"Days to come he would encounter wild indians deep in the sierras living in the chozas and wickiups"
Kumeyaay woman in front of traditional choza at Campo, by Edward S. Curtis (1926)
Public DomainKumeyaay woman in front of traditional choza at Campo, by Edward S. Curtis (1926) - Credit: Library of Congress

A choza is a tent-shaped structure with a covering made from branches, straw or grass. The word originally described the small huts of wood or stone where Spanish shepherds and goat herders would spent the night by their flocks, and was later applied to describe the temporary residences used by the indigenous peoples of modern-day Mexico.

 

Apache Wickiup, photographed by Edward S. Curtis (c.1903)
Public DomainApache Wickiup, photographed by Edward S. Curtis (c.1903) - Credit: Edward S. Curtis Collection

 

The term wickiup (meaning dwelling in the Fox language) is more usually applied to Native American homes constructed using tall saplings driven into the ground, bent over, and tied together near the top. The dome-shaped framework was then covered with large overlapping mats of woven rushes, bark or grasses.