Marker Logo HMdb.org THE HISTORICAL
MARKER DATABASE
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”

The Dalles in Wasco County, Oregon — The American West (Northwest)
 

Importance of Salmon

 
 
Importance of Salmon Marker image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, August 13, 2020
1. Importance of Salmon Marker
Inscription.  Assets of the Columbia River, from the Dalles east at the Long Narrows and Cielo Falls was the most productive fishing area in North America. The power of salmon in the lives of American Indians living along the Columbia River can not be overestimated. These people were the "salmon tribes" and, according to their legends, the salmon was the "chief of all fish."
Salmon is the subject of countless legends of Wasco, Wishram, Tenino, Klickitat and other people of the Dalles. Archaeologists, anthropologists, and ethnographers have solid evidence that salmon fishing dominated the lifestyle of the people of the mid-Columbia River. One village site yielded over 250,000 salmon remains that date back approximately 10,000 years.
"Each good fishing site on the myriad channels had a name, many of which conveyed information about how it was used such as sapawifalartpama ('for netting jumping fish'), tayxaypama ('for spearing fish'), qiyakawas ('gaffing place'), and swaycas ('long pole,' for long-handled dip nets), The rocks and islands were often named for the families that used them." -- Carolyn Gilman

As the Lewis and Clark expedition
Importance of Salmon Marker image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, August 13, 2020
2. Importance of Salmon Marker
passed down the Columbia, evidence of the central role that salmon played to the people of the Dalles was obvious. October 24, 1805, Clark writes in his journal "I counted 197 Stacks of dried pounded fish in different places on those rocks which must have contained 10,000 w(eight) of neet fish." That was just a fraction of the estimated 320,000 pounds of salmon produced annually for trade by the people of the Dalles.

April 19, 1806, on the return trip, Clark saw a first salmon ceremony. He writes. "There was great joy with the natives last night in consequence of the arrival of the Salmon; one of those fish was caught, this was the harbinger of good news to them... this fish was dressed and being divided into Small pieces was given to each Child in the village."
 
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: AnimalsAnthropology & ArchaeologyExplorationNative Americans. In addition, it is included in the Lewis & Clark Expedition series list.
 
Location. 45° 36.413′ N, 121° 11.277′ W. Marker is in The Dalles, Oregon, in Wasco County. Marker can be reached from West 1st Street near Union Street, on the right when traveling west. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 801 West 1st Street, The Dalles OR 97058, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of
Paid Advertisement
Click on the ad for more information.
Please report objectionable advertising to the Editor.
this marker. The White Man Legend (here, next to this marker); Trade Center for 10000 Years (here, next to this marker); The Lewis & Clark Expedition (a few steps from this marker); Rumor of Attack (a few steps from this marker); Establishing Rock Fort (a few steps from this marker); Archaeology of Lewis & Clark (a few steps from this marker); The Mill Creek Tunnel (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); St. Peter's Church (approx. 0.3 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in The Dalles.
 
More about this marker. This marker is located at Rock Fort.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on October 21, 2020. It was originally submitted on October 21, 2020, by Barry Swackhamer of Brentwood, California. This page has been viewed 32 times since then. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on October 21, 2020, by Barry Swackhamer of Brentwood, California.
Paid Advertisement
Mar. 1, 2021