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According to tribal legend, Nimiipuu, “the people,” were created in north central Idaho at the dawn of time. There is evidence dating back more than 11,000 years of Nez Perce inhabiting the regions surrounding the Clearwater and Snake River valleys.

The Nez Perce people are credited for saving the lives of the Corps of Discovery explorers who entered their camp near starvation. Without the food and shelter provided by the Nimiipuu villagers, the Lewis & Clark expedition may have had a tragic ending.