part two - Ulysses s. Grant's ultimatum to the lakota chiefs living in unceded territory–come in or be considered hostile.
Ulysses S. Grant figured out a way to force a Lakota revolt—that required government retaliation—to gain control of the Paha Sapa and the gold she held.
Grant believed that without the influence of major chiefs living on unceded land, the reservation chiefs, those bands living off the dole, would agree to sell the Black Hills–Paha Sapa to the United States. His solution: Force the Lakota into an untenable position aimed at making them appear to be the aggressor in an inventible conflict with the army. The result would be to place the hills under governmental control and require all Lakota people to live on reservations.
To that end, on December 3, 1875, Grant, supported by his cabal, sent messengers to inform the chiefs living on unceded land that they had until January 31 to report to their designated reservations or be considered hostile to the United States. The fact of the matter was that the weather resulted in the inability of the messengers to locate all the bands, and the impossibility of those that were notified to move their camps in the middle of the winter when the snow was deep and the weather was deadly.
Scandals riddled the Grant presidency. The dark secret—a cabal to ensure the U.S. can take the hills back.
Grant had taken office in 1869 with a pledge to keep the West free of war. Unfortunately, the first scandal occurred the same year, when the gold market collapsed setting the stage for an extended recession. The scandal? Unknown to him, Grant’s sister was married to one of the men who perpetrated a scheme that led directly to the market’s collapse, forcing the United States deep into the throes of a recession.
When he started his second term in 1873, a national panic erupted with the collapse of westward railroad construction, and an economic cloud settled over Grant’s second term. It was in 1873 that he formed the cabal to take the Black Hills from the Lakota.
If only there were a new gold strike to provide relief.
At seventy-six, I’m at the beginning of a new chapter in a life filled with blessings from above, adventure, love of family, and kinships reaching into the heavens and to God himself. —AND— I love to tell a story.