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Cowlitz Indian Tribe is like what Pine Ridge was in the 1970's but with no Rez.

The Cowlitz People are being run the same way Pine Ridge was run in the 1970's.
The Cowlitz Indian Tribe has allowed metis (non-cowlitz people of European dissent) to enroll in the tribe. Two very important pieces added to the constitution during the June 2000 General Council meeting to maintain council's control over general council. 1. Through a vote by general council, the requirement of 1/16 Cowlitz Blood was dropped so the chairman's son could maintain his set on council and allow other non Cowlitz Indians to maintain their sets too. Every tribe I have contacted keeps this requirement for council elections. 2. The enrollment of "metis" into the tribe to maintain control over the general body of the Cowlitz people was also adopted by those whom wish to keep this control over the Cowlitz People. This coming General Council meeting in November will cast a blow to at least 400 to maybe 600 Cowlitz Indians being banished from the tribe for no other reason than wanting keep tradition a live and well within Our Tribal Community. And, they all have Cowlitz Blood that is documented in "Robins Roll" of 1856. One of these tribal members ran for Tribal Chair this last June and lost out to the current chairman who is 100 per cent against the Environmental Groups ( he and his son own a timber company here in Washington State) by just 7 votes. The Chairman called in every vote he could get his hands on to maintain his position as tribal chairman. Certain members setting on council have given money to other tribal members to get votes for what the chairman puts forth before general council. Council has made deals with outside interests to gain money, land and traded out land in the Toledo area. One deal was made to remove an Ancestor from land owned by one out side interests and to this date council hasn't rein turned our Ancestor to Earth Mother. In one deal the outside party gave the tribe 43 acres but when council transferred this parcel into Cowlitz Community Foundation from Cowlitz Indian Tribe that parcel dropped in size to 25.28 acres known as the Bill Creek Property. (If you'd like, I can send the property descriptions if you request them) Next came the alteration of Bill Creek to make way for a bridge, than came an open pit rock query, then a locked gate that tribal members could not pass through. This month saw the county improving the road to the query and made it easier for the corn farmer to harvest his corn and use it to move the queried rock from the pit. (I have taken pictures of this and if anyone would copies and will send them out) Now for Tribal Housing and the Assistant who works for the tribe. She happens to be related to the party mentioned above. Here is where it starts getting into manipulating by out side parties. The Housing Assistant has access to any tribal members records, S.S. Numbers and the like (her uncle is the corn farmer who lives in Toledo) and if someone ends up being on the wrong side of this farmer things start happening to said tribal member from her office at St. Marry's (this place was paid for through HUD). Among the many things happening if someone was to upset this farmer, one might find out that they are no longer eligible for programs like the Elders, where one can go to receive a meal paid for through grants, but this farmer can come over to St. Marry's and receive a meal with out paying for it and have the full run of St. Marry's. Grant money to run tribal offices also pay the grantee out of this money, which could run from $1500.00 to say maybe $3500.00 a month, while the tribal office gets its cut too, leaving only a small amount to run the program the grantor gave the money for. If any one remembers what went on during the 1970's on the Pine Ridge Rez. , one could come up with the same kind of situation for the Cowlitz Tribe, where council is the dictator over General Council and if anyone tries to speak their mind, might find themselves excommunicated from the tribe for ever.

Where are your Facts? 29.Sep.2003 17:26

Voice of the Cowlitz

Where are your facts, Mr. Roth?

The only thing you are hoping to accomplish is to sow diseased seeds with your half-baked conspiracies. If anyone disagrees with you or you suffer some imagined slight, it must be a conspiracy, some great plan where everyone's making gains but keeping you out.

Please, for the sake of all concerned, do some research. I'm sure if you complain loudly enough someone will give you access to a computer that's not being monitored by the tribal council, but you know how long their reach extends. Then, you can show everyone some facts that back up your paranoid ramblings.

Graywolf is right 30.Sep.2003 23:30

Fed up Cowlitz member

What this graywolf says is not far off the mark. The Cowlitz Tribe is being run by a group that act like mobsters. You are in very deep trouble if you speak out against anything they do, and believe me, there is lots to speak out about. At the last meeting, the Chairman himself tried to get the general membership to make a law against discussing any tribal issues via email. One of his hit men made a speech condemning all that had done so. This goes against the Tribes own constitution, but it is backed up by a so called "Code of Ethics" which the leaders, not the general membership passed to keep people in line. If you accuse one of them of breaking these "codes' , they just say you have no case and throw you out. If they accuse you of breaking the "codes," you could very well be banned for 10 years just as they did with one member. The general membership has nothing to say about it. They are too scared to anyway. And speaking to your non-member wife or husband about any tribal matter is forbidden. So are emails. What country do they think they are in anyway? If someone who opposes them shows up at a meeting and has every right to be there, it doesn't stop the Chiefs son from throwing them out illegally. He has been using the County Sherriffs for this dirty work, but rumors are that they are getting pretty tired of it, also. There is a black cloud hanging over this Tribe until that leadership is overturned.

To Voice of the Cowlitz 30.Sep.2003 23:36

Fed up again

Are you going to call everyone who disagrees with this tribe's leadership "paranoid?" Can't you resect a person's views even if you don't agree with them? Why don't you just tell your version of things, instead of bad-mouthing anyone who disagrees with you?

I am Mary Kiona's Grand daughter I can not get enrolled in the Cowlitz 10.Dec.2003 01:56

Ruby James, Melvina Kiona's daughter lynnj143@hotmail.com

To Whom it May Concern,

I was counted in order for the Cowlitz tribe to be federally recognized in Tacoma, Washington. Now that they are recognized. I called for enrollments forms. I was told that my mother had to be enrolled in order for me to be enrolled. I am 55 years old. I am a direct decendant of MARY KIONA. I can not get enrolled.

10526 NE Klickitat St. Portland, Oregon 97220

enrollment 10.Apr.2004 17:02

Lisa S

My father, brother and I cannot get enrolled either. Something about this being in the constitution. I have to respect laws however, my dad and granddad were on the rolls but a fire swept out everything. we cannot get back on b/c NO ONE contacted us.
If anyone is interested in discussing this further or has the same problem please respond. Also about the people who are controlling this tribe, it seems very childish. I feel that the tribal coucil should have more respect for the rest of the people.
It's ashame that you should not treat people fairl,you are doing exactly what the WHITE men did to your ancestors.



KIONA & STELLA tita4real2003@yahoo.com

i am 11 years old and i am yakama& nisqually, cowlets. i am native american evrything has to have a number. but what about the lost native kids my age. who are desendents of family members. do we have rights to cliame that part of the native culture or is it just forgoten that we the children of the northwest native poeple.
those are words from a 11 year old young lady who has been trying to get enrolled with one of her tribes. but no one is acknowleging the lost children. she is for the native children. things must change due to then there will be no more tribal members as years go buy.

I am 1/16 Cowlitz 15.Oct.2004 16:10

Judith Abbott judiabbott@aol.com

I am a direct descendent of Veronica, daughter of Chief Scanewa, and was told in June 2000 that I could only be enrolled if my mother enrolled me. Since she had been dead for over 10 years this was impossible. Her youngest sister, Carolyn Moriarty enrolled herself and my cousins and told me so I could enroll. My aunt, and her sister Geraldine Degg, is in a state of denial and had declined to enroll her or her 3 sons. The fat that my mother is unable to enroll me makes me a disenfranchised member of the Cowlitz tribe and I wonder if there is any redress?

24 Dearborn Road, Sanbornton, NH 03269

COWLITZ 09.Jan.2005 17:18

Concerned About The Truth

Graywolf's comments are Not True. Richard has trouble sorting out his thoughts. I am familiar with what he says. Graywolf has it all twisted around and backwards. I believe he receives government assistance because of his type of thinking. Be kind. He does try and he does mean well.

As for enrollment, except for Kiona and Stella, those complaining were so concerned about our Tribe that they never attempted to enroll untill they smelled money.

Ruby James said she was counted for Federal Recognition, but now when she tries to enroll she can't. The problem with what she said is that to be counted one had to be already enrolled. And, if she had lived up to her responsibility she would have been enrolled.

Lisa S said no one contacted them. Well, if Lisa S really cared about our Tribe, she and her family would have been in contact with the Tribe. Fire or no fire. The people controlling the Tribe are those elected by majority vote. The Laws of our Tribe are also passed by a Majority of our Tribe. The shame is that Lisa S and her family did not care enough to be envolved with THEIR and my Tribe!

Not quite sure what to make of Kiona and Stella. She said she is Yakama, Nisqually, and Cowlitz. It seems that her parents let her down. Three excellent choices and her parents did not enroll her anywhere. I don't know what the rules are for the Yakama or the Nisqually enrollment. We parents have a responsibility to our children. Unfortunatly some times parents fall short.

Judith Abbott, I also am a direct descendent of Veronica. You have no excuse for not being enrolled! You are not enrolled because you Did Not Do IT!

The only one who has a bitch is Kiona and Stell. Her complaint is with her parents not with the Tribe


truth about enrollment 26.Jul.2005 13:09

Lisa S katya116@hotmail.com

To the last person who replied to me Lisa S.

I have just learned about three years ago that my grandfather was not on the rolls. Do not accuse me of not CARING. If I did not CARE I would not write. I have been doing my own research on the tribe and I have purchased and I am reading several books.

Apparently the fire that happened was long ago. No one knew that you could not get back on. Again I am just starting my research three years ago, I did contact the tribe. they said unless my dad or granddad was on the rolls no way could I be enrolled.

Please do not say that I do not care. You dont know me and that is not the truth. PEople write on this comment section b/c they care. For me I honestly did try to find out all the information I could.

If you think that there was something else that shoudl have been done I can respect that. Unfortunately no one knew at the time. I am sure we are not the only ones who were not contacted.

My father and his dad went to the tribe many years ago. They were not allowed to be enrolled AGAIN b/c there was no grandparnet on the rolls before. So they could do NOTHING.

those are the FACTS....

Enrollment woes 10.Sep.2005 00:44

anonymous jameszk29@hotmail.com

I too have an enrollment story that illustrates the Western realist paradigm consuming enrollment issues. The problem is quite simply a selfish desire to protect one's own interest. Many in Western society would say this is merely human nature. Enrollment for these people equals entitlement. To allow others access to that entitlement would necessarily diminish the value of that entitlement and thus diminishing their return on that entitlement. Entitlement does not necessarily mean monetary benefits, but cultural and societal legitimacy as well. I feel the outrage here lies in the total adoption of western thought and practice at the expense of traditional forms of reconciliation and tolerance. Though the federal government has provided the form for such selfish acts over the politics of identity many tribal councils have provided much of the content.

Cowlitz Casino 04.Dec.2005 11:30


Do you think the Cowlitz casino the leadership is trying to build will help the tribe or just help the leaders of the tribe?

helping one cowlitz helps the tribe! 03.Jan.2006 12:20

Susan Hadley currentfeet@yahoo.com

after reading so many negatives i feel a need to write something ...please bare with me. my husband is a cowlitz,his father registered him and his brother shortly after they were born has well as his sister that came along after his honorable father came home from vietnam. his father is gone now along with his older brother,,,which left his sister and him broken hearted,my husband has lived and worked for another tribe for many years at there bingo hall and then there casino,he has spoken for years of the hope and wish to some day work for his own tribe,,trust me when i say he has taken much ribbing and put downs from native brothers because he belived it would some day happen...he comes from a long line of honarable people and has maintained this honor in his belief in his tribe....so if this casino only helps him ,,,i would say it was worth all the time and enegry spent,,,all things human are flawed ,,i belive we serve each other better by supporting one another then ripping at the seams of a tattered cloth,,,,bless you all ,,,and thank you to the tribe for being there and staying alive.........Susan Hadley

p.o box 1672

only yourselves to blame 03.Jan.2006 13:58


You know, I find it very peculiar that the people who are complaining right now are not enrolled, you've had a long , long time to do this and get it figured out, i live far away and yet i took the time to enroll myself and each of my children, even before we were recognizwd as a tribe(fedrally), i did so because it is important to me to be a part of this tribe to say I belong with this family is a very big deal itself, so unlike some people whom are smelling money right now I am just proud to be in this tribe and hopefully be able to help take care of the elders who are the most important, don't forget you all will need someone to take care of you someday. HONOR AND RESPECT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

In respect to all Cowlitz 18.Feb.2006 15:28

Little Grizzly akrooster86@yahoo.com

I would like to remind all writers to this forum about the Cowlitz Tribe before the present time. The fact is we all use to share what we had with other members in good times and bad. Becuase of this past fact, the present ethics of the Tribe should be to share with all brothers and sister and respect all of the Great Spirits beings. Unfortunely, we have lost our way as a Tribe because of our loss of culture and the greed that western society has taught us. All we hear about is the Casino money and how rich the tribe will be. We will not be rich as a people until we do the things our ansestors did. We need to share our native langauge, stories, and most of all our past respect for all living things. If we begin to do these things, all things will become even in spirit, even if the leaders spirits do not, the Great Spirit will deal with them in their dreams and lives. Remembers, we our the healers, we our the medicine people, we are the ones who shall the future, we our the Cowlitz people of the greater nation.

I would like to share our real origin legend with you all in short form. "There were two sister looking into the night sky dreaming of the sky husbands in the sky. They decided to climb a cedar woven rope to the sky to be with the their sky husbands. They had relations with these husbands and returned to earth with the baby "Star Child" who all tribes on both sides of the Cascades Mountians come from. This legend varies from tribe to tribe and was retrieved from interviews on the Chealis Reservation in the late 1800s. Y

Follow members, whether enrolled or not, about enrollment, keep in mind that the Cowlitz(the real name of the tribe before Europeans gave us this name was something else) was and is a political organization formed in 1912 to further land claims. What is funny about enrollment is, to be Cowlitz or other European given names of multi-tribes you could come from many of the tribes in the Pacific Northwest. Why, because most of the tribes of the Pacific Northwest intermarried among the leadership families of ajioning tribes and had mulible wives in the process. Enrollment processes are made-up by a modern day critrea that may not reflect the true nature of the Tribe in the pasted. As an example, the Cowlitz, Nisiqally, Yakami, Chinook, Puyallup, Cayuse, Umatilla and others were all related through marriages. This is a well kept history of geanologies within reservation and non-reservation groups. Divide and conquer was the concept which is still going on through tribal enrollment processes through out Indian country.

Farewell Brothers and Sister and be of good heart. Dream big and your dreams will come true. We are all Brothers and Sisters in the eye of our Grandfather and our Mother Earth. Dream and pray for a change and a change will come in our collective heart.

Cowlitz has No enrollment according to the Lawer repersenting John Barnett 02.Mar.2006 07:23


I was at one of the meeting concerning the Cowlitz Tribe Casino that Mr. John Barnett wants to be put up in Clark County. During the meeting the question was asked to the Lawer How many Cowlitz are on the roll and what percent of blood line does the roll except. The answer was: The Colitz Tribe does not go by or have roll instead To be part of the Cowlitz Tribe it does not matter how much percentage you line is. One just has to prove a blood line to be part of the Tribe.
Blood line is something that is almost impossible to prove. The total of Cowlit Tribe members range from 1,200 to 35,000. No one really knows. There is one thing that is know the blood line of the Cowlitz in a person is not over 25% that is why the Tribe is excepting any Percentage of blood line. With out doing so the Colitz Tribe like many other Tribes will No longer be.
As for the Casino the reservation land is only going to be 150 acres to build a Casino on, Not for the betterment of the Cowlitz Tribe. Housing, education or history of the Tribe. Sorry.

Blood Lines 05.Mar.2006 13:41

Little Grizzly akrooster86@yahoo.com

In retrospect, Ada Deer during her time as the BIA Chief did away with blood percentages. She felt that in the future there would not be enough membership in given tribes to continue their membership forever. This does not excuse run away memberships for financial gains. Membership in tribes is currently in the Court concerning Minnesota tribes. The big problem with lax or unethical enrollment; is the fact that the American tax payers provide grants and other financial help to provide for housing, health care, economic development. Once tay payers get wind of tribes that are abusing the system by allowing unrealistic enrollment critreas all tribes will suffer. All tribes will suffer from one or more tribes abusing the system for kinship gains.

This is what should happen to stem the negative tide that will come. Write your Congressmen or Senators and let them know about unethical enrollment practises. In response, the government my have to step in and regulate tribal enrollments. The greatest threat under the current system used by the Cowlitz Tribe and others is that non-native membership could grow to untold thousands, thereby eroding fragile Indian Rights. Unfortunately, the undoing of Indian culture itself is at stake, because groups that use this method do not speak their native langauge, or know their real legends, or practise their heritage. The idea of having your own Nation is to retain your heritage not be further assimulated into western culture. True Native believe is of the circular nature whereby all actions taken help substain the future for all living things. However, the western model is of the linear prespective, whereby, all things are for the here and now because the end is in sight. We should choose the circular over the linear and retain our culture for the future.

Keep in mind, the Indian Bill of Rights passed in the late 1960s protects Indian Civil Rights. Accordingly, if your Human Rights are being violated under any grant programs or enrollment processes controlled by a tribe or you see violations taking place notify the FBI. The federal government police agencies are the only ones who have real juristriction over these issues. Remember local police ejecting bonified members from meetings on tribal lands is out of their authority and juristriction.

Money is not the answer to a broken hearted people!!!! We have all suffered at the hands of these oppressor before. Remember he said, follow me I know the way we should go. What happened? Now the rivers are dammed and do not flow, the native fish do not run, the air we should not breath, and the tree we can longer see.

All Natives of the circular belief should stand up and be counted. How do we do this? I never endorse violence and always thing praying and using peaceful non-violent methods such as Jesus Christ, Gandi, and Martin Luther King suggested are the way to a bloodless change. Peaceful protest in front of the tribal centers will bring media attention and public opinion will weigh in. The strongest message, in my opinion, we can send is through this non-violent means. I challenge all Natives of the circular belief to step forward and save our Nation from the hands of the linear western ways.

Keep praying, dancing, and singing in the old ways and we will raise again just as our Nation has under the Cowlitz a political name.

wow 11.Dec.2011 02:49


the farmer you are refering to happens to be my uncle...the employee you are talking about is my cusin...along with atleast a thousand cowlitz indians...you talk about those people wanting to keep traditions alive???????...were are they when me (lil skip geezie) of the cowlitz canoe family and my cusins are standing up infront of thousands of indians on the tribal journeys...i dont know who you think you are hommie...and what your tryin to prove...but i sugest you stop runnin your muttha fu**in mouth about my family!!!!!...i am a direct desendant of cheif scenewa...from veronicas line...let a muttha fu**a call me white...im down for minez boi...were are these " 400 to maybe 600 cowlitz indians being banished from the tribe for no other reason than wanting to (see u dont even put all of the words in punk)keep tradition a live and well within our tribal community"?????????????????cause im keepin it gangsta and they shure as hell wernt standing in swinomish when my voice along with a dozen of my kusins and about 20 others voices were heard loud and proud singing tha man dance song...and several other songs???????????...if those 400-600 mut**a fu**in tribal members who wanna keep tradition alive step up to tha plate and jam just once wit me and my kusins on journeys i will be suprised...and as far as your metis s**t goes...im a real life cowlitz indian who is tha same color as these metis people...let someone try and run their mouth to me ill knoc* em tha f**k o*t...i am tied by blood!!!!!! to both sides of your arguement...as a matter a fact if i hear any more of this non sence i will find you (im shure you are in prison) if you are who i think you are (make me catch a case to see you face to face)...i dont really care who tha f**k you think you are...im a real life cowlitz indian dawg...let someone step up and tell me my blood quantim iznt high enuff ill knock their teeth out...i dont appericate you runnin your mouth about my family...or about light skinded cowlitz...i am real life coast salish warrior...i know 300+ songs...there is no guys except for my little cusins,steve k,my kusins husband d.r.,josiah w,my lil kusin charlie,and a few others who have the testicular fortitude to stand up and sing cowlitz songs infront of others...and stand proud...you fukkin lil weird pretendian...say somephin and get knocked tha *uck out...ill give a punk my address,phone num...you can even add me on facebook if anybody wanna chat...but im down for minez...will defend me and minez to tha end...cause im tired of this sh*t...


Got the wrong Tribe 02.Jan.2013 20:38


It seems like the Grand Rhonde tribe is doing an audit of there enrollment and rummor has it that there is 2000 tribal members that are being audited. The problem being that when they were looking for tribal member they adopted non tribal members into the tribe. Some of the Tribal members being audited are in the tribal council. Look in the Smoke Signals dated 12/15/2012 under Chairperson comment saying the first phaze of audit completed and follow that story. I do not think degrading the Cowlitz Tribe is the right approach unless you are doing a smoke screen for the Grand Rhonde Tribe.