Posts Tagged ‘buffalo hunt’
It’s been more than 100 years since members of the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation hunted buffalo.
Although treaty rights originally guaranteed the tribes access to buffalo hunts, the Oregon-based tribe recently finished walking a five-year road to reprove the right. The work was spurred by CTUI member Jim Marsh, who took his first bull last week Wallowa.com reports.
His journey over those five years was more than just the distance between Oregon and Montana. Marsh pushed to assert his tribe’s right, and became a part of the politics in the process.
“Every time Jim saw me over the last four years, it was, ‘So Carl, how’s the bison hunt coming?’” recalled Carl Scheeler, wildlife program manager for the CTUIR’s department of natural resources.
“Jim was very supportive and right there reminded me every time he saw me that it was important to him.”
Scheeler said the CTUIR looked at the buffalo picture as far back as the 1990s, when the board of trustees briefly considered having a domestic herd. It soon decided against that, in favor of subsistence and cultural hunting.
Of course, the tribes’ history with buffalo go back to ancient times. The Treaty of 1855, which set up the Umatilla Indian Reservation, ensured the right to hunt buffalo along with other traditional foods such as salmon, deer and elk.
“The 1855 treaty mentioned 24 times about buffalo,” Marsh said.
Getting Montana and other government agencies to recognize that right took years.
Thanks to Indigeneity for the link.