Northern Shoshone and Bannock
Traditional Culture
  Since Time Immemorial
Who's Who
All My Relations
Pipe Ceremony and Peacemaking
Great Circle
Intertribal Relations
"How the Indian Averted Famine"
Naming Ceremonies
Agaidika Perspective on Sacajawea
Horses, Trade, & Travel
References Cited

  Contemporary Culture
  Sovereignty & Tribal Government
Arts & Artists
Annual Festival Dances
Recommended Websites

  Relationship with the U.S.
  Early Contact
Fur Trade
Naturalists in Shoshone Country
Missionaries and Emigrants
Making Treaties
Lemhi In Limbo
Lemhi Reservation and  Loss
Shrinking Reservation
References Cited

Snake River plains,
near Mountain Home, Idaho.

Copyright © Ralph Maughan, used with permission.
Two tipis in the Lemhi Valley.
Photo courtesy of the Bureau of Land Management.
Horses in the Lemhi Valley
Image courtesy of Marilyn "Angel" Wynn
Red Butte
S. Thompson phot
Buffalo Plains near Madison River, in Montana.
(Taken from Madison Buffalo Jump State Park).
K. Lugthart photo


Salmon River Canyon
Courtesy Lemhi County Historical Society

Lemhi Pass > Culture >Homelands


"American Falls" on the Snake River, with the Three Buttes in background,
from Report of Fremont's Exploring Expedition 1843-'44.
Courtesy University of Montana's Mansfield Library, K. Ross Toole Archives.


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Ronald Snake Edmo

Shoshone Map Rock

The Indians who called the Snake River plain "home" left a record on the rocks of their comings and goings. Hundreds of petroglyphs (etched images) and pictographs (painted images) can be found on boulders and rock walls along the Snake and Salmon rivers and their tributaries. "Map Rock", located southeast of Boise along the Snake River, has long been interpreted as a map of the upper Snake River country. Both the Snake and Salmon Rivers can be observed in the design, alongside images of many animals of the region. image
"Map Rock" in archaeological park southeast of Boise. Barry Rose photo taken in 1991, courtesy Bureau of Land Management.
Courtesy of Bureau of Land Management
Buffalo, deer, mountain sheep, elk, antelope, and human figures are present. The richest hunting area within the Shoshone homeland was in this northeastern area, where the basins meet the mountains, and the ecological diversity is great.
Would people draw a map of hunting areas to be seen by all who passed along the road? Mark Warhus, in his book Another America, suggests that the images might better be understood "as an expression of the spiritual relationship between the land, its resources, and the people who depended upon them… The petroglyph may have been made as part of a ritual meant to keep all these elements in balance and to secure the continued health of the people" (Warhus: 1997:21). image
Historic photo of Shoshone Map
Rock with man on Schwinn motorbike.

Courtesy BLM.

Bannock Trail through Yellowstone

The Bannock Indian Trail and the hunting areas accessible from it.
(from Aubrey Haines, The Bannock Indian Trail, 1964)


For many years during the 19th century, the Bannock Trail was traveled from Camas Meadows over Targhee Pass and through Yellowstone Park country to the Absaroka Mountains. It connected with a half dozen routes which led to buffalo plains and other hunting grounds. It was in heaviest use from the end of the fur trade era, when buffalo disappeared from Snake River country, until reservation days.

Shoshone on staged buffalo hunt in Yellowstone Park, 1925
Courtesy National Park Service.
Portion of Jean Pierre DeSmet's map
Courtesy Midwest Jesuit Archives, DeSmetiana Collection, C-8 #13