This couple is identified as "Princess Timiteen, last of the Clatsops, and Companion, from the Ola Stryker Bell Collection." Unfortunately I can't find any further information about Princess Timiteen. You can learn more about the Clatsops here. I'll note there is a woman in their photo gallery who looks very much like this woman. It's not clear why Mrs. Bell would have a photograph of a member of a coastal tribe, and I suspect members of the Clatsop-Nehalem Confederation would take issue with her "last of" status. Hopefully someone knowledgeable can fill in some details, as such a wonderful image must have a story to tell.
Ola Stryker Bell and her husband Charles Bell were longtime owners of the Mt. Hood Hotel. They were responsible for its many expansions.
[Ed. note: We now know the subjects of this photo are Jennie Michel and Michelle Martineau. Jennie Michel was also known as Janie Tsin-is-tum, which might account for the "Princess Timiteen" notation. Check the comments for details]
I don't know anything about the Clatsops, but my Whealdon relatives of Ilwaco, Washington were friendly with the local Chinook Indians in the early days.
Jeffrey Bryant on 6th April 2015 @ 8:37am
There is a possibility that the Clatsop Indians came up the river to Celilo to fish. I know that the Yakima tribes used to go to the ocean to dig clams. In fact that is where Chief Chenowith was during the Cascade Massacre. He and those with him came back about the time that the Government sent the soldiers. Just so happened that Cheowith was the small band they came upon first and the rest is history. The Yakima's were the ones involved and they had "skiddaddled" back up north.
Charlott on 6th April 2015 @ 9:30am
If you google Tsin-is-tum or Jennie Michel, you will find lots of information on who this lady probably is.
There are several photos of her in Arthur's link and there are numerous articles and photos of her online.
This Oregon History Project article will get you started on reading about her life. She died in 1905.
She says she knew Chief Coboway. Coboway was a favorite of Lewis and Clark. When they left Fort Clatsop to return east, they gave him the fort.
Her father was killed when their Clatsop village was attacked by a ship sent by Dr. McLoughlin. Her father was possibly Snake Indian.
Jennie Michel says, when she grew up, she married Wah-tat-kum, last chief of the Nehalem Indians. When he died, she married Michel Martineau and they lived at Seaside.
From the Seaside Museum: "The museum displays also tell the story of the marriages between Indians and non-Indians. Shown above is Jennie Michel, an Indian woman married to a French Canadian. Her marriage record shows her name as Janie Tsin-is-tum. Her husband was commonly known as Michel which is pronounced Meschelle for a man and Michelle for a woman. The 1880 census lists her as Jennie Machell and the 1900 census as Jennie Marchinow. The land records show here as Jennie Martineau and her probate record lists here as Jennie Merchino."
I found some information that says Michel Martineau was a Métis, (half Cascades) riverboat captain.
If this photo was actually taken in Hood river, that might explain them being in the area, but I suspect it was not taken here.
The Clatsop were never a federally recognized tribe, so in the eyes of the government, they don't exist.
L.E. on 7th April 2015 @ 4:56am
In the "National Register of Historic Places", for the Mt Hood Hotel, there is this detail about Ola Stryker Belle's life before she married Charles Bell and moved to Hood River....
Ola was living in the Portland area, "....In about 1896 Ola and a friend, Josie Parrott, went to Gearhart on the Oregon coast and worked as the superintendent of the children's dining room. The following year, she was hired to oversee the installation of the furniture in the new Hotel Flavel in Clatsop County, Oregon which opened in in 1897. In the summer of 1898, Ola returned to the coast as the housekeeper for the well-known Seaside house....Ola ran Seaside House for several years....."
I am going to guess Ola obtained the photo when she was living at Seaside. But who knows....maybe Tsin-is-tum came to visit her in Hood River.
I would also like to mention that friend Josie Parrott was from the Glenwood area of Klickitat County and for some years her mother ran the hotel in Glenwood.
L.E. on 7th April 2015 @ 12:00pm
L.E.'s comments about Ola Stryker reminded me of our oldest unsolved Mystery Monday picture of a big hotel. I put it into Google's image search, and the mystery is solved! : http://historichoodriver.com/index.php?showimage=10
Arthur on 7th April 2015 @ 12:58pm
Oh Wow!!! I also, while writing about a Seaside Hotel, thought of that photo and wondered if it would ever be solved.
Good job Arthur. Who would have thought it was in Portland? I will have to drive over there some day and see if I can find it.
L.E. on 7th April 2015 @ 3:41pm
This is indeed a picture of Jennie Michel, thanks for sharing. Just wanted to correct something that was said above by charlott. In the eyes of the government the Clatsops did and still do exist. That is why the Clatsops signed a treaty with the US in 1851. It is why Clatsop Indian children attended Indian schools like Chemawa in Salem and Haskell in Lawrence, KS, both of which you had to be from a federally recognized Tribe to attend. Also the US government drew up Tribal rolls in 1906. It wasn't until the 1950s that the US terminated the Clatsops. Today they are fighting for Justice to be restored.
Clatsop on 11th June 2016 @ 11:16pm
I'd like to add a link to Dr. David Lewis' article about this photo. He identifies Jennie Michel's companion as Michelle Martineau. You can read all about them here:
Arthur on 8th October 2018 @ 11:57pm