Crazy Horse

Crazy Horse was one of the most famous Indian warriors who fought against the U.S. army during the 19th century. He was the chief of the Sioux tribe and took part in Red Cloud’s War as well as the Great Sioux War of 1876.

Crazy Horse Early Life

Crazy Horse was born in South Dakota in 1840. His father actually named him ‘Among the Trees’ but as Crazy Horse, he showed an exceptional degree of courage and bravery.

For this reason, his father named him ‘Crazy Horse’. Crazy Horse was good at riding horses and hunting buffalo from a very young age. And because of this, he frequently led the other young boys of his tribe who accepted him as his leader.

Conflict with the U.S. Army

In the 19th century, United States of America was rapidly expanding towards the West. This meant that the vast territories which the Native Americans considered their homeland increasingly came under the control of USA.

It also resulted in many skirmishes between the Native Americans and the U.S. Army. The Sioux Nation, to which Crazy Horse belonged, decided to fight back when the U.S. army tried to take their homeland. This resulted in a war between the two sides.

Crazy Horse Role in Red Cloud’s War

In 1866, Red Cloud who was a Native American leader, launched war against the U.S. army. The war was fought over the control of the Powder River country. The U.S. army wanted to take control of the area while the Native Americans believed that the land belonged to them.

The war included many battles between the two sides and Crazy Horse distinguished himself as a courageous and brave warrior during these battles.

The war resulted in the victory of the Native Americans and according to Treaty of Fort Laramie in 1868, U.S. government accepted that the Lakota people were the rightful owners of the Black Hills.

10 years later, U.S. government broke the treaty and tried to take the Black Hills which led to another war. This was called the Great Sioux War of 1876.

Role in the Great Sioux War

When the Great Sioux War began, Crazy Horse had already become the chief of his tribe. He was considered a gifted leader and a fearless warrior. He took part in the famous Battle of Little Big Horn at the start of the Great Sioux War.

This battle took place in 1876. Crazy Horse and other Indian warriors surrounded a group of U.S. soldiers. Although the U.S. soldiers fought back and the Indian side had to suffer many casualties, Crazy Horse led his warriors to storm the defensive positions of the U.S. soldiers and gained victory.

Crazy Horse Surrender and Death

Although Crazy Horse and other Indian warriors scored some early victories in the Great Sioux War of 1876, the tide soon turned against them. In 1877, they were outnumbered by the U.S. soldiers and many of their villages had been burnt by the U.S. army.

So Crazy Horse finally agreed to surrender, bringing an end to the war. Sometime after his surrender, the army tried to arrest him over suspicion of conspiracy but Crazy Horse resisted and he was killed by an army guard on September 5, 1877.