Author’s Note, 1994

First published in 1977 by J. J. Douglas in Canada, and by the University of Washington Press in the United States, Indian Fishing: Early Methods on the Northwest Coast interested a wider range of people than I had expected. These included leisure and commercial fishers, a woodcarver who worked with yew and a woman with a passion for drying foods. Also children, one of whom came to my door seeking help with a replica fish hook he was making. That pleased me a lot.

In 1978, Indian Fishing won a British Columbia Book Award (the forerunner to the B.C. Book Prizes), and the government presented a copy to every school in the province. An elegantly bound Japanese language edition was published in 1987.

After several years of being out of print, Indian Fishing is available again. Readers should know that the word “Indian” (a misnomer initiated by Columbus, who mistakenly thought he had arrived in India) is now largely being replaced by the more appropriate “First Nations.”

Indian Fishing was first published seventeen years ago, and because this is a reprint and not a revised edition, it seems expedient to inform readers of the following updated name changes which more accurately reflect the coastal cultures. In the cultural Key on page 11, and in the book wherever they are mentioned: Bella Coola is now Nuxalk; Kwakiutl is now Kwakwa̱ka̱’wakw, except for the people of Fort Rupert, for whom Kwakiutl (also spelled Kwa-gulth) is correct; Nootka, which was changed in the 1970s to West Coast, is now Nuu-chah-nulth.