• Nez Perce National Historical Park. Front Page banner photograph is of Heart of the Monster, an ancient place where the Nez Perce creation story originates. The secondary page photograph is of Nez Perce beadwork.

    Nez Perce

    National Historical Park ID,MT,OR,WA

The Cemetery


The Cemetery at the Spalding site. It is still an active cemetery.

Nez Perce National Historical Park

Nearly 180 people are buried there that include Nez Perce, some of the Indian agents, and some of the missionaries, including Henry Spalding and his first wife, Eliza. Josiah Red Wolf, a young boy during the 1877 Nez Perce War and one of its last survivors, and prominent Nez Perce families are buried here. Among the markers is the Granite monolith with the remains of Henry Spalding and his first wife Eliza, Indian Agent John Montieth and missionary Mary Crawford.

If you eat lunch in the picnic area, there are specific rules that govern behavior around the cemetery. Burial sites are sacred to the Nez Perce therefore all visitors are expected to respect the cemetery as sacred ground. Please do not:

  • Walk or stand on the graves
  • Take food or drinks into the cemetery
  • Take rubbings or markings from headstones
  • Handle the headstones
  • Touch or bother any items on the graves
  • Engage in any type of recreational activity
  • Adults please accompany children

Did You Know?

Original art work by Roy Anderson depicting Lewis and Clark meeting the Nez Perce for the first time.

In September of 1805 Lewis and Clark crossed into Nez Perce country. A debate ensued among the Nez Perce. Should they assist these strangers or attack them? A female Nez Perce elder, Wetxuuwíis (Wet-k'hoo-wees)urged her people to do them no harm. Her words were heeded; the expedition was welcomed.