The traditional homeland of the Kalispel surrounding the Pend Oreille River was vast and abundant. It included the mountains, river, lakes and prairies that stretch from Lake Pend Oreille in North Idaho to where Paradise, Montana now stands and northwestward across northeastern Washington to the mouth of the Salmo River, just over the international border in British Columbia. It was “ntxwe”, the Pend Oreille River, which bound together one end of the Kalispel country to the other, some 200 miles in length.
Like other tribes, the Kalispels have been profoundly influenced by their environment, the greatest cultural influence seem to have come from the environment created by the Pend Oreille River which they call “ntxwe”, a Kalispel word which, it is said, symbolically reduces all other streams to an inferior status. It was from this river that Kalispel culture arose. Here our people built winter villages and established summer root digging camps. Surely the Kalispel would say “The river and we are of one mind”, for even today we are known as “The People of the Oreille”, and we have withstood unimagined hardships to maintain our lives in harmony with “ntxwe”.
The Kalispel Tribe of Indians is rich in heritage. Our traditions have taught us cultural pride, and working together continues the advancement of our people. Our children are raised in a caring environment and grow up to lead responsible and productive lives.
Our successes extend well beyond our economic development, from the work that Kalispel Natural Resources do to care for our land, air, water and culture, to the Camas Center & Clinic that cares for the well-being of our local community, we consider success from a holistic perspective as well as the prosperity of our community.
Kalispel Charitable Fund
The Kalispel Tribe of Indians believes in being a positive force in the fabric of the community, donating over a million dollars a year since 2000 to our local communities.
As the Tribe continues to grow we are committed to re-investing in the community’s greatest assets, the people! The Kalispel Charitable Fund is one of the many ways we contribute to the greater Spokane and Pend Oreille Counties.