Posted by: Jonathan Caswell | July 1, 2020

IN THE WAKE OF CORONAVIRUS


By the Mighty Mumford

Easter Sunday’s change

Is prearranged…

Communion share

While on Web aired,

Holy days managed!

Elements taken,

Stirred not shaken…

Spirits alive

Together relive

The day Death was broken!

Jesus Christ lives,

By His sacrifice gives…

Life, if you believe

In His love, receive

Forgiveness for sin because He LIVES!

Jonathan Caswell

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Posted by: Jonathan Caswell | July 1, 2020

WHEN I THINK OF INFINITE LOVE


By the Mighty Mumford

WHEN I THINK OF INFINITE LOVE

Only God’s love everlasting

Has power to our natures outcasting…

Replaced with His Spirit–

We needn’t fear it–

The Evil one with Him contrasting!

The Father through Jesus Christ,

His only Son’s sacrifice…

Our price paid

On the cross he laid,

So we could enter Paradise!

On Christ’s name believe,

His Lordship salvation receive…

For God is Love

Come down from above,

Do not His Holy Spirit grieve!

God’s love in both reason and rhyme,

Embodied in Christ came in time…

God is love to prove–

Believers are moved

To God all their sins resign!

Repenting  and confessing their sins,

Believers then receive “ins”…

To enter boldly

God’s throne room holy,

Where nothing on earth can bind.

–Jonathan Caswell

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Posted by: Ron DuBour | June 26, 2020

Knowing your American Heroes ~ THE ALAMO ~ by rldubour


Friday! Time for an American Hero! Part 2 of 2 Today is:

 

Knowing your American Heroes

THE ALAMO

 

Battle at Alamo | The Saturday Evening Post

The Texas Revolution
The battle of the Alamo.
Between the rebel Texan forces
And the Republic of Mexico.

In San Antonio, Texas
The stage was the Alamo mission.
In Eighteen-hundred-thirty-six.
Santa Anna had one ambition.

During the fight for independence
Knowing their odds were more than grave
The siege lasted for thirteen days.
Survivors were women, children and slaves.

Despite the loss all were heroes
They delayed the Mexican forces.
Time was needed for Sam Houston
And his troops to change courses.

The final assault on March sixth
All one-hundred-and-eighty-nine men.
Fought against sixty-one-hundred
As they attacked again and again.

Santa Anna raised a blood red flag
He fought in the Napoleonic style.
The buglers played El Deguello
The no-mercy call all the while.

The message was perfectly clear
No quarter for the defenders.
A reply from Colonial Travis
“We will never retreat or surrender.”

Around five-thirty that morning
Columns of three to four-hundred men
Reports were under an hour
All defenders were dead within.

All one-hundred-and-eighty-nine
The ultimate price they paid.
For freedom and for liberty
American heroes they portrayed.

Some famous names in history
Defenders of the Alamo
William Travis, James “Jim” Bowie and
David Crockett the records show.

 

AUTHOR NOTES *


Lieutenant Colonel William Barret Travis now commanded the Texan regular army forces assigned to defend the old mission. In January 1836, he was ordered by the provisional government to go to the Alamo with volunteers to reinforce the 189 already there. Travis arrived in San Antonio on February 3 with 29 reinforcements. Within a short time, he had become the post’s official commander, taking over from Col. James C. Neill who promised to be back in twenty days after leaving to tend to a family illness.
Various other men had also assembled to help in the defensive effort, including a number of unofficial volunteers under the command of Jim Bowie (of Bowie knife fame). Travis and Bowie often quarreled over issues of command and authority, but as Bowie’s health declined, Travis assumed overall command.
Texas was part of the Mexican colony of New Spain. After Mexican independence in 1821, Texas became part of Mexico and in 1824 became the northern section of Coahuila y Tejas. On 3 January 1823, Stephen F. Austin began a colony of 300 American families along the Brazos River in present-day Fort Bend County and Brazoria County,

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

Knowing your American Heroes

 

DAVY CROCKETT (August 17, 1786 – March 6, 1836)

 

David "Davy" Crockett (August 17, 1786 – March 6, 1836) was a 19th ...

 

Was mid August of eighty six,
in northeastern Tennessee
The song does say he killed a bear
when he was only three!

A noted hunter with a style,
at eighteen learned to read.
Always giving a helping hand
with not one ounce of greed.

At eighteen he was married and
involved in politics.
People loved his oratory and
all of his antics.

He served three years in Congress,
and was well received.
On the fourth term was defeated,
truth is he felt relieved.

Disgusted now with politics,
he moved from Tennessee
Heading for the state of Texas,
was his destiny to be.

His name will be forever known,
In U.S. history.
With his coon skin cap and rifle
he fought for liberty.

There was one hundred and eighty nine,
on record it does show.
As one by one they lost their life
We know as~~~ the Alamo!

 


Friday! Time for an American Hero! Today is:

 

Knowing your American Heroes


CLINT EASTWOOD (1930- )

Film Fan Site - Clint Eastwood

May thirty-first, nineteen-thirty,
He was born in San Francisco.
Was named Clinton Eastwood Jr.
More than the actor that we know.

Mom is Margaret, Dad is Senior
And with one sister they named Jean.
Born before the Great Depression
His family lived within their means.

While attending Oakland High School
His teacher put him in a play.
To help him overcome his shyness
Did not enjoy it to this day.

Was drafted into the Army
The year was nineteen-fifty-one.
Did basic training at Fort Ord
To Korea when he was done.

Clint flew home on a Navy plane
To visit parents and his girlfriend.
Rode on a bomber back to duty
One mile out this plane did descend.

Was forced to swim to save his life
Over one mile back to shore.
Because of this his orders changed
To be a swimming instructor.

At night he worked as a bouncer
Plus weekends at the NCO.
Was there he met David Janssen
Star of “The Fugitive” and “Harry O.”

He also met Martin Milner
Plus the actor Richard Long.
Clint was discharged in fifty-three
His thirst for acting now was strong.

Moved to Southern California
To attend L.A. City College.
Took business and drama courses
For experience and knowledge.

Married twice with seven children
Has five daughters and two sons.
Plus his only two grandchildren,
Eastwood jokes of this in fun.

Clint started his career in acting
His style earned him world wide fame.
A second career in directing
Receives greater critical acclaim.

On April eight in eighty-six
With double the voter turn out.
He won a landslide victory
Elected Mayor was no doubt.

A viable star for the eighties
These infamous words he did say.
In a speech President Reagan
Quoted his words, “Make my day.”

 

 

  AUTHOR NOTES*


audiophile :’o -de-O-“fl
: a person who is enthusiastic about high-fidelity sound reproduction
(born Clinton Eastwood, Jr. on May 31, 1930
Born at St. Mary’s Hospital in San Francisco, California to Clinton Eastwood Sr. and Margaret Ruth Runner near the beginning of the Great Depression, which in turn left its mark on his later films. While attending Oakland Technical High School in Oakland, CA, one of his teachers assigned him a part in a play to try to get him to be less introverted. He did not enjoy the experience. Eastwood was drafted into the Army, apparently in 1951, during the Korean War. He was sent to Fort Ord on the Monterey Bay, California for basic training. He was supposed to be sent to Korea, but a trip home to Seattle to visit his parents and girlfriend changed that. Eastwood flew home on a Navy plane from Moffett Field, and rode a Navy torpedo bomber returning to duty. The plane developed engine trouble and was forced to make a water landing off San Francisco. . He was forced to swim over a mile through the tide to shore. Because of this, instead of being sent to Korea, he was assigned a job as a swimming instructor and remained at Ft. Ord. He worked nights and weekends as a bouncer at the NCO club. It was while on duty at Ft. Ord that Eastwood met fellow soldiers and future TV actors Martin Milner (“Route 66” and “Adam-12”), David Janssen (“The Fugitive” and “Harry O”), and Richard Long (“The Big Valley” and “77 Sunset Strip”). After his discharge in 1953, Eastwood moved to Southern California and attended Los Angeles City College, studying drama and business administration under the G.I. Bill.
He spent much of the decade in motion, an experience that would inform such movies as 1982’s Honkytonk Man, with its migrant, “Okie” families. From his working-class childhood and upbringing, Eastwood the artist drew upon a perspective that was often far more archetypically middle-American than those of other California-born actors and directors. Eastwood, who has been married twice, has five daughters and two sons by five different women: Kimber (born 1964), with Roxanne Tunis; Kyle (born in 1968) and Alison (born on May 22, 1972), with ex-wife Maggie Johnson; Scott (born March 21, 1986) and Kathryn (born February 2, 1988), with airline hostess Barrett Stone; Francesca Ruth (born August 7, 1993), with Frances Fisher, his co-star in Unforgiven; and Morgan (born December 12, 1996), with current wife Dina Ruiz. Clint Eastwood lived with actress Sondra Locke from 1976 to 1988. The relationship produced no children. Eastwood owns the exclusive Tehama Golf Club located in Carmel Valley within Monterey County. The invitation-only club reportedly has around 300 members and a joining price of $500,000. Clint Eastwood is also an audiophile, known for his love of jazz. He owns an extensive collection of LPs which he plays on a Rockport turntable. His interest in music was passed on to his son Kyle, now a jazz musician. Eastwood has developed directing as a second career, and has generally received greater critical acclaim for his directing than he ever did for his acting.
Eastwood made one successful foray into elected politics, becoming the Mayor of Carmel-by-the-Sea (Carmel), California (population 4000), a wealthy small town and artist community on the Monterey Peninsula, for one term. Frustrated with what he perceived to be the bureaucracy in Carmel’s politics, he ran a last-minute, small scale campaign emphasizing better relations between the residential and business communities. On election day, April 8, 1986, with double the voter turnout, Eastwood garnered 72.5% of the vote and was elected to a position that paid $200 per month. During his tenure he tried to balance the rights of preservationists and develop the town for local business. Eastwood decided not to run for a second term due to the number of small scale decisions required of the mayor in such a small town.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Friday! Time for another American Hero! Today is:

 

Knowing your American Heroes


ETHAN ALLEN (1738-1789)

 Ethan Allen - Wikipedia

Born in Litchfield, Connecticut
Then parents moved to Cornwall.
Had five brothers and two sisters
Ethan was the oldest of them all.

Parents were Joseph and Mary
Family known to be influential.
Brother Ira was the youngest
And would earn some grand credentials.

The University of Vermont.
Ira founded and earned respect
Also a prominent figure in
The government of the Republic.

In fifty-five his father died
Preventing Ethan’s education.
Always felt disappointment
But home needed his attention.

Allen was head of the household
In seventeen-hundred and fifty seven.
Joined the Litchfield County Militia,
To his siblings the farm was given.

In sixty-two near Salisbury
Was part owner in smelting iron ore.
Seeing a great need for kettles
Wash and cooking they were made for.

That same year he was married
His wife’s name was Mary Brownson.
They made their home in Sheffield, Mass.
Would have four daughters and a son.

His marriage he was not happy
Was frequently absent from home.
Impulsive and a heavy drinker
Is fact that Ethan liked to roam.

What was called the New Hampshire Grants
Today we know it as Vermont.
Moved his family from Salisbury
For a Grant of land that he would want.

In Fay’s tavern in Bennington
A group called the Green Mountain Boys.
Formed a militia to protect their land
Violence they would employ.

Allen and Benedict Arnold
On May tenth in seventy-five.
Had seized Fort Ticonderoga
The Green Mountain Boys led the drive.

Fought for freedom and liberty
Was a take charge man of his life.
A symbolic figure of Vermont
As a leader showed no strife.

Frontiersman, soldier and statesman
The Green Mountain state does honor.
Ethan Allen as their hero
A leader and the founder.

 

 

  AUTHOR NOTES*


(January 21, 1738 – February 12, 1789)
Ethan Allen was born in 1738 in Litchfield, Connecticut, the eldest of the eight children of Joseph and Mary Allen. He had five brothers (Heman, Heber, Levi, Zimri, and Ira) and two sisters (Lydia and Lucy) all of whom lived to adulthood, unusual in those days. Of these siblings, his youngest brother Ira is best known as the founder of the University of Vermont in 1791, and as an influential member of the government of the Republic of Vermont. When Ethan Allen was in his teens he worked and moved grain for a mill in Woodbury. In the 1740?s children started working at an early age. When work permitted, Allen liked to be with his elders He asked many questions and learned a lot. He also liked to read a great deal, he read the Bible until he found other books in Cornwall. He read almost every book in Cornwall. When he learned to write and read at a young age, he started his thoughts on paper. His father impressed with Allen’s ambition, sent him to Reverend Jonathan Lee for schooling in Salisbury. His father’s death forced him to leave the school. He returned home to help bury his father and take charge of the family farm. He acted as head of the family and did very well. Ethan from going to Yale to pursue his education, a disappointment he felt throughout his life.
In the summer on 1757, at the age of 19, Allen turned the farm over to his brothers and enlisted in the militia to fight in the French and Indian War. His company did not see any action in the war, and for the next four years Allen just helped with the farm. In late 1761, Allen Began work in Salisbury smelting iron ore. He built a huge blast furnace (which is still there today) to smelt iron ore and to make kettles; kettles were in need at that time. In the 1760’s, New Hampshire’s governor began granting land in the region now know as Vermont. In 1768, Allen left his family at his brother’s home in Salisbury and headed north to the New Hampshire Grants.
After a short stay there he returned to Salisbury. He eventually moved his whole family to the Grants. The Green Mountain Boys were a citizens’ militia founded in Fay’s Tavern in Bennington in 1770. This militia could be called up to protect, by force if necessary, the ownership of the land in the New Hampshire Grants. Ethan Allen was its first and by all accounts very charismatic Colonel-Commandant. Ethan Allen, who has become a folk hero in Vermont, was an unusually flamboyant backwoodsman-turned-statesman from Connecticut. He was one of the early inhabitants of Burlington, where he lived on his property in the Winooski River interval from 1787 until his death in 1789. He made a very significant contribution to the early history of Vermont, at that time called the New Hampshire Grants, when the territory constituted the northern frontier of the New England colonies, and of the emerging nation.


 

 

Knowing your American Heroes

MARTIN LUTHER KING JR.  (1929-1968)

Kids Commute - Civil Rights Week! | Interlochen

 

Mother was Alberta Williams
She loved and married Michael King.
Thanksgiving Day in Atlanta
She said, “I do” and wore his ring.

Their first child born was a daughter
Known as Willie Christine by name.
The second child was named Michael
His ministry would bring him fame.

The youngest boy they named Albert
In honor of his grandfather.
The rule for woman teachers then
They must be a stay home mother.

At this time father changed his name
To Martin Luther King Senior
He also changed young Michael’s name
To Martin Luther King Junior.

He attended Morehouse College
Where he received his first degree.
Was mentored by Benjamin Mays.
A, B.A. in sociology.

To Crozer Theological Seminary
He was valedictorian.
A Bachelor of Divinity
Was top of his class once again.

Then Boston University
Where he received a Ph.D.
In nineteen-hundred-fifty-five
In Systematic theology.

On June eighteenth in fifty-three
Coretta Scott became his wife.
Her father Reverend Albert Scott
Gave them their marriage vows for life.

Two children in Montgomery
Martin the III and Yolanda.
Then Dexter and Bernice came next
They both were born in Atlanta.

All four have gone their fathers way
With their own ideals they prefer.
As activists in civil rights
Each one their goals they do concur.

A political activist
A minister, a peacemaker.
He received the Nobel Peace Prize
Was a leader and great speaker.

Presidential Medal of Freedom
He was posthumously awarded.
In his honor a special day
His words “I Have a Dream.” recorded.

April fourth, nineteen-sixty-eight
The Lorraine Motel in Memphis.
Was shot while on the balcony
Another leader we still miss.

 

  AUTHOR NOTES*

Born; January 15, 1929 Atlanta, Georgia

Died; April 4, 1968 Memphis, Tennessee

King was assassinated at 6:01 p.m. the next day, April 4, 1968 on the balcony of the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, Tennessee Friends inside the motel room heard the shots and ran to the balcony to find King shot in the throat. He was pronounced dead at St. Joseph’s Hospital at 7:05 p.m.

Besides winning the 1964 Nobel Peace Prize, in 1965 the American Jewish Committee presented King with the American Liberties Medallion for his “exceptional advancement of the principles of human liberty.” Reverend King said in his acceptance remarks, “Freedom is one thing. You have it all or you are not free.”

In 1966, Planned Parenthood Federation of America awarded Mr. King the Margaret Sanger Award for “his courageous resistance to bigotry and his lifelong dedication to the advancement of social justice and human dignity.”

In 1977, the Presidential Medal of Freedom was awarded posthumously to King by Jimmy Carter.

King is the second most admired person in the 20th century according to a Gallup poll.

King was voted 6th in the Person of the Century poll by TIME.

King was elected the third Greatest American of all time by the American public in a contest conducted by the Discovery Channel and AOL. Coretta Scott King died on January 30, 2006


Friday! Time for an American Hero! Today is:

 

Knowing your American Heroes

FATHER RASLE (1658-1724)

Father Rasle Monument (2001)

Born and named Sebastian
Rasle
Dole, France in sixteen-fifty-eight.
His family was distinguished;
Rasle knew teaching was his fate.

He did his studies in Dijon
Much against his parents wish.
Wanting to be a Jesuit
This goal he would not relinquish.

In sixteen-hundred and seventy-five
For a short time taught Greek at Nimes.
Joined the Society of Jesus
Life of teaching was facing him.

In eighty-nine he did request
An attachment in Canada.
That July he left La Rochelle
Would end up in America.

First he landed at Quebec, was
Given charge of various missions.
Then headed for America
To teach and preach religion.

Living among the Abenakis
In what is now the state of Maine.
He compiled a thorough study
By sharing hardship and their pain.

He established the first school there
And a mission in Norridgewock.
Acquired a strong influence
Among the Indians he would walk.

When the Chiefs of the Abenakis
To the English they sought alliance.
Rasle advised them against this
And would pay for his defiance.

Governor Dudley, of Boston
In seventeen-hundred and two.
A vote from the common council
For Rasle’s head they did choose.

In seventeen hundred and five
With two-hundred and seventy men.
Plus forty-five New Englanders
Captain Hilton failed to bring Rasle in.

Peace restored in seventeen-thirteen
At Norridgewock a new church.
A price was still on Rasle’s head
The English would make another search.

Under Colonel Thomas Westbrook
In seventeen-hundred and twenty-three.
Once more the church was pillaged
Again Rasle managed to flee.

John Pickering from Fort Richmond
Surprised Norridgewock in the night.
Father Rasle was shot to death
And seven Chiefs guarding his life.

 

  AUTHOR NOTES*


RASLE, Sebastien, French missionary, born in Dole, France, in 1658; died in Norridgewock, Maine. 12 August, 1724. His name is often improperly spelled Raale, Rale, and Retle. His family was distinguished in the province of Franche-Comte. and, after completing his studies in Dijon, he became a Jesuit, much against the wish of his parents, and taught Greek for a time in the college of the society at Nimes. At his request he was attached in 1689 to the missions of Canada, and,
sailing from La Rochelle, 23 July, he landed at Quebec on 18 October After having charge of various missions he was placed in charge of the station of Norridgewock, on Kennebec river, about 1695.
He came to America on 13 October 1689 and lived with the native Americans in Illinois (1692-95) and at Becancour (1705-11) in Canada. He later lived among the Abenakis for whom he established the first school ever in what is now the State of Maine. Here he made a thorough study of the Abenaki language, and, by sharing the dangers and hardships of the Indians, he acquired such an influence among them that the French authorities at Quebec thought advisable to utilize it in the struggle against England. In the winter of 1705 Captain Hilton, with a party of 270 men, including forty-five New Englanders, surprised Norridgewock and burned the church, but Rasle escaped to the woods with his papers.
When peace was restored in 1713 he set about building a new church at Norridgewock. and, aided by the French governor, erected one which, in his own words, ” would excite admiration in Europe.” It was supplied with all the apparatus of Roman Catholic worship, and the set-vices were conducted with great pomp, forty Indian boys, trained by him, acting as acolytes. Shute, of Massachusetts, engaged afterward in a correspondence with Rasle; but failing in the attempt to decoy him to Boston, sent parties to seize him. In January, 1723, a band of 300 men under Colonel Thomas Westbrook succeeded in reaching the mission, burned the church, and pillaged Rasle’s cabin. There they found an iron box which contained, besides his correspondence with the authorities of Quebec, a valuable dictionary of the Abenaki language in three volumes. Captain John Pickering in 1724 with a party of 208 men from Fort Richmond surprised Norridgewock in the night, killed several Indians, and shot Rasle, who was in the act of escaping, at the foot of the mission cross, seven chiefs, who endeavored to protect him, sharing his fate. His body was afterward mutilated by the incensed soldiery and left without burial; but when the Abenakis returned a few days later, they buried his remains. The French authorities vainly asked reparation for the outrage, but in 1833 the citizens of Norridgewock raised a subscription, bought an acre of land on the spot where Rasle fell, and erected there a monument to his memory, which Bishop Fenwick, of Boston, dedicated on 29 August. Rasle was killed at his mission in Norridgewock, Maine, on 23 August 1724, as he defended his Abenaki people. After his death the war known as Father Rasle’s War started. It lasted for two years in which the native Americans lost their lands with English victory.

Posted by: Jonathan Caswell | June 3, 2020

BADLY NEEDED ENCOURAGEMENT–BOLLYWOOD STYLE!*


YOWSA-YOWSA-YOWSA-!

By the Mighty Mumford

JOHN, Jani, Janadhan–BAH-RRUM-PAH-PAH-PAH PAH!

JON, JONNY JONATHAN–bah-rum-pah-pah-pah-pah!

An all-around useful gent,

That’s how the story went…

Had his song

With chorus along,

In joy his life was spent!

I needed some good,

Reached back to Bollywood…

Note my respelling

Of names I’m telling,

Closer to how I would!

Jon, Jonny, Jonathan–BAH-RUM-PAH-PAH-PAH-PAH!

JON, JONNY, JONATHAN–bah-rump-pump-pah-pump-pah!

Locked into comparing,

Although he knows it’s wearing…

A good man down

In wearing a frown

And internal thoughts erring!

Stepped up his cheerful routine,

So no one sees his “demean(or)”…

Writing to you

His joy breaks through,

Glory to God he’s not meaner!

–Jonathan Caswell

*JOHN, JANI, JANADHAN”,  a 1984 Hindi remake of  an earlier film, is on You Tube,

including the title song, from which this limerick poem was developed.

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Friday! Time for an American Hero! Today is:

 

Knowing your American Heroes

SITTING BULL (c. 1831-1890)

Son of Sitting Bull - Other & Abstract Background Wallpapers on ... 

Born around eighteen-thirty-one
In present day South Dakota.
At a place they called “Many Caches”
Given name of Tatanka-Iyotanka.

In English translate to Sitting Bull
While this was not his real name.
Before the end of his life here
This Chief would reach world-wide fame.

The first time he saw U.S. soldiers
Was June of eighteen-sixty-three.
His people were severely beaten
From this, a Great Chief he would be.

The Battle of Killdeer Mountain
Had struck a significant blow.
Many went to reservations
While Sitting Bull refused to go.

This action won him huge respect
And head Chief of Lakota nation.
In eighteen-hundred-sixty-eight
White man came from all directions.

Brought settlers and miners,
Farmers and missionaries.
Railroad workers and town folks
And increasing military.

Slowly they were being pushed
As they were forced from tribal lands.
Sitting Bull, a medicine man
Had made his people understand.

Like many tribal leaders
That were being moved from their land.
He wanted peace and trade with whites
Soon would be forced to make a stand.

Eighteen-hundred and seventy-six
Attacked by the 7th Cavalry.
Custer’s army was forced to retreat
For Sitting Bull a victory.

More than three-thousand warriors
Proceeded to counter-attack.
Annihilating the soldiers
Led by Sitting Bull to fight back.

Now was placed as a great leader
With Crazy Horse and Geronimo.
This victory would be short lived
Relentless pressure they would soon know.

In eighteen-hundred and ninety
Sitting Bull and his son Crow Foot.
Where both killed while being arrested,
Forty-three Indian police it took.

A Great Chief and medicine man
An inspirational leader.
Always affable and friendly
A loving father and gifted singer.

 

  AUTHOR NOTES*


Sitting Bull was born around 1831 on the Grand River in present-day South Dakota, at a place the Lakota called “Many Caches” as it was used for food storages pits for the tribe to see out the winter. He was given the name Tatanka-Iyotanka at his birth, which describes a buffalo bull sitting intractably on its haunches. This, in English, translates as Sitting Bull. While this was not his real name, it would be the one he would reach world-wide fame with towards the end of his life. He saw his first encounter with American soldiers in June of 1863, when the army mounted a broad campaign in retaliation for the Santee Rebellion in Minnesota, in which Sitting Bull’s people played no part. The following year he was involved when his tribe clashed with U.S. troops at the Battle of Killdeer Mountain. The battle was a decisive victory for the Army and left the Native Americans badly beaten, largely because of the artillery used by the Army which devastated the Sioux. The Battle of Killdeer Mountain struck a significant blow against Native American resistance and many chiefs gave up the fight and went to reservations. Sitting Bull refused to surrender and rose to be a tribal leader, leading his warriors in a siege against the newly-constructed Fort Rice in present-day North Dakota. This action won him huge respect among the tribe and he became head chief of the Lakota nation in c. 1868. Like many tribal leaders, Sitting Bull first attempted to make peace and trade with the whites. However, many of the men the Lakota encountered would trick them into accepting poor deals for their lands which created resentment amongst the tribes. When his people were driven from their reservation in the Black Hills, an area that the Sioux consider holy, after the discovery of gold in 1876, Sitting Bull took up arms against the whites and refused to be transported to the Indian territory.
On June 25, 1876, Custer’s 7th Cavalry advance party of General Alfred Howe Terry’s column attacked Indian tribes at their camp on the Little Big Horn River expecting a victory. Custer’s badly-outnumbered troops lost ground quickly and were forced to retreat, as they began to realize the true numbers of the Native American force. The tribes then led a counter-attack against the soldiers on a nearby ridge, ultimately annihilating the soldiers. The victory placed Sitting Bull among the great Native American leaders such as fellow Little Big Horn veteran Crazy Horse and Apache freedom fighter Geronimo. But the Native Americans’ celebrations were short lived, as public outrage at the military catastrophe and Custer’s death brought thousands more cavalrymen to the area. Over the next year, the new forces relentlessly pursued the Lakota, forcing many of the Indians to surrender. Sitting Bull refused to surrender, and in May 1877 led his band across the border into Canada, where he would remain in exile for a number of years, refusing a pardon and the chance to return. Pre-empting the army, 43 Indian police attempted to arrest him on December 15, 1890 at the Standing Rock Agency. However, his followers were still loyal, and fought to prevent the arrest, fearing that the army meant to kill Sitting Bull. Shots were fired and Sitting Bull, who was hit in the head, and his son Crow Foot, were both killed. Sitting Bull’s body was taken by the Indian police to Fort Yates, North Dakota and buried in the military cemetery. The Lakota claim that his remains were transported in 1953 to Mobridge, South Dakota, where a granite shaft marks his grave. Sitting Bull is still remembered among the Lakota not only as an inspirational leader and fearless warrior, but as a loving father, a gifted singer, and as a man always affable and friendly toward others, whose deep religious faith gave him prophetic insight and lent special power to his prayers.

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