The Salish People and the Lewis and Clark Expedition
On September 4, 1805, in the upper Bitterroot Valley of what is now western Montana, more than four hundred Salish people were encamped, pasturing horses, preparing for the fall bison hunt, and harvesting chokecherries as they had done for countless generations. As the Lewis and Clark Expedition ventured into the territory of a sovereign Native nation, the Salish met the strangers with hospitality and vital provisions while receiving comparatively little in return. For the first time, a Native American community offers an in-depth examination of the events and historical significance of its encounter with the Lewis and Clark Expedition. The Salish People and the Lewis and Clark Expedition is a startling departure from previous accounts of the Lewis and Clark Expedition. Rather than looking at Indian people within the context of the expedition, it examines the expedition within the context of tribal history. The arrival of non-Indians is therefore framed not as the beginning of the history of Montana or the West but as only a recent chapter in a far longer Native history. The result is a new understanding of the expedition and its place in the wider context of the history of Indian-white relations. Based on three decades of research and oral histories, this book presents tribal elders recounting the Salish encounter with Lewis and Clark. Richly illustrated, The Salish People and the Lewis and Clark Expedition not only sheds new light on the meaning of the expedition but also illuminates the people who greeted Lewis and Clark and, despite much of what followed, thrive in their homeland today.
be sure to READ the three star review
By Kevin McGowan "Linguist" - August 3, 2008
This book is an excellent introduction to the history and ways of Montana's Salish people. The previous (3 star!?!?!?) review took issue with the fact that the admittedly excellent book doesn't fit well on his coffee table or bookshelf. boo hoo! Set aside a special place for this wonderful volume full of interesting insights, history, and beautiful pictures.
The Salish People
By Barney Considine - April 10, 2006
Let me start by saying that I am pleased to own this book. An article published at the time of its release noted that it was the first of a series that the University of Nebraska is planning on American Indian tribes. If so, I will own the others as well. However, this is a book of contradictions, a fact that also complicates efforts to understand or review it. It is nicely illustrated in the style of a coffee table volume. Yet, its size and shape match few other books on my coffee table or book shelves. At first glance it looks as if it might end up on the coffee table, but the reader will find that it is much more. It is a serious cultural account of Salish history, with the tribe overseeing the content and drawing upon the elders for subject matter. The authors have inserted many phonetic representations of Salish words that, while fully explained, will interrupt the flow for casual readers. It is a mixed blessing that this book has attached itself to the Lewis and Clark... read more