Chapter 5 Document
The United States and Indians had been making treaties with one another for nearly a century; however, the US felt that they should treat the Indians as wards of the government rather than independent nations. One of the treaties made between the Natives and the U.S. government was the first treaty of Fort Laramie in 1851. The purpose of this agreement was to possibly reduce the chance of confrontations between the Natives and the American settlers, while also an opportunity for the whites to come up on more open land. This treaty would not hold assurance that conflict would not happen, because fighting would break out a couple years later. Next, in 1835, is the treaty of New Echota. The sole reason of this agreement was for the entire Cherokee Nation to give up their land in the southeast and relocate to Indian Territory in the west. This period of relocation would lead to the horrors of what is known as the Trail of Tears. Then, as the war was ending, because some of the Natives had backed the Confederacy, federal agents decided that the tribes’ contracts were no longer valid.
Then, in 1868, the 2nd Treaty of Fort Laramie would ultimately lead to the US agreeing to abandon the Bozeman Trail. Two years before the agreement took place, chief of the Oglala Sioux, Red Cloud, would battle the U.S. army to the point where the U.S. had no choice but to agree to the Natives terms. However, after 1867, the U.S. had decided that it was time for the Natives to finally as a whole become “civilized”. This would lead to the Medicine Lodge Treaty of 1867. This treaty was to assure the relocation of the Kiowa’s, Comanche’s, Southern Cheyenne’s, Southern Arapahos, and Plains Apaches to Oklahoma. The Kiowa Chief, Santana, did not want to give up the lands, and had claimed that the land south of Arkansas belonged to the Kiowa’s and the Comanche’s. The army would then start a movement based on punishing those tribes who declined to cooperate by relocating them to an uncomfortable and even more limited space. The Medicine Lodge Treaty also held that the government would make sure to keep buffalo hunters out of Indian lands, but the U.S. government, again, would not hold their end of the deal. This case of betrayal would cause the Red River War in 1874, as well as the massacre of buffalo between the years of 1867 and 1883, taking away a major food source and ultimately ending the Natives way of life.
The survival stories of some of the Native American groups would be very depressing, having to battle against their fellow neighboring Indians in the hopes of providing safety and security to their own people. The Natives knew that the only way they would have a chance at surviving the European invasion would be to cooperate with the United States government. According to the reading, the Crows, Shoshonis, Airfares, Utes, Bannocks, Pawnees, Arapahos, Cheyenne’s, and Sioux had all served in the United States Army by 1877. The Natives would also assist the white Americans as guides, traders, farmers, and Baptists.
For example, a Native Indian man by the name of Black Beaver had learned to speak English, French, and Spanish, as well as knowing multiple different Indian languages, including Native sign language. Beaver had accomplished much for the white Americans, as he was an interpreter for an expedition led by Colonel Richard Dodge and at the Treaty of Medicine Lodge, served the United States Army as a scout during the war with Mexico, and guided Captain Randolph Marcy and five hundred emigrants to Santa Fe. He was also a member of the Indian delegation, and would become a Baptist later into his final years. It would seem as though Beaver was able to live longer than most of the…