The Woman On The Face Of Half Dome...
The Legend of Tis-sa-ack



Tis-sa-ack, the old indian woman, looks sadly from the face of half dome at her husband who was also turned to stone.

There is a reason for everything and a story explaining all that you see…


The old Indian woman and her husband finally arrived at the Valley they knew as Ahwahnee.

As was the tradition in those days long-long ago, the woman carried a beautiful… but heavy, cone shaped basket that was woven from reeds and the course grasses.


Tabuce gathering acorns with her conical basket

Her husband walked alongside her unburdened except for his walking stick.

The sun was high and hot and as the old couple continued on their journey they grew more and more thirsty.

Tis-sa-ack arrived at the beautiful mountain lake first, and she drank deeply of it. She drank so deeply that when her husband arrived the lake was dry!

Because the lake was dry there came a drought and the once beautiful green valley dried up.

The man was enraged  by this and he raised his walking stick to strike at his wife. She cried as she ran from him and her tears stained her face.

She turned and threw her basket at her husband….and as they faced one another The Great Spirit transformed them both to great stone structures because of their wickedness.


Displeased...the Great Spirit turned Tis-sa-ack into Half Dome

She and her husband now remain separated forever...The white man knows them as Half dome and Washington Column.

To this day, her tears stain her face and her discarded basket lies nearby.

Tis-sa-acks husband became what the white man knows today as Washington Column



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