Massacre at Wounded Knee Creek

Topics: Wounded Knee Massacre, Lakota people, Native Americans in the United States Pages: 6 (1386 words) Published: July 28, 2014
The first document is an excerpt from Black Elk’s autobiography regarding the Wounded Knee Massacre. The second document is an excerpt from President Benjamin Harrison’s annual message describing the conflict and progress of the program to decrease Native American’s landholdings. The audience of these two excerpts is the general public. However, in general, Native Americans were more interested considering that it was their land and people diminishing. I find it interesting that President Harrison refers to the Native American’s land as “waste land”; however, for the newcomers, the land is suddenly infinitely valuable due to the prospect of farming. In reality, the newcomers would have probably been able to bargain with the Natives to do their own farming there, consequently, the Natives could have kept their land and the newcomers would have still prospered and been fed. In Flying Hawk’s recollection of the events at Wounded Knee, he concludes by stating “I was there and saw the trouble,-but after the shooting was over; it was all bad.” This conclusion is highly impactful. It summarizes all that was occurring with their lives at this time. They were warring with the new come Americans and they were losing their homes to them. These documents make it clear that the newcomers came in and overturned the Native American’s way of life. The culture of this time appears to be that of a dictatorship. It seems that the new comers told the Native Americans what to do, when to do it, and if they didn’t do exactly as asked, there would be war.

hese three documents are an exerpt of an autobiography, a report for the accounts of what happened at Wounded Knee Creek, and a recollection from someone who was there. The audience for whom these documents were directed are the people who need or want to know what happened at Wounded Knee in 1890. What I found interesting about these three documents was the point of view from each of them. Two of them being from an indian point of view and the one other from a, “Wasichus.” What was interesting was seeing how much the white man disregarded the indians, even though they were stomping all over their land. To think, they trapped them and destroyed so many of them just to gain acreage and build new homes for people of their own race instead of just living together. There were two phrases I found most memorable in these documents. The first being, “It is also gratifying to able to feel, as we may, that his work has proceeded upon lines of justice toward the indian.” I find this statement ironic because the indians got no justice at all. They got massacred so that the white man could secure more land for themselves. The second phrase is, “It was an ugly business, and brutal. They treated the indians like they would torment a wolf with one foot in a strong trap.” This phrase is so memorable because it truly puts into perspective, from someone who was there, how bad things actually were. These documents showed me that the culture of this time was extremely aggressive and that killing was what people thought they had to do to get more land. Unfortunately, sometimes that is what still sometimes happens, be it not for land, but something else. I guess that is just the world we live in.

The documents were known as memorandum or personal accounts of what happened at Wounded Knee Creek and actually personal events on who was there during this time. The audience for these documents are for anyone that would have interested on what happened or went on during the Wounded Knee. There were many things I found interesting about the document, but the main one was how the white man had no empathy for the Native American. They would take there land without question as if it were a dictatorship. Not to mention according to the white man the Native Americans land was “waste land” even though it had many agricultural gains that the white man needed. They even went to lengths to...
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