The Fort Bridger Treaty of 1868 is among the most important documents created between the U.S. government and the Shoshone-Bannock Tribes. In addition to affirming the establishment of the Fort Hall Reservation, the Fort Bridger Treaty reserved the inherent rights of the Shoshone and Bannock people to self-government and self-preservation. This means the members of the Shoshone-Bannock Tribes have the right to use any unoccupied federal public lands in the country for the purpose of hunting, fishing, and gathering. This provision of the treaty remains in force. Responsible stewardship of federal public lands is vital to the cultural preservation and life ways of the Shoshone-Bannock people.
The Fort Bridger Treaty of 1868 and the Soda Springs Treaty of 1863 were negotiated among the chiefs of the many bands of Shoshone and Bannocks who occupied a broad geographic area that today includes California, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Utah, Wyoming, and parts of Canada and Mexico. The chiefs who signed the treaty were identified as follows:
Shoshone Bands: Wash-a-Kie, Toop-se-po-wot, Taboonshe-ya, Pan-to-she-ga, Wau-ny-pitz, Nark-kok, Bazeel, Ninny-Bitse
Bannock Bands: Taggee, We-rat-ze-won-a-gen, Pan-sook-a-motse, Tay-to-ba, Coo-sha-gan, A-wite-etse
For more information about the history and
culture of the Shoshone and Bannock people, please visit the Tribes' website or the Shoshone-Bannock Tribal Museum at Fort Hall, Idaho.