Catholicism as a Meeting Space Between Two Cultures

The photographs in this exhibit and much of the background research that accompanies them come the archives of the the Oregon Province of Jesuits. This exhibit also drew largely from the writings of Father Edward Griva, including written sources from both his diary as well as his brief account of the missions at Nespelem. Father Edward Griva was a unique person at the time, speculated to be the only white person to be able to speak and write the Yakima language. While he was very socially progressive with respect to the Native culture, Father Griva still wrote from a white, Jesuit perspective.

These photos were taken from the St. Ignatius Mission Collection, Jesuit Oregon Province Archives and they provide insight into the changing relationship between the Native people and white people.

Father Griva tended to stick to the areas surrounding Nespelem. More broadly, he largely stuck to the Colville Reservation and the area immediately surrounding. The documents that are being analyzed are largely from 1910-1930, so this is a period of time where tensions between Native people and white people have settled and the communities have started to come together, largely through Catholicism.


Patrick Leon, Rito Karashima

Evolution of social relationships between natives and whites


Patrick Leon and Rito Karashima