Battle of the Big Hole

Map of Battle of the Big Hole
Map of Battle of the Big Hole

A History of General Gibbon’s Engagement with Nez Perce Indians in the Big Hole Valley, Montana, August 1877… referred to as the Battle of the Big Hole

When reading the history of any civilization it is important to remember there are two sides.  We have provided two different accounts of the Nez Percé Indian War this one and Northwestern Fights and Fighters. Josephs request for Compensation from the United States Government is also included – In the compensation article, read the portion Lands in the Wallowa Valley, Oregon, check the dates closely in comparison to this book.

Battle of the Big Hole TOC

Big Hole Battlefield Panorama
Big Hole Battlefield in 2003
Photograph by Phil Konstantin

The following is a list of the American soldiers casualties that occurred at the Battle of the Big Hole:

  • Seventh Infantry, Killed
    • Company A.
      • Capt. William Logan
      • Private John B. Smith
    • Company B.
      • First Lieut. James H. Bradley
    • Company D.
      • Corporal William H. Payne
      • Corporal Jacob Eisenhut
      • Musician Francis Gallagher
    • Company E.
      • Private Mathew Butterly
    • Company F.
      • Private William D. Pomroy
      • Private James McGuire
    • Company G.
      • First Sergeant Robert L. Edgeworth
      • Sergeant William H. Martin
      • Corporal Domminic O’Conner.
      • Corporal Robert E. Sale
      • Private John O’Brien
      • Private Gottlieb Mauz
    • Company H.
      • Private McKindra L. Drake (orderly for General Gibbon)
    • Company I.
      • Sergeant Michael Hogan
      • Corporal Daniel McCaffrey
      • Private Herman Broetz
    • Company K.
      • First Sergeant Frederick Stortz
      • Musician Thomas Stinebaker
      • Artificer John Kleis
  • Second Cavalry, Killed
    • Company L.
      • Sergeant Edward Page
  • Seventh Infantry, Wounded
    • Col. John Gibbon, Seventh Infantry (left thigh, severe flesh wound)
    • Company A.
      • First Lieut. C. A. Coolidge (both legs above knees, right hand, severe)
      • Private James C. Lehmer (right leg, serious)
      • Private Charles Alberts (under left breast, serious)
      • Private Lorenzo D. Brown (right shoulder, serious)
      • Private George Leher (scalp, slight)
    • Company D.
      • Sergeant Patrick C. Daly (scalp, slight)
      • Corporal John Murphy (right hip, severe),
      • Musician Timothy Cronan (right shoulder breast, serious)
      • Private James Keys (right foot, severe)
    • Company E.
      • Sergeant William Wright (scalp, slight)
      • Sergeant James Bell (right shoulder, severe)
    • Company F.
      • Capt. Constant Williams (right side, severe, and scalp, slight)
      • Sergeant William W. Watson (right hip, serious died August 29, 1877)
      • Corporal Christian Luttman (both legs, severe)
      • Musician John Erikson (left arm, flesh)
      • Private Edwin D. Hunter (right hand, severe)
      • Private George Maurer (through both cheeks, serious)
      • Private Charles B. Gould (left side, severe)
    • Company G.
      • Sergeant John W. II. Frederic (left shoulder, flesh)
      • Sergeant Robert Benzinger (right breast, flesh)
      • Private John J. Conner (right eye, slight)
      • Private George Baughart (right shoulder, thigh, and wrist, severe)
      • Private James Burk (right breast, serious)
      • Private Charles H. Robbuke (left hip, slight)
    • Company I.
      • First Lieut. William L. English (through back, serious, and scalp, slight; died August 19, 1877)
      • Corporal Richard M. Cunliffe (shoulder and arm, flesh)
      • Private Patrick Fallen (hip and leg, serious)
      • Private William Thompson (left shoulder, flesh)
      • Private Joseph Daross (ankle and leg, serious)
    • Company K.
      • Second Lieut. C. A. Woodruff (both legs above knees, and left heel, severe)
      • Sergeant Howard Clarke (heel, severe)
      • Private David Heaton (right wrist, severe)
      • Private Mathew Devine (forearm, serious)
      • Private Philo O. Hurlburt (left shoulder, flesh)
  • Citizen Volunteers
    • Killed
      • L. C. Elliott
      • John Armstrong
      • David Morrow
      • Alvin Lockwood
      • Campbell Mitchell
      • H. S. Bostwick (post guide, Fort Shaw)
    • Wounded
      • Myron Lockwood
      • Otto Lyford
      • Jacob Baker
      • William Ryan
Officers Seventh Infantry25*
Enlisted men Seventh Infantry2030§
Enlisted men Second Cavalry11
Volunteers (citizens)54
Bostwick (citizen)  
* One officer since died, §Ono enlisted man since died, Post guide at Fort Shaw.

John Gibbon
Colonel Seventh Infantry, Com’d’g Dist. Montana.
September 2, 1877.

Shields, G. O. "Coquina" The Battle of the Big Hole. A History of General Gibbon's Engagement with Nez Perce Indians in the Big Hole Valley, Montana, August 1877. Chicago and New York: Rand, McNally & Company, Publishers, 1889.

2 thoughts on “Battle of the Big Hole”

  1. “The following is a list of the American soldiers casualties that occurred at the Battle of the Big Hole:”

    Where is the native american casualties list? It’d said my 4x great grandma died in the battle but can’t confirm family tails.

    1. It would be highly unusual to find a list of Native Americans who died or were injured in a battle against American soldiers, unless there was a specific chief involved. Just like we didn’t keep lists of those German soldiers we killed in WW2, we didn’t keep track of the Native Americans killed. Even the total casualty counts for dead Native Americans are suspect.

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