Thursday, May 21, 2009

Winding Waters

The name Wallowa Valley comes from the Nez Perce word for it, Wallowa (Wah-low-ah), which translates to "Land of Winding Waters". This is where the famous Chief Joseph and his band were from, and so cruelly driven out of so I can live here now and take pictures like this. Hmmm. Funny how things are never just black and white in life. Many people live in this valley who are deeply moved by the tragedy that took place here just over a hundred years ago. Yet what if "justice" had been done, and the original inhabitants of this land were allowed the same property rights that I and my neighbors enjoy now? I certainly wouldn't be enjoying those rights on this land that's for sure! I could never justify someone's beloved homeland being torn from them, and then have them forced under inhumane conditions from it into a desperate life of poverty! Yet I would fight just as fiercely as they did to keep MY home on that very land... How do we reconcile these things as Americans? I certainly don't claim to have the answer. But I think it's a question worth asking. If nothing else that question can motivate us to find a more balanced way of progressing as a Nation than we have in the past. We must not turn our mistakes into patterns of repetition, but use them to grow as a people and a Country. (Leave it to me to take a simple landscape photograph and turn it into a political diatribe!)

1 comment:

Ashley said...

Yes, it's not quite a kajillion miles away... Oregon is a bit far from minneapolis, but I'm happy to touch base with another photog'/artist.

Got your message... ;) checked out your work. it's fantastic. :)
I have a certain affinity towards vintage and historical photography, so I love your vintage shots in front of abandoned places.

you can find me at:
or at:


or if you have a myspace,