Mapping Indigenous LA

Screen shot of Mapping Indigenous LA.

Launched in 2015

Following indigenous protocols of recognizing the original inhabitants of Los Angeles, we would like to acknowledge Gabrielino/Tongva (Tongva) on whose lands we live as we put together this website. Mapping Indigenous Los Angeles aims to uncover and highlight the multiple layers of indigenous Los Angeles through a storymapping project with youth, community leaders, and elders from indigenous communities throughout the city. The website resulting from this collaborative research makes visible the rich Indigenous identities and histories that are often hidden within other racial formations yet deeply embedded in the history of Los Angeles. Not only are indigenous communities often obscured by the complexities of racial labels and multiple migrations, our communities are often invisible to each other. Indigenous knowledge about Los Angeles roots our knowledge of LA in the rich and multiple notions of place created by indigenous peoples. We will continue to build on our research to include more original inhabitants of Southern California and relocated American Indians, the Latin American indigenous diaspora, and Pacific Islander communities, who have made Los Angeles their home. This knowledge preserves the cultural integrity of indigenous Los Angeles and serves policy makers, city planners, and the community at-large in understanding indigenous people of LA as people who are not just in some distant, historic past, but still reside here and share the contemporary cultural and geographic landscape of the city with its inhabitants.

Learn more about MIPA




UCLA Server

Principal Investigators/Directors
Dr. Mishuana Goeman (Tonawanda Band of Seneca) Professor of Gender Studies and American Indian Studies IDP, UCLA Special Advisor to the Chancellor on Native American and Indigenous Affair; starting January 2022, Professor of Indigenous Studies, UB.

Dr. Wendy Teeter, Curator of Archaeology, Fowler Museum at UCLA, UCLA Repatriation Coordinator, UCOP Native American Advisory Council Member

Dr. Maylei Blackwell (Cherokee), Associate Professor of Chicana/o and Central American Studies, UCLA

Grants and Funding
Institute of American Cultures, California Humanities (a non-profit partner of the National Endowment for the Humanities), University of California Humanities Research Institute, University of California Center for New Racial Studies, The Center for Digital Humanities, Social Science Computing and the UCLA College of Social Sciences.