Native American Americanization

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The United States wanted to prevent hostility, so they tried to get the Indians to agree to living on reservations instead of on their homelands. For the rest of the following century they struggled to force the Indians to accept it, they failed to do so in the end and were forced to more desperate measures to clear the west for western settlement. The first policy was the Medicine Lodge Treaty, signed in Kansas, 1867. It divided the Great Plains into two huge Indian territories. In return for government supplies, most of the Indians stayed in their reservations. The Northern Plains Indians did not agree so readily. Red Cloud signed the Fort Laramie Treaty in 1868, after the government agreed to abandon forts along the Bozeman Trail. Most white settlers wanted to commit genocide against the Indians rather than restrict them to reservations. The U.S. army did not abide by the reservation policy, as long as the army sustained the settlers’ hunger for extermination. Within a few weeks of the Fort Laramie Treaty, troop’s massacred Cheyenne’s in Washita, Oklahoma. Those troops were led by Colonel George Armstrong Custer. In South Dakota, there was a massive gold rush on Indian lands. When the Lakota Sioux refused to give their lands to the miners, General Custer led the battle of Little Bighorn; Custer’s men were slaughtered by 2,000 Indian warriors led by Sitting Bull and Crazy Horse in 1876. Forced to desperate measures, the whites decided to rid the Indians of their number one source of sustenance, the buffalo. A U.S. army colonel urged one hunter “Every buffalo dead is an Indian gone”. 30 years later, the Indians surrendered out of starvation. The Sioux war ended in 1890 with a shocking massacre of 200 Native American men, women, and children at Wounded Knee, South Dakota. America decided to commit Cultural Genocide against the Indians now that they were under American control. The best way to kill a culture is to “educate” their children. They built a school,...
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