"We're Simply Here:" Tribes Turn Out For Treaty Commemoration

May 4, 2018

Over the last few weeks, Native Americans from across the Northern Plains have been traveling toward Fort Laramie National Historic Site in Wyoming. They came by bus, by foot and even by horse. They're here to recognize the 1868 Fort Laramie Treaty. 

It was signed 150 years ago last month in hopes of putting an end to the Indian Wars of the mid-1800’s when the Northern Plains turned into a war zone. More and more settlers had moved into lands promised to the tribes in previous treaties. Around then, the pressure on the tribes to move onto reservations became fierce. But many tribes continued to resist. Then, in late April 1868, three Lakota clans and the Dakota and Arapaho came to this very spot where the cottonwoods grow along the North Platte River. This morning, dozens of tepees sit among them, smoke curls from campfires and boys ride bareback through the meadows. 

And inside a big white tent jam-packed with people and drum circles, tribal leaders gather to recognize the broken promises of the 1868 treaty.