Andrew Fisher

Andrew Fisher grew up in Portland, received his Ph.D. in history from Arizona State University in 2003, and is now an associate professor of History at the College of William & Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia. His research interests focus on modern Native American history, environmental history, and the American West. His first book, Shadow Tribe: The Making of Columbia River Indian Identity (University of Washington Press, 2010), examines off-reservation communities and processes of tribal identity along the Mid-Columbia. His current research project is a cultural biography of the Yakama showman Nipo Strongheart. In addition to publishing articles and books, Andrew has worked as an expert witness for the Yakama Nation, served on advisory boards for the Confluence Project and the High Desert Museum, and appeared on an episode of Who Do You Think You Are? that focused on Northwest history.

Author's Entries

  • Celilo Fish Committee (1935 - 1957)

    Members of Umatilla, Yakama, and Warm Springs tribes joined unenrolled Mid-Columbia Indians to establish the Celilo Fish Committee in 1935. The committee had been proposed the year before to address problems created by declining salmon runs, encroaching state regulation, and rising competition among Native American fishers at Celilo Falls, …

    Oregon Encyclopedia

  • David Sohappy (1925-1991)

    Born and raised on the Yakama reservation in south-central Washington, David Sohappy began catching salmon at age five and spent much of each year along the Columbia River. "That is where I learned about Indian language and religion," he recalled. "I remember going to the longhouse from way back …

    Oregon Encyclopedia

  • Seufert Brothers Cannery

    Seufert Brothers Company was the leading salmon packer on the Middle Columbia River from the mid-1890s to the mid-1950s. Beginning in 1867, industrial processing and canning techniques had transformed the river’s anadromous fish runs into a valuable commodity. At first, the swift currents of the Mid-Columbia confined commercial fishing interests …

    Oregon Encyclopedia

  • Sk'in

    Sk’in was a significant Native American settlement located on the north side of Celilo Falls near the present town of Wishram, Washington. Its name—the Columbia River Sahaptin word for “cradleboard”—referenced a prominent rock formation above the falls that resembled the device traditionally used to carry children. According to tribal oral …

    Oregon Encyclopedia

  • Tommy Thompson (1864?–1959)

    Tommy Kuni Thompson served as the headman of Wyam (an Ichiskiin Sinwit word that translates as "echo of falling water" in English), also called Celilo Village, and was the salmon chief at Celilo Falls during the tumultuous final decades of the traditional Indigenous fishery there. He was a lifelong advocate …

    Oregon Encyclopedia