The Nezperce Story
A History of the Nezperce National Forest
The Nezperce Story is a general history of the exploration,
development, and establishment of the Nezperce National Forest. The
story begins with the Nez Perce Indians and touches on the early
exploration by Lewis and Clark, the gold rush and later settlement of
the area. The forest reserve was established by Presidential
proclamation in 1897. Since that time the job of administration has
changed gradually from protection to multiple use. Changes in personnel
have been frequent and many oldtimers have passed on, making the past
difficult to unravel.
To preserve this story, Albert N. Cochrell has written the account
that follows. Born in Nebraska, Albert moved with his parents to Weippe,
Idaho, for his early schooling. He grew up in the Nezperce and
Clearwater area and started work for the Forest Service in 1913 as a
smokechaser on the Clearwater National Forest. He worked in the regional
office and on numerous other national forests in Region 1, including the
Kootenai, Kaniksu, Pend Oreille, Gallatin, and Helena. In 1944, Albert
became supervisor of the Nezperce National Forest and served in this
position until his retirement in 1957, completing 40 years of service.
With his experience and first hand knowledge of the area, we are
fortunate to have him write The Nezperce Story.
Last Updated: 11-Nov-2008