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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”

Near Walla Walla in Walla Walla County, Washington — The American West (Northwest)
 

The Prince

 
 
The Prince Marker image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, August 14, 2020
1. The Prince Marker
Caption: Fig. 1: Hudson's Bay Company. Fort Walla Walla at Wallula. (Joseph Dayton, 1841); Fig. 2: Pášzapa, the Cayuse winter village, seen in the distance from the grist mill at the Whitman Mission.
Inscription.  The Cayuse name of the Prince is not recorded. "Prince" was often used in fur trade culture to refer to a headman or trading partner's younger brother or son. The Prince was a young brother of Hiyumtipin, headman at Pášxapa, the Cayuse village just east of the Whitman Mission. It was Hiyumtipin who discovered the drowned body of young Alice Clarissa Whitman in the Walla Walla River in 1839, Hiyumtipin and the Prince were from the same extended family as Wilemutkin (Old Joseph) and Wilewmutnin (Twisted Hair, who was Lewis and Clark's Nez Perces Guide), a well as Young Chief (Tauitau), Looking Glass, Homlie, and others, all leaders in a regional indigenous political alliance.
Around 1834, Looking Glass of the Nez Perces, Young Chief of the Cayuse, and the Prince became involved in a dispute with Pierre Chrysologue Pamburn of the Hudson's Bay Company (HBC) over prices for furs and horses. They allegedly sized Pamburn and interpreter Jean Toupin, threw blankets over them and beat them severely. In response to this incident, the HBC cut off trade with those involved, blacklisting
The Prince Marker image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, August 14, 2020
2. The Prince Marker
The marker is in the middle-ground, on the left.
all three leaders and their families.
When the three leaders returned to the HBC to seek reconciliation Pamburn resorted to "gift diplomacy" to resolve the conflict. Gift diplomacy was the common practice of offering gifts in exchange for goods, horses, or promises of peaceful collaboration. It is documented that Pamburn built a cabin for Young Chief on or before 1840. In fact, and in part because of the Prince's involvement in this conflict, we believe Pamburn built at least two cabins: one for Young Chief on the Umatilla River, and one for the Prince at Pášxapa. It is not known if Looking Glass received a cabin.
Although there is no official record linking the Prince's cabin to Pamburn, his connection to its construction is suggested by several pieces of evidence. An 1844 letter by Narcissa Whitman referencing "the Prince's house up the river," attests to the location and ownership or the Prince's cabin. In addition, as you will see on the panel documenting French-Canadian cabin design, the cabin itself exhibits structural characteristics typical of the 1830s, and a level of construction skill specific to French-Canadian artisans of the time.
The Prince's notoriety as a Cayuse leader waned in the years following the attack. During a council with Indian Agent Elijah White in 1843, the Prince is reported to have said, "Perhaps you will say it is out
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of place for me to speak, because I am not a great chief. Once I had influence, but now I have but little...yet, I am from honorable stock. Promises which have been made to me and my fathers have not been fulfilled...But it will not answer for me to speak, for my people do not consider me their chief.."

Unfortunately the Prince did not long enjoy the shelter of his cabin - he was slain by members of another tribe in about 1845, while en route to the buffalo country.
 
Erected 2016 by Frenchtown Historical Foundation.
 
Topics. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Native Americans.
 
Location. 46° 2.991′ N, 118° 30.725′ W. Marker is near Walla Walla, Washington, in Walla Walla County. Marker can be reached from Old Highway 12 near U.S. 12, on the left when traveling east. The marker and cabin are located near the Frenchtown Historical Foundation kiosk. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 8519 Old Highway 12, Walla Walla WA 99362, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Welcome to the Prince's Cabin (here, next to this marker); Hudson's Bay Company (here, next to this marker); French-Canadian Cabin Design (here, next to this marker); St. Rose Mission (about 700 feet away, measured in a direct line); Local Tribes
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(approx. 0.2 miles away); Frenchtown (approx. 0.2 miles away); The Battle of Walla Walla (approx. 0.2 miles away); Saint Rose Mission (approx. 0.2 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Walla Walla.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on October 28, 2020. It was originally submitted on October 28, 2020, by Barry Swackhamer of Brentwood, California. This page has been viewed 39 times since then and 8 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on October 28, 2020, by Barry Swackhamer of Brentwood, California.
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Mar. 7, 2021