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The Snake River Valley Reminiscences of the Early Days

In 1833 Captain Bonneville, an officer in the army, secured leave of absence and spent about two years here, mostly in the Snake river valley. He left his horses for the winter with some Indians at a camp near where St. Anthony is now located. He and his men made their way down Snake river in boats till they reached Black Rock canyon, where now is Idaho Falls, the thriftiest town in southeast Idaho: but they dared not venture in their boats through the canyon. Captain Bonneville found a desolate sage-covered valley, holding out no promise of ever being more than a range where Indian cayuses might pick a precarious living on bunch grass. Not a tree as far as the eye could reach, except an occasional wind-twisted and gnarled juniper growing out of the seams in the lava rock along the banks of Snake River. In 1849, when the California stampede was on, many of the gold-seekers passed over the same Snake river valley, and, in after years, relating their experience, described it as one of the most hopeless spots encountered in their ox-train journey across the continent. In 1864 the stampede for Alder Gulch, Montana, was fairly under way. Whether from east or west, the Snake River valley was on the route. A ferry was put in by John Gibson just below where Blackfoot now is, and soon afterward one by a man named Kutch, some miles further up the river. The same year Harry Rickets started a ferry, known as the Eagle Rock ferry, to catch the travel that came over what was known as Lander’s...

The Indians Of Idaho Nez Percé And Shoshone Uprisings

Some notice of the original inhabitants of Idaho is due the reader of this book, even though that notice must necessarily be short and its data largely traditional. With-out a written language of any kind, unless it was the use of the rudest and most barbarous symbols, they have passed away and left no recorded history; without architecture, except that which exhausts its genius in the construction of a skin wigwam or a bark lodge, they have died and left no monuments. Traditions concerning them are too confused, contradictory and uncertain to satisfy any who desire reliable history. Any real information at all reliable concerning them began with the publication of the journal of the exploring expedition of Lewis and Clarke in 1804 and 1805. Incidental notices of various tribes have been given to the world by other explorers and travelers, but very much that has been written concerning them was not the ascertaining of patient and continued personal investigation, nor yet the impressions of any extended personal contact, but the chance and hasty gatherings of unreliable traditions, or, what was even less to be depended on than this, the exaggerated recitals of some wild, camp-fire stories. All these, of course, have a value as literature, and occupy an interesting place in romantic story, but their history is not great. When these people were first brought under the study of civilized men two facts distinctly marked them: One was that the tribes east of the Cascade mountains had very different mental and physical qualities from those residing west of that range. The other was, that there was no form...

Various Subjects

Presbyterianism In Idaho The history of Presbyterianism in Idaho embraces three separate histories: that of the work among the Nez Perces, that of the work among the whites in the Panhandle, and that of the work in the southern section of the state. The work among the Nez Perces had its beginning in 1836, when Rev. Henry H. Spalding, the friend and companion of Marcus Whitman, established a mission station at Lapwai on the Clearwater, twelve miles above the present city of Lewiston. When the Whitman’s were massacred in 1847 Mr. Spalding and his wife were also marked as victims, and though they escaped with their lives they were shut out from work in that field until 1871. In that year Mr. Spalding was allowed to return and spent three busy years among the people from whom he had been separated for almost a quarter of a century. The seed sown with weeping so long before had not perished, and he was permitted to gather in his sheaves with rejoicing. During the last three years of his life he was permitted to baptize six hundred and ninety-four Indian converts. One year before he died two women of heroic spirit, educated, consecrated, and in every way fitted, came to his help. They were the Misses Susan and Kate McBeth, whose names are now household words in Presbyterian homes. Miss Susan had worked among the Choctaws until the civil war compelled her withdrawal, and then she served as a nurse in the army hospitals in St. Louis until the close of the war. Shattered in health though she was, when she...

Treaty of July 3, 1868

Articles of a treaty made and concluded at Fort Bridger, Utah Territory,on the third day of July, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and sixty-eight, by and between the undersigned commissioners on the part of the United States, and the undersigned chiefs and head-men of and representing the Shoshonee (eastern band)and Bannack tribes of Indians, they being duly authorized to act in the premises: Article 1. From this day forward peace between the parties to this treaty shall forever continue. The Government of the United States desires peace, and its honor is hereby pledged to keep it. The Indians desire peace, and they hereby pledge their honor to maintain it. If bad men among the whites, or among other people subject to the authority of the United States, shall commit any wrong upon the personor property of the Indians, the United States will, upon proof made to the agent and forwarded to the Commissioner of Indian Affairs,at Washington City, proceed at once to cause the offender to be arrested and punished according to the laws of the United States, and also re-imburse the injured person for the loss sustained. If bad men among the Indians shall commit a wrong or depredation upon the person or property of any one, white, black, or Indian, subject to the authority of the United States, and at peace therewith, the Indians herein named solemnly agree that they will, on proof made to their agent and notice by him, deliver up the wrong-doer to the United States, to be tried and punished according to the laws; and in case they...

Bannock Indians

Bannock Indians. In historic times their main center was in southeastern Idaho, ranging into western Wyoming, between latitude 42° and 45° North and from longitude 113° West eastward to the main chain of the Rocky Mountains. At times they spread well down Snake River, and some were scattered as far north as Salmon River and even into southern Montana.

Bannock Tribe

Bannock Indians (from Panátǐ, their own name). A Shoshonean tribe whose habitat previous to being gathered on reservations can not be definitely outlined. There were two geographic divisions, but references to the Bannock do not always note this distinction. The home of the chief division appears to have been south east Idaho, whence they ranged into west Wyoming. The country actually claimed by the chief of this southern division, which seems to have been recognized by the treaty of Ft Bridger, July 3, 1868, lay between lat. 42° and 45°, and between long. 113° and the main chain of the Rocky Mountains. It separated the Wihinasht Shoshoni of west Idaho from the so-called Washaki band of Shoshoni of west Wyoming. They were found in this region in 1859, and they asserted that this had been their home in the past. Bridger1 had known them in this region as early as 1829. Bonneville found them in 1833 on Portneuf River, immediately north of the present Ft Hall reservation. Many of this division affiliated with the Washaki Shoshoni, and by 1859 had extensively intermarried with them. Bridger states that when he first knew them (about 1829) the southern Bannock numbered 1,200 lodges, indicating a population of about 8,000. In 1869 they were estimated as not exceeding 500, and this number was probably an overestimate as their lodges numbered but 50, indicating a population of about 350. In 1901 the tribe numbered 513, so intermixed, however, with the Shoshoni that no attempt is made to enumerate them separately. All the Bannock except 92 under Lemhi agency are gathered on Ft Hall Reservation,...

Condition of the Idaho Indians in 1890

Early the summer of 1877 troubles arose in regard to the occupancy of the Wallowa valley by white settlers, it having been withdrawn in 1875 as a reservation under treaty of 1873, because of the failure, of the Indians to permanently occupy it. An Indian belonging to a band of non-treaty Indians under Chief Joseph was killed by some settlers; then the Indians insisted upon the removal of the settlers and the restitution of the valley to them. Upon the refusal of the government to do this, and after further efforts to compel all the non-treaty Indians to come into the reservation at Lapwai, an outbreak occurred, under the leadership of Joseph, which resulted in a number of pitched battles, with great loss. He was compelled to retreat, the forces under General Howard pursuing him eastwardly across the headwaters of the Snake River and through the Yellowstone national park, where the pursuit was taken up by the threes under General Terry, resulting finally in the capture of Joseph and his band. On the morning or September 30, 1877, Chief Joseph and his Nez Perces were met and surrounded by Colonel Nelson A. Miles and his command in the valley of Snake creek, northern Montana. On the 4th of October 1877, they surrendered. The length of this raid, the march of the troops, and the tact displayed by Joseph form one of the most extraordinary chapters in the history of Indian outbreaks, Eighty-seven warriors, 184 squaws, and 117 children surrendered. They were sent under guard to Fort Abraham Lincoln, North Dakota, thence to Fort Leavenworth, and afterward located in the...

Bannock Indian Tribe Photo Descriptions

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...

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