Native American language
Native American Indian culture
Native American Legends: Stick Indians
Name: Stick Indians
Tribal affiliation: Salish,
In the traditions of many Salish and other Northwest Indian tribes, Stick Indians are malevolent and extremely
dangerous forest spirits. Details about Stick Indians vary from tribe to tribe (they are described as large, hairy
bigfoot-like creatures by the Salish, and as forest dwarves by the Cayuse and Yakama.) In some traditions
Stick Indians have powers to paralyze, hypnotize, or cause insanity in hapless humans, while in others, they merely
lead people astray by making eerie sounds of whistling or laughter in the woods at night. In some stories
Stick Indians may eat people who fall prey to them, kidnap children, or molest women. They also take aggressive
revenge against people who injure or disrespect them, no matter how unintentionally.
Not too many traditional legends regarding Stick Indians have been recorded, in part due to taboos related to these
deadly creatures. "Stick Indians" is an English euphemism; saying the actual Salish names of these beings in public
is considered to be provoking their attacks in some tribes, a belief many Native people still adhere to today,
choosing to refer to them only in English (if at all.)
Stick Indian Stories
The Story of Stick Indians or Tsiatko:
Legends about the Stick Indians from the Puyallup tribe.
Recommended Books of Related Native American Legends
In the Shadows of Mountains:
Our organization earns a commission from any book bought through these links
Collection of legends from the Copper River Ahtna tribe.
Our Voices: Native Stories of Alaska and the Yukon:
Collection of legends and oral history from the Athabaskan tribes.
Puget Sound Salish tribes
Washington Native American culture
Northwest Native American tribes
Northwest Native American artwork
Salish language family
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