Battle of the Little Bighorn

Next Tuesday, 25 June 2024

The Battle of the Little Bighorn was an armed conflict that took place on  June 25, 1876.  It is also known as the Battle of the Greasy Grass or Custer's Last Stand.

The battle took place between the Lakota, Cheyenne, and Arapaho Native American tribes and the United States federal troops. 

George Armstrong Custer led the US Army to confront the tribes after they failed to move from their land into reservations. 

The Indian fighters were led by Sitting Bull and severely outnumbered the American army, who quickly lost the battle. 

General George Armstrong Custer at the Battle of Little Bighorn, 1876, lithograph published 1899

What Is The Battle Of Little Bighorn

The United States government implemented policies with the intention of forcing Native Americans into Indian Reservations. 

This did not go well with the Leaders of the Sioux tribes, Sitting Bull and Crazy Horse, and tensions between the Indians and the US government rose heavily.

Gold was discovered in South Dakota's Black Hills in 1875, the land of Native Americans. However, the US federal troops illegally invaded the region.  

They refused to accept this treachery and men from the Sioux and Cheyenne tribes left their reservations to join Sitting Bull and fight alongside him and Crazy Horse. 

Overall, by 1876, over 10,000 Native Americans had assembled to fight along the Little Bighorn River. 

On June 25th, after being sent to lead the 7th Cavalry to scout for enemies, Custer defied orders and called for the battle. 

He led his 600 men without reinforcements but was quickly overwhelmed by the large numbers of Indians who pledged to fight for Sitting Bull. 

On June 25, after being sent to lead the 7th Cavalry to scout for enemies, Custer decided to 

Upon hearing about the invasion, Crazy Horse guided 3,000 of his troops to confront the attackers. Custer and all his soldiers were dead within one hour. 

Consequences of the Battle

The Battle of the Little Bighorn represented the worst defeat for the US Army during the Indian War. 

It reinforced the idea that white Americans had of Native Americans being dangerous and wild.

As a result, efforts to confine the tribes into reservations were increased, and in five years most of the Sioux and Cheyenne tribes were imprisoned on reservations. 

The site of the Battle of the Little Bighorn in Montana now houses the Little Bighorn Battlefield National Monument.

Little Bighorn Battlefield, National Monument.

Today, it is a memorial for those who lost their lives during the battle of both the 7th Cavalry and the Native American forces.

But, for many years following the battle, the place where the fighting took place was only a national cemetery and the place of rest for Custer and his troops.

While the cemetery still stands, in 1991 the United States government recognized the sacrifices of the Native American people. 

Thus, an Indian Memorial was built in honor of their warriors, themed "Peace Through Unity".

Battle of the Little Bighorn
Battle of the Little Bighorn

Battle of the Little Bighorn - Next years

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