Tributaries: A Confluence History Blog

Louis Caywood at Fort Clatsop – a less than successful search.

The Archaeological Footprints of Louis R. Caywood

Archeologist Louis Caywood was a pioneer of studying the buried clues that’ll the story of the Columbia River. He represents a good starting point but modern archeologists have learned to dig deeper to unearth valuable insights to our past. more >

Camas Prairie, ID – Incited the Bannock War of 1878 when naïve settlers foolishly allowed their hogs to destroy the carefully tended Camas Prairie that was so well-cared for many thousands of years by Native Americans.

Profound Role of Camas in the Northwest Landscape

The Pacific Northwest is known for its wealth of agricultural and natural resources. Learn more about Camas, a First Food so important it caused major conflicts and even war among settlers and the indigenous people of the northwest. more >

Mount Hood, Oregon. Albert Bierstadt. Undated. Believed to be Bierstadt’s first rendering of four paintings of Mount Hood, Oregon. Chinookan people and canoes sail the Columbia River and wait on shore. Measuring 35 x 60 inches, the painting manifests Bierstadt’s ability to transfer his personal sense of wonderment to the viewer through his adept use of perspective, light, color and composition. Auctioned at Christie’s in May 2017.

An Artist’s Price for Manifest Destiny

Artists play an important role in both propaganda and the multitude of ways that history is recorded. Albert Bierstadt was a skilled painter, known to paint stunning detailed panoramas of the west meant to attract east coast Americans to find settlement out here. more >

The Tahltan Bear dogs were likely traded to Native Americans of the Nez Perce and Plateau tribes from Canadian tribes. They are believed to be extinct today.

Dogs Along the Columbia

Dogs have been good companions to people of the Pacific Northwest for a very long time. From the dogs of indigenous legends to the strange attitudes of Merriwether Lewis, this post delves into the exciting lives of our furry friends. more >

A postcard image of Columbia (LV-88). See

“From sheer loneliness and boredom, to all the excitement you could stand”

The Columbia River bar, where the mouth of the river empties into the Pacific Ocean, is known to be a dangerous entry point for ships navigating their way inland by way of the Columbia River. Learn about the lightships that stood watch over this treacherous location and the lives of their crews. more >