Crazy Horse - Tashunkewitko

"One does not sell the land the people walk upon."

Unlike Little Wolf, Geronimo and others Crazy Horse did not live to be an old man, dying as a result of treachery at around 35.

He was notable among the Oglala for his appearance, being light skinned and having curly brown hair.  There are no authenticated likenesses of him as he always avoided having his photograph taken. In battle he painted a yellow lightning fork on his left cheek and used white powder to form 'hailstones' on his body.

On a vision quest he was told that he would not die in battle, which turned out to be true.  He also had an image of being held by Indian arms.

He fought at Little Bighorn and was famous for his determination to oppose white acquisition of tribal lands but in 1877 presented himself at Fort Robinson, apparently believing he could surrender peaceably.  Upon finding himself ushered into a cell he resisted, saying he had been tricked. He was bayoneted in the back while being held by fellow Oglala Little Big Man, a rival who had a reputation for deviousness.  It is not clear whether this was a deliberate act of treachery or whether he was misguidedly trying to restrain Crazy Horse's aggression to try to prevent an attack by the soldiers; treachery seems most likely.

Crazy Horse survived in great pain until the following day when he died in the presence of his father. His place of burial is unknown but his spirit is to be found wherever the Indian fights for the rights of his people.

It is recorded that a few days before he died he said this to Sitting Bull:

Upon suffering beyond suffering, the Red Nation shall rise again and it shall be a blessing for a sick world.  A world of broken promises, selfishness and separations, a world longing for light again.  I see a time of Seven Generations when all the colours of mankind will gather under the Sacred Tree of Life and the whole earth will become one circle again.  In that day, there will be those among the Lakota who will carry knowledge and understanding of unity among all living things and the young white ones will come to those of my people and ask for this wisdom. I salute the light within your eyes where the whole universe dwells.  For when you are at that centre within you, and I am at that place within me, we shall be one.

Sources and reading:

Lakota Country Times

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