Tribal Hall of the Confederated Tribes of Coos, Lower Umpqua and Siuslaw Indians (Empire Community Hall) – Coos Bay OR

Description

Built in 1940-41 to serve as a multi-purpose community center for the Confederated Tribes of Coos, Lower Umpqua and Siuslaw Indians, this tribal hall is the last known intact New Deal Indian Community Building left in Oregon. Its funding came through the Works Projects Administration (WPA), the Indian Reorganization Act of 1934 (IRA), and the Indian Division of the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC-ID).

The hall was designed to support what was then an unorganized group of Indians in southwestern Oregon in addressing economic, social, health and political needs. The functional building provided an auditorium to seat 300, a kitchen for canning food, a clinic for community health staff, and a carpenter shop primarily for boat construction.

The design itself is a simple colonial/Cape Cod structure. Architectural plans for the hall are attributed to the United States Department of the Interior – Office of Indian Affairs.

The Tribal Hall was granted National Historic status even before it reached the traditional fifty year requirement for that status because of its heritage and governmental significance. Not only is it an intact New Deal era Indian community building, as noted in the building’s nomination form: “it required the recipients to take the first formal steps to re-form as a soverieign nation to sustain itself in a 30-year successful struggle to oppose the Western Oregon Termination Act of 1954.”

 

Project Details

Federal Cost Local Cost Total Cost Project #'s
$6,000

Source notes

"National Register of Historic Places Registration Form: Tribal Hall of the Confederated Tribes of Coos, Lower Umpqua and Siuslaw Indians," March 1989. Posted in the Oregon State Historic Preservation Office, Historic Preservation Office Database. https://heritagedata.prd.state.or.us/historic/index.cfm?do=v.dsp_siteSummary&resultDisplay=34465  Viewed: December 31, 2021.

Project originally submitted by Judith T Kenny on December 31, 2021.

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Location Info


338 Wallace Street
Coos Bay, OR 97420

Coordinates: 43.38917, -124.26487

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