Yesteryears -- Feb. 1, 2024

01.31.2024 Sherron Lumley Yesteryears


2019 – Three Tribal members – Jackie Many Hides, Duke Kimsey and Jim Holmes – served as stand-ins for their parents, who were going to be memorialized in bronze for their contributions to the Grand Ronde Tribe’s Restoration. The three traveled to Portland’s 3-D Foundry to pose for 3D body scanning and digital remodeling for the bronze memorial “Visionaries.” It would pay tribute to the efforts of Tribal leaders Margaret Provost, Marvin Kimsey and Merle Holmes, who began working to restore the Grand Ronde Tribe in the early 1970s. After more than a decade of work, the Grand Ronde Reservation Act was signed into law on Nov. 22, 1983.

2014 – The ceremonial hunting season began with deer tags good for one month and the right to hunt the tags with a bow. Tribal members were entitled to new $25 gas vouchers for each harvest and a knife for all hunters who harvested their first animal. The knives had the Tribal logo and the year of the harvest on the blade.

2009 – The Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde received a $500,000 federal grant to expand the Health & Wellness Center dental clinic. The Department of Housing and Urban Development Indian Community Block Grant would help add six new dental chairs, two consultation rooms and three dental offices.

2004 –Tribal Elders who lived in Elder housing presented a Spirit Mountain Pendleton blanket and award to Tribal Elder Harvey Grout following the New Year’s Day storm. He was out every day throughout the weeklong ice and snowstorm, shoveling the sidewalks and driveways for those living in the Tribe’s Elder Housing development. “If it wasn’t for Harvey, I wouldn’t even be able to visit my next door neighbor,” Tribal Elder Anna Hannan said. Thanks to Grout, residents were able to pick up items including medicine and groceries. “I was raised to help others whenever I could,” he said. “It’s the Indian way.”

1999 –The grand opening celebration of Spirit Mountain Lodge included Tribal Council, community members and other guests who toured the inside of the lodge, casino and Hall of Legends. Tribal Council member Val Grout gave an opening blessing. Spirit Mountain Board of Directors Chairman Mike Larsen said it was a wonderful day for the Tribe and the community. “I want to give thanks to the people who gave us their support to build here,” Tribal Council Chair Kathryn Harrison said. “Not only our own people but the community as well. I hope when the future generations take over, they will have good things to say about us. Because then, we will be the ancestors.”

1994 – As the Tribe continued to grow, different departments adopted new programs or expanded existing ones. The Social Services Department enacted a program patterned after a state program to assist Tribal members in finding employment or developing skills to meet future goals. The Tribe applied for a grant to fund the program. “We offer help with career planning, extended schooling, retraining for a position nor working on getting a GED,” JOBS Coordinator Carmen Mercier said. “Whatever barriers a client is facing, I help that person work through them one step at a time.”

1989 – The Tribe held an open house for its new youth treatment center in Keizer, Nanitch Sahalie. The facility would be used as a youth residential treatment center for American Indian youth in the Pacific Northwest who needed substance use disorder care. The Tribe worked with Indian Health Service, Bureau of Indian Affairs, Rep. Les AuCoin, Sen. Mark Hatfield, Northwest Portland Area Indian Health Board and other Oregon Tribes in planning the treatment center. Tribal Chairman Mark Mercier provided opening comments and approximately 100 visitors attended the open house.


Yesteryears is a look back at Tribal history in five-year increments through the pages of Smoke Signals.