JULY 21, 2011

KOOTENAI CHAIRWOMAN AMELIA “AMY” CUTSACK TRICE DIED—DECLARED WAR ON THE U.S.

Born on April 26, 1936, in Bonners Ferry, Idaho, Trice grew up in an empoverished Kootenai community.  As tribal enrollment was too small, the Bureau of Indian Affairs would not offer any assistance to improve living conditions.  In 1974, Trice, as chairwoman of the Kootenai Tribal Council, declared war on the United States.  Tribal members set up informational pickets and asked for 10-cent tolls on U.S. Highway 95 at Bonners Ferry.  When state police arrived armed with Mace and firearms, Trice threatened to call the American Indian Movement (AIM) for help.  AIM had just been engaged in the armed standoff at Wounded Knee.  The tribe got its land grant from the federal government.  Trice was known for her efforts to preserve Kutenai culture and beliefs.  She was a founding member of Upper Columbia United Tribes, received the Breaking Barriers for Women of Color in Idaho Award and Chairman’s Award from the Confederated Salish and Kootenai tribes.  She died in Spokane, Washington.

Source:  Mike Praeger, "Kootenai tribal elder Trice dies," The Spokesman-Review, 7/29/2011.  Retrieved 5/29/2020, https://www.spokesman.com/stories/2011/jul/29/kootenai-tribal-elder-trice-dies/
Document:  Internal White House Memorandum, 9/26/1974.  Declaration of War from the Kootenais.  Public Domain.  Source:  Box 9, Norman Ross Files, Gerald Ford Presidential Library.  Kootenai Nation (1) (fordlibrarymuseum.gov).

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