Tamastslikt Institute unveils new exhibit
PENDLETON, Ore. - The Tamastslikt Cultural Institute will unveil an exhibit
on tribal wild horse round-ups June 9, to run through July 23. Based on
historical accounts, in the 1800s the tribes in Oregon owned some of the
largest free-running horse herds in North America. At a time when the horse
was not only transportation but also a symbol of prestige and wealth, the
ancestors of today's members of the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla
Indian Reservation amassed huge herds. And annually, usually in the spring,
they rounded them up.
Relying on the memories of tribal elders and a few printed accounts to tell
the story, Tamastslikt's new exhibit, Wild Horse Round-Ups, also includes
family photos, horse regalia and other artifacts related to the horse
According to Marjorie Waheneka, exhibits manager for the cultural
institute, most of the 30 photos in the exhibit are from the 1940s. At
least one is from the well-known Howdyshell of Pendleton collection.
"The photos show Round-Ups up on Cabbage Hill and horse corrals up on
Telephone Ridge," said Waheneka. She added that "when the word got out in
the Confederated Umatilla Journal that we were looking, we got calls from
tribal members like Norman Conner, Ron Pond and Matt Johnson of
Howdyshell," said Waheneka. "It wasn't that hard to find the photos but
we're still looking for more."
Waheneka said that Tamastslikt is also looking for people who can recall
the brands of tribal members.
"We'll have a sheet up where people can make note of brands they remember.
Already, Louie Dick has been pretty helpful because he recalled several
brands," she said. She noted that Tamastslikt is also hoping visitors to
the exhibit will help identify the people in the photos, for those who are
In addition to the items from tribal members, the exhibit includes 21 items
- beadwork horse regalia and historical horse photos - contributed by the
Yakima Valley Museum of Yakima, Wash.
For more information, call (541) 966-9748 or visit www.tamastslikt.com.