agent distributing rations to Yankton Sioux (detail). Photograph
by J.H. Hamilton, before Nov. 1867. NAA MS 4605, Inv. 01600804.
the ration of meat was issued.
On Monday, October 17, 1881, the day for issuing beef, called
on the agent, met Lieut. Macomb and Carnish. They took me to
the corral, the only place where the thing could be safely seen.
Climbed up on top of a crib like scale. Indians came in every
direction, dressed in full costume, paint, feathers, gay blankets,
mounted on their ponies with rifles. Women, too, on ponies,
painted - the shell earrings hanging to their waist, between
the rows of shells pieces of buckskin, bracelets, necklaces,
beads, hair painted, some with faces painted yellow. Children
painted, braids rolled up in a strip of beaver skin, part painted
red, and faces spotted.
The cattle were rounded up by the cow boys and let out one
by one, the Interpreter marking off on a book, as he sat on
a fence. A crier called the Indian and as the steer issued,
the Indian either chased or shot it. A most brutalizing scene.
The cow boys were the worst - would shoot some 6 or 7 times
at one poor steer penned where it could not escape.