The Nez Perce numbered 431 persons: 79 men, 178 women and 174 children when they arrived.
A worse place to put a camp of four hundred human beings, mostly women and children could not have been selected; in fact it would seem as if this spot had been selected for the express purpose of putting an end to Chief Joseph and his band.... One half were sick.... All were filled with the poisonous malaria of the camp.
This will be no hardship to them, as the difference in temperature between that latitude and their old home is inconsiderable.
Ezra A. Hayt
Commissioner of Indian Affairs
November 1, 1877
1 cannot tell how much my heart suffered for my people while at Leavenworth. The Great Spirit Chief who rules above seemed to be looking some other way, and did not see what was being done to my people.
Today, Nez Perce Way runs along the top of a levee. Before it was built, the airfield area was probably swampy. Malaria, cholera, and a lack of concern were the main culprits in killing the Nez Perce.
The Nez Perce Flight to Canada - An Introduction
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