Sunday, April 3, 2016

Native American Biography: Tendoy: Shoshone Bannock

Tendoy (Tin Doi)
Tendoy was a Lemhi Bannock chief.  He was of Bannock and Shoshone heritage.  Through his mother he was related to Washakie, and maintained a close relationship with him.  Through his father, who was killed in combat with the Blackfoot, he inherited the leadership of the Bannock band in the Lemhi pass area in Idaho.  He was a contemporary of Bear Hunter, who was killed at the Bear River Massacre.  However he and his people had a different attitude toward change.  He always maintained a peaceful relationship with encroaching white settlers.  They avoided economic hardship by trading and having business interaction with the whites.  Even during the Nez Perce War he taught his people to be accommodating rather than confront the new settlers.  This allowed them to maintain a stance of neutrality.  He was rewarded by President Grant who issued an order that the Lemhi Bannocks could remain in their ancestral area.  Tendoy traveled to Washington on several occasions and was finally convinced to sign away their land in Lemhi valley and move to the reservation at Fort Hall.  His people still resisted and this move did not take place until shortly before his death in 1907.  Tendoy was honored by the State of Montana .  "The Society of Montana Pioneers paid tribute to Tendoy in recognition of his long association with early settlers. The skillfulness with which he had guided his people for 43 years through the labyrinth of Washington indifference, settler hostility and agency neglect, while holding patiently, but firmly to the course he had set for himself and his tribe."

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