For Native people of the Columbia River system, knowledge about salmon has been passed down through the generations, since time immemorial. Fish are intertwined with River Peoples’ past, present, and future. This article highlights several important subjects and resources, along with how seven fish of the Nch’i Wāna (Columbia River) are intertwined with tribal identity.
A prairie plant dug up by women and children, the Camas bulb was an important part of Columbia basin diets. Grazing animals on camas lands by settlers led to skirmishes between the Army and the Bannock tribes.
The cultivation of apples and other orchard fruit at Fort Vancouver was highly successful, expanding to a third site at Fort Simcoe. The Nez Perce and Yakama quickly took to the crop, finding it productive and valuable.
Wapato are a wetland tuber which were a part of Native diet. Though consumption of wapato ceased after land cultivation by white farmers, wapato are being reintroduced to the Yakama diet. Notes on cooking and edibility.
The introduction of apple trees and other orchard fruits to the Northwest was very popular with both Native and white populations. Often overlooked, Native women played a major role in cultivating the first orchards.