Current topics in archaeology, cultural heritage & historic preservation

Sunday, December 12, 2010

The Petroglyph Rubbings at Skamania Lodge

I was lucky enough to get to attend a Christmas party at Skamania Lodge in Stevenson, WA this weekend.

Very nice place and they have an excellent collection of petroglyph rubbings and Pacific coast Indian-inspired wood carving displayed throughout the hotel.

The rubbings are mostly of ancient images found on the Columbia River Plateau. The region is home to hundreds of petroglyphs that have been carved into the surface of the native basalt and also to many pictographs that are painted on the rock.

Some of the rubbings are especially interesting because they are of images that are now submerged in the pools behind the major dams on the Columbia.

The rubbings were done by artist Jeanne Hillis over a number of years beginning in the 1940's. Skamania Lodge developer John D. Gray (also famous for Salishan, John's Landing, etc.) acquired the entire Hillis collection in the early 1990's to provide an artistic theme for the new lodge. Well known rock art scholar Dr. James Keyser was commissioned to write a monograph on the collection titled Indian Petroglyphs of the Columbia Gorge: The Jeanne Hillis Rubbings which was published in 1994.

I hope you enjoy the images below...and appreciate that they represent an important aspect of a living culture that has existed in the Pacific Northwest for thousands of years.

In addition to the rubbings the lodge holds several major wood carvings with images inspired by Pacific coast Indian art.

All the images in this blog are viewable for free in the public areas of the lodge. It's well worth a stop if you're ever in the area.


(The author received no compensation from Skamania Lodge (or anyone else) for this post.)

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