Humans have occupied the area we now know as Joshua Tree National Park for at least 5,000 years. The first group known to inhabit the area was the Pinto Culture, followed by American Indians including the Serrano, the Chemehuevi, and the Cahuilla.
Everyone who has lived in this desert has left an imprint on the landscape. Some individuals have left an especially big mark. Without the passion and commitment of Minerva Hoyt, for example, Joshua Tree might never have been set aside and protected. Elizabeth Campbell was a pioneering archeologist in the region. Explore their stories here.
Last updated: November 24, 2023