"The sky has wept tears of compassion on our fathers for untold centuries. Today it is fair; tomorrow it may be overcast with clouds. "You say that the Great White Chief has sent us word that he wishes to buy our lands, and to give us a reservation where we can live in comfort. This is generous. We will ponder your offer and we will tell you the answer. But I make this condition: That we shall not be denied the right to visit when we will the graves of our ancestors and friends. Every part of this country is sacred to my people. The very dust under our feet responds to our foot-step because it is the ashes of our ancestors......... At nights when the streets of your cities are silent, they will throng with the hosts that once filled this beautiful land. The white man will never be alone. Let him be just and deal kindly with my people, for the dead are not powerless."
My name is In-mut-too-yah-lat-lat (Thunder traveling over the Mountains). I am chief of the Wal-lam-wat-kin band of Chute-pa-lu, or Nez Perc's (nose-pierced Indians)… We did not know there were other people besides the Indianuntil about one hundred winters ago, when some men with whitefaces came to our country. They brought many things with them to trade for furs and skins. They brought tobacco, which was new to us. They brought guns with flint stones on them, which frightened our women and children. Our people could not talk with these white-faced men, but they used signs which all people. understand. These men were Frenchmen, and they called our people Nez Perc's, because they wore rings in their noses for ornaments.… These French trappers said a great many things to our fathers, which have been planted in our hearts. Some were good for us, but some were bad. Our people were divided in opinion about these men. Some thought they taught more bad than good. An Indian respects a brave man, but he despises a coward. He loves a straight tongue, but he hates a forked tongue.
The French trappers told us some truths and some lies. The first white men of your people who came to our country were named Lewis and Clarke. They also brought many things that our people had never seen. They talked straight, and our people gave them a great feast, as a proof that their hearts were friendly.
These men were very kind. They made presents to our chiefs and our people made presents to them. We had a great many horses, of which we gave them what they needed, and they gave us guns and tobacco in return.