Tiller's Guide to Indian Country - First Edition

Idaho problems are referred to hospitals in attend the local public school system. Coeur D’Alene. Students Kootenai - Nez Perce allowed parties to venture eastward onto the Great Plains to hunt buffalo. Contact with the Lewis and Clark Expedition in 1805 precipitated an era of increasing contact with Euro-Americans. During the early Federal reservation Nez Perce Nez Perce, Clearwater, Idaho, Latah, and Lewis counties, Idaho Nez Perce Tribe of Idaho P.O. Box 305 Lapwai, Idaho (208) 843-2253 Fax: 843-7354 Total area 750,000 acres Tribally awned 85,248 Allotted 48,298 acres Federal trust 36,950 acres Non-Indian 664,752 acres Per capita income $6,102 High school graduate or higher 70.6% Bachelofs degree or higher education 07.1% Total labor farce 743 Unemployment rate 26.1% on-reservation Indian population 1,595 Total reservation population 16,159 Tribal enrollment 3,000 LOCATION AND IAND STATUS The Nez Perce Reservation covers approximately 750,000 acres in north-central Idaho and encompasses five counties. Several small towns are located within the boundaries of the reservation; Lapwai, on the reservation’s western edge, serves as the tribal headquarters and is home to the largest population of tribal members. Kamiah, on the reservation’s eastern boundary, contains the second highest concentration of tribal members and provides social services through the Wa A’Yas Community BuiLding. Other towns within the reservation, including Orofino, Kooskia, and Craigmont, are predominantly non-Indian. The Treaty of June 11, 1855 established a reservation of some 7.5 million acres. However, the United States reduced the size of the Nez Perce Reservation to 750,000 acres in 1863 after the discovery of gold in the region. Today about twelve per cent of the land within the reservation is owned by the Nez Perce Tribe or tribal members. CULTURE AND HISTORY The Nez Perce are a %haptian speaking tribe linked culturally and linguistically to other Northwestern tribes including the Yakama, Umatilla, KLickitat, and Wallawalla. The name “Nez Perce” (French for “pierced nose”) was given to the tribe by the Lewis and Clark Expedition in 1805; that the expedition applied this term to the tribe is curious as they did not traditionally practice nose piercing. The Nez Perce call themselves “Ni Mii Pu” meaning literally “The People.” Prior to the rnid-19th century, the Nez Perce roamed throughout the vast Columbia Basin practicing a subsistence pattern based on hunting, gathering, and fishing. The arrival of the horse during the early 18th century, substantially increased the tribe’s mobility and 338 19th century, the Nez Perce were drawn into the economic orbit of British and American fur trade companies operating in the Northwest. An influx of settlers in the mid-19th century touched off fighting between the United States Army and numerous Northwestern tribes, including the Nez Perce. The Nez Perce signed a treaty on June 11, 1855 which ceded several million acres to the United States and set aside 7.5 million acres for the tribe as a reservation. A second treaty signed in 1863 reduced the reservation’s size to 750,000 acres. Several Nez Perce bands refused to sign this treaty, most notably Chief Joseph’s Wallowa Valley band. Another treaty in 1868, in tandem with the Dawes Severalty Act of 1887, led to the allotment of the entire reservation and the eventual loss of most tribal lands to non-Indians. As with many other tribes, the Nez Perce have experienced a cultural renaissance during the past half century. A revival of traditional arts and crafts, dance, and religion has been ongoing since the 1940s. Today, the Nez Perce are involved in writing their own history and reviving the Nez Perce language. The tribe participates in the operation of the Nez Perce Cultural Museum at Spalding, Idaho where Nez Perce artisans sell cornhusk weaving, jewelry, and other crafts. The tribe currently operates several tribally owned businesses including a tribal store, Nez Perce Limestone Enterprise, and Nez Perce Forest Products Enterprise. The Nez Perce Tribe is also involved in ongoing negotiations over Snake River water rights to guarantee the future appropriation of water for on-reservation agriculture. GOVERNMENT The Nez Perce Tribal Executive Committee, a nine member body elected at large, manages economic development, tribal social service programs, natural resources, and tribal investments. Committee members serve three-year terms with elections occurring amually. The tribe rejected the provisions of the Indian Reorganization Act of 1934. The current constitution and bylaws were adopted on April 2, 1948. ECONOMY AGRICULTURE AND LIVESTOCK The tribe cultivates 37,639 acres of reservation land; wheat is the major crop. Other crops include barley, dry peas, lentils, canola, bluegrass seed, alfalfa, and hay. The tribe also raises some cattle and has an active program to revive the Appaloosa horse breed. ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT PROJECTS NezPerce Express I and 11are tribally owned convenience/grocery stores which the tribe plans to expand into larger commercial centers. The Aht’Way Commercial Plaza is currently under construction near Lewiston, Idaho. The tribe is also considering a proposal to establish a PET plastics recycling plant on or near the reservation. FORESTRY The Nez Perce Forest Resource Management Program manages 40,203 acres of tribally owned timber land, harvesting approximately 7,000 b’l13F annually on a sustained-yield basis. The forest is primarily composed of mixed conifers. The Nez Perce