Native Americans

The Fish Wars: Fighting As Northwest Salmon Run Dry

Jan 23, 2014
Mural near the Fisherman's Cove Marina and Lummi Island Ferry on Lummi Nation.
KUOW Photo/Jeff Emtman

This is an excerpt from KUOW's "Sacred Catch" series. Explore the full series with additional audio, pictures and materials.

Hundreds of Indians climbed the cliffs at night and waited under the edge of the bluff for the first morning light.

'Schelangen,' But Also A Right

Jan 22, 2014
Jay Julius is a member of the Lummi Tribe and an outspoken defender of his people's fishing rights
EarthFix Photo/Katie Campbell

Back in the 1850s, the United States negotiated a series of five treaties with the coastal tribes living in what is now Washington state. The treaties secured a majority of the land for the state and broke the tribes up into reservations. But of less interest to early white settlers were water rights. Native Americans kept their right to fish along coastal waters. However, over the decades those rights have been disputed.

Before Salmon Was King, Before Salmon Was Greed

Jan 21, 2014
KUOW Photo/Jeff Emtman

The Salish Sea is a network of waterways that run from northwestern Washington to British Columbia. The waters of the Salish Sea are home to some of the richest marine life on the planet. The Lummi Tribe of Northern Washington rely on the abundance of these waters, but the fish have been in decline for the last century and a half.

Clean Slate For Tribal Fishing Rights Protesters?

Jan 15, 2014

Around 40 to 50 years ago, American Indians in Western Washington were repeatedly arrested during protests over treaty fishing rights.

Seattle 2013: A Year In Protest

Dec 30, 2013
Heather Villanueva

As we looked back on the last year, debating which stories to highlight here, we noticed a trend that surprised us: 2013 was a year of activism and protest in the Seattle area.

Flickr Photo/USFWS Pacific

Pacific lamprey were once a major staple in Northwest tribes’ diets. The oils were a source of nutrition. Babies used lamprey tails as teething rings.

Now, as numbers decline, lamprey only make it to the table during ceremonies or special occasions. Washington biologists hope to turn those numbers around and in doing so, may create the world's first lamprey hatchery.

KUOW Photo/Liz Jones

It's a frosty morning at the Nooksack tribal courthouse in Deming, Wash., and caution tape and tribal police block the entrance.

KUOW Photo/Liz Jones

Adelina Parker lets up on the gas as she drives through her childhood stomping grounds.

“Up there, that was all Filipino farmers and strawberry fields,” Parker says, motioning toward a school and apartments that occupy this land.

On December 6, 2013 at Town Hall in Seattle, reporter Ashley Ahearn moderated a discussion with Jay Julius, Lummi councilmember; and tribal law experts Mason Morisett and Knoll Lowney about an ongoing battle over a coal terminal, proposed to be built at Cherry Point, a sacred site for the Lummi.

A massive load of oil equipment is on its way to Canada, along a winding route that began near Hermiston, in northeast Oregon. 

EarthFix/KUOW Photo/Ashley Ahearn

Three summers ago, the company that hopes to build the largest coal terminal in North America failed to obtain the permits it needed before bulldozing more than four miles of roads and clearing more than nine acres. 

Flickr Photo/North Cascades National Park

Ross Reynolds interviews Robert Anderson, director of the Native American Law Center at the University of Washington, who explains why most Native American tribes in Washington are unlikely to allow the production, sale or use of recreational marijuana.

Imagine running power lines through a cathedral. That's how archaeologists describe what the Bonneville Power Administration proposes doing in the Columbia River Gorge in Washington state. The federal electricity provider is trying to string a new transmission line near a cave that contains ancient paintings, a site considered sacred by Native Americans.

Tribal casinos are trying to appeal to a new kind of customer – one who may not even gamble at all. 

Makah Filmmaker Fights Stereotypes One Story At A Time

Sep 20, 2013
Courtesy of Sandy Osawa

Sandy Osawa is a local filmmaker and a member of the Makah Tribe. She and her husband, Yasu Osawa, have been creating documentaries for four decades. They have produced more than 65 videos, including five PBS documentaries. But for the Osawas, this is not a business. It's a battle. They use film to fight society's images of American Indian people.

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