Stick Indian sighting

Stick Indian sighting in the Dalles!

Stick Indian sighting in the Dalles

I’ve been realizing that “Stick Indian” has to be quite an old conventionalized Chinook Jargon expression.

In George Gibbs’s “Indian Tribes of Washington Territory” (an edition by Ye Galleon Press of Fairfield, WA, 1967), he writes on page 34 of

The Taitinapam, a band of Klikatats already mentioned, living near the head of the Cowlitz…called by their eastern brethren wild or wood Indians.  

Because Gibbs communicated with Native people in CJ, it’s probable that this expression reflects Jargon “stick Indians”.  “Wood” here clearly means “the woods” (CJ stik).

wooden indianClearly we aren’t dealing with the other meaning of stik here, “wood” or “wooden” 🙂