Among the Nez Perce Indians of the Pacific Northwest, there were two Chief Josephs: “Old Chief Joseph,” the father and “Young Chief Joseph,” the son. The latter is known for leading his people on an 1,170-mile trek just shy of the border of Canada, where they were seeking asylum.
Stopped by the U.S. Army just short of the goal, Chief Joseph and his people — which included not only warriors whose prowess impressed armies with far more firing power, but also women and children — were forced to turn back and were interned in a reservation, far from their Wallowa Valley Home.
The Land of Chief Joseph honors the memory of these two noble and notable men, as well as their people. While we living today cannot right the wrongs of yesterday, we can be humbled by them, using the lessons of history to teach us kindness, thoughtfulness, honor, fairness, justice, and integrity.
An excellent book on the subject is The Nez Perce Indians and the Opening of the Northwest by Alvin M. Josephy, Jr.
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