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Let Your Heart Lead the WayA warrior woman gathers wisdom and strength from her ancestors. She is a protector for community, family, and the next seven generations


The woman in this photo, taken in 1900, is identified as Sabrina Winthorn of the Cayuse Tribe whose ancestral home is the Columbia Basin area in Oregon and Washington. During Victorian times, photos taken around the world were often a product of colonization and exploitation. Many photographers of Indigenous people presented them as a vanishing race or in a highly romanticized manner. And yet, if one listens to the generational and present-day stories of Indigenous people, there is so much more to see and learn. I am moved by what I see in this image, a woman of strength and resilience.


In the words of The People today: “We are the Natítayt (The People). We exercise our national sovereignty and preserve our cultural lifeways. We live in balance with the land as dictated by our traditional teachings. We acknowledge the wisdom of our elders and spiritual leaders. We are accountable to the Creator. As long as the earth shall last, there will be life. Our life is the land. We are the Cayuse, Umatilla and Walla Walla.” The Tamástslikt Cultural Institute

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