Nakia Williamson Cloud interprets a photograph of Jefferson Greene and Sam Lott (Many Wounds)

Cultural Narrative: 

This photo depicts two individuals that are from the Nez Perce reservation and were very well known in the community at that time in the early reservation period. And both of these individuals had participated in the events surrounding what is now known as the Nez Perce War of 1877. I think both these individuals escaped into Canada just subsequent to the battle at c’áynim ‘áalikinwaaspa known as the Bear Creek Battlefiled, or Snake Creek, more appropriately. The man on the left is an individual that is known amongst our reservation as Jefferson Greene. In the photo he’s identified as Daniel Webster. I don't know if that’s an earlier name or if it’s just a misidentification in this regard. But one of my elders, píilocanmay, grew up and was a neighbor to this man. And they would refer to him in in everyday terms as lim lím, as sort of a nickname that they had.

And oftentimes as they would eat dinner, he would come and join them. And so my elder, as she was a young girl, would go over and call over to him, “hipsíix,” time to eat. And lim lím, or Jefferson Greene, would come and join them in dinner each evening.

So he was a very kind of distinguished looking individual. And the way he’s dressed here is in a very kind of appropriate attire for that time period, mostly made out of what we’d call kiincóc, or trade cloth that was traded through the Hudson Bay Company. And depicting a white salvage-edge, which was the undyed portion of that cloth, which was a very costly sort of material that his shirt is made of. And his leggings are made of a similar cloth. And his cepéek’ilkt, or his hide breech cloth is made of beaded designs that look like it may be from the prairie area to the east of the plains area. I’m not sure. It might have been a trade item. All the other items are consistent with what would have been worn at that time with the Nez Perce people. And he’s wearing a pretty peculiar headdress. Split horn buffalo or some other type, so maybe even steer horn with a beaded brow with the eight-pointed star and some feathers on it as well.

The individual on the right side of the photograph is ‘Ilexní ‘éewteesin’ or Many Wounds, also known as Sam Lott in the reservation period. And he comes from a long lineage of well-known leaders and warriors. And actually these two individuals come from the same lineage, very old lineage amongst the xa'xaac 'ilp'ílp, I believe, Red Grizzly Bear. And so their relatives, and they come from that lineage too, xa'xaac 'ilp'ílp.  

And so there are numerous individuals that are descended from these two individuals on the Nez Perce reservation in the case of Many Wounds and lim lím also has descendants on the Nez Perce reservation, but also even on the Warm Springs reservation. So these were very important individuals that preserved many aspects of some of the things that they had experienced during the 1877 war as young boys and young men, young men during that very tumultuous time for our people. And they served as reservoirs for knowledge for our community. And transferred that knowledge via McWhorter for the success of generations, and preserved that knowledge for those of us that have come afterwards.