The Lakota are a Native American tribe. Known as the Teton Sioux, they are one of the three Sioux tribes of Plains, their current lands are in South Dakota. They speak Lakȟótiyapi—the Lakota language, the westernmost of three related languages that belong to the Siouan language family; the seven bands or "sub-tribes" of the Lakota are: Sičháŋǧu Oglála Itázipčho Húŋkpapȟa Mnikȟówožu Sihásapa Oóhenuŋpa Notable Lakota persons include Tȟatȟáŋka Íyotake from the Húnkpapȟa band. Siouan languages speakers may have originated in the lower Mississippi River region and migrated to or originated in the Ohio Valley, they were agriculturalists and may have been part of the Mound Builder civilization during the 9th–12th centuries CE. In the late 16th and early 17th centuries, Dakota-Lakota speakers lived in the upper Mississippi Region in present-day Minnesota, Wisconsin and the Dakotas. Conflicts with Anishnaabe and Cree peoples pushed the Lakota west onto the Great Plains in the mid- to late-17th century.
Early Lakota history is recorded in their Winter counts, pictorial calendars painted on hides or recorded on paper. The Battiste Good winter count records Lakota history back to 900 CE, when White Buffalo Calf Woman gave the Lakota people the White Buffalo Calf Pipe. Around 1730, Cheyenne people introduced the Lakota to horses, called šuŋkawakaŋ. After their adoption of horse culture, Lakota society centered on the buffalo hunt on horseback; the total population of the Sioux was estimated at 28,000 by French explorers in 1660. The Lakota population was first estimated at 8,500 in 1805, growing and reaching 16,110 in 1881; the Lakota were, one of the few Native American tribes to increase in population in the 19th century. The number of Lakota has now increased to more than 170,000, of whom about 2,000 still speak the Lakota language. After 1720, the Lakota branch of the Seven Council Fires split into two major sects, the Saône who moved to the Lake Traverse area on the South Dakota–North Dakota–Minnesota border, the Oglála-Sičháŋǧu who occupied the James River valley.
However, by about 1750 the Saône had moved to the east bank of the Missouri River, followed 10 years by the Oglála and Brulé. The large and powerful Arikara and Hidatsa villages had long prevented the Lakota from crossing the Missouri. However, the great smallpox epidemic of 1772–1780 destroyed three-quarters of these tribes; the Lakota crossed the river into short-grass prairies of the High Plains. These newcomers were the Saône, well-mounted and confident, who spread out quickly. In 1765, a Saône exploring and raiding party led by Chief Standing Bear discovered the Black Hills the territory of the Cheyenne. Ten years the Oglála and Brulé crossed the river. In 1776, the Lakota defeated the Cheyenne; the Cheyenne moved west to the Powder River country, the Lakota made the Black Hills their home. Initial United States contact with the Lakota during the Lewis and Clark Expedition of 1804–1806 was marked by a standoff. Lakota bands refused to allow the explorers to continue upstream, the expedition prepared for battle, which never came.
Some bands of Lakotas became the first Indians to help the United States Army in an Indian war west of the Missouri during the Arikara War in 1823. In 1843, the southern Lakotas attacked Pawnee Chief Blue Coat's village near the Loup in Nebraska, killing many and burning half of the earth lodges. Next time the Lakotas inflicted a blow so severe on the Pawnee would be in 1873, during the Massacre Canyon battle near Republican River. Nearly half a century after Fort Laramie had been built without permission on Lakota land, the Fort Laramie Treaty of 1851 was negotiated to protect travelers on the Oregon Trail; the Cheyenne and Lakota had attacked emigrant parties in a competition for resources, because some settlers had encroached on their lands. The Fort Laramie Treaty acknowledged Lakota sovereignty over the Great Plains in exchange for free passage on the Oregon Trail for "as long as the river flows and the eagle flies"; the United States government did not enforce the treaty restriction against unauthorized settlement.
Lakota and other bands attacked settlers and emigrant trains, causing public pressure on the U. S. Army to punish the hostiles. On September 3, 1855, 700 soldiers under American General William S. Harney avenged the Grattan Massacre by attacking a Lakota village in Nebraska, killing about 100 men and children. A series of short "wars" followed, in 1862–1864, as refugees from the "Dakota War of 1862" in Minnesota fled west to their allies in Montana and Dakota Territory. Increasing illegal settlement after the American Civil War caused war once again; the Black Hills were considered sacred by the Lakota, they objected to mining. Between 1866 and 1868 the U. S. Army fought the Lakota and their allies along the Bozeman Trail over U. S. Forts built to protect miners traveling along the trail. Oglala Chief Red Cloud led his people to victory in Red Cloud's War. In 1868, the United States signed the Fort Laramie
In United States and Canadian history, an Indian agent was an individual authorized to interact with Native American tribes on behalf of the U. S. government. The federal regulation of Indian affairs in the United States first included development of the position of Indian agent in 1793 under the Second Trade and Intercourse Act; this permitted. The legislation authorized the President of the United States to "appoint such persons, from time to time, as temporary agents to reside among the Indians," and guide them into acculturation of American society by changing their agricultural practices and domestic activities; the government ceased using the term temporary from the Indian agent's job title. From the close of the 18th century to nearly 1869, Congress maintained the position that it was responsible for the protection of Indians from non-Indians, in establishing this responsibility it "continue to deal with Indian tribes by utilizing agents to negotiate treaties under the jurisdiction of the Department of War."
And before the reforms of the late 19th century, an Indian agent's average duties were as follows: Work toward preventing conflicts between settlers and Indians "He was to keep an eye out for violations of intercourse laws and to report them to superintendents" Maintain flexible cooperation with U. S. Army military personnel See to the proper distribution of annuities granted by the state or federal government to various Indian tribes. In 1849, the Bureau of Indian Affairs decided to place the position of Indian agent under civilian jurisdiction; this came at a time when many white Americans saw the role of Indian agent as inefficient and dishonest in monetary and severalty dealings with various Indian tribes. By 1850, many citizens had been calling for reform of the agents in the Bureau of Indian Affairs, their wish had been granted when in 1869 the bureau created the civilian-controlled Board of Indian Commissioners. The board "never more felt, that Indian agents should be appointed for merit and fitness for their work…and should be retained in the service when they prove themselves to be efficient and helpful by their character and moral influence."
This civilian run board was charged "with responsibility for supervising the disbursement of Indian appropriations" from state and federal governments. However, the United States Army command was dissatisfied of the transfer of the Bureau of Indian Affairs from the Department of War to the Department of the Interior by 1849, so they began to make public complaints about the corruptive nature of the civilian presence in the job of Indian agent. Despite its felt convictions that its Indian agents were appointed and removed on merit, the civilian Board of Commissioners was deemed corrupt, portrayed derogatorily in print and propaganda, inadvertently assumed the scapegoat for the perceived inefficiency of Indian-White affairs: the Indian agent. By the late 19th century, the job title of Indian agent began to change in the wake of the recent attempts to civilize Indians, assimilating them into American culture. Despite the public scorn for the agents, the Indian Office stated that the "chief duty of an agent is to induce his Indian to labor in civilized pursuits.
To attain this end every possible influence should be brought to bear, in proportion as it is attained…an agent is successful or unsuccessful."By the 1870s, the average Indian agent was nominated by various Christian denominations due to the increase in civilization reforms to Indian-white affairs over land. Part of the Christian message of reform, carried out by the Indian agents, demonstrated the pervasive thought of Indian land ownership of the late 19th century: civilization can only be possible when Indians cease communal living in favor of private ownership. Many citizens still held the activities of Indian agents in poor esteem, calling the agents themselves "unprincipled opportunists" and people of low quality. In the 1880 Instruction to Indian Agents, it states the job duties of the Indian agent as follows: See that Indians in one's designated locality are not "idle for want of an opportunity to labor or of instructions as to how to go to work," and "no work must be given to white men which can be done by Indians" See to it that the Indians under one's jurisdiction can farm and for the subsistence of their respective family Enforce prohibition of liquor Both provide and supervise the instruction of English education and industrial training for Indian children Allow Indians to leave the reservation only if they have acquired a permit for such And as of July 1884, Indian agents were to compile an annual report of their reservations for submission aimed at collecting the following information from Indian respondents: Indian name, English name, Relationship and Name among other statistical information.
When Theodore Roosevelt reached the presidency at the turn of the 20th century, the Indian agents that remained on the government payroll were all replaced by school superintendents. Distinguished individuals who have served as Indian age
Sitting Bull was a Hunkpapa Lakota leader who led his people during years of resistance to United States government policies. He was killed by Indian agency police on the Standing Rock Indian Reservation during an attempt to arrest him, at a time when authorities feared that he would join the Ghost Dance movement. Before the Battle of the Little Bighorn, Sitting Bull had a vision in which he saw many soldiers, "as thick as grasshoppers," falling upside down into the Lakota camp, which his people took as a foreshadowing of a major victory in which a large number of soldiers would be killed. About three weeks the confederated Lakota tribes with the Northern Cheyenne defeated the 7th Cavalry under Lt. Col. George Armstrong Custer on June 25, 1876, annihilating Custer's battalion and seeming to bear out Sitting Bull's prophetic vision. Sitting Bull's leadership inspired his people to a major victory. In response, the US government sent thousands more soldiers to the area, forcing many of the Lakotas to surrender over the next year.
But Sitting Bull refused to surrender, in May 1877 he led his band north to Wood Mountain, North-Western Territory. He remained there until 1881, at which time he and most of his band returned to US territory and surrendered to U. S. forces. After working as a performer with Buffalo Bill's Wild West show, Sitting Bull returned to the Standing Rock Agency in South Dakota; because of fears that he would use his influence to support the Ghost Dance movement, Indian Service agent James McLaughlin at Fort Yates ordered his arrest. During an ensuing struggle between Sitting Bull's followers and the agency police, Sitting Bull was shot in the side and head by Standing Rock policemen Lieutenant Bull Head and Red Tomahawk after the police were fired upon by Sitting Bull's supporters, his body was taken to nearby Fort Yates for burial. In 1953, his Lakota family exhumed what were believed to be his remains, reburying them near Mobridge, South Dakota, near his birthplace. Sitting Bull was born on land included in the Dakota Territory.
In 2007, Sitting Bull's great-grandson asserted from family oral tradition that Sitting Bull was born along the Yellowstone River, south of present-day Miles City, Montana. He was named Jumping Badger at birth, nicknamed Hunkesi, or "Slow," said to describe his careful and unhurried nature; when the boy was fourteen years old he accompanied a group of Lakota warriors in a raiding party to take horses from a camp of Crow warriors. Jumping Badger displayed bravery by riding forward and counting coup on one of the surprised Crow, witnessed by the other mounted Lakota. Upon returning to camp his father gave a celebratory feast at which he conferred his own name upon his son; the name, Tȟatȟáŋka Íyotake, which in the Lakota language means "Buffalo Bull Who Sits Down", would be abbreviated to "Sitting Bull". Thereafter, Sitting Bull's father was known as Jumping Bull. At this ceremony before the entire band, Sitting Bull's father presented his son with an eagle feather to wear in his hair, a warrior's horse, a hardened buffalo hide shield to mark his son's passage into manhood as a Lakota warrior.
During the Dakota War of 1862, in which Sitting Bull's people were not involved, several bands of eastern Dakota people killed an estimated 300 to 800 settlers and soldiers in south-central Minnesota in response to poor treatment by the government and in an effort to drive the whites away. Despite being embroiled in the American Civil War, the United States Army retaliated in 1863 and 1864 against bands which had not been involved in the hostilities. In 1864, two brigades of about 2200 soldiers under Brigadier General Alfred Sully attacked a village; the defenders were led by Sitting Bull and Inkpaduta. The Lakota and Dakota were driven out. In September, Sitting Bull and about one hundred Hunkpapa Lakota encountered a small party near what is now Marmarth, North Dakota, they had been left behind by a wagon train commanded by Captain James L. Fisk to effect some repairs to an overturned wagon; when he led an attack, Sitting Bull was shot in the left hip by a soldier. The bullet exited out through the small of his back, the wound was not serious.
From 1866 to 1868, Red Cloud as a leader of the Oglala Lakota fought against US forces, attacking their forts in an effort to keep control of the Powder River Country of Montana. In support of him, Sitting Bull led numerous war parties against Fort Berthold, Fort Stevenson, Fort Buford and their environs from 1865 through 1868. Sitting Bull made guerrilla attacks on emigrant parties and smaller forts throughout the upper Missouri River region. By early 1868, the U. S. government desired a peaceful settlement to Red Cloud's War. It agreed to Red Cloud's demands that the US abandon forts Phil Kearny and C. F. Smith. Gall of the Hunkpapa signed a form of the Treaty of Fort Laramie on July 1868 at Fort Rice. Sitting Bull did not agree to the treaty, he told the Jesuit missionary, Pierre Jean De Smet, who sought him out on behalf of the government: "I wish all to know that I do not propose to sell any part of my country." He continued his hit-and-run attacks on forts in the upper Missouri area throughout the late 1860s and early 1870s.
The events of 1866–1868 mark a debated period of Sitting Bull's life. According to historian Stanley Vestal, who conducted interviews with surviving Hunkpapa in 1930, Sitting Bull was mad
Fort Buford was a United States Army Post at the confluence of the Missouri and Yellowstone Rivers in Dakota Territory, present day North Dakota, the site of Sitting Bull's surrender in 1881. Company C, 2nd Battalion, 13th Infantry, 3 officers, 80 enlisted men and 6 civilians commanded by Capt. William G. Rankin, first established a camp on the site on June 15, 1866, with orders to build a post, the majority of, built using adobe and cottonwood enclosed by a wooden stockade; the fort was named after the late Major General John Buford, a Union Army cavalry general during the American Civil War. The second night after arrival the camp was attacked by a band of the Hunkpapa Lakota led by Sitting Bull, they were driven off with one soldier wounded; the next day, the same group attacked and attempted to drive off the company's herd of beef cattle, but were repulsed and two Lakota killed. Parties of men cutting and rafting logs from the mouth of the Yellowstone were attacked and driven to camp, where the fighting lasted from two to six hours with losses on both sides.
Three civilian wood cutters were killed at the mouth of the Yellowstone in December. Lieut. Hiram H. Ketchum with sixty men reacted, drove off the Indians and recovered the bodies with slight loss to his detachment. According to the regimental history, the Lakota boasted that they intended to annihilate the soldiers and during the winter they besieged the post; the siege cut off the garrison from the nearby Missouri River and forced them to sink shallow wells near their quarters in order to obtain fresh water. The shallow well water they drank was contaminated, by the post's livestock and/or human waste, caused dysentery. From December 21–24 a large group of the Hunkpapas attacked and captured the post's ice house and sawmill located near the river and opened fire on the post; the attackers were not repelled. Captain Rankin's wife spent the winter in camp, enduring the hardships and dangers with the troops in garrison; the harassing raids and resulting lack of communication from the isolated post led to the perpetration of a hoax, the "Fort Buford Massacre", purporting that the fort had been wiped out, Capt. Rankin captured and tortured to death, Rankin's wife captured and abused.
The episode began when the Philadelphia Inquirer ran a story April 1, 1867, based on a letter written from the fort, picked up and run the next day nationwide. It was given "legs" by a letter published April 6 in the Army and Navy Journal, attributed to the wife of a prominent Army officer, confirming the massacre. Although by April 4 many newspapers had begun to question the validity of the report, The Chicago Daily Times, Detroit Free Press, New York Daily Tribune, New York Times, Boston Herald, among others, continued to feed the rumors with further stories for another month, many of them accusing the Army and the Johnson Administration of covering up the massacre; the hoax was exposed by Rankin himself in correspondence to the war department. Although the general harassing by the Lakota of Fort Buford lasted until the early 1870s, the worst was during that first year, June 1866 to May 1867. In May, the Missouri River thawed allowing the sternwheeler steamboat Graham to reinforce the garrison with additional riverboats arriving in June carrying Companies B, F, G, part of E thereby enabling the garrison to better defend itself and allow for more permanent structures to be built.
With the arrival of Companies B, F, G, E, Fort Buford was expanded in 1867–1868 from the original 1866 one-company 360-foot square frontier stockade to a 540 x 1,080 feet 5 company fort with only three walls towards the West and East. The South side, while not being walled off, was enclosed by the long portion of a reverse "L" of adobe barracks buildings and the Missouri River towards the South served as a natural moat; the reconstructed barracks on the site today is on the location of where the original that formed the short leg of the "L" was. In 1867, old Fort Union, A fur trading post dating back to 1829 and located 2 miles away by land, 7 by river, was bought by the Army and parts of it were demolished and used at Fort Buford during this construction phase; the reason being that the wood there had 30 years worth of age and was of superior quality to the green cottonwood available along the Yellowstone and Missouri Rivers where the only native wood grew. The post was expanded again in 1871–1872 with the arrival of Colonel William B.
Hazen's 6th Infantry Regiment to a six-company infantry post covering a square mile, including laundress' quarters and other civilian areas, using lumber shipped from the Eastern United States by steamboat but with no stockade. At that time the fighting had moved further westward into Montana Territory and the garrison was large enough to no-longer need the perimeter stockade; the original Commanding Officer's Quarters at the site today was part of this expansion and built in 1871–1872 and served as Hazen's residence from 1872–1880. This structure sits at the southern end of what once was a double row of Officer's Quarters that ran towards the North. Beyond this double row the stone Powder Magazine was built in 1875 out of sandstone quarried from an area located to the North of the fort; when in use the magazine held over a million rounds of ammunition for the fort's garrison, much of it being black powder cartridges one of, the.45-70. At this time Fort Buford became a key element in the supply route for the military campaigns of 1876–1877 in Montana Territory.
At the peak of occupation, which followed the Battle of the Little Bighorn in 1876 until 1881, there were just under 100 buildings and 1,000 people occupying t