In June 1877, Cottonwood House was the only commercial establishment in Cottonwood. For the preceding fifteen years it had served as a way station on the stage road from Mount Idaho to Lewiston. It was a hotel, saloon, and store all rolled into one.
Built from lumber obtained from a nearby cottonwood grove, its large stables accommodated the number of horses used for hauling in those days. At that time, Benjamin Norton was the proprietor of Cottonwood House, which he had bought from Joe Moore and Pete Ready.
The Nez Perce Flight to Canada - An Introduction
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