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Pursuit of Indians in Baker County Oregon

In the month of June 1866, a number of horses and mules were driven off by the Indians, being taken from the vicinity of Washington ranch. Twelve men started in pursuit, following the trail of the stolen animals over the mountain to the head of Elk creek, and on towards the head of Powder River, then across the divide to Burnt River and over the west ridge to Willow creek. Here six of the party turned back, and John Hibbard, Hardin Estes, Frank Johnson, Hiram Kinnison, Jo Hodgeons and Curtis kept on the pursuit. The Indians had chosen their route over the stoniest ground in order to baffle their pursuers if they should be followed. When the party came to a place so stony they could not see the prints of the horses feet, they would divide, some going to the right and some keeping to the left, keeping on soft ground watching for the place where the Indians had left the hard ground. In this way they managed to follow at a lively gait, and from the appearance of the tracks, believed they were gaining on the Indians. Late in the afternoon of the 10th day they came to the brink of a precipitous bluff on a small tributary of the south fork of the Malheur River, and espied the horses and mules for which they were searching, in the valley below. They could see six Indian wickiups and after a few minutes spent in consultation, they resolved to attack the camp, and drive the Indians away and recover the animals. Mr. Curtis, who was an experienced scout...

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