Chief Joseph, born Hinmuuttu-yalatlat

Chief
Joseph, born Hinmuuttu-yalatlat
1840
1904

Humanitarian, Peacemaker, Chief of teh wal-lam-wat-kain (Wallowa) band of Nez Perce

Author Quotes

Treat all men alike. Give them all the same law. Give them all an even chance to live and grow. All men were made by the same Great spirit Chief. They are all brothers. The earth is the mother of all people, and all people should have equal rights upon it...Whenever the white man treats the Indian as they treat each other, then we will have no more wars. We shall all be alike - brothers of one father and one mother, with only the sky above us and one country around us, and one government for all.

It does not require many words to speak the truth.

Our fathers gave us many laws, which they have learned from their fathers; these laws were good. They told us to treat all men as they treated us; that we should never break a bargain; that it was a disgrace to tell a lie, that we should speak only the truth; that it was a shame for one man to take from another his wife, or his property without paying for it. We were taught to believe that the Great Spirit sees and hears everything and that he never forgets; that hereafter He will give every man a spirit home according to his desserts - if he has been a good man, he will have a good home; if he was bad, he will have a bad home. This I believe, and all my people believe the same.

We do not want churches. They will teach us to quarrel about God.

The earth is the mother of all people, and all people should have equal rights upon it. You might as well expect the rivers to run backward as that any man who was born a free man should be contented when penned up and denied liberty to go where he pleases.

We do not want churches because they will teach us to quarrel about God, as the Catholics and Protestants do. We do not want to learn that. We may quarrel with men sometimes about things on earth. But we never quarrel about God. We do not want to learn that.

Our fathers gave us many laws, which they had learned from their fathers. These laws were good. They told us to treat all people as they treated us; that we should never be the first to break a bargain; that it was a disgrace to tell a lie; that we should speak only the truth; that it was a shame for one man to take from another his wife or his property without paying for it. We were taught that the Great Spirit sees and hears everything, and that he never forgets, that hereafter he will give every man a spirit-home according to his deserts: If he has been a good man, he will have a good home; if he has been a bad man, he will have a bad home. This I believe, and all my people believe the same.

If the white man wants to live in peace with the Indian, he can live in peace. Treat all men alike. Give them all the same law. Give them all an even chance to live and grow. All men were made by the same Great Spirit Chief. They are all brothers. The earth is the mother of all people, and all people should have equal rights upon it. You might as well expect the rivers to run backward as that any man who was born a free man should be contented when penned up and denied liberty to go where he pleases.

Author Picture
First Name
Chief
Last Name
Joseph, born Hinmuuttu-yalatlat
Birth Date
1840
Death Date
1904
Bio

Humanitarian, Peacemaker, Chief of teh wal-lam-wat-kain (Wallowa) band of Nez Perce