Pre-Anthropologists and Colonization

Anthropology as a science grew out of needs of colonizing countries to gain more information about the frontier. The United States in the early 19th century needed to have more information about the North American frontier for the purpose of claiming and colonizing the area for the expansion of the nation. The earliest beginnings of Anthropology, collections of the oddities of natural history, the gathering of native languages and unique material cultural artifacts, was part of the colonization of the world by European powers as well. The impetus of exploration, of finding new lands, new animals and plants, new things … Continue reading Pre-Anthropologists and Colonization

Native Kinships and Wealth among the Middle Chinookans

Native kinships are incredibly complex. They do not follow the nice neat patterns of kinship that Americans have adopted from their European ancestors. Native peoples did not marry inside their own tribes, but were influenced by societal norms to marry someone from outside of the tribe. People born of royalty were encouraged to or arranged to marry royalty in other tribes and in this manner leadership roles and genealogies were kept within certain families. It can safely be said that all of the tribes in a particular region are all interrelated with one another by Native laws of marriage. But … Continue reading Native Kinships and Wealth among the Middle Chinookans

The Trail of Broken Treaties Redux

Vine Deloria, Jr. famously penned a book, the Trail of Broken Treaties in response to over 150 years of the United States breaking its agreements with Native American Tribes. The current Standing Rock action by thousands of Native American peoples and their allies is another chapter in this trail of broken treaties. The encampment was initiated to call attention to and halt the progress of an oil pipeline from Canada into the United States. The pipeline has now been rerouted several times, the most recent, away from the population center at Bismark, and through the relatively unoccupied lands near the … Continue reading The Trail of Broken Treaties Redux

A Startling History of the Cascades Indians, 1855-1862

On March 26, 1856, a year after the Willamette Valley treaty is negotiated (Jan. 22, 1855) there is an uprising on the Columbia near the Cascades. There are numerous versions of the story,  but it is associated  as an extension of the Yakima Indian Wars, where  Klickitat and Yakima and perhaps some Cascades Indians were upset with the Americans and killed some of them in a series of attacks on settlements and outposts on the Columbia River. The Yakima leader Kamiakin was upset about the invasion of his country and wanted to drive the Americans from the Columbia. The Klickitats … Continue reading A Startling History of the Cascades Indians, 1855-1862