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Wounded Knee, in South Dakota, was the scene of a massacre of around 300 Lakota Sioux men, women and children by troopers from the U.S. Army Seventh Cavalry. The soldiers were attempting to disarm some of the Lakota men, who lived on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation, as part of a campaign to suppress the Ghost Dance movement on Sioux reservations. During the process, someone fired a shot, and the cavalrymen opened fire on the Native Americans. Almost all were unarmed, and some had even been chased more than two miles from the site of the massacre before being gunned down in cold blood. Along with the massacre of Cheyenne at Sand Creek, Wyoming in 1864, Wounded Knee stands as the biggest massacre of Indian people in the second part of the nineteenth century. The site became the scene of a large protest by the American Indian Movement (AIM) in 1973. AIM protestors took over the site and proclaimed an Independent Oglala Sioux nation before surrendering to federal marshals.
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