Imagining the American Nation, and Ignoring the Tribes

In the early nineteenth century, the United States assumed ownership of all of the Oregon Territory through “right of discovery”, first adjudicated in the United States Supreme Court in 1823 in Johnson v. M’intosh (Supreme Court of the United States 1823).[i] This ownership remained tenuous as it relied on the European protocols of exploration and … More Imagining the American Nation, and Ignoring the Tribes

Slavery at Canyonville, 1853

The subject of slavery in Oregon goes back to the first wave of settlers who came to the territory in 1844 and after. These first settlers combined with a few hardy souls who had arrived earlier and had been fur traders and explorers, formed the first territorial laws in a series of Wolf meetings. the … More Slavery at Canyonville, 1853

Causes of the 1853 Rogue River War

The first Rogue River War was a series of skirmishes and battles between mainly gold miners and the tribes. The miners had no regard for the tribes and tended to treat them badly. Some miners, the worst of the bunch, would murder native men on sight and take native women to rape them. It’s very … More Causes of the 1853 Rogue River War

Baleful Gifts of Civilization: Smallpox Epidemic 1853

  It is well recording in numerous sources that diseases from Europe came with the exploring Whitemen and infected millions of the indigenous peoples of the World with waves of pandemics, causing the death of more people in the exploratory period than all of the wars of humankind. An estimated 100-300 million indigenous peoples worldwide … More Baleful Gifts of Civilization: Smallpox Epidemic 1853

Major Benjamin Alvord discusses Eastern Oregon Settlement, 1853

In 1853, the former Superintendent of Indian Affairs of Oregon Anson Dart had been forced to resign as none of his nineteen treaties with the tribes were ratified. Joel Palmer took this position in late May. Palmer was already a well-healed politician, and probably knew most people in Oregon at the time, and had previously … More Major Benjamin Alvord discusses Eastern Oregon Settlement, 1853