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Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes

The Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes are located on the Flathead Reservation in western Montana.

Bull Trout's Gift
Format: Hardcover
Text Content Territories: Indigenous American; Native American; Kootenai; Salish;
Grade Levels: 2; 3; 4; 5; 6;

"We were wealthy from the water," Mitch Smallsalmon says, and like all the tribal elders, he speaks to our understanding of the natural world and the consequences of change. In this book the wisdom of the elders is passed on to the young as the story of the Jocko River, the home of the bull trout, unfolds for a group of schoolchildren on a field trip.

The Jocko River flows through the Flathead Indian Reservation in northwestern Montana. For thousands of years the Salish and Pend d’Oreille Indians lived along its banks, finding food and medicine in its plants and fish, and in the game hunted on its floodplain. Readers of this story will learn, along with the students of Ms. Howlett's class, about the history and culture of the river and its meaning in Native life, tradition, and religion. They will also discover the scientific background and social importance behind the Tribes' efforts to restore the bull trout to its home waters.

Beautifully illustrated and narrated in the tradition of the Salish and Kootenai Tribes, this account of conservation as the legacy of one generation to the next is about being good to the land that has been good to us. Bull Trout's Gift is steeped in the culture, history, and science that our children must know if they hope to transform past wisdom into future good.

Educator Information
Ages 8 - 12.

Authentic Indigenous Text
Authentic Indigenous Artwork
$32.95

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The Salish People and the Lewis and Clark Expedition
Format: Paperback
Text Content Territories: Indigenous American; Native American; Salish;

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 their encounter with the Lewis and Clark expedition. The result is a new understanding of the expedition and its place in the wider context of U.S. history. Through oral histories and other materials, Salish elders recount the details of the Salish encounter with Lewis and Clark: their difficulty communicating with the strangers through multiple interpreters and consequent misunderstanding of the expedition’s invasionary purpose, their discussions about whether to welcome or wipe out the newcomers, their puzzlement over the black skin of the slave York, and their decision to extend traditional tribal hospitality and gifts to the guests.

What makes The Salish People and the Lewis and Clark Expedition a startling departure from previous accounts of the Lewis and Clark expedition is how it depicts the arrival of non-Indians—not as the beginning of history, but as another chapter in a long tribal history. Much of this book focuses on the ancient cultural landscape and history that had already shaped the region for millennia before the arrival of Lewis and Clark. The elders begin their vivid portrait of the Salish world by sharing creation stories and their traditional cycle of life. The book then takes readers on a cultural tour of the Native trails that the expedition followed. With tribal elders as our guides, we now learn of the Salish cultural landscape that was invisible to Lewis and Clark.

The Salish People and the Lewis and Clark Expedition also portrays with new clarity the profound upheaval of the Native world in the century before the expedition's arrival, as tribes in the region were introduced to horses, European diseases, and firearms. The arrival of Lewis and Clark marked the beginning of a heightened level of conflict and loss, and the book details the history that followed the expedition: the opening of Salish territory to the fur trade; the arrival of Jesuit missionaries; the establishment of Indian reservations, the non-Indian development of western Montana; and, more recently, the revival and strengthening of tribal sovereignty and culture.

Conveyed by tribal recollections and 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.

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$37.50

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Beaver Steals Fire: A Salish Coyote Story
Format: Paperback
Text Content Territories: Indigenous American; Native American; Salish;
Grade Levels: Kindergarten; 1; 2; 3;

A long time ago, fire belonged only to the animals in the land above, not to those on the earth below. Curlew, keeper of the sky world, guarded fire and kept it from the earth. Coyote, however, devised a clever plan to steal fire, aided by Grizzly Bear, Wren, Snake, Frog, Eagle, and Beaver. These brave and resourceful animal beings raided the land above and risked all to steal fire from Curlew.
 
Beaver Steals Fire is an ancient and powerful tale springing from the hearts and experiences of the Salish people of Montana. Steeped in the rich and culturally vital storytelling tradition of the tribe, this tale teaches both respect for fire and awareness of its significance, themes particularly relevant today.
 
This unforgettable version of the story is told by Salish elder Johnny Arlee and beautifully illustrated by tribal artist Sam Sandoval.
 
Reviews
"Beaver Steals Fire: A Salish Coyote Story is a picture book rendition of a story directly from the cultural tradition of the Salish people of Montana. Retold by Salish elder Johnny Arlee, and wonderfully illustrated in full color by tribal artist Sam Sandoval, Beaver Steals Fire recounts how the animals worked together to obtain fire and help prepare the world for inhabitation by human beings. Beaver Steals Fire is presented with the full support of The Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribal Division of Fire; a note to the reader at the beginning asks those who use Beaver Steals Fire in the classroom or others who read it aloud to orally tell or discuss the story only in winter, when snow is on the ground, as this is a strongly ingrained part of tribal seasonal tradition. A beautifully presented legend, highly recommended." — Children's Bookwatch, February 2006

Additional Information
64 pages | 7.50" x 10.00"

Authentic Indigenous Text
Authentic Indigenous Artwork
$22.50

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