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Battle of Slim Butte

Michael has a BA in History & American Studies and an MSc in American History from the University of Edinburgh. He comes from a proud military family and has spent most of his career as an educator in the Middle East and Asia. Please consider reading our editorial policy to understand how and why we publish the resources we do.

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Part of our in-depth series exploring Sioux Nation Forts

Following the Little Bighorn debacle, Generals Alfred Terry and George Crook took up an unsuccessful summer chase of the Sioux. As the campaign continued into fall, Gen. Crook’s column found itself out of supplies. Unexpectedly, as part of the column under Capt. Anson Mills was attempting to reach the Black Hills to find supplies, the command stumbled onto the Sioux village of American Horse.

On the evening of September 8, 1876, near the present town of Reva, South Dakota, Mills’s Third Cavalry troopers surrounded the village and attacked it the next morning. Taken by surprise, the village was destroyed and American Horse killed. Other assaults during the fall and winter convinced most of the Sioux and Cheyenne of the futility of fighting the soldiers. The site is on private land.

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