Accordingly, Convoking Their Chiefs, He Inveighed Against Their
Craven Policy, And Urged The Necessity Of Vigorous And
Retributive Measures That Would Check The Confidence And
Presumption Of Their Enemies, If Not Inspire Them With Awe.
this purpose, he advised that a war party should be immediately
sent off on the trail of the marauders, to follow them, if
necessary, into the very heart of the Blackfoot country, and not
to leave them until they had taken signal vengeance.
he recommended the organization of minor war parties, to make
reprisals to the extent of the losses sustained. "Unless you
rouse yourselves from your apathy," said he, "and strike some
bold and decisive blow, you will cease to be considered men, or
objects of manly warfare. The very squaws and children of the
Blackfeet will be set against you, while their warriors reserve
themselves for nobler antagonists."
This harangue had evidently a momentary effect upon the pride of
the hearers. After a short pause, however, one of the orators
arose. It was bad, he said, to go to war for mere revenge. The
Great Spirit had given them a heart for peace, not for war. They
had lost horses, it was true, but they could easily get others
from their cousins, the Lower Nez Perces, without incurring any
risk; whereas, in war they should lose men, who were not so
readily replaced. As to their late losses, an increased
watchfulness would prevent any more misfortunes of the kind. He
disapproved, therefore, of all hostile measures; and all the
other chiefs concurred in his opinion.
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