U.S. Geological Survey
The Killdeer Mountains in North Dakota.

United Tribes of North Dakota Oppose Killdeer Development


On September 6, the United Tribes of North Dakota said it officially opposed any further development on Killdeer Mountain by way of a resolution, which passed unanimously.

Their opposition is because the site is sacred and they don’t want any remains there disturbed. On July 28, 1864 a peaceful encampment of Teton Natives was at the sacred site at Killdeer when they were attacked by the U.S. Army under Brigadier General Alfred Sully.

“An undetermined number of Native American men, women and children were killed, accompanied by the destruction of between 1,600 and 1,800 lodges they occupied… as a part of a continuing effort by the U.S. military to stamp out all resistance by Native Americans to U.S. domination of Indian country in Minnesota, Dakota Territory and further west; an effort which would now be called a war of genocide,” reads the resolution. “The Tetons that managed to escape the horrors of the so-called ‘Battle’ in the Killdeer Mountains in Dakota Territory were unable to ever give their relatives the appropriate burial ceremonies, with many bodies being buried in a long line along the hills where they were killed.”

The attack also destroyed tons of buffalo meat, piles of tanned hides, clothes, utensils and tipi poles.

The United Tribes of North Dakota, which represents the Sisseton-Wahpeton Oyate, the Spirit Lake Tribe, the Standing Rock Tribe, Mandan/Hidatsa/Arikara Nation and the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa, worry that the proposed construction of an electric power transmission line “could potentially disturb the remains of those killed at the site.”

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