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Yakima: What is its True Origin?

One of the most common conversations of guests staying in Ledgestone Hotel Yakima is that no one knows the true origin of the city’s name “Yakima,” a peaceful city and Washington State’s top supplier of high-quality agricultural products. Yakima is an area filled with various farming land and beautiful sceneries. The green fields surrounding the territory are as wide as the theories about the history of the city’s name.

Yakama River

Out of all the theories about its beginning, the most popular one is the tale of a Native American daughter of a chief who escaped and ran away from her tribe after breaking one of their sacred rules. As she was wandering around, she came along the Yakama River and made it her home.

It is believed that “Yakima” is derived from “Yakama,” since the city was found near the runaway daughter’s home.


Pregnant One

A Native American legend also theorizes that Yakima was a wrong pronunciation of the Native American term for “pregnant one.” This theory is probably more accurate in terms of its description of Yakima’s agricultural contributions to the State of Washington and the United States of America.


Black Bear

Since the Native Americans believe that the black bear is a spiritual animal and that the plural form for it is “yah-Kah,” many believe that Yakima originated from this word.


There are more theories and legends about Yakima’s origin aside from the ones mentioned above. Nobody knows which one amongst these speculations is a fact. One thing’s for certain: Yakima is the agricultural heart of Washington and the United States of America.

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