What is your general belief about who or what is most responsible for causing the conflict?

I think that it is partly the Cayuse Native Americans and the missionaries fault. The natives should have been more content with the deaths but at the same time it is their belief that if a person dies it is the shaman or in this case the doctors fault. The Cayuse acted on belief and that is not to blame but to the missionaries that was foreign and unheard of. So in part they are both to blame.

What is the relevant background information (i.e. who, what, when, where)?

On November 29th, 1847 Marcus and Narcissa Whitman (along with 12 other whites) where brutally massacred by the Cayuse Native Americans in Walla Walla Valley.

What were 3 factors that helped cause the conflict (politics, economics, geography, history)?

Geography, history, and economics were 3 factors in this conflict. The geography was a factor because the Walla Walla Valley was too large to keep sending supplies to the Whitman’s mission. Economics were another of the three factors because there wasn’t enough money to send for supplies ant for transportation. And lastly history was a big part in tis conflict because of the Native American’s beliefs.

Explain why one factor is more important than the others.

History played a major role in this conflict because if the Cayuse would have looked past their belief that if someone dies it is the person who was taking care of them is the one to blame.

How could the conflict have been avoided?

If the missionaries would have spent more time to treat the Cayuse Native Americans and less time by them selves it could have been avoided. Also, if the missionaries would have explained that they have built up an immunity to the disease it could have been avoided.

What sources of information have you used?

Lambert, Dale; Clark, Dustin. Washington: a State of Contrasts. East Wanatche, WA: Dicrect Media inc., 2008.

Flora, Stephanie, "Whitman Massacre." 2004. N/A. 5/22/2009