When I began a serious examination of my family history, I soon discovered the origins of my family in Okanogan County (Eastern Washington). In 1886, Washington Territory opened some of the Colville Reservation to non-Native Americans. It could not stop the flood of miners and settlers from the Eastern U.S. Two weeks later, my great-grandfather arrived, hoping to strike it rich. He didn’t get rich, but he stayed and raised a family there.
I have pondered the word reparations. What does that mean and what could it mean for me? While I am not responsible, I see that I benefited from the actions of Washington Territory and my great-grandfather.
A few years ago, I decided to research what I could do. I began a yearly donation to the Colville Tribes High School Scholarship Fund. It is something useful that I can do now.
Susan Aigner, Covington