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The Chinook Indians - tribe of Chinookan linguistic stock, lived in villages on the embankments of the Columbia River, from British Columbia, Canada to Eastern Washington State, all the way to the Pacific Ocean.
They were peaceful people whose livelihood revolved around fishing, mostly salmon, and trading in good ranging from fur, to fish, to slaves.
The Chinook were a hedonistic society with a penchant for entertainment and leisure; their villages were comprised mostly of their own relatives. They would not easily give in to violent behavior, opting instead for challenging ritual events to resolve conflicts.
The Chinook language gave way to the Chinook Jargon, which would end up being used by traders from the Yukon to California.
Today, the last descendants of Chinook origin live on reservations in Washington and Oregon. There are currently over two thousand registered members of the Chinook Nation and hundreds more applying for membership. Their legacy is that of a placid, thriving society; never to fully reveal its complex culture and mythology, save for a few scattered texts, artifacts and images.
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Last modified: April 23, 2001