Steelhead Trout
Umatilla Website

Umatilla Flag

The Umatilla Tribe


The main food source of the Umatilla was fish, usually being salmon, steelhead trout, eel, and sturgeon. Men fished while the woman gathered cammas roots, potatoes, carrots, acorns, and other nuts and berries. The Umatilla also ate wild game including deer, elk, mountain sheep, bear, antelope, wolf, fox, and cougar. In the later years the Umatilla also feasted on buffalo.

The Umatilla favored winter homes called longhouses to be their shelter of choice. These were often built along the Columbian river. They were sometimes as long as 80 feet. They were formed from dry mats over a pole frame. These winter lodges could house many families, villages wouldaloe contain around five or six of them. The Umatilla would have portable mat teepees upon gatherings and buffaloe hunting trips. The teepees were not made of buffalo skins because their supply was not as high as the plains tribes.

The clothing of this tribe were usually robes, vests, and aprons, all were made from animal fur or skin, and women made basket-shaped hats, which were woven from fur.


The Umatilla owned a pluthera amount of horses. The grass was perfect for the horses. Mobility was imroved by the coming of horse. The Umatilla used horses to move from place to place. For their new living quarters they had fifteen thousand to twenty thousand horses

The people of Umatilla were skilled with their artwork. The women were well known for their beadwork, they decorated bags, baskets, and created children's dancing costumes with geometric designs. The men of the tribe printed their robes and war shields with pictures and scenes of their brave
Umatilla Beadwork
deeds. They would also do regalia sewing, which was fancy clothing or symbols that showed that they were of high rank. Through their artwork they would also obtain another desire, which was to preserve their tribe and culture, they did this through making beadwork, totems, baskets, and paintings.

The Kwakiutl Tribe Needs

The area of the Kwakiutl was great for fishing, since they had deep, cold, murky waters. They probably traveled a short distance for hunting on dry land. They hunted with a bow and arrow. With them, they hunted black bears, grizzly bears, and wolves. But, most of the tribe depended on the fishing for food and supplies for living.They had a variety and an abundance of fish and other sea foods, like mammals: porposes, seals, sea lions, sea otters, whales, sea birds and other sea fowl. Also, they ate mullosks: clams, muscles, oysters, limpets, aldone, crabs, octobus, squid and sea urchins. Eggs from sea gulls and puffins also made delightful meals for them. The most important food was five species of Pacific salmon. Salmon was the staple food.

Summer villaiges were built near prime fishing spots. This was both along the coast and up river. It was composed of small wooden cabins for temporary use. They were rectangular with long, sloping, or flat roof. Winter villaiges were built in sheltered locations that offered protection from high winter tides and fierce storms from the Pacific Ocean. These villaiges consisted of large houses, sometimes elevated on stilts to escape tides. But all homes had doorways facing the beach and ocean. In steep areas, platforms were built to support the homes. Boardwalks were layed around the entire villaige, in front of houses. The wooden winter homes were made first by frames. Building them took a lot of cooperative efforts. The houses were around 10ft wide, 100ft long and 20ft high. Three posts were put up in the front of the home, three in the center and three in the back. Heavy horizontal beams ran across the axis. Smaller beams ran perpendicular. Frame rafters lashed to beams overlapped with planks and shingles. Walls and roof were structurally separate and could be removed to allow light and ventilation into the home.

The Kwakiutl had a certain way to dress. Mats for floors were also used as clothing. During cold, wet, weather, warm and water resistant clothing was manditory. The most common of the dress was a garment like a cedar bark cape or cloak, or blanket. The wearer had to wrap this bit of clothing around his or her body. There were many varieties of doing this, and they were then tied or pinned shut. Cedar bark was sometimes woven together with wool of a mountain goat. Also, the tribe raised wooly dogs for the purpose of the thick coats. The clothing was then rubbed in fish oil, to increase water resistance.


Fur: In exchange for European goods, indian hunters delivered pelts to foreign traders. Some pelts were of otters, beavers, and foxes

(this was done by galaxy girls)