My command, discovering Joseph's ruse, kept the trail which Sturgis had been so near, but had not seen, and, finally, slid down the canyon, many a horse, in his weakness, falling and blocking the way The mouth of this canyon, which debouches into Clark's Valley, was not more than twenty feet across from high wall to high wall. And one may imagine the scene of cavalry, infantry and pack-mules crowding through it, and admire the quick wit of an Indian who had the hardihood to try the experiment, and break the almost impassable roadway.
Gen. O.O. Howard
Howard's command emerged from the canyori.and found, to their dismay, that the Seventh Cavalry had disappeared. But at Littlerock Creek they found something else of interest.
We struck Clarks Fork about two miles below where it comes out of the canyon. Here the command camped for the night at 5 p.m. The Scouts went on about 6 miles to little rocky creek. Charley Rainey, Jule and Indians found three dead bodies of white men a little off the trail on the River. They came on and overtook me telling me about it.... From the papers and letters the boys picked up near the dead men I think one of their last names was Olson and one Anderson. They were evidently Danish or at least two of them and were from the Black Hills. The Bodies were not stripped nor scalped.
September 10, 1877
What had happened to Sturgis would not be answered for another twenty-four hours.