Confluence Library

This talk argues that the Doctrine of Discovery morphed into “American Manifest Destiny” and was used, and is still being used today, to justify the United States’ acquisition of the lands and assets of the Indian Nations and peoples.

A brief summary of the treaties and Acts signed by Presidents Lincoln, Johnson, and Grant in the 1860s and 1870s which affected Native tribes, especially the Nez Perce.

The confluence of the Snake and Columbia Rivers was a major uniting force for tribes of the Columbia River basin. It became a major site for settlers later, as the waterways provided a convenient mode of transportation.

The Sacajawea State Park area saw a lot of change between the surrender of Chief Joseph and the revelation of the Hanford nuclear operations only a century later: railroads, dams, and plutonium replaced trade and family.

The Vancouver Land Bridge site was rich with biodiversity prior to settlers’ advancement. Seated on a floodplain near Mt. St Helens, it was home to savanna, hardwood forest, and prairie. Today it is home to Ft Vancouver.

The Chinook are one of several Lower Chinook people indigenous to the western Washington coast. Though not federally recognized, the Chinook were long recognized as prodigious traders across the Northwest coast.

The Nez Perce are a tribe found throughout Eastern Washington, Oregon, and Idaho. The Nez Perce were known for their early openness to white settlers, and later for their persecution. Special focus on Chief Timothy.

Jane Jacobsen talks about how Confluence was created as a response to the Lewis and Clark Bicentennial, and the decision by tribes to invite Maya Lin to design the artwork, as well as the importance of respect for places.

Many different tribes came together at the site of modern-day Sacajawea State Park. Although to later explorers it seemed barren, this crucial trading site was also an important site for weddings and kinship exchanges.

The site of Sacajawea State Park had been important for trade and kinship. The Corps of Discovery were led there by Sacajawea in 1805. By the 1870s, settlers took the land and local tribes were sent off to reservations.