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Pacific Northwest History A lecture by: S.T. Rice March 2, 2011.

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Presentation on theme: "Pacific Northwest History A lecture by: S.T. Rice March 2, 2011."— Presentation transcript:

1 Pacific Northwest History A lecture by: S.T. Rice March 2, 2011

2 1700-1810, Protohistoric period (time of great change) Timeline: 30,000bc 20,000bc 10,000bc 0 1700 1750 1800 30,000-8,000 BCE, Paleo-Indians enter the Pacific Northwest 10,000-8,000 BCE, Salmon return to the Columbia river as the Ice age begins to end 4,500-2,000 BCE, Plateau and Coastal native cultures begin to develop 2,000-200 BCE, “Indian Golden Age” of population expansion occurs 1760-1800, Smallpox epidemics devastate Indian tribes 1786-1810, Most tribes in the Pacific Northwest experience contact with whites.

3 When we think of Native American culture, what stereotypes come to mind? Are some of these real and are some made up? We may think of some of the following images:

4 Prior to the arrival of white people coming from northern Europe, native culture had developed in many different ways. Many of the tribes in the North American Midwest were cultures that revolved around semi-nomadic cultures. The tribes of the North American Southwest lived in permanent dwellings and cultivated small crops. Tribes of the North American Southeast lived in large communities and some at times reached in to the tens of thousands and they farmed. The tribes that lived in our area revolved around the use of Salmon and the abundance of the Pacific ocean to create a highly developed, permanent culture. Activity


6 For the most part, North America, in it’s modern position, is very isolated. Strong scientific evidence shows that man, as a species, evolved in the Eurasian region. From this evolution came a need for humans to move further from each other to find sustainable food supplies and to avert conflict. With this need for food and land comes the great dispersion of humans throughout the world. One thought of how native groups reached N.A. is by way of the Bering Land Bridge.

7 The two theories that you need to be able to identify are the Bering Land Bridge Theory and the Solutrean Hypothesis




11 When settlers came to the Pacific Northwest the area was home to many different groups of natives. However, all of these smaller groups could be split into two distinct and very different groups: The Coastal People The Plateau People The two groups were split by one major geographical landform: The Cascade Range.



14 These people consist of the people in the area from northern California to Southeastern Alaska. The Pacific Ocean is the major supplier of food and nutrition. Giant Red Cedars served as the Coastal Indians source of shelter, clothing, and transportation. The ocean’s resources gave the Coastal natives the extraordinary gift of leisure time in the winter months. Everything that they did revolved around salmon and a marine economy – in addition to salmon, native people caught other kinds of fish and many kinds of shellfish

15 Homes of Cedar – The red cedar was the major building block of Coastal culture. This wood was easy to split and could be turned into straight blanks to create long houses. Several related families lived in one long house. Family Groups – The basic social unit was the extended family. There was no true tribal divisions among Coastal natives. Social Status – Wealth was the determinate of social status (how important you are to others in the community). No single chief ruled the group, but instead a council made decisions for the best of the tribe

16 Spirituality – There was a strong belief in a Supreme Being. Some believed that there was one god, while others believed in multiple gods. Animism – The belief that all things, living or non-living, have a spirit. This spirit can be good or evil. Art – Nothing distinguishes the Coastal Natives as impressively as its art. The abundance of the Pacific Ocean allowed for Coastal Natives to have sufficient time to develop extensive carving and basket weaving arts. Potlatch – a huge celebration hosted by a family for a special event, i.e. a death, birth, marriage. People of the highest social status received expensive gifts and people of lower classes got lesser gifts.


18 This is the group of the natives that lived east of the Cascade Mountains. The plateau’s hot, dry summers and cold snowy winters required seasonal moves and changes of clothing and shelter. Plateau culture revolves around the prominent Columbia River. These people were split into two main language groups: The Salish-speaking tribes of the North The southern non-Salish

19 A Semi-Nomadic People – these groups of plateau people lived long winters in the same locations, but would move around for months at a time in the summer. This makes them semi-nomadic. Living Spaces – these groups lived in both teepees and structures called pit houses. The Seasonal Round – Plateau people gathers food on a yearly basis. Women gathered camas bulbs while the men fished on The Dalles and The Kettle Falls.

20 Gender roles and Equality – Plateau Indian groups lived with a strict system of gender roles. Women – gathered berries, roots, dried meat and took care of the children Men – fished and hunted, made tools and weapons, built houses and, if necessary, went to war. Plateau women had a high level of authority. Plateau women had complete control over food and men needed to ask for permission to eat anything. Material Culture and Art – because these people were semi-nomadic and always looking for food they had little time for art. Anything that may be considered art also served a practical purpose.

21 This response must be at least 3-5 sentences Give me at least 2 examples of how Plateau Natives and Coastal Natives are different. Use specifics and make sure your answer is in a compare and contrast style.

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