Around Lake Roosevelt, there are more than four hundred documented ethnographic sites.

One of the most important cultural resource areas is in and around Kettle Falls (see photo). This area was submerged when Lake Roosevelt was created. For centuries, tribes used this area for fishing, trading, habitation and sacred ceremonies.

Historically, habitation and fishing sites often clustered along the lower terraces of the Columbia and Spokane Rivers. Burial and sacred sites were often located on the higher benches. Lake levels generally protect submerged archaeological resources on the lower terraces. Burial, sacred and other sensitive sites, however, can be exposed when the lake is drawn down. Even when the lake is at full pool during the summer, erosion and other factors may expose artifacts that may be just below the feet of visitors.

Excavated archeological sites range from pictographs and petroglyphs to habitation and fishing sites. Evidences of human occupation include such things as cobble tools or modified core tools. Through these sites, much is known about the human occupation in this area that dates back over nine thousand years.