November is National Native American Heritage Month, which honors and celebrates the history and culture of Native people.
The land that we now call Portland, Oregon rests on the traditional village sites of the Multnomah, Kathlamet, Clackamas, bands of the Chinook, Tualatin Kalapuya, Mollalah and many others who made their homes along the Columbia River. Multnomah is a band of Chinooks that lived in this area. We thank the descendants of these Tribes for being the original stewards and protectors of these lands since time immemorial. We acknowledge the ongoing systems of genocide, relocation and assimilation that still impact many Indigenous/Native American families and communities today.
A special thank you to the Portland State University Indigenous Nations Studies program for crafting this land acknowledgment.
Resources for learning more:
- Learn about Portland’s Native community from Travel Portland, in collaboration with 1000 Nations and the Oregon Native American Chamber.
- Learn about terminology from the National Museum of the American Indian. Whenever possible, refer to Native people by their specific tribal name. While Native American has been widely used in the United States, it is falling out of favor with some groups, and the terms American Indian or Indigenous American are often preferred.
- Tragically, Native women are murdered at rates 10 times the national average, and cases of missing and murdered Native women often do not get the same media coverage that white women do. Learn more from this interview with Abigail Echo-Hawk, chief research officer for the Seattle Indian Health Board and the director of the Urban Indian Health Institute.
- Learn more about Native American Heritage Month, including virtual events, here.
Want to support a Native-led organization? Our friends at Red Lodge Transition Services are participating in Give!Guide this year.