“This land was not empty when the first whites arrived. This land, these rivers, the tidelands, the waterways–for the original inhabitants, this land was a garden, cultivated and cared for, cherished and understood.” — preface to The Madrona Project
By Washington State Poet Laureate Rena Priest
Lands and Peoples Acknowledgement for the North Olympic Peninsula
We acknowledge and honor the chalá·at (Hoh), kʷoʔlí·yot’ (Quileute), qʷidiččaʔa·tx̌ (Makah), nəxʷsƛ̕áy̕əm̕ (Klallam), & t͡ʃə́mqəm (Chimacum) People, who have occupied and stewarded this land throughout hundreds of generations. Through disease, unfair dealings, oppression, and attempted erasure of their culture, the indigenous people of this place have endured and continue to honor their cultural traditions.
Living more sustainably requires us all to think holistically and long-term – not just to the future, but also the past. Colonization has shaped the reality of everyone here today. We take this opportunity to acknowledge that fact and express our desire to engage in the process of understanding our “landcestry” and repairing relationships with both people and land, as an investment in our shared future.