Greg Walden Statement on House Passage of Bill to Nullify Fraudulent Warm Springs Treaty
Bill would nullify the underhanded 1865 agreement and reinforce the validity of the 1855 treaty
WASHINGTON, D.C. --Today, Representative Greg Walden (R-Hood River) released the following statement after the House passed the 1865 Treaty Nullification Act. The legislation, for which Walden introduced companion legislation in the House in 2019, would nullify a fraudulent treaty with the Confederated Tribes of the Warm Springs Reservation, and clearly validate an 1855 treaty that establishes the tribes’ reservation and preserves certain hunting, gathering, and fishing rights. The bill now heads to the President for signing into law.
"The Warm Springs Treaty of 1865 has long been recognized as a fraud and a sham," said Walden. "The U.S. Government has not enforced the treaty and Federal Courts have also regarded it as fraudulent. I am pleased that today the House has passed this legislation to nullify this unfair treaty, which will ensure that the tribes’ rights under the 1855 treaty are fully recognized. I am proud to have worked with Senators Wyden and Merkley to correct this historical anomaly and I look forward to President Trump signing this bill into law so that we can fully right this longstanding wrong."
In 1855, the Warm Springs Tribes entered into a treaty with the United States defining the trusting relationship between the parties and establishing rights to land and off-reservation hunting and fishing.
However, in 1865, an unscrupulous Superintendent of Indian Affairs for Oregon, J.W. Perit Huntington, wrote a supplemental treaty that amended the 1855 agreement to prohibit members of the Warm Springs from leaving their reservation without government permission and relinquishing all off-reservation rights.
The 1865 treaty sought to undermine the hunting and fishing rights that were protected in the 1855 treaty.