Big Lagoon Rancheria
Total population
Regions with significant populations
United States United States (California California)
English, Tolowa, Yurok[1]
traditional tribal religion,
World Renewal religion, Indian Shaker Church, Assembly of God[2]
Related ethnic groups
other Tolowa and Yurok tribes

The Big Lagoon Rancheria is a federally recognized tribe of Yurok and Tolowa Indians. They are located in Humboldt County, California, and their tribal headquarters is in Arcata, California.


The tribe was first recognized by the US federal government on 10 July 1918.[3] Tribal enrollment is based on a minimum of 1/8 blood quantum and lineal descent from the Plan of Distribution on the Assets of the Big Lagoon Rancheria, created January 3, 1968.[4] The tribe has 24 enrolled members.[5]


Location of Big Lagoon Rancheria

The Big Lagoon Rancheria was established in 1918.[6] Their 20-acre (81,000 m2) reservation is adjacent to Big Lagoon, a beautiful waterway, located 30 miles (48 km) north of Eureka, California. It also lies adjacent to the unincorporated community of Big Lagoon, California. Eight households reside on the reservation. The tribe has been able to improve the local water facilities and road system on the reservation.[3] As of the 2010 Census the population was 17.[7]


The ranchería is served by the Big Lagoon Union Elementary School District and Northern Humboldt Union High School District.

Economic development

Due to the highly sensitive environment of the reservation, the tribe has agreed with the state of California to not develop the reservation. Instead the tribe has partnered with the Los Coyotes Band of Cahuilla and Cupeño Indians to operate the Barstow Casino and Resort in Barstow, California.[3]

The historical Arcata Hotel in Arcata is owned and operated by the Big Lagoon Rancheria.[3]

41°09′51″N 124°07′15″W / 41.1642580°N 124.1207870°W / 41.1642580; -124.1207870

See also


  1. ^ Eargle, 111
  2. ^ Pritzker, 159
  3. ^ a b c d Big Lagoon Rancheria Historical Background. Archived 2008-08-27 at the Wayback Machine The Barstow Casino & Resort. (retrieved 24 Feb 2009)
  4. ^ Constitution of the Big Lagoon Rancheria. 1985 (retrieved 24 Feb 2009)
  5. ^ California Indians and Their Reservations. Archived 2009-02-05 at the Wayback Machine San Diego State University Library and Information Access. 2009 (retrieved 24 Feb 2009)
  6. ^ Pritzker, 161
  7. ^[permanent dead link]