" Shield Badge
Sioux, or Dakota, Indians, a large and powerful tribe of Indians, who were found by the French, in 1640, near the headwaters of the Mississippi River. In the War of 1812 the Sioux took sides with the British. In 1822 the population of the two divisions of the tribe was estimated at nearly 13,000. In 1837 they ceded to the United States all their lands east of the Mississippi, and in 1851 they ceded 35,000,000 acres west of the Mississippi for $3,000,000. The neglect of the government to carry out all the provisions of the treaties for these cessions caused much bitter feeling, and a series of hostilities by some of the Sioux ensued; but after being defeated by General Harney, in 1855, a treaty of peace was concluded.
Loosely made treaties were violated on both sides. By one of these the Black Hills were made part of a reservation, but gold having been discovered there, the United States wished to purchase the tract, and induce the Indians to abandon that region and emigrate to the Indian Territory. They showed great reluctance to treat. Sitting Bull, Spotted Tail, and Red Cloud visited the national capital in 1875, but President Grant could not induce them to sign a treaty.
In the spring of 1876 a military force was sent against them, and in June a severe battle was fought, in which General Custer and all of his immediate command were slain. This battle will live in infamy, popularly referred to as The Battle of Little Big Horn, or Custer's Last Stand. By whatever name it is called, it will be remembered as one of the most significant victories of the Indian Nations. While in the end their cause was lost, they demonstrated their superb bravery and military skill in defeating Custer and humiliating the US Army.