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Frozen Forest


in Shonitkwu

This blog's author is unsettled by the relatively sudden transformation of the millennial indigenous native Pacific Northeast. The Euro-American commercial and colonial settler Nineteenth Century historic real estate take-aways are especially concerning.   An area of special concern is how these interests, in combination, served to impact the on-going future of the Interior Salish tribes from what for millennia had been centered around sustainably well-managed indigenous native fishery cultures--and one in particular, at Shonitkwu [Kettle Falls] on the Upper Columbia River.  As the U.S. Army was drawn there as military police due to prospector gold mineral finds, the federal government's western expansion policy soon followed. By gravely diminishing millennial indigenous native territories in the "uncultivated" valleys surrounding these fishery falls, it created "mineral lands" for sale to Euro-American prospectors and subsequent mining interests as well as "public lands" for sale to pioneering settlers.  Creation of an arbitrary international border further separated the Interior Salish from the free roam of their millennial tribal territories.  Ultimately, the indigenous natives of the Upper Columbia were forced [for their "protection"] by military intervention to remove themselves from the farms and ranching enterprises they had successfully endeavored and adapted themselves to the Euro-American commercial culture.  Some seventy years later, in 1941, the completion of the Grand Coulee Dam committed the final troubling act by taking away the sustainable fishery and its iconic indigenous cultural heritage as the dam's blocked the seasonal fish migrations and its reservoir inundated the falls.  

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