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United States. Office of Indian Affairs / Annual report of the commissioner of Indian affairs, for the year 1855
([1855])

[Central superintendency],   pp. 68-118 PDF (20.8 MB)


Page 75

COMMISSIONER OF INDIAN AFFAIRS.                  75 
pany me with their annuities,) were driven back to the fort by a war 
party of Sioux Indians, having had a miraculous escape with their 
lives. The boat immediately returned to the fort, and the trip to the 
Crows abandoned for the present season. 
A few days previous to this, some Indians (no doubt of the same 
party) stole from Fort Union eight horses, and from Fort William 
five: at the same time, near the latter fort, they fell in with two men 
who were butchering some buffalo they had killed; they took from 
them their meat, horses, guns, and clothing, and they told me per- 
sonally that they considered themselves fortunate in getting off alive. 
Shortly after the boat returned, fifteen Indians appeared on the hills 
in sight of the fort; ascertaining them to be Sioux I sent my interpre- 
ter to them, he returned bringing them with him to the fort, where I 
held a talk with them; they were of the Sans Arc and Minneconza 
bands; stated that there were in the party two hundred and twenty 
warriors, and that they were hunting for the Assinneboins; they also 
stated that just before they left their villages a war party of Minne- 
conzas had returned from an excursion to the Platte, with 100 head 
of mules and horses, the property of the government, which they had 
stolen from the vicinity of Fort Laramie. After giving them a good 
lecture about their conduct in violating their treaty stipulations in 
being at war, they left me promising to return to their people without 
committing any more depredations. 
Thus you see that these war parties of Sioux have not only prevented 
the government from being able to deliver the Crow Indians their 
annuities, but have also prevented them from the usual facilities 
derived ftom their licensed traders. 
It is my intention to write to the commanding officer at Fort Pierre, 
and give him a statement of the conduct of the Sioux Indians, their 
location, &c., for I firmly believe that if 600 of the troops would only
show themselves at the villages of these refractory bands, it would so 
intimidate them they would forthwith come on such terms as would 
be dictated to them, and their war excursions would be brought to a 
close. 
Of the Brul6 bands of Missouri Indians nothing certain has been 
ascertained, either as regards their movements or location, it is, how- 
ever, the general supposition that they are hovering somewhere in the 
vicinity of the Platte, and in case of any engagement of the troops 
and the Indians there, they will join issue with those bands; the same 
may be said of the Sans Arc and Minneconza bands. 
The express you started from Fort Pierre to the Onk-pa-pas and 
Blackfeet bands, with the expectation that they would bring those 
Indians to this place by the time of your arrival in the steamer, 
arrived here eight days after our departure with 54 of the principal 
chiefs and braves. The express would promptly have met you here 
had not these Indians held them prisoners for 12 days, at the expira- 
tion of that time the party as above concluded to come here with 
them. Of this party some were for receiving the annuities and some 
were not; the principal chief stated that it was his wish to take the 
goods and do as his Great Father wished him, but those who were on 
his side were but few, consequently he was completely overpowered by 


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