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Chief Joseph QUOTES / QUOTATIONS
A chief called Lawyer, because he was a great talker, took the lead in the council, and sold nearly all the Nez Perce country.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
A man who would not love his father's grave is worse than a wild animal.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
About daybreak one of my men went out to look after his horses. The soldiers saw him and shot him down like a coyote.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
All men were made by the Great Spirit Chief. They are all brothers.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
An Indian respects a brave man, but he despises a coward.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
During the hot days we received notice that we were to be moved farther away from our own country.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
For a short time we lived quietly. But this could not last. White men had found gold in the mountains around the land of winding water.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
From where the sun now stands I will fight no more.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
General Howard informed me, in a haughty spirit, that he would give my people 30 days to go back home, collect all their stock, and move onto the reservation.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
Good words will not give me back my children.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
Governor Isaac Stevens of the Washington Territory said there were a great many white people in our country, and many more would come; that he wanted the land marked out so that the Indians and the white man could be separated.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
Governor Stevens urged my father to sign his treaty, but he refused.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
Hear me, my chiefs! I am tired. My heart is sick and sad. From where the sun now stands, I will fight no more forever.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
I am tired of talk that comes to nothing.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
I believe much trouble would be saved if we opened our hearts more.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
I cannot tell how much my heart suffered for my people while at Leavenworth.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
I did not want my people killed. I did not want bloodshed.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
I had never sold my country, and I had no land in Lapwai.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
I have been asked to show you my heart.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
I have heard talk and talk, but nothing is done.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
I hope that no more groans of wounded men and women will ever go to the ear of the Great Spirit Chief above, and that all people may be one people.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
I know that my race must change.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
I labored hard to avoid trouble and bloodshed.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
I only ask of the government to be treated as all other men are treated.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
I pressed my father's hand and told him I would protect his grave with my life. My father smiled and passed away to the spirit land.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
I said in my heart that, rather than have war, I would give up my country.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
I saw clearly that war was upon us when I learned that my young men had been secretly buying ammunition.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
I saw that the war could not be prevented. The time had passed.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
I want the white people to understand my people.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
I will obey every law, or submit to the penalty.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
I will speak with a straight tongue.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
I would give up everything rather than have the blood of white men upon the hands of my people.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
I would have given my own life if I could have undone the killing of white men by my people.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
I would have taken my people to the buffalo country without fighting if possible.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
If the white man wants to live in peace with the Indian he can live in peace.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
In the fight with General Gibbon we lost 50 women and children and 30 fighting men. We remained long enough to bury our dead.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
It does not require many words to speak the truth.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
It has always been the pride of the Nez Perce that they were the friends of the white men.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
It makes my heart sick when I remember all the good words and the broken promises.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
It required a strong heart to stand up against such talk, but I urged my people to be quiet and not to begin a war.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
Lawyer acted without authority from our band.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
Lawyer acted without authority from our band. He had no right to sell the Wallowa country.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
Let me be a free man - free to travel, free to stop, free to work.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
Many of the Nez Perce came together in Rocky Canyon to hold a grand council.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
Mr. Chapman took sides against us, and helped General Howard. I do not blame him for doing so.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
My father was chief before me. He left a good name on earth. He advised me well for my people.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
My father was chief before me. When he was a young man, he was called Joseph by Mr. Spaulding, a missionary.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
My father was the first to see through the schemes of the white man.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
My father... had sharper eyes than the rest of our people.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
My people were divided about surrendering.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
None of the soldiers were scalped. We do not believe in scalping, nor in killing wounded men.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
Our people could not talk with these white-faced men, but they used signs which all people understand.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
Soldiers do not kill many Indians unless they are wounded and left upon the battlefield. Then they kill Indians.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
Some of you think an Indian is like a wild animal. This is a great mistake.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
The earth is the mother of all people, and all people should have equal rights upon it.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
The first white men of your people who came to our country were named Lewis and Clark. They brought many things that our people had never seen. They talked straight. These men were very kind.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
The Great Spirit is looking at me, and will hear me.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
The Indian race are waiting and praying.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
The white men told lies for each other. They drove off a great many of our cattle. Some branded our young cattle so they could claim them.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
There was one young brave present whose father had been killed by a white man five years before. This man's blood was bad against white men, and he left the council calling for revenge.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
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.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
They brought many things with them to trade for furs and skins. They brought guns with flint stones on them.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
Treat all men alike. Give them the same law. Give them an even chance to live and grow.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
War can be avoided, and it ought to be avoided. I want no war.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
We ask to be recognized as men.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
We captured one white man and two white women. We released them at the end of three days. The women were not insulted.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
We damaged all the big guns we could, and carried away the powder and the lead.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
We did not know there were other people besides the Indian until about one hundred winters ago, when some men with white faces came to our country.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
We gathered all the stock we could find, and made an attempt to move. We left many of our horses and cattle in Wallowa. We lost several hundred in crossing the river.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
We gave up some of our country to the white men, thinking that then we could have peace. We were mistaken. The white man would not let us alone.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
We had 250 warriors. General Howard attacked us with 350 soldiers. The fight lasted 27 hours.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
We had a great many horses, of which we gave Lewis and Clark what they needed, and they gave us guns and tobacco in return.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
We had good white friends who advised us against taking the war path. My friend and brother, Mr. Chapman, told us just how the war would end.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
We had no friend who could plead our cause before the law councils.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
We moved over to White Bird Creek, 16 miles away, and there encamped, intending to collect our stock. But the soldiers attacked us.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
We numbered in that battle 60 men, and the soldiers 100. The fight lasted but a few minutes.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
We soon found that the white men were growing rich very fast, and were greedy to possess everything the Indian had.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
We soon found that the white men were growing rich very fast, and were greedy.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
We were taught to believe that the Great Spirit sees and hears everything, and that He never forgets.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
When an Indian fights, he only shoots to kill.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
When my young men began the killing, my heart was hurt.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
With a prayer in my mouth to the Great Spirit Chief who rules above, I dashed unarmed through the line of soldiers. It seemed to me that there were guns on every side.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
Words do not pay for my dead people.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
You can judge whether an Indian is a man or not.
Quotation of Chief Joseph
You might as well expect rivers to run backwards as any man born free to be contented penned up.
Quotation of Chief Joseph