Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee

by Dee Brown

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Summarize the fatal account of General Custer and describe the events that led to his downfall in Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee.

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In 1874, George Armstrong Custer and his Seventh Calvary report that there is gold in Sioux territory's Black Hills, causing waves of white miners to converge on the area.  The Indians resist, rejecting the government's paltry offer to purchase land and mineral rights.  The Army responds by attacking an Indian camp near the Powder River; there is further confrontation at Rosebud, where the Indians are victorious.  The chiefs then move west to Little Big Horn where grass and game are plentiful, and establish a huge camp of more than 10,000, including 2000-4000 warriors.  This camp is then attacked by Major Marcus Reno to the south and Custer from the east.  As Custer approaches through a ravine, a large band of Sioux led by Gall is diverted to intercept Custer in a frontal attack after having repulsed Reno, while Sioux under Crazy Horse hit the column's flank, and Two Moon's Cheyennes attack from the rear.  Surrounded, Custer's troops fight bravely but are easily overwhelmed.  None of them survive.

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