While much of the country tears down racist statues, in the Tahoe area change has come via the renaming of a peak. Jeff Davis Peak in the Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest is now Da-ek Dow Go-et Mountain.
In the Washoe Indian language the name means saddle between points. The rock cropping at the top is now Sentinel Rock. The names were officially recorded with the U.S. Board on Geographic Names on July 9. Sentinel rock is what is listed on an 1883 survey map.
Talk of renaming this 9,025-foot peak in Alpine County in Mokelumne Wilderness has been going on for several years. Jefferson Davis was president of the Confederate States of America during the Civil War. He doesn’t have any ties to California, and reportedly didn’t want it to become a state because of its anti-slavery position. Davis once said, “African slavery, as it exists in the United States, is a moral, a social, and a political blessing.”
Alpine County Board of Supervisors, the U.S. Forest Service, and Gov. Gavin Newsom backed the name change.
Now the Washoe Tribe is working to change Jeff Davis Creek near the peak to Da-ek Dow Go-et Wa Tah. A decision is expected later this year.
In June 2019, the federal agency renamed Jeff Davis Peak in Great Basin National Park in Nevada to Doso Doyabi. In the Shoshone Indian language it means white mountain.