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Native American Heritage Month

In 1990 President George H. W. Bush approved a joint resolution designating November 1990 “National American Indian Heritage Month.” Similar proclamations, under variants on the name (including “Native American Heritage Month” and “National American Indian and Alaska Native Heritage Month”) have been issued each year since 1994.

Click here to read the 2023 Presidential Proclamation on National Native American Heritage Month, 2023

Native American Heritage Month

According to the National Congress of American Indians, "The month is a time to celebrate rich and diverse cultures, traditions, and histories and to acknowledge the important contributions of Native people. Heritage Month is also an opportune time to educate the general public about tribes, to raise a general awareness about the unique challenges Native people have faced both historically and in the present, and the ways in which tribal citizens have worked to conquer these challenges."


Some of the reasons Indigenous communities celebrate this year:


Some of the challenges facing Indigenous communities in Oregon include:

The Warm Spring Tribe's fight for drinkable water since 2019

Missing & Murdered Indigenous Women & Girls (#MMIW)

The impact of Covid-19 on Native communities

The dark history of Indian Boarding Schools and the Chemawa Indian School in Salem

Ways to Honor Indigenous Peoples During National Native American Heritage Month

Read the works of Native American authors

Check out the books/ebooks list in this libguide to see some of our newest holdings of titles by Native American authors. Some popular authors whose books we have copies of includes Tommy Orange, Joy Harjo, and Louise Erdrich.

Support Native-owned businesses

The Oregon Native American Chamber maintains a list of Native-owned businesses in Oregon. Other sites, like Beyond Buckskin have also compiled lists of Native-owned businesses throughout the United States.

Many businesses and corporations use phrases like 'Native-inspired' when describing products that take indigenous aesthetics and imagery and profit off of it. To fight back against Indigenous appropriation, groups like 'Eighth Generation' raise awareness of Native artists through their 'Inspired Natives' program.

"Support Inspired Natives, not Native Inspired"

Missing & Murdered Indigenous Women, Girls & Two-Spirts (MMIWG2S) Awareness














  • Indigenous Women (girls +) murdered 10x higher than all other ethnicities.

  • Murder is the 3rd leading cause of death for Indigenous Women (Centers for Disease Control).

  • More than 4 out of 5 Indigenous Women have experienced violence (84.3%) (National Institute of Justice Report).

  • More than half Indigenous Women experience sexual violence (56.1%).

  • More than half Indigenous Women have been physically abused by their intimate partners (55.5 percent).

  • less than half of Indigenous Women have been stalked in their lifetime (48.8 percent).

  • Indigenous Women are 1.7 times more likely than Anglo-American women to experience violence. 

  • Indigenous Women are 2xs more likely to be raped than Anglo-American white women. 

  • Murder rate of Indigenous Women is 3xs higher than Anglo-American women. 


Western Oregon University in Monmouth, OR is located within the traditional homelands of the Luckiamute Band of Kalapuya. Following the Willamette Valley Treaty of 1855 (Kalapuya etc. Treaty), Kalapuya people were forcibly removed to reservations in Western Oregon. Today, living descendants of these people are a part of the Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde Community of Oregon ( and the Confederated Tribes of the Siletz Indians (