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From: Guest10/6/99 9:41 PM 
To: All  (1 of 4) 
This summer, I was at The Little Big Horn. If you have ever been through Montana, you know how wide open the state is, just like west Texas..

When we were there, we took the bus tour of the battle ground. It was very educational.

At the Big Horn, there are markers where the soldiers fell. These markers are scattered through out the battle ground.

The young lady who was the commentator or tour guide did a great job of telling the story of the battle.

The tour was both educational and funny. Certainly, no battle is funny, but at one point in the tour, the bus stopped and the tour guide was pointing out an area of interest. She began to tell us about two officers that were moving troops and she forgot the name of one of the officers. She said, Benteen and, .... ah, .... ah, ..... ah, ..... well, that other guy ......

That was so funny, everybody on that bus just exploded with laughter.

The land of the battle ground and the land surrounding the battle ground, is now divided and fenced off . So there are fence rows on the battle ground.

The tour guide told us a story of little old White lady that took the tour one day.

On the battle field, there is a group of about five white marble markers, marking a spot where five soldiers had fallen. The markers were not very far from a fence. As the tour guide was telling the story of the battle that day, the little old White woman said, "that one other there would have gotten away if it wasn't for that fence."

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From: Omoya (omoya1)10/6/99 10:42 PM 
To: Guest  (2 of 4) 
 82.2 in reply to 82.1 
As I said, I was there when the Oglalas and some Cheyennes as well re-enacted, as a pledge several had made to do so for four years running, the Lakota side of that story. We hit the trail for a week, heading over the old trails, trails that cut across all sorts of ranches and what not that we had to ask permission to trespass upon, pitching tipis and living pretty much as the People did then. It was a very sacred week, and we were all instructed, over the weeks before, how to fast, and what to do to be ready. First, we went up to Bear Butte, the most sacred spot the Lakotas and others have over that way. From there, we headed towards Montana, the men and a few women on horseback, with the women who'd pledged to cook and otherwise care for everyone--that was my pledge--following in the only modern "conveniences," mostly old rez cars bought for the occasion (remember Pow Wow Highway? THAT kinda car!). At Crow Agency, we were dismayed at first to see a big old casino looming across the street from the Little Big Horn Memorial. But, when we realized there were real bathrooms in there, and that the tribe had instructed them to give us EXTRA free soft drinks (everyone who enters gets something, but we got even more) for our efforts on behalf of all people...we sort of forgave them. Sort of...The day of the ride, after we had stayed up all night singing and painting coup sticks and what not, one of the riders lay down on the grass up where the battle took place and frowned, and said, "What's this?" As he raised up off the ground, and brushed the grass, he came up with a bullet that would later be authenticated by the museum curator as the type used AT the battle we were commemorating. And the best part is, they let the brother keep it, as a "token" for his medicine pouch! I loved that! So, I have truly fond memories of that place. Casino and all...


From: Guest10/6/99 11:28 PM 
To: Omoya (omoya1)  (3 of 4) 
 82.3 in reply to 82.2 
OMOYA, I was at Bear Butte this summer but I didn't walk up.

Some Lakota don't see Bear Butte as such, but when we were there, people were at the butte.

But I didn't walk up because I was told to never set feat on such sacred grounds because those grounds are not for me. Since I am Christian and I am not Lakota, I didn't feel comfortable treading of grounds that I am not of or of mine.

My trip started with a flight into to Dallas. We drove through Oklahoma, Kansas, Nebraska, into South Dakota (Rapid City). Then on to Montana. We left Montana, drove through Yellowstone into Jackson Hole, Wyoming. Then we drove to Cheyenne then to Denver (home), into Colorado Springs and back into Texas. We spent two to three nights in each place.

It was not all fun though. One of the people traveling with us was just pure hell to deal with. So we had to dismiss her in Cheyenne. I had wanted to do this for years and I refused to allow her to continue to destroy my vacation. I just hate that we waited so long before we decided to do something about the hell we were experiencing, unbelievable. I'm thinking about writing a book. I know it will turn into a movie.

But after the dismissal, the trip was great fun. That old saying, "you never know people until you travel with them", is absolutely true. I am now a witness.


From: Omoya (omoya1)10/7/99 10:51 AM 
To: Guest  (4 of 4) 
 82.4 in reply to 82.3 
You were absolutely right not to go up! I wish everyone were so respectful. I was taken up by two medicine men who, because I have Native ancestry and because of my past relationships with Native people, wanted me to participate in the prayers being offered for the ride. Had they not been so adamant--this happens on Hopi, too, a lot, with my relatives--I would never have considered it. Often, if a ceremony is "closed" I'll still insist upon staying home. But once the people have spoken, I stick to an old unspoken rule that says "When the elders say do it, do it!" For the most part, that works for me!

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