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Coming to Warm Springs

In August of 1877, Cyrus Walker accepted a job at the Warm Springs Indian Agency, where he would work with the Cayuse, Paiute and Warm Springs tribes. For Cyrus, this was a kind of return to his roots as the child of missionaries to Northwest tribes. Though he firmly believed in Christianizing the tribes, he was probably more culturally sensitive than many of his contemporaries, since he had grown up among the Spokane and had learned about native lifestyles since childhood. Cyrus learned to speak the local version of the creole language, "Chinook Wawa," that was in use at the Agency, and acquired various business interests to supplement his income. After the tumultuous period of his divorce and financial difficulties, coming to Warm Springs appears to have provided him with stability and purpose.