The Modoc once lived in villages in the area of Oregon and Northern California, where they hunted, fished, and farmed. During the war, white settlers tried forcing the Modoc off of their land and onto reservations elsewhere. The Modoc tribe became violent very quickly, for each village was independent but would band together in times of war. The Modoc survivors of the war were exiled to the Quapaw Agency in Oklahoma. Many died over the next few years from unfamiliar diseases and the effects of the harsh climate. Descendants of 7 of the 155 Modoc prisoners of war still reside on the former Quapaw Reservation in Oklahoma. The descendants of those who never left the Klamath Reservation reside in Oregon and elsewhere. Only in recent years have the Modoc begun to return to the Lava Beds. Many still refuse to return to an area with
such terrible memories. Others are trying to reestablish their spiritual bonds to the land of their ancestors.The Modoc Indians have strong beliefs on respecting their elders, respecting the land and all forms of life on it, and are very religious.
The Modoc tribe was very respectful to their elders and peers. Consequences followed for disrespect. For example, when the Sky Chief’s daughter disobeyed his commands (sticking her head out of the top of the mountain and the wind catching her hair), she faced the consequence of being blown away. A new race had been created between the daughter and the grizzlies, which was not of her fathers making, and therefore goes against his rules; he cursed all the grizzlies: "Get down on your hands and knees. You have wronged me, and from this moment all of you will walk on four feet and never talk again." (Richard Erdoes and Alfonso Ortiz.) This concept is still displayed in what little of the Modoc culture is left today, along with many other cultures around the world. It was a big deal to the Modoc’s to appreciate the land and resources they were lucky enough to have been given: Before there were...
Cited: Warren, Beck, and Hasse Ynez. "The Modoc War." California State Military department. The California State Military Department, 1975. Web. 1872-1873. .
Baker, Grove. "Social Organization." Modoc. Mount Shasta Companion, 2001. Web. 12 Sep 2013. .
Erdoes, Robert, and Alfonso Ortiz. When the Grizzlies Walked Upright. 2nd. Boston: Pearsons Educations Inc, 2007. 21-23. Print.
"Native American Contributions 1." Native American Contributions 2. United States Department of Agriculture: Natural Resources Conservation Service, 7/31/2013. Web. 7/31/2013. .
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