..........................................The Lakota Indians .............................


By Bobby C

Mrs. Boles Home Page


The Lakota tribe is a Native American Indian tribe that started in the 1700s and still exists today. Their society centered around buffalo hunting on horse back. There was roughly around 20,000 Lakota in the mid 18th century. When superior tribes, Arikara, Mandan, and Hidasta were damaged by the small pox and other diseases, the Lakota was able to cross the Missouri for the first time. In 1765, a Saone exploring party led by Chief Standing Bear discovered the Black Hills. In 1776, they defeated the Cheyenne and took control over the land.


After the discovery of gold in 1876 in the Black Hills, his people were driven from their reservation, a place that was considered holy. Sitting Bull took up arms against the whites and refused to be sent to the Indian Territory. In his trips throughout the country, Sitting Bull realized that the whites were highly advanced and if the Indians would continue to fight they would be defeated. The Authorities decided to arrest him because they feared him as a popular spiritual leader. Not letting them arrest him he was shot in the head and died along with his son, Crow Foot, on December 15, 1890.

One major conflict that the Lakota’s faced was the California Gold Rush. The Black Hills were a holy place for the Lakota, and the whites kept coming and invading the Indians land. They tried to be peaceful and negotiate but they kept coming so they had to fight. Due to the fighting, the Lakota’s lost allot of Indians. Eventually they gave up the fight and were forced to leave their land once again. They can’t stop the whites from taking their land or else they would be killed, so they have to deal with it and move.


Even though the Lakota connected with allot of the themes, I would say that violence and conquest best fits the tribe. Before the whites they were expanding their territory across the west. They expanded their territory across the Missouri river as soon as the Arikara, Mandan, and Hidasta tribes were weak. And for the violence part, they fought all the time. They fought against other Indian tribes for land, and against the whites to keep their land.


I think the American West is interesting just because there were Indians. It’s interesting the way the Indians lived their lives and their life styles. Like in order for you to be recognized as someone great, you would have to do something brave or great to earn it. For example, like when Sitting Bull led his warriors against the whites at Fort Rice, that was really brave and he became the chief after that. The Indians are what made the American West cool.


Work Cited Page


Encyclopedia Of The American West Vol. 1

Charles Phillips, Alan Axelrod

Copy Right: 1996 By Siman & Schuster