Topic: Nez Perce

The Salmon River Expedition

On the 24th of June, 1877, seven days after the battle of White Bird Canon, Troop H, First Cavalry, left Mount Idaho by the roundabout way of Florence for the little settlement of Slate Creek on the Salmon River. Slate Creek empties into Salmon about six miles above the mouth of White Bird. The Indians were still in camp on the riverbank and had possession of all trails between the two points. The march was through the mountains over an old, abandoned trail, obstructed by rocks and fallen timber; and, although it was mid-summer, snow and rain fell almost incessantly

The Battle of the Clearwater

On quitting camp at Slate Creek, Oregon, I marched my troop, consisting of thirty enlisted men and three officers, to a crossing some miles below the settlement on Salmon River and put them across – horses swimming, men and packs by canoe. This movement was in obedience to an order from General Howard to join his immediate command in pursuit of the Indians via the Salmon River hills. The hostiles had been confronting the General’s command at the mouth of the White Bird Creek, they, the hostiles, being on the farther side of the river, and the command under General

General Howard’s Comment on Joseph’s Narrative

On reading in the North American Review for April the article entitled “An Indian’s View of Indian Affairs,” I was so pleased with Chief Joseph’s statement – necessarily ex parte though it was, and naturally inspired by resentment toward me as a supposed enemy – that at first I had no purpose of making a rejoinder. But when I saw in the Army and Navy Journal long passages quoted from Joseph’s tale, which appeared to reflect unfavorably upon my official conduct, to lay upon me the blame of the atrocious murders committed by the Indians, and to convict me of

Anecdotes of Chief Joseph

With the death of Chief Joseph, the famous leader of the Nez Perces, the United States has lost its most celebrated Indian. Joseph, since the death of Red Cloud and Sitting Bull, has been the most discussed American Indian. He was the last of the great warrior chiefs. Descendant of a long line of fighters, chieftain, since early manhood, of the Nez Perce tribe, and followed with constant devotion by his dwindling people, Chief Joseph was the last Indian leader who dared to put up a real fight against civilization; and in his desperate Waterloo he put up a fight

The Battle of Camas Meadows

During the memorable campaign against the Nez Perce Indians, in the year 1877, there were many stirring incidents that have never been given to the public, and notably among these is the Camas Meadow fight of Capt. Randolph Norwood’s Company L, of the Second Cavalry. In the early part of the summer we had assisted the Fifth Infantry, under Col. Nelson A. Miles, in rounding up and capturing the remnant band of Cheyenne Sioux, under Lame Deer, and bringing them into the cantonment at the mouth of Tongue River. Shortly after arriving there, Gen. W. T. Sherman and staff, and

Chief Joseph’s Own Story

Chief Joseph’s Own Story: With an Introduction by the Rt. Rev. W. H. Hare, D.D., Bishop of South Dakota 1This and the following chapter are taken from The North American Review for 1879, by the gracious permission of Messrs. Harper and Brothers, the present publishers of the magazine and the owners of the copyright. – C. T. B. Wish that I had words at command in which to express adequately the interest with which I have read the extraordinary narrative which follows, and which I have the privilege of introducing to the readers of this Review. I feel, however, that

The Battle of White Bird Canon

The Wallowa Valley is fifteen or twenty miles east of the Grande Ronde Valley in eastern Oregon, and had long been a bone of contention between the whites and a band of non-treaty Nez Percé Indians under Chief Joseph. The whites claimed the right of settlement under the United States Land Acts, and while no determined effort on their part was made to take up homestead, preemption or other claims, yet they kept it as a grazing ground for their cattle, while the Indians denied them the right to such privileges, claiming to themselves the entire control of the valley

The First Settlements the March of Progress

The first settlements made by whites with-in the present boundaries of Idaho were effected by Jesuit missionaries, as is true throughout the Pacific coast region; and previously to 1863, the beginning of a new era in this region, there were but two or three settlements made by others. In the primeval stage the country was not at all inviting to civilized people. The almost omnipresence of red savages precluded all thoughts of prospecting in the mountains for valuable minerals, while the valleys seemed to be only arid deserts absolutely irreclaimable for agricultural purposes. In the outside world ideas as to

Idaho, the Gem of the Mountains, Origin of the Name

The Mountains have ever been the bulwarks of freedom. Valor is born there; virtue is cherished there, and these are the seeds of song and story. No land ever yet had a literature to endure that had not these for its theme, these off-springs of the pure, sweet atmosphere and sublime splendor of inspiring Mountains; and the more glorious the Mountains, the more glorious the song and story. What then may we not prophesy for Idaho when her torn and devastated placer fields all are terraced vineyards, as in Savoy, and the peace and rest of the old pastoral days

Early Explorations

During the long period of time in which the Pacific coast of North America was being slowly brought to the knowledge of civilized man, the course of narrative shows that the Frenchman and Spaniard were the pioneers of exploration in this region, both by sea and land. Spain led the maritime nations in distant and successful voyages. The voyage of Columbus, under the auspices of Ferdinand and his noble queen, Isabella, whose reign over the united kingdoms of Castile and Aragon gave Spain so much glory in that adventurous and chivalrous age, had kindled every maritime Spaniard into a very