To Rev. Greene: September 8, 1846

Waiilatpu Walla Walla River Sept 8th 1846

Rev David Greene
Sect A B C F M.

My Dear Sir

Yours of July 26th 1845 came into the mouth of the River about the first of July at which time Mr Spalding was in the lower country and sent it to me.

Most of the Immigrants are now passed and we have received but one letter across the Mountains but none from the Board. A new road has been taken by those most in the rear who were met by a party from the Wallamette. They party met them soon after leaving Fort Hall and took them in the direction of California and so on to the head waters of the Wallamette. This season has been one of great prosperity to the Immigrants they being much earlier than formerly. Thus far no calls have been made upon me for provisions. A waggon route is now open through the Cascade Mountains to the Willamette Valley. A general quiet prevails through out the Country among all parties.

I know little of the situation of the station at Tshimakain father than all are well a short time since.

Mrs Spalding has a brother who arrived here this morning and is on his way to the station. He is a single man and will be likely to winter with them.

We are situated in our family much as when I last wrote. Mrs Whitman health is better than in some former years. We have, my Nephew and three half breeds which we took some years since, and the Seven Orphans in our family. Mr Rodgers who taught our school last winter is also with us pursuing studies with design for the ministry. He will teach a school for three months during the winter. But in the mean time I have engaged Mr Geiger who is here on a visit from the Wallamette to teach eight or ten weeks first. Mr Spalding expects to send two of his children and we expect Mr Walker will also. Mr Waller of the Methodist Mission at the Dalls gave encouragement of sending two. This you will see is for white children. At present I do not see as a school for Indians would succeed. But I have no doubt it would as soon as the relations of the country shall become stable if we would board and clothe the scholars. This would be a manual labour school and the English would be taught. Your views on the subject are solicited. Mr Greiger will be most suitable as a teacher in case he gets a pious wife, as is likely to be the case. My Nephew will be an able assistant by an other year. Both are apt in the native language

I have no doubt but the Indians will be most quiet as soon as the relation of the country shall be amicably settled with England. A steady improvement is going on among this part of the people. The Roman Catholic influence is still among them, but has lost its power to a great degree. The present Superentendant at Walla Walla Fort however is a papist. I think we have at no time been as much in the affections of the people as now. A much kinder disposition is manifested toward us, now more than at any former period - exibiting the feeling that they could not do without us. No abatement is seen in attention upon religeous instruction and more consistent views of religeon are manifested.

I wrote you upon the subject of our stations being located from under us; at the time when that spirit was abroad in the land, and when an effort was making by Mr Craig a neighbor of Mr Spalding to get his claim so recorded as to cover the station improvements at Lapwai. A more consistent state of things is now in exercise, but still you should recollect that we cannot hold the stations as our own property, and laws regulating claims may not recognize the rights of the Mission, in case the stations may be taken from us by unprincipled men. At present we could make a claim by paying five dollars a year to the treasury of Oregon. But I do not think it best for us to take claims in that way just now. I think we ought not however to let the opportunity pass in case the line becomes settled with England, and Congress opens the way for us to share with our country men. But you must be aware that it will require the consent of the Board, for us to make claims in case either time or money are required to make improvement in order to hold them, as all our time belongs to the Board as well as all of the property in our hands -

May I not here inquire at this time, how those who have salaries under the Board differ from common stock system of support?

We were hoping to see an Associate with this Immigration, but are disappointed. As the Indians become more permanent in their plans for cultivation, they are selecting what each esteems his more appropriate section of country to cultivate upon This is calling for a minister who could visit them more or less at their respective locations. We hope not to be overlooked in your plans of enlargement for the benefit of the Indians. Surely no part will sooner feel the need than this from the growing influx of the white population

The methodist have been upon the point of relinquishing their last station situated at the Dalls. A most important point to be kept. This would make a good addition for us. The Snakes will also now require attention. They consist essentially of two languages the Banak near us and Snakes proper toward Fort Hall.

The health of Rev Hervey Clark is so poor I have invited him to winter with us which invitation we expect him to accept.

This is the day of the convention of the Annual Meeting of the Board. Situated as we are at this time we could not meet as a Mission - but Thursday I trust will be kept as a day of prayer as you desire. No Mission I think has been so remote as this from the Board - so far as time is concerned for the interchange of letters. For the last two years I have had but two letters from the Board which have been acknowledged in their order. Surely no mission has more need than ours to prize every effort to call forth concert of feeling with our patrons and the Board or more to prize concert in prayer and effort

As the Immigrants have not called on me this year for any supplies, I shall have no means to meet the small bill I have made at Vancouver therefore I shall need to draw upon the Board. The Company have agreed to pay us back the 20 per cent added to our bill of last year, because they did not give us notice before we had had our bill ordered and filled. In future we have to pay 100 per cent to the company on London costs but shall only draw our bills for payment on Boston

With esteem
I am My Dear Sir
Yours Truly
Marcus Whitman

Last updated: March 1, 2015

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