JOSEPH AND HIS BRETHREN.
rounded by Indians and being cut to pieces." The little company of troops at once set forward in double quick toward the scene of conflict. The victims were a company of seventeen volunteers. Several had already fallen, but on the approach of Whipple's soldiers the Indians galloped off and were lost to sight behind the hills.
It was the 11th of July before Howard with his main force again caught sight of Joseph. The troops were on a high bluff overlooking the Clearwater River. The hostiles were discovered below on either side of the stream, a position from which they were quickly driven by showers of balls from the Gatling guns. For some distance clown the stream, on the side occupied by the soldiers, there was a rough, rocky plateau terminating in a bluff overlooking a large ravine or canon, leading up from the river. The Indians' attempt was to escape from between the high, perpendicular walls along either side of the river through the opening made by this canon. They were, in fact, just hurrying up the ravine when the whites discovered the movement and sought to prevent it. A fierce battle followed. The Indian sharp-shooters, planted behind lofty rocks, picked off the soldiers, while the latter fired into the ravine from the bluff or made charges down the slopes of smaller ravines leading into the main one. At nightfall the position of the two forces was unchanged.
On the following clay the battle was renewed. About half-past two a furious charge was made into the ravine. For a few minutes the Indians fought desperately from behind their rocky covers, but at length gave way and fled in all directions, bounding from rock to rock through the ravines or plunging into the river out of sight only to reappear when its rapid current had borne them out of gunshot. The Indian camp, with all its blankets, buffalo robes, cooking utensils, and provisions, fell into the hands of the victors.
Joseph and his band fled toward the east. Nothing remained but pursuit. Without pausing for a rest, General Howard and