Courtesy of the Chinook Indian Nation Facebook page.
But what the five tribes that make up the nation — Cathlamet, Clatsop, Lower Chinook, Wahkaikum and Willapa — don’t have are a treaty or a reservation. Since the late ‘70s, the nation has pushed for recognition, initially going through a decades-long process that saw the Bureau of Indian Affairs grant them recognition only to reverse its decision months later. The tribes have also attempted (with little success) to pass a bill through Congress granting them official status.
Now, Tribal Chairman Tony Johnson is taking a new approach. Every day for the last three months, he’s sent President Barack Obama a letter requesting clarification of tribal status via executive order.
- Tony Johnson: Tribal Chairman for the Chinook Indian Nation