• 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

Nez Perce NHP - Oregon and Washington Sites

Oregon

Dug Bar

At this traditional crossing of the Snake River, the Wallowa bands crossed in May, 1877 as they left their homes in Oregon for the reservation in Idaho.

Directions: Located in Hell's Canyon National Recreation Area, the site is accessible by either boat or a high clearance vehicle from Imnaha. Please check local road conditions before driving.

Joseph Canyon Viewpoint

The canyon seen from the overlook was one of the winter homes of the Nez Perce. Tradition holds that Chief Joseph was born in a cave along the east bank of the creek. Restrooms are available.

Old Chief Joseph's Gravesite
The remains of the elder Chief Joseph were reburied here in 1926. Nearby are the graves of other Nez Perce and some settlers.

Directions: Old Chief Joseph gravesite is located on the west side of Oregon Highway 82, just north of Wallowa Lake and one mile south of Joseph.

Lostine Campsite

At the junction of the Lostine and Wallowa Rivers is a traditional Nez Perce summer campsite where Old Chief Joseph died in 1871. This landscape has changed little from the days before the area was settled. Not a developed site.

Washington Sites

Burial Site of Chief Joseph the Younger

In 1885 Chief Joseph and his band were allowed to return to the Northwest from Indian Territory in Oklahoma. Joseph spent his remaining years on the Colville Reservation and died here in 1904. The cemetery is private property and a sacred place.

Nez Perce Campsites at Nespelem

Chief Joseph's band continued their traditional way of life while living on the Colville Reservation. These were their winter and summer homes and were the last places where Joseph lived. Not a developed site.

Buffalo Eddy

The unique petroglyphs of this area are evidence of the longevity of the Nez Perce occupation of the area. Defacing federal archeological sites is a criminal offense.

Directions: The site is approximately 20 miles south of Lewiston, Idaho along the Snake River on County Road 209.

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.