Methodists in Oregon

Reverend Jason Lee established the first Methodist Mission near Champoeg in 1835. By 1839 the mission had been damaged by flood waters and Lee established another farm and school in what is now downtown Salem. Lee had the sawmill built first, and with the sawed timbers built first the grist mill then his house on Broadway at the Liberty interchange along Chemeketa Creek (Mill Creek)( the house is now situated at Willamette Heritage Center) and then the mission school, at what is now Willamette University. Many of the students at the first mission were taken off of the French Prairie and … Continue reading Methodists in Oregon

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

The Neo-Colonization and Termination of Native Reservations 2017

Standing Rock camp is rounding up this week, after at least 10 months of activation to stop oil pipelines through North Dakota. At stake was the health and welfare of the Stand Rock Sioux who live on the Standing Rock Reservation. The encampment attracted upwards of 20,000 people who rotated in and out of the encampment, who wanted to protect the region from the probability of another oil pipeline breach, a fairly common problem for pipelines in the region. The pipeline was halted just before bridging the Cannonball river. The protectors faced severe opposition with state police and hired guards attacking the protectors … Continue reading The Neo-Colonization and Termination of Native Reservations 2017

Mott’s Special Report on Grand Ronde and Siletz in 1858

In the first few years of the Western Oregon reservations, the Coast and Grand Ronde reservations, the federal government was still working to develop a good system of Indian administration. Many of the Indians were just recently arrived from a war, and were envisioned as being potentially violent.  On the reservations, there were murders, and many Indians became alcoholics, while the Indian agents tried to get access to funding, and feed and care for the tribes. Funding was tough to come by so much of the provisioning came from credit accounts. Then provisions and food was early on being sent … Continue reading Mott’s Special Report on Grand Ronde and Siletz in 1858

Houses of the Oregon Tribes

The question of what sorts of houses the Kalapuyans had has again surfaced. Over the years this question has been of prime importance. Many Americans, ignorant of the diversity and variability of Tribal cultures have assumed that tipis were the houses for all American Indians. This notion has informed generations of Americans and has been reinforced by media and Hollywoodian images of Native societies. In addition, the extreme focus on the Indian cultures of the American Great Plains by American society (wars, buffalo hunting, studies, religions) has caused the notion of the tipi to become somewhat larger than reality. The … Continue reading Houses of the Oregon Tribes