Native American Nations
                   Your Source for Indian Research
                   Rolls ~ History ~ Treaties ~ Census ~ Books

Shahaptian Family

 Native American Nations | Linguistic Families                    

  • Shahaptan, Scouler in Jour. Roy. Geog. Soc., XI, 225, 1841 (three tribes, Shahaptan or Nez-percés, Kliketat, Okanagan; the latter being Salishan).
  • Shahaptan, Prichard, Phys. Hist. Mankind, V, 428, 1847 (two classes, Nez-perces proper of mountains, and Polanches of plains; includes also Kliketat and Okanagan).
  • Sahaptin, Hale in U.S. Expl. Expd., VI, 198, 212, 542, 1846 (Shahaptin or Nez-percés, Wallawallas, Pelooses, Yakemas, Klikatats). Gallatin in Trans. Am. Eth. Soc., II, pt. 1, c, 14, 1848 (follows Hale). Gallatin, ibid., II, pt. 1, c, 77, 1848 (Nez-percés only). Berghaus (1851), Physik. Atlas, map 17, 1852. Gallatin in Schoolcraft, Ind. Tribes, III, 402, 1853 (Nez-perces and Wallawallas). Dall, after Gibbs, in Cont. N.A. Eth., 1, 241, 1877 (includes Taitinapam and Kliketat).
  • Saptin, Prichard, Phys. Hist. Mankind, V, 428, 1847 (or Shahaptan).
  • Sahaptin, Latham, Nat. Hist. Man, 323, 1850 (includes Wallawallas, Kliketat, Proper Sahaptin or Nez-percés, Pelús, Yakemas, Cayús?). Latham in Trans. Philolog. Soc. Lond., 73, 1856 (includes Waiilatpu). Buschmann, Spuren der 107 aztek. Sprache, 614, 615, 1859. Latham, Opuscula, 340, 1860 (as in 1856). Latham, El. Comp. Phil., 440, 1862 (vocabularies Sahaptin, Wallawalla, Kliketat). Keane, App. Stanford’s Comp. (Cent, and So. Am.), 460, 474, 1878 (includes Palouse, Walla Wallas, Yakimas, Tairtlas, Kliketats or Pshawanwappams, Cayuse, Mollale; the two last are Waiilatpuan).
  • Sahaptin, Gatschet in Mag. Am. Hist., 168, 1877 (defines habitat and enumerates tribes of). Gatschet in Beach, Ind. Misc., 443, 1877. Bancroft, Nat. Races, III, 565, 620, 1882.
  • Shahaptani, Tolmie and Dawson, Comp. Vocabs., 78, 1884 (Whulwhaipum tribe).
  • Nez-percés, Prichard, Phys. Hist. Mankind, V, 428, 1847 (see Shahaptan). Keane, App. Stanford’s Comp. (Cent, and So. Am.), 474, 1878 (see his Sahaptin).
  • Seliah, Dall, after Gibbs, in Cont. N.A. Eth., I, 241, 1877 (includes Yakama which belongs here)

Derivation: From a Selish word of unknown significance.

The Shahaptan family of Scouler comprised three tribes—the Shahaptan or Nez Percés, the Kliketat, a scion of the Shahaptan, dwelling near Mount Ranier, and the Okanagan, inhabiting the upper part of Fraser River and its tributaries; “these tribes were asserted to speak dialects of the same language.” Of the above tribes the Okinagan are now known to be Salishan.

The vocabularies given by Scouler were collected by Tolmie. The term “Sahaptin” appears on Gallatin’s map of 1836, where it doubtless refers only to the Nez Percé tribe proper, with respect to whose linguistic affinities Gallatin apparently knew nothing at the time. At all events the name occurs nowhere in his discussion of the linguistic families.

Geographic Distribution
The tribes of this family occupied a large section of country along the Columbia and its tributaries. Their western boundary was the Cascade Mountains; their westernmost bands, the Klikitat on the north, the Tyigh and Warm Springs on the south, enveloping for a short distance the Chinook territory along the Columbia which extended to the Dalles. Shahaptian tribes extended along the tributaries of the Columbia for a considerable distance, their northern boundary being indicated by about the forty-sixth parallel, their southern by about the forty-fourth. Their eastern extension was interrupted by the Bitter Root Mountains.

Principal Tribes and Population

Chopunnish (Nez Percé), 1,515 on Nez Percé Reservation, Idaho.

Klikitat, say one-half of 330 natives, on Yakama Reservation, Washington.

Paloos, Yakama Reservation, number unknown.

Tenaino, 69 on Warm Springs Reservation, Oregon.

Tyigh, 430 on Warm Springs Reservation, Oregon.

Umatilla, 179 on Umatilla Reservation, Oregon.

Walla Walla, 405 on Umatilla Reservation, Oregon.

Indian Linguistic Families of America North of Mexico, 1891

Linguistic Families


Copyright 2000-2019 by and/or their author(s). The webpages may be linked to but shall not be reproduced on another site without written permission from NaNations or their author. Images may not be linked to in any manner or method. Anyone may use the information provided here freely for personal use only. If you plan on publishing your personal information to the web please give proper credit to our site for providing this information. Thanks!!!