The Makah and Nez Perce Tribes

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Makah tribe symbol
Makah tribe symbol
Nez Perce Tribe Flag
Nez Perce Tribe Flag


Introduction

The Makah and Nez Perce tribes were two very unique tribes of washington. These tribes, like every other growing comunity, had their needs, wants, values, and beliefs, and their own ways to meet their needs and wants, while following rituals, and customes.

Locations:

The Makah and Nez Perce Native Americans were two very important Indian tribes of Washington State. Each tribe lived on opposite regions of Washington, the Makah, living in the coastal region, meaning, western Washington, and the Nez Perce, in the Platuea region, meaning Eastern washington.

Makah

  • Food
external image 871098822_15c874724d.jpgBeing one of the most impotant needs of the Makah tribe, food, was found by gathering, and hunting. The men would organize groups to hunt. the way the organized was that, if a certain number of people where good at aiming, the cheif would tell them to shoot aminals like rabits, or other small animals. The center piece of the makah diet were sea mammals. Some of these being, slamon, halibut, birds, various fish, shrimp, small octopues, worms, snails, and crabs. Along with that, they also ate things like berries, and roots.

  • Clothing:

external image makah1.gifIn general, both men and women wore ceder woven into capes, and skirts. Ceder bark was also used for hats, shirts, or jewelery. Other material was Cattail fluff. If a tribe member was rich, or very respected, they had clothing made from animal fur. In rainy weather, they wore cone shaped hats, and bear-skinned robes.

Shelter:

external image fyrkatLongHouseExpExterior.jpg The Makah people met their shelter needs by building things called longhouses. Longhouses were made from wood that was stacked in a cris-cross style in order to form the walls. The roof was held down with rocks. The wood was stacked in a way, that it could be taked off, to use for other things, or to make a hole in the roof for smoke to get out

Culture:
external image whales.jpgCulture was a very impotant want of the Makah people. The main part that is known to many is the Whale. To hunt the whale was to bring honor upon yourself. People cared for the whale as they cared for their own young. Whaling was banned from the Makah people for more than 70 years, recently, in 1999, they got the right back to whale, and it was caught on tape. The video also shares about the value of the whale to the makah people, and not only the harpooner's connection to it, but the harpooner's family's connection as well. For example, if a whale hunt is going on, then the harpooner's wife must stay still. It was said that if the wife moved, then the whale would also be moving, and that would be dangerous.



Transportation:
external image green-canoe-1-large.jpgTo meet the want of transportation, the Makah people used canoes. Builing these canoes was a speciality of the makah people. The way canoes were made, was that a log was cut in half, hollowed out, then warmed with hot rocks, and molded into a boat-like shape. Canoes were often about 12 feet long.
Totem Poles
Totem poles where very important to coastal culture, because they showed family history, and told many miths and stories. They were built from the ceder tree, and each one was (of course) hand carved with care. Totem poles oalso told the history of that particular tribe. They were just like a mini history book.
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Nez Perce:


  1. Food:
external image pyracantha-berries.jpgThe Nez perce people quenched their need for food by hunting for game such as deer, elk, bears, or any other animal that they could find. In the spring, they disperced, and gathered berries, roots, plants, and other edibles. Of course, to hunt, they needed things like guns. which they got from trading other goods such as blankets, and jewelery.
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Shelter:
Teepee
Teepee
To meet their shelter needs, the Nez Perce people built Teepees. They were easy to move around, and to rebuild anywhere. This was important, because the nez perce people were nomads; which meant that they had to move around, and not live in the same place in order to meet their needs and wants. Teepees were made from animal skins, and grasses.


Culture
Culture was a very essential (not nessecerily a need) part of nez perce life. They had many customs, including one called the WEeyekin system, which was done by a child going into adulthood. The way the final step was acheived was that a child must have obtained through some sort of childhood spirit guardian, inheritance, dreams, life crisis, or incidental contact with the spirit world. The child must also go through a dream-state, or a altered state.
Transprotation:
external image man-o-war.jpg Being a nomadic tribe, another nez perce want was transportation. Unlike coastal tribes, the nez perce people used horses, which they treated as their prized possesions at times. The horses would pull the teepees, as well as having an elder of someone sick ride upon them. The nez Perce people obtained horses by trading fur and jewelery for horses with the europeans that came.

Credits:

  • Native American Tribes Volume 3 and 4 by Anna Sheets, Sharon Malinowski, and Linda Shmittroth
  • Makah Cultural Research Center
  • www.Makah.com
  • Elibrary.com artical, by Allen Slickpoo
  • Macmillian reference, by the Gale group. Bookrags.com
  • All images found through google.com