Just off of Highway 12 and Blacktop Road sits a monument to Sitting Bull, one of the country’s most significant historical figures. Overlooking the majestic Missouri River and the quaint town of Mobridge, this historical memorial rests as a place for all to learn of an American legend. A Teton Native American, Sitting Bull is most well-known for his achievement in unifying the Sioux Nation of the American Plains in an attempt to fortify the region from the European Settlers following numerous advances from the East. During the Great Sioux Wars of 1876 was the Battle of Little Bighorn. In this historic onslaught from the white settlers, Sitting Bull and Crazy Horse allied to fight off the attempted siege of the land. It culminated in the killing of General Custer and his men. This marks perhaps the zenith of Sitting Bull and the Sioux’s efforts to thwart settling of the region from the white settlers.
After the news of Custer’s defeat spread, Americans across the country had strengthened resolve in the fight against the Natives. The U.S Government sent General Ranald Mackenzie along with as many as 1,000 troops to defeat what was left of the Sioux/Cheyenne in South Dakota. The tribes never recovered from the onslaught.
Meanwhile, Sitting Bull famously kept surviving and retreating as the encroachments from the U.S soldiers continued. He famously declined treaty after treaty against all odds of defeating the settlers. After years of small battles and retreat Sitting Bull finally surrendered in 1881 so his people could receive amnesty. Years later, in 1890, Indian leaders began to sense Sitting Bull was plotting another revolt, and thus decided to arrest him. When he declined to comply with the Indian Police, he was murdered in his home on December 15th of 1890. Today, his memorial stands in South Dakota in honor of his courage, resolve, and wit in an immeasurably dark time in American History.