The Bannack, Bonnack, or Pannaque, a small, scattered tribe of Shoshone stock, roaming over the desert plains of Idaho and portions of the surrounding Territories, were first found about the Blue Mountains. In 1833 Bonneville met them on the Snake River, near the mouth of the Portneuf, “numbering about 120 lodges. They are brave and cunning warriors, and deadly foes of the Blackfeet, whom they easily overcome in battle when their forces are equal. They are not vengeful and enterprising in warfare, however, seldom sending parties to attack the Blackfeet towns, but contenting themselves with defending their own territories and houses.” They frequent the headwaters of the Snake and Yellowstone countries to hunt and fish.
They have generally enjoyed a reputation for friendliness, although, in 1866, all but the Eastern Bannack under Tahgee engaged in hostilities against the whites.
At the present time there are 600 Bannack associated with 900 Shoshone at the Fort Hall reservation on Snake River, where the attempt is being made to civilize them. There are 200 more at the Lemhi reservation, where there are also 340 Sheep-eaters, a band of the Bannack living a retired life in the mountains dividing Idaho from Montana, and 500 Shoshone.
List of illustrations.
46. Group of eight of the leading chiefs and braves; photographed at the Snake River agency in 1872, among whom are Paquits, or Bannock Jim, a prominent chief; Totse-Cabe-Natsy, The White-faced Boy, and Major Jim.
47. Group of a miscellaneous crowd at the agency.
48. Family Group.
In 1871, while returning from the exploration of the Yellowstone region, and while encamped near the head of the Medicine Lodge Greek, the camp of a family of the Sheep-eater band of Bannack was accidentally discovered near by, almost completely hidden in a grove of willows. Their tent or tepee is made of a few boughs of willow, about which are thrown an old canvas picked up in some of the settlements. The present of a handful of sugar and some coffee reconciled them to having their photographs taken. In the group are the father and mother and five children. The Sheep-eaters are a band of the Bannack, running in the mountains north of the Kamas prairies, and are so shy and timid that they are but rarely seen.
51-61. Groups and Scenes about the agency.
Eleven views, showing the various operations of the agency, some of the solders, and a few groups of squaws and papoose.