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Message - Re: The Kalapuya of the Upper Willamette Valley
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Posted by  David Lewis on July 24, 2003 at 16:09:20:

In Reply to:  The Kalapuya of the Upper Willamette Valley posted by Kevin Matthews on March 22, 2002 at 22:03:27:

Regarding extinction of kalapuya... I am Kalapuya, of the Santiam, and Yoncalla tribes and so I guess that theory is not true. As well the original message contain many other factual and theoretical errors that are not supported by any evidence. I have seen similar descriptions of the Kalapuya in anthropological and historical texts but there never is cited much evidence. I think that readers of this "standard and popularized history" need to be aware that these descriptions were not written by Indians, did not take into account Indian perspectives and are based on Westernized notions of concepts like "civilization," "permanence," "tribe," and "city."

The evidence does suggest, as mentioned previously, that the Kalapuya have been in the Willamette Valley for 9,000 years, which suggests a "permanence" to the Kalapuya culture longer than many Western cultures. As for the term "seminomadic," well Indians lived in the same area for 9,000 years and freely travelled about that area on regular, annual and monthly cycles of food and other resource gathering. How could that possibly be nomadic? The same situation exists today for people who regularly travel the length and breadth of Oregon visiting relatives, for work, or for recreation. So contemporary Oregonians could be called seminomadic!

There are many other logical and theoretic errors in the text that should and can be effectively challenged and I hope other readers will.
Respectfully,
David G. Lewis
Kalapuya, Chinook, Takelma, Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde

 


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