Friday, July 29, 2005

Will The Real Duwamish Please Stand Up?

Hi All,

As some of you may know a lot of us have been having fun in a town called Duwamish.

The Duwamish we write about isn't real city, as some of you may know...however the Duwamish People are very real. I've enclosed a link so that you can meet them as well as their Chief, who's namesake is the city of Seattle.

In a way, he inspired my creation of a Werewolf named Kincross Benandanti, if you read to the bottom of this post you'll see that someone who grew up hearing about the Young Cheif Seattle was bound to be inspired by his bravery and daring.

SO PLEASE if you've enjoyed bringing our Duwamish to life, please please take the time to meet the Real Duwamish people and I hope that they will inspire you as they have inspired me.

Anita Marie

The Story of the Duwamish
Told by the Tribal Logo

The Killer Whale This represents the Duwamish people as they were sea oriented people

The Eagle (Dorsal Fin) The Eagle represents the high respect the Duwamish people had for it as the ruler of the sky, and the fact, that the main base for the Duwamish Tribe was in Renton. The Eagle represents the ruler of the sky

The Raven (Pectoral Fin) Clever and cunning, the Raven represents the knowledge and teachings of the Duwamish people

Tail Ovoid Represents the white man when he first came to the Puget Sound

Whale Eye Ovoid Represents the Duwamish Indian

Raven Eye Ovoid Represents the Duwamish and how they helped the white man from starving to death and how they took care of them for the first two years here in the Puget Sound. They taught the white man how to live and become self-sufficient.

Si'ahl’s leadership ( Seattle )

It is said that Si'ahl grew up speaking both the Dkhw’Duw’Absh and Dkhw’Suqw'Absh dialects of Lushootseed. Because Native descent was derived from both parent’s lineage, Si'ahl inherited his position as chief of the Dkhw’Duw’Absh Tribe from his maternal uncle. He built a strong alliance between the two Nations of his parents.

As a young warrior, Si'ahl was known for his courage, daring, and leadership in battle. In the 1820s, thirty years before European-American immigrants landed on the shores of Elliott Bay, local tribes waited uneasily for a threatened invasion. Rumors had reached Si'ahl that a large force of warriors from the White River tribes was on its way downriver to make a night attack on the Dkhw’Duw’Absh.

Si'ahl set up a night ambush at a strategic bend in the Black River, defeating over 100 warriors in 5 large war canoes. When word of the victory reached Old Man House, the important Suquamish longhouse on Agate Pass, a council of six tribes chose Si'ahl as the leader of a 6-tribe confederation in central Puget Sound. As leader of six local tribes of central Puget Sound, Chief Si'ahl continued the friendly relations with European-American immigrants that his father began in 1792.

Protector and Benefactor

By 1851, Chief Si'ahl was a venerable leader respected for his peaceful ways, not his prowess at war. Chief Si'ahl and other members of the Dkhw’Duw’Absh Nation greeted the first European-American immigrants when they arrived at Alki Point, near Duwamish Head in what is now West Seattle.


At 7:31 PM, Blogger Believer said...

Hi Anita,

I went to the site; it's very impressive. The Longhouse should be remarkable when it's finished. I'm glad you wrote and explained this.

I'm making two connections here--the movie Free Willy and the Indian who befriended the boy. Was he Duwamish? I keep seeing images in my head that say maybe.

In my library we have a book called Chief Seattle that has excerpts from his speech. It has exquisite illustrations by one of my favorite artists, Susan Jeffers. Have you seen it?


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