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Native Languages of the Americas:
Yurok Indian Legends
This is our collection of links to Yurok folktales and traditional stories that can be read online.
We have indexed our Native American legends section
by tribe to make them easier to locate; however, variants on the same
legend are often told by American Indians from different tribes, especially if those tribes are kinfolk or neighbors to
each other. In particular, though these legends come from the Yuroks, the traditional stories of
related tribes like the Wiyot and
Hupa tribes are very similar.
Enjoy the stories! If you would like to recommend a Yurok story for this page or think one of the ones on here
should be removed, please let us know.
Wohpekumeu (also spelled Wah-pec-wah-mow, Wohpekuman,
or several other ways.) Wohpekumeu is the benevolent culture hero of the Yurok tribe (sometimes referred to as a "transformer" by folklorists.)
He shares some similarities with other Algonquian heroes such as the Wabanaki
Nanabush, and Cree
and some of the same stories are told in eastern Algonquian tribes with only the identity of the protagonist differing.
Pulekukwerek. Pulekukwerek is a mythical
hero who protected the Yurok people by slaying monsters.
The Foxes and the Sun:
Yurok legend about how Sun was caught by the foxes.
How Thunder and Earthquake Made Ocean:
Yurok tale about the origin of the ocean.
Myths and Legends of California and the Old Southwest:
Online book about Southwest and California Indian mythology.
Mythology of the California Tribes:
Early 20th-century collection of Yurok and other California Indian legends.
Recommended Books on Yurok Mythology
Surviving Through the Days: Translations of Native California Stories and Songs:
Our organization earns a commission from any book bought through these links
Anthology of myths and traditional literature from the Yurok and other Native California tribes.
Great collection of traditional tales about little people from the Yurok and other tribes.
American Indian Trickster Tales:
Compilation of more than a hundred stories about Coyote and other Native American tricksters.
(Use discretion sharing these with kids as some of the stories contain adult humor.)
Yurok religion and expressive traditions
Indian beliefs and religions
California Native history
California culture region map
List of Native American tribes in the United States
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