Bryson Liberty: You Didn’t Get Jobs in Grocery Stores

In this excerpt, Bryson Liberty talks about the jobs he worked as a young man, such as in the wheat fields.

Bio: Bryson Liberty is a tribal elder of the CTUIR. Liberty has a military background and is a published author, as well as working as a health administrator and actor. His article about fishing at Celilo titled “On the Rock” was published in Cowboys and Indians magazine in 2011. He was on “The Cellar,” “Northern Exposure,” and “Little House on the Prairie”.


Well, I left Chemawa and really I was just kind of a bum. I lived with my folks, worked in the wheat fields and the — fields and anything else. That’s about all you could get a job in. If you didn’t work for the agency on the road crew –or something like that or go downtown– like kids my age would get jobs in grocery stores and stuff, that didn’t happen out in the reservation. These, I don’t know why, Indian kids didn’t go down and look for jobs, you know. It wasn’t in their scope of their culture. You didn’t go to town and get a job in a grocery store. So I did that until I was, let’s see I think I was about 20 years old.

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