Cultural Resources Management Program
Pacific Region / California & Nevada Region
Highlights of Cultural Heritage- WASHINGTON

Conboy Lake NWR: The Cultural History of the Camas Prairie dates back long before Euro-Americans moved into the area. Klickitat and Yakama people gathered every year on the lake shore to harvest camas and to fish.

Whitcomb-Cole Hewn Log House is one of the oldest standing examples of pioneer log architecture in Klickitat County. Top

Nisqually NWR: The Refuge is located on a portion of the Nisqually Delta that was a traditional council ground for the Nisqually Indians. From December 24-26, 1854, the historic Medicine Creek Treaty Council was held beneath the "treaty trees" on the east side of the former course of what is now called McAllister Creek, at a location which appears to have been mostly buried under I-5 when it was constructed in the 1960s.

Euroamerican settlement of the Nisqually Delta began in the 1830s and 40s. Fruit trees scattered around the Refuge are all that remain of these homesteads. In the early 1900s, A.L. Brown built a 4-mile dike around the delta for large-scale farming operations. Today the dike is a prominent landscape feature of the Refuge, as is the apple orchard near the visitor center. Top

Ridgefield NWR : Cathlapotle is an ancient Chinookan town site on the banks of the Columbia River. Lewis and Clark described the town on their trip down the river in November, 1805, stopping to visit the people of Cathlapotle on their way back up river in March 1806. They recorded 14 cedar plank houses and estimated over 900 inhabitants, making it one of the largest native towns on the Columbia River. The site's historic legacy continues into the 1830s, as other Northwest Tribes such as the Salish-speaking Cowlitz and Sahaptin-speaking Klickitat moved into the houses on the riverbanks. In the 1850s, Euro-American settlers moved into the area and the houses were permanently abandoned.

Wapato Portage is one of the oldest known prehistoric sites on the lower Columbia River, dating to at least 2300 years ago. It was also a camp site of the Lewis and Clark Expedition in March, 1806. Clark's description of Cathlapotle women loading wapato into their canoes and portaging them from what is now Carty Lake across the site into Lake River was the inspiration for the modern name of the site. Top


Last updated: December 20, 2012

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