Quileute Tribal Council

Quileute Tribal CouncilThe Quileute, also known as Quillayute, is a Amerindian people in westerly Washington state in the United States, presently numbering around 750. The Quileute people settled onto the Quileute Indian Reservation after signing the Treaty of Quinault River of 1855, later reauthorized as the Treaty of Olympia in 1856. It’s located near the southwesterly corner of Clallam County, Washington at the mouth of the Quillayute River on the Pacific coast. The reservation’s primary population center is the community of La Push, Washington. The 2000 census accounted  the official resident population of 371 citizenry on the reservation, which has a acreage of  1,003.4 acres. They have their own governing Tribal  council inside of the United States.

The   Quileute Tribal Council is the governance of the Quileute Tribe, per Article III of its establishment. It consists of five elected members, each of whom serves staggered three-year terms. From inside, the elected members select a Chair, a Vice-Chair, a Secretary, and a Treasurer. Other officers and committees can be appointed as required. Council seats up for election are voted upon in a General Council meeting of enrolled members, each January. In addition to the Constitution, by-laws and ordinances the council render further focus on tribal government. The Quileute Tribe is a federally acknowledged Indian Tribe of 700 listed members (as of 3/1/2005). Headquarters are in La Push, Washington.

Government In 1936 the tribe adopted a constitution and bylaws. The governing body of the tribe is the council.  The authority  the tribal council has is the power to veto any sales, disposition, lease, or other encumbrance of tribal property. They also have the authority to notify on and approve of appropriations: to levy and collect taxes and license fees from nonmembers performing business on reservation; to enforce ordinances related to visitors, trespassers, and tribal memberships; to establish tribal court and to conserve law and order. For the lands ceded under the Quinault River Treaty the Quinault, Queet Indians, they and the Hohs all received $25,000 as specified by the treaty. The four tribes claimed this to be unconscionably low. The Indian Claims Commission decided that all four tribes had 688,000 acres as of March 8, 1858. On April 17, 1963 the Quileutes and Hohs were awarded $112,152.60 for their share. The people make a living by sportfishing and lumbering. The 593.84 acres of trust land is tribally owned.

The current tribal council comprises of: Chair, Carol Hatch, Vice-Chair, Tony Foster, DeAnna Hobson, Secretary, and Anna Rose Counsell, Treasurer.

Facts about the Tribe

  • The council is in the Hotels and Motels industry in LA PUSH, WA. This company presently has around 50 to 100 employees and yearly sales of $25,000,000 to $74,999,999.
  • The Quileute tribe linguistically belongs to the Chimakuan family of languages amongst Northwest Coast indigenous peoples. The Quileute speech is one of a kind, as the only kindred aboriginal people to the Quileute, the Chemakum, were annihilated by Chief Seattle and the Suquamish people during the 1860s. The Quileute language is one of only five known languages not to have any nasal sounds (i.e., m, n).
  • Like several Northwest Coast indians, in pre-Colonial times the Quileute relied on fishing from local rivers and the Pacific Ocean for food and built plank houses (longhouses) to protect themselves from the rough, wet winters west of the Cascade Mountains. The Quileutes, along with the Makah people, were one time great whalers.
  • The opinions of the Quileute People have changed over time. They in the beginning were a very spiritual people. The boys would go on pursuits to find their supernatural power once they arrived at puberty, if they wanted to. They’d perform the first salmon ceremony to guarantee a good season.
  • They thought that each person had their own guardian and they’d pray to it, along with the sun and Tsikáti (the universe). A great deal of their original religion was lost and forgotten after the Europeans arrived. James Island, an island visible from First Beach, has played a role in all aspects of Quileute beliefs and culture. Originally named “A-Ka-Lat” (“Top of the Rock”), it was employed as a fort to keep opposing tribes out and served as a cemetery for chiefs.
  • Contrary to  many easterly tribes, groups of Native Americans on the Southwest Coast had classes that were based on ownership and property, which was very different from the rest of the continent. It is ordinarily schooled and was commonly believed among many groups of native people that you couldn’t possess land and that things were shared out. In the Northwest Coast region, and within the Quileute tribe, there was a immense emphasis placed on ownerships. In the Quileute culture it was conceivable for families to own dances, songs, and a range of other nonphysical items . An example of the focus on wealth is the Quileute word “?á·čit.” It has three meanings, the first is chief, and the other two are ‘head of the family’ and ‘wealthy.’ It was also conceivable to own the rights to fishing in certain places and the rights to tell people they couldn’t fish there. Besides owning land, rights, songs, and dances, the Quileute also owned slaves. This was common in the area, there was even a slave trade in the Pacific Northwest, but the Quileute people weren’t directly affiliated. The Quileutes, and many of their adjoining tribes were a part of the Potlatch culture. Potlatches were common amongst the tribes of the Northwest region. Potlatches were a ceremonial way for tribal leaders to essentially “one-up” each other and a means of redistributing wealth. The word “Potlatch” is a deviation of the Chinook word patshatl which means “giving. ” During the ceremonial occasion the potlatch giver will toss worldly possessions into a fire to demonstrate how much he has. His willingness to burn up the valuable objects displayed how little he needs them. A common item to burn was a part of a copper (a valuable family heirloom). Another usual occurrence at a potlatch was to kill or free slaves . After the burning of wealth, the potlatch giver would give gifts to the attendees who he would insult while awarding them with gifts. They would be required to pay him back double at their next Potlatch. The potlatch culture peaked in the 1700s, since that is when the Europeans started to arrive, and the old ways began to change, causing much of this fascinating history to be forgotten.

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