Fort Vancouver Locality ..... 200

Umpqua Valley Locality ..... 800

Cape Disappointment Locality ..... 100

Chinook Point Locality ..... 100

Coweeman on Columbia Locality ..... 100

Champoeg on Willamette Locality ..... 150

Nisqually Puget Sound Locality ..... 500

Cowlitz County Valley Locality ..... 250

Fort Colville, Upper Columbia Locality ..... 800

Pend d'Oreille, Idaho, Locality ..... 400

Flatheads, Bitter Root Valley Locality ..... 500

Kootenais - Kootenai river, Idaho, Locality ..... 500

Okanogan, Upper Columbia Locality ..... 300

Walla Wallas, Walla Walla Valley Locality ..... 300

Fort Hall - Eastern Idaho Locality ..... 200

Fort Boise, Boise Valley Locality ..... 200

Fort Victoria, Vancouver Island Locality ..... 5,000

Fort Rupert, Vancouver Island Locality ..... 4,000

Nanaimo, Vancouver Island Locality ..... 3,000

Fort Langley, Fraser River Locality ..... 4,000

Fort Simpson, N.W. Coast Locality ..... 10,000

Kamloops, Upper Columbia, B.C., Locality ..... 2,000

TOTAL: ..... 33,400

In a population of this size there must have been five or six thousand fighting men. But there was no organization, no co-operation, and scarcely sympathy of one tribe with another. One tribe might rally a few hundred at one time for a single battle to rob a party of white men or attack a ship. Their weakness was pitiful. And so the white traders and trappers ranged the vast county over with scarcely a noticeable resistence; the massacre of the Smith party on the Umpqua and of the crew of the Tonquin at Clayoquot being the only example of concerted action of the natives to destroy the white men. And after the Indian had learned the use of firearms, combinations of tribes to resist the aggression of the white man was formed, as in the case of the Rogue River Indian war, the Yakima war, and the memorable resistence of Chief Joseph in his effort to retain the ancient home of his family in the Wallowa Valley. [An account of the Indian wars will be given in the order of time of occurrence in another chapter].

Probably the most effective agency to get access to the Indian mind, and to unify their relations to the white settlers and promote trade, pearce and good fellowship with all the tribes was the invention and construction of the "Jargon" or "Chinook" language. Of all the spoken languages in America or in the world the "Jargon" is the most unique. Its origin is not definitely known. When Lewis and Clark reached the mouth of the Columbia river in 1805, they found the "Jargon" in use among the Indians at that point. It is supposed to have been originated by the first voyagers to the Oregon coast in search of furs and was added to from time to time by Indians, travelers and fur traders. It contains some real Indian words of the Wasco tribe, and some corrupted French and English words, but most of it is pure fiction. Some of the words have gone into general use among the pioneer Oregonians and have got into good company with people who prefer forcible languages, for instance the word "cultus" meaning utterly worthless, irreclaimably bad.

Return to Oregon Centennial History Index
Return to "A Place Called Oregon"