the following name for the Pueblos:


One lady who was half Ute and half Arapaho told me that the Pueblos were called Pinyon Jays by the Utes because each morning they would sit on top of their Pueblos calling out to people what to do every day. Glen Jenks.


SHOSHONI Soahoach'.

SIOUX The North Dakota Sioux were further removed from the Utes than the Sioux in South Dakota and so they were just called Guhmuch or Koomuch' Different.

SIOUX The South Dakota Sioux are called Mukoo'taw, which is often shortened to Koo'taw. The Ute word is probably derived from the Sioux word for themselves

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