Lead: For 8000 years humans have shared the lush and fertile Willamette Valley south of Portland, Oregon.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: The Valley's climate is moderate and moist. It was originally settled by Native Americans who moved from the nearby foothills and whose habit it was to annually burn the vegetation on the valley floor. This insured an abundance of those plants and animals important to their way of life and culture but created large meadows absent of timber only occasionally punctuated with oak woodlands. The use of fire in cultivation encouraged the growth of tall grasses they called kalapuya. When Europeans arrived they named the people there Kalapuya after the lush waving grass that covered the Valley. By the 1790s, when the first explorers arrived about 13,500 Kalapuya inhabited the Willamette. The newcomers brought with them venereal decease and malaria. These infections combined with the different patterns of farming and new breeds of animals brought by the settlers, hastened the passing of the gentle Kalapuya. By 1890 they had been all but wiped out.

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