• bible sitting next to a teapot

    Whitman Mission

    National Historic Site Washington

Killed, Escaped, Captive

Many people were staying with the Whitmans when the mission was attacked on November 29, 1847. Most were emigrants who were just spending the winter before continuing on to the Willamette Valley.

Below are lists of who was killed, who escaped, and who was held hostage. The hostages were held at the mission site for one month.

Ages of children are given in parentheses.

 

Killed (listed in alphabetical order)

Crocket Bewley
Nathan Kimball
Isaac Gilliland
Jacob Hoffmann
Walter Marsh
Andrew Rodgers
Francis Sager (15)
John Sager (17)
Amos Sales
Judge L. Saunders
Marcus Whitman
Narcissa Whitman
James Young

 

Escaped

Mr. W. D. Canfield

Mr. Peter D. Hall – made it to Fort Walla Walla, but never seen after that, presumed drowned

Osborn Family:
Mr. and Mrs. Josiah Osborn
Nancy A. Osborn (7 ½)
John L. Osborn (4)
Alexander (2)

 

Hostages
Organized by family. Members killed or escaped noted in parentheses.

The Whitmans’ adopted children and other children staying with them:
(John and Francis Sager - killed)
Catherine Sager (13)
Elizabeth Sager (10)
Matilda Sager (8)
Louise Sager (6) – died of measles during captivity
Henrietta Sager (4)
Mary Ann Bridger (11) – died of measles during captivity
Helen Mar Meek (10)
David Malin (Cortez) (8)
John Manson (13)
Stephen Manson (11)
Eliza Spalding (10)

Lorinda Bewley (brother Crocket Bewley- killed)

Mrs. Saunders (husband Judge L. W. Saunders - killed)
Helen M. Saunders (14)
Phoebe Saunders (10)
Alfred Saunders (6)
Nancy Saunders (4)
Mary A. Saunders (2)

Mrs. Rebecca Hays
Henry Clay Hays (4)
Rapolean Hays (infant) – died of measles during captivity

Mrs. Peter D. Hall (husband - escaped, but presumed drowned)
Gertrude Hall (10)
Mary C. Hall (8)
Ann E. Hall (6)
Rebecca Hall (3)
Rachel Hall (1)

Mrs. Nathan Kimball (husband - killed)
Susan M. Kimball (16)
Nathan Kimball Jr. (12)
Byron E. Kimball (8)
Sarah S. Kimball (6)
Nina A. Kimball (1)

Marsh Family: (Walter Marsh - killed)
Mary E. Marsh (11) - daughter
Alba Lyman (2) - grandson

Mrs. W. D. Canfield (husband - escaped)
Ellen Canfield (16)
Oscar Canfield (9)
Clarissa Canfield (7)
Sylvia Canfield (5)
Albert Canfield (3)

Mr. and Mrs. Elam Young
(son James - killed)
Daniel Young (21)
John Q. Young (19)

Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Smith
Mary Smith (15)
Edwin Smith (13)
Charles Smith (11)
Nelson Smith (6)
Mortimer Smith (4)

 

Sources

Drury, Clifford M. Chapter 21 (pdf 2.7 mb) and Chapter 22 (pdf 2.1 mb) of Marcus and Narcissa Whitman and the Opening of Old Oregon. 1994. Northwest Interpretive Association: Seattle, Washington.

Did You Know?

Brass compass which belonged to Dr. Whitman

In the fall of 1842 Dr. Whitman decided to travel from Waiilatpu to Boston. He wanted to convince the board members to keep his mission station open. Dr. Whitman was in such a hurry when he left that he forgot his compass.