Upper Skagit Indian Tribe

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Upper Skagit
Total population
Enrolled members: 200
Regions with significant populations
 United States Washington
English, Lushootseed dialect (endangered)
Christianity (incl. syncretistic forms)
Related ethnic groups
Salishan tribes of coastal Northwest, especially Lower Skagit, Sauk-Suiattle,

The Upper Skagit are a federally recognized Native American tribe living in the state of Washington. Before European colonization, the tribe occupied lands along the Skagit River, from as far downstream as present-day Mount Vernon, Washington, and villages going north as far as Newhalem along the Skagit River, as well as lands on the Baker, and the Sauk rivers.[1]

Culturally, the Upper Skagit share characteristics with the Lower Skagit, the Coast Salish, such as the Sauk-Suiattle Indian Tribe, as well as the Plateau Indians on the eastern side of the Cascade Mountains.[2] They traditionally spoke Lushootseed, part of the Salishan language family. It was spoken by many coastal tribes of the Northwest.

Sign at reservation entrance

Upper Skagit Indian Reservation[edit]

The Upper Skagit Indian Reservation consists of three separate small parcels of land in western Skagit County. The cities of Sedro-Woolley and Burlington have developed near the reservation parcels. The largest section, located northeast of Sedro Woolley, is at 48°32′31″N 122°11′15″W / 48.54194°N 122.18750°W / 48.54194; -122.18750, while the smaller western sections are at 48°33′33″N 122°20′42″W / 48.55917°N 122.34500°W / 48.55917; -122.34500 (the section where the casino is), and at 48°34′07″N 122°20′43″W / 48.56861°N 122.34528°W / 48.56861; -122.34528, between Burlington and Alger. The total land area is 110.45 acres (0.447 km²). Its resident population was 238 persons as of the 2000 census.[3]

The Upper Skagit owns and operates the Skagit Valley Casino Resort, along with the Bow Hill gas station located on Bow Hill.


  1. ^ Collins, June M. Valley of the Spirits: The Upper Skagit Indians of Western Washington. Seattle: University of Washington Press. 1974, p. 17.
  2. ^ Markowitz, Harvey. American Indians, Salem Press, 1995, p.726.
  3. ^ Detailed Tables - American FactFinder

External links[edit]