Confederated Tribes of Coos, Lower Umpqua and Siuslaw
Restoration Date: October 17, 1984
Number of Members: 953
Land Base Acreage: about 415 acres
Number of people employed by the Tribes: 542
Three Rivers Casino & Hotel, Ocean Dunes Golf Course, Restoration Forest Plan
Points of interest
Three Rivers Casino & Hotel; Salmon Ceremony held on the first Sunday in August at the Tribal Hall in Coos Bay; Annual Restoration Day celebrated on or about October 17 each year. The Confederated Tribes of Coos, Lower Umpqua and Siuslaw observe summer and winter solstices and sponsor seasonal events for hunting and gathering.
History and culture
The tribal people of western Oregon understood the land to be the Spirit expressing itself in the natural world. The people were connected to the land with certainty and gratitude. It sustained, nurtured and made life possible, while supporting all the spirits sharing this world. The tribal economy reflected the relationship of the Creator to the People. Acquiring objects of both aesthetic and utilitarian value was a measure of an individual’s wealth and status, yet acquisition was not an end in itself. The annual Potlatch became the setting for individuals to give their possessions to others, further mirroring the Creator’s relationship to the People. The spiritual act of gifting your earthly possessions to others remains a powerful personal experience and a statement of faith and trust.
The tribes administered laws with transparency and a focus on the collective rights of the people. Individualism at the expense of community was not tolerated. Victims of an offense participated in the forming of appropriate punishments in a public arena where justice and fairness were, like other decision making processes, a group affair.
By 1854, white settlers began taking Donation Land Claims around Coos Bay. In 1856, the U.S. Army forcibly removed the tribal people to the new 18,000 acre Great Coast Reservation established on a windswept spit on the north side of the mouth of the Umpqua River.
Tribal Judge J. D. Williams, 1245 Fulton Ave., Coos Bay 97420; 541-888-9577
Chief Warren A. Brainard (2020), Chairman Bob Garcia (2015), Beverly Bowen (2018), Vice-Chair Mark Ingersoll (2015), Teresa Spangler (2015), Arron McNutt (2018)