Established in 1965, Nez Perce National Historical Park is situated across four states-Idaho, Montana, Oregon, and Washington. Nez Perce culture, the “discovery” and mapping of America, and westward expansion during the mid-1800s serve as the the park’s three themes. The arrival of settlers from the east, treaties that affected the land, and conflicts between settlers and the Nez Perce profoundly altered the more than 11,000-year-old Nez Perce culture. In the park, visitors will learn about the endurance and resilience of the Nez Perce people. Several visitors’ centers offer resources to help visitors and coordinate various opportunities for learning and activities.
Archeologists have served a different function inside of the park. They work to facilitate interpretation of the cultural resources while also working to try to protect burial remains from disturbance. Since 1973, several park service archeological investigations have been conducted in the park. In the 1990s, major projects were taken on revealing various aspects of the park’s past. Archeologists prepared an Archeological Overview and Assessment for the Montana Nez Perce War Sites. The focus was on the historical archeology, primarily associated with the Nez Perce War of 1877.