The Siletz placename is something of a mystery. Leo J. Frachtenberg, the ethnologist assigned to collect native languages on the Grand Ronde and Siletz reservations in about 1913, in about 1914 thought the word “Siletz” to be of Athapaskan origin and suggested that the origin is in the word “Si’is/Silet” meaning Black Bear. I have … More Nachicolcho or Siletz: a Place on the Oregon Coast
Removal of the western Oregon tribes to the reservations was a tumultuous affair. Caravans from the Umpqua and Table Rock reservations to the Grand Ronde Indian Reservation (also called Yamhill River Reservation) took place in the dead of winter with several people dying on the trip. These “Trails of Tears” removed tribal people from their … More Estuaries Saved the Coastal Tribes: Section 2- Removal and Exposure
In the 1860’s the western Oregon reservations were still struggling with feeding all the Indians despite promises by Indian agents, and the treaties, that when they removed, there would be plenty of food. This was a persistent problem that was not solved until at least the 1870’s. As mentioned in other essays, Grand Ronde … More We are Treated like Slaves and are Starving: Siletz Chiefs send their Remarks to the President 1862
Albert B. Meacham was an Indian agent in the 1860’s and 70’s and oversaw some changes in the reservations. He attempted to give the tribes some voice in this situation, worked to get the tribes to adopt western medicine, and began warning the tribes that their treaty funding was about to end. In short, he … More Meacham’s Final Appeal to Fairly Pay the Tribes Removed to the Coast Reservation.
I have previously written about how the coastal tribes were relocated to several river estuaries within the Coast Reservation (Siuslaw, Yachats, Alsea, Nashesne, Siletz and Umpqua). There the tribes, mostly from the southern Oregon coast, were not given much in the way of help from the federal government, there was very little money, and their … More Estuaries Saved the Coastal Tribes: Section 1- Joel Palmer’s Plan in 1855