KLAMATH

 

Native North Americans, who in the 19th cent. lived in S.W. Oregon.

They speak a language of the Sahaptin-Chinook branch of the Penutian linguistic stock.

The material for the first description of the Klamath was collected by Peter Skene Ogden, who visited them in 1829 and opened trade relations.

They subsisted by hunting, fishing, and collecting roots and wokas, or water-lily seeds.

The Klamath were peaceful toward the settlers but not toward the N. California Native Americans.

They raided those Native Americans periodically and carried off the women and children, keeping their captives as slaves or selling them to other Native Americans.

By the treaty of 1864 with the United States, the practice of slavery was abolished and their land N.E. of Upper Klamath Lake in Oregon was set aside as the Klamath Reservation.

Today they are mostly farmers. See Leslie Spier, Klamath Ethnography (1930); Theodore Stern, The Klamath Tribe (1965, repr. 1988).