Modoc Indian Tribe Photos
The Modoc were originally part of the Klamath but recently hostile to them.
Their name is an Indian word meaning enemies. Their original territory was on
the south side of ' Klamath Lake, including some 4,000 square miles. Were early
known as a treacherous and cruel people, and up to 1850 had cut off more than 50
whites. Engagements followed between them and the whites in 1851 when Wright
massacred 41 out of a total of 46 which were kept up until 1864, when they
agreed to go on a reserve. The treaty to that effect was not ratified for seven
years, and in the mean time were induced to go on the Klamath reserve. Were
harassed and dissatisfied, and after wards put on Yaniax reservation, but most
of the tribe left under two rival chiefs, Schonchin and Captain Jack. The former settled peaceably near the settlements, while the latter went back to their
old home and became troublesome. In 1872, were ordered back to the reserve, and
upon their refusing to go troops were called on to enforce the order, the
citizens joining in an attack on their entrenched camps, but were repulsed. The
Modoc then retreated to the "lava-beds," a volcanic region so broken up into
great caves and fissures as to serve as a natural fortification. After several
engagements a commission was organized to enquire into the trouble, and while
holding a conference with the leaders were attacked, and General Canby and Dr.
Thomas were killed, (April 11, 1873.) After two months' further operations, the
hostiles were reduced, their leaders hung, and the rest removed to the Indian
Territory. About 100 who took no part in the trouble remained at the Klamath
List of illustrations
1008. Scar-Faced Charley.
The famous war chief of the lava-bed warriors, and the greatest of their
soldiers. He was the most trusted of Captain Jack's braves, and the most
desperate of his fighters. Rev. Dr. Thomas; who was slain at the
peace-commission massacre, on the day before his death called Scar-Faced Charley
the "Leonidas of the lava-beds." He was never known to be guilty of any act not
authorized by the laws of legitimate warfare, and entered his earnest protest
against the assassination of General Canby and Dr. Thomas. He led the
Modoc against Major Thomas and Colonel Wright when the United States troops
were so disastrously repulsed and when two-thirds of our men were killed and
wounded. Wearied of the slaughter, he shouted to the survivors, "You fellows
that are not dead had better go home; we don't want to kill you all in one day."
He has said since, "My heart was sick of seeing so many men killed."
1009. Shack-Nasty Jim,
The sub-chief of the tribe and chief of the Hot Creek band of the Modoc;
although hardly twenty-one years of age, is known throughout Christendom as one
of the most fearless warriors that the red men ever sent to fight the
pale-faces. He led the tribal forces that suffered most severely. After the
massacre he quarreled with Captain Jack; and, with "Bogus Charley," "Hooker
Jim," and "Steamboat Frank," became scout for General Jeff. 0. Davis which led
to the capture of the remnants of the Modoc army.
1010. Steamboat Frank,
One of the participators in the Modoc war, but after the massacre of General
Canby's party, left his tribe, and as a scout under General Davis, did good
service in securing the capture of the remnants of Captain Jack's forces.
1011. Wi-Ne-Ma, or Tobey Riddle.
The modern Pocahontas, who, at the risk of her own life, saved the life of Col.
A. B. Meacham, chairman of the Modoc peace commission, at the Modoc massacre.
The Oregon Statesman truly says: "A truer heroine was never born in the American
forest than the poor Indian woman, Tobey Riddle, whose exertions to save one who
had befriended herself and people were no less daring and resolute than the
devotion of Pocahontas. We have nowhere read of a woman, white, black, or red,
performing an act of sublimer heroism than Tobey Riddle, when, under suspicions
of treachery, she returned to her people in the rocks, with an almost absolute
certainty of being flayed alive. The description of that event is one of the
finest passages in Mr. Meacham's speech, and is a fitting tribute to the courage
and fidelity of his dusky, lion-hearted friend. The gratitude, fidelity, and
devotion of that poor squaw ought to forever put to silence and shame those
heart less savages who, in the midst of a Christian civilization, are clamoring
for the extinction of a people whom God had planted where they were found."
Tobey is 28 years of age, and the wife of Frank Riddle. She is honored by all
who know her.
Photographs of North American Indians
Descriptive Catalogue, Photographs Of North American Indians. United States Geological Survey
of the Territories, 1877 by W. H. Jackson, Photographer of the Survey,
F. V. Hayden, U. S. Geologist.
Photographs of North American Indians