Mount Idaho

Its Past and Present Are More Than Meet the Eye

By Amanda Breitbach Ragsdale

If you knew nothing about Mount Idaho before your first visit, you never would guess that the small, rural community was once a thriving center of Camas Prairie business, or that it played a pivotal role in the outbreak of the Nez Perce War. Mount Idaho today boasts no post office, no grocery store, no gas station—not even a bar. Sadly, not one of its early buildings has survived to the present day. The only clues that this lovely, pastoral settlement near Grangeville played an important role in Idaho’s past are a few historic markers and the stone monuments in the town’s small cemetery. Among the stones there are ten markers for settlers and soldiers who died in the Nez Perce War of 1877, when tensions erupted between the non-treaty Nez Perce and white settlers along the Salmon River and on the Camas Prairie.

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Amanda Breitbach Ragsdale

About Amanda Breitbach Ragsdale

Amanda Breitbach Ragsdale and her husband, Ryan Ragsdale, recently moved to Grangeville, where they enjoy exploring the rivers and picking wild fruit. Amanda was raised in rural eastern Montana, and graduated from Montana State University-Bozeman in 2004 with degrees in photography and French. After spending two years as a Peace Corps volunteer in Guinea, West Africa, she started writing and photographing for small newspapers in Montana. She now has a photography business, and can be contacted online at

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