Shoshone Indians

The Shoshone Indians on the East and West of the Rocky Mountains were one in the same, but they were very different in the ways of life. They covered parts of California, California, Idaho, Nevada, Utah, and Wyoming. The northern group of the Shoshone Indians were the Shoshoni. They had settled along the Snake River in Utah. The Western group, sometimes called the Panamint, lived in central Idaho, northwestern Utah, central Nevada, and in California around the Death and Panamint Valleys. The Eastern Shoshone's lived in northern Colorado, Wyoming, and Montana but had conflicts with the neighboring tribes. Around 1750, the eastern Shoshone Indian conflicts with the Lakota, Blackfoot, Cheyenne, Arapahos, and Crow tribes shoved them southwest.

The introduction of the horse to the western Shoshone Indians in the 1700's made life much easier for the tribe. They were able to hunt larger prey and start trading. Although they were not afraid to fight, they stayed clear of their fierce enemies, the Pocatello and Crow Indians. The Treaty of Ruby Valley was a peace treaty that was signed in 1863 granting the U.S. to establish permanent reservations for the western Shoshone Indians on their territory. It also allowed the government rights of way and mining rights with in the land.


Since Sacajawea's contact with Lewis and Clark the eastern Shoshone Indians were friendly towards the Americans. They signed many treaties starting with the commonly know Five State Treaty. 

As the white settlers began moving up to the Great Salt Lake in 1862, they had taken over the Cache Valley. The Shoshone Indians of the north fought back by attacking the mining parties going to and from Montana and raiding the herds. Their aggression came to an end when Colonel Patrick Edward Connor lead the attack known as the Bear River Massacre in late January 1863. At least 250 Shoshone Indians were killed, leaving the rest to sign the Treaty of Box elder in order to bring peace to the nation.



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