Yesteryears - May 15, 2023

05.16.2024 Yesteryears


2019 – A First Fish Ceremony was held at Tribal plankhouse achaf-hammi. The Chinook salmon was caught the day before the ceremony by the Tribal fishermen at Willamette Falls who used a dipnet while standing on a 30-foot-high platform above the water. It took two days to catch the first fish.

2014 – A groundbreaking was held for the Chxi Musam Illihi apartment complex. The 20-unit apartment complex was the Tribe’s sixth housing development. It was built across from the Tribe’s existing family housing and was a response to a long waiting list of individuals and couples seeking family housing.  

2009 – Tribal member Bryan Mercier was hired as the Tribal Account Executive for Tribal Affairs at the Bonneville Power Administration. He acted as liaison between the BPA and Indian communities and advised the agency on Tribal issues.

2004 – Tribal Engineer Eric Scott gave a report at the May General Council meeting. Included in the report was a look at some of the major projects completed in 2003. These included the Spirit Mountain Water Treatment facility, Grand Ronde Station and convenience store, new RV and valet parking lots, the Yoncalla Creek bridge replacement that opened up two more miles to migrating salmon, the Rogue River bridge replacement, a Natural Resources equipment shed, and the Fort Yamhill access road and bridge design.

1999 – The last General Council meeting before the summer hiatus took place. It was the first meeting held in the new Tribal Governance Center and more than 136 people were in attendance. The agenda was Tribal Council nominations for three positions with 17 people nominated.

1994 – The Tribe was seeking applications for a cultural heritage recovery director. The director would design and implement a comprehensive cultural heritage recovery program for the Tribe. The program would include developing a Tribal museum and cultural center, collections repatriation and management, oral history and ethnohistory research, public education and interpretive programs, exhibits and publications, and developing ties with government, academic and private organizations.

1989 – Willamina Title IV Elementary School students Nick Bailey, Ronaele Loomis, Mickey Jones and Manning Mercier completed 10 weeks of Chinuk Wawa classes. The students completed the classes with presentations to other elementary students and a special presentation to Grand Ronde Elders. The class was taught by Eula Petite.

1984 – The second annual Native American Finance Officers Association Conference was held in San Francisco. Attendees from Grand Ronde included Interim Tribal Council Chairperson Kathryn Harrison, council member Merle Leno, Executive Director Jim St. Martin and Accountant Alan Wilkenson. Harrison was introduced and invited to sit at the head table during the luncheons along with the chairwoman from the Caddo Tribe of Oklahoma.


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