Frederic Homer Balch (1861-1891) was born in Lebanon, Oregon. In his boyhood Mr. Balch enjoyed exceptional opportunities to inform himself regarding the character and manners of the Indians: he visited them in their homes, watched their industries, heard their legends, saw their gambling games, listened to their conversation; he questioned the Indians and the white pioneers, and he read many books for information on Indian history, traditions, and legends. By personal inquiry among old natives he learned that the Bridge which suggested the title of his romance was no fabric of the imagination, but was a great natural bridge that in early days spanned the Columbia, and later, according to tradition, was destroyed by an earthquake. His only work, The Bridge of the Gods: A Romance of Indian Oregon, was published in 1890. This tale of the Indians of the far West has fairly earned its lasting popularity, not only by the intense interest of the story, but by its faithful delineations of Indian character.