Artifacts on the Fort Waters Level - Garth, 1948 Archeological Report
Partially because of an appalling lack of information about the period from 1848 to 1860, the artifacts found on floor 3A are of much more doubtful origin than those found lower down. A large percentage is, no doubt, mission property which was re-used by the soldiers or the stockmen who followed. The soldiers of 1848 found books and other mission property scattered about the grounds. They likewise recovered some $2,000 worth of mission property from the Indians, although there is nothing in the records to indicate what this might consist of. They mention having ". . . blacksmith's anvils and bellows, tools and irons, plows, harrows, and hoes. . ." (51) Most of these things must have come from the mission ruins. In fact, we found more heavy iron objects on floor 3A than on floor 4, the mission level. The Volunteers may even have recovered some of the mission chinaware as missiontype shards were found in abundance on the 3A level.
The most diagnostic items include several hand-made tin cans, indicating possibly that some of the army rations were in tins, several conical powder horn tips probably for use with a cow's horn, wagon parts, a horn hardy and other blacksmith iron and tools, many Indian beads, etc. Quantities of charred coffee beans and corn kernels, as well as some wheat and beans in the rear half of the Fort on the 3A level, suggest that the stockmen, Bumford, Brooks, and Noble, may have left the premises in a hurry at the onset of the second Cayuse war in 1855. They also failed to remove windows and other property of considerable value. They no doubt considered it impossible for only a few men to defend the Fort successfully.
Did You Know?
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.