Blackfoot Indian Tribe History
Sihasapa ('black feet', so called
because they wore black moccasins). A small division of the Teton Sioux.
The name, like the names of some other Teton tribes, does not appear to
have come into notice until a recent date, no mention being made of it by
Lewis and Clark, Long, or earlier authorities. Catlin in his Letters and
Notes, written during his stay among the northwestern Indians (1832-39),
mentions the Blackfoot Sioux. In a note to De Smet's Letters (1843) they
were estimated to number 1,500. Culbertson (Smithson. Rep. 1850, 141,
1851) estimated the tribe at 450 lodges, an exaggeration, and mentions
five bands or subtribes, but does not locate them. It was not until Gen.
Warren and Dr. Hayden visited their country that definite information in
regard to them was obtained. The former (1856) makes the following brief
notes: "Sihasapas Blackfeet. Haunts and homes same as the Unkpapas;
number, 165 lodges. These two bands have very little respect for the power
of the whites. . Many of the depredations along the Platte are committed
by the Unkpapas and Sihasapas, whose homes are farther from it than those
of any other of the Titonwans." Hayden (1862) says that they, the Hunkpapa
and Sans Arcs, "occupy nearly the same district, and are so often encamped
near each other, and otherwise so connected in their operations, as
scarcely to admit of being treated of separately. That part of the country
under their control lies along the Moreau, Cannonball, Heart, and Grand.
rivers., seldom extending very high up on Grand river, but of late years
reaching to the Little Missouri [in North Dakota]. Although the bands just
mentioned are often stationed near each other, they are sometimes found
several days' journey apart, and each is headed by its own chief." His
estimate is 220 lodges. Subsequently the Sihasapa were gathered partly at
Cheyenne River reservation, South Dakota, and partly at Standing Rock
reservation, North Dakota.
The number on the former in 1878 was 224, and on
the latter 590, a total of 814. They are no longer separately reported. J.
O. Dorsey mentions the following bands:
Swift (1884) gives the same divisions, except that he
omits Glaglahecha and includes Tizaptan. The first and third were given in
a list of bands by Culbertson (1850), who enumerates also the Cuts, Those
That Camp Next To The Last, Tashunkeota, and Devil's Medicineman Band.
The books presented are for their
historical value only and are not the
opinions of the Webmasters of the site.
of American Indians, 1906
Index of Tribes or Nations