Stories of the Cahto Tribe

This collection of oral teaching stories is attributed to the ancestors of the Cahto Tribe. They are largely from a collection at the University of California and derived from the field work of Professor Pliny Earle Goddard in the early 1900s, with line-by-line translations provided by Bill Ray, Daatcaahaal-kwaatc’ileeh (He Who Dives for Hookbill Salmon), of the Cahto tribe. Many times these stories were told as part of a chant or in chorus, thus explaining the repetitive nature of the individual lines. As literature, these Cahto legends and stories, are more poetry than prose.

A Prayer for Eels
A Supernatural Experience
Coming of the Earth
Coyote Competes with Grey-squirrels
Coyote and the Gambler
Coyotes Seen Fishing
Coyotes Set Fires for Grasshoppers
Coyote Tricks the Girls
Coyote Recovers Kangaroo Rat’s Remains
Dancing Elk
Description of Man Eater
Duck and Otter Have a Diving Contest
Flood and Creation
Geese Carries off Raven
Grizzly Woman Kills Doe
Gopher’s Revenge
Great Horned Serpent
How Coyote and Skunk Killed Elk
How Turtle Escaped
Making the Valleys
The Maneater
Milk-snake among the Eels
Meadowlark’s Breast
Placing the Animals
Polecat Robs her Grandmother
Rattlesnake Husband
Securing Light
Stealing of Fire
Stealing the Baby
Supernatural Child
Treatment of the Stranger
Turtle’s Exploit
Water-Panther’s Escape
Water-people and the Elk
Wolf Steals Coyote’s Wife
Yellow-Hammer’s Deeds
(Stories based on Cahto oral traditions and beliefs)