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JOSEPH — The Nez Perce were forced from their northeastern Oregon homeland by a fraudulent treaty and a bloody horseback war more than 130 years ago, but their passion for Wallowa County never died.
In recent years, the tribe’s Wallowa Band has acquired thousands of acres on the county’s north end, making it one of the county’s biggest landowners.
The purchases have sparked fears among a few locals that the tribe may love the area too much, and perhaps one day want it back. But others say the Nez Perce have been good neighbors and careful stewards of the land.