Kemo Sabe -Indian phrase meaning "Faithful Friend" or "Trusty Scout" used by
the North American Indian Tonto (Jay Silverheels), to describe his close friend
John Reid, aka "The Lone Ranger" (Clayton Moore/John Hart) on the western
adventure THE LONE RANGER/ABC/1949-57.
The Lone Ranger ("Kemo Sabe") and Tonto
The word "Kemo Sabe" was actually
inspired by James Jewell, the director of the original Lone Ranger radio series
that debuted on January 30, 1933.
"Kemo Sabe" was derived from the name of a boys camp
called "Kee-Mo-Sah-Bee" established in 1911 at Mullet Lake in Michigan that
was owned by Jewell's father-in-law, Charles W. Yeager.
During the 1930s "Lone Ranger Camps" were held at this popular
North Michigan campground. The camp closed in 1941.
Other alleged origins of the term "Kema Sabe"
included the fact it derived from the Tewa
Indian dialect per Dr. Goddard of the
Smithsonian Institution and his reference to
29th Annual Report of the Bureau of American
Ethnology (1916 which that in Tewa,
"Apache" equates to Sabe and "friend" to Kema.
An other reference points to a Arizona
Indian Yavapai Tribe word "kinmasaba"
or "kinmasabeh" that means "one who is
Back to Top