Chetco of United States

People Group Info

Total Population: 40

ROP3 Code: 102079
IMB Affinity Group: American Peoples
Affinity Bloc: North American Peoples
People Cluster: North American Indigenous
Language: English - (eng)
Religion: Christianity
Country of Origin: United States

Photo of Lucy Dick, the last known native Chetco speakers.

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Majority Located Where

  Brookings, OR - 40

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Brief Profile

The Chetco people are among an endangered people and language. Some Chetco people are enrolled in federally recognized tribes, the Confederated Tribes of Siletz Indians in Oregon, and Cher-Ae Heights Indian Community of the Trinidad Rancheria, located in Humboldt County, California.

Their name, Chetco, comes from the word Cheti in their own language, meaning "close to the mouth of the stream". The Chetco Indians of southern Oregon once lived spread out over a vast area reaching from the Winchuck River, near the California border, to Cape Ferrelo 13 miles to the north. They lived mainly along the lower reaches of the Chetco and Winchuck Rivers, but also in camps along the coast. They were hunter gatherers, and fished, harvested shellfish, picked berries and acorns, and hunted sea lions in their lush coastal territory. They lived in wooden plank houses, wore clothing woven from bark and grass, with the occasional deer hide poncho for warmth, and were peaceful, warring only sporadically with surrounding tribes.

Although small in number and Chetco speak their native tongue, they seek to pass on their traditions, recipes, ceremonies and stories teaching their children about their heritage. They are educating the public about their ways. In addition, they continue to hold a Pow Wow, celebrating and proclaiming their existence.

Prayer Points

  • Give thanks for the heritage of the Chetco people.
  • Pray for the few remaining Chetco to live a life that understands what it means to have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.


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