Land Acknowledgement

Acknowledgement of America’s First Peoples

Washington State University acknowledges that its locations statewide are on the homelands of Native peoples, who have lived in this region from time immemorial. Currently, there are 42 tribes, 35 of which are federally recognized that share traditional homelands and waterways in what is now Washington State. Some of these are nations and confederacies that represents multiple tribes and bands. The University expresses its deepest respect for and gratitude towards these original and current caretakers of the region. As an academic community, we acknowledge our responsibility to establish and maintain relationships with these tribes and Native peoples, in support of tribal sovereignty and the inclusion of their voices in teaching, research and programming. Washington State University established the Office of Tribal Relations and Native American Programs to guide us in our relationship with tribes and service to Native American students and communities. We also pledge that these relationships will consist of mutual trust, respect, and reciprocity.

As a land grant institution, we also recognize that the Morrill Act of 1862 established land-grant institutions by providing each state with “public” and federal lands, which are traced back to the disposition of Indigenous lands. In 1890, Washington State received 90,081 acres of Indigenous Lands designated to establish Washington State University (see data). Washington State University retains the majority of these lands to this day. We acknowledge that the disposition of Indigenous lands was often taken by coercive and violent acts, and the disregard of treaties. For that, we extend our deepest apologies. We owe our deepest gratitude to the Native peoples of this region and maintain our commitment towards reconciliation.

List of Tribes and Nations whose Homelands are in Washington State

All Tribes are federally recognized, except for those marked with an asterisk * are non-federally recognized. Some of the non-federally recognized tribes are in the process of being recognized.


(29 federally recognized, 7 non-federally recognized)


  • Coeur d’Alene Tribe
  • Kootenai Tribes of Idaho
  • Nez Perce Tribe


  • Confederated Tribes of Umatilla
  • Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs
  • Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde