Homeland of the Cow Creeks Historic Marker

This portion of the southwest Oregon is the homeland of the Cow Creek Band of Umpqua Indians.  They thrived here for thousands of years before contact with Euro-Americans.  Living in plank-house villages, they followed a seasonal round of resource use.  Moving from summer camas meadows and salmon fisheries along the rivers to the high country, they picked huckleberries and hunted for deer in the fall.  By late fall they returned to the valleys to collect acorns and prepare for winter.

The area became a source of contention when Euro Americans arrived. Despite a treaty with the U.S. government – one of Oregon’s first – clearly defining boundaries of their homelands, a federal program of Indian removal attempted to forcibly remove the Cow Creeks to reservations in northwest Oregon.  Many members eluded capture by hiding in remote parts of the region – seven core families maintained a continuous presence in the area.  The U.S. government ceased pursuing them by the 1870s, and tribal families began gradually returning.

Get more information on this area from TravelOregon.com

National Geographic