Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Wounded Knee

A morning drive took us up to the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota. We'd been there a couple of times before, but had not gone as far as the Wounded Knee Memorial. Forgive the gory picture, but this was in our minds as we approached the scene of the historic event. We could see the very place where, in December 1890, someone took this picture of the aftermath of the massacre.

I've read a lot about that tragic event, and watched a couple of movies about it, so it was enlightening to see the actual location. It's not tourist season, so I can't judge what it looks like then, but on this occasion we noticed how shabby everything looked. The sign telling about the massacre has grafiti and bullet holes all over it, and we could hardly read the story. Sad. If you click on the photo to enlarge it, you may be able to read a few words and see the bullet holes.

This is the memorial. For those who don't know the story, the massacre at Wounded Knee was the last battle fought by white soldiers and Native Americans, the Lakota. You can read the details on the wikipedia site.


This hill is now a burial ground, and right between the stone pillars is a plot of ground where they buried the Lakotas who died in the battle. There are other graves on the hill as well.

We get a different perspective when we live near or in "Indian Territory", such as in the Black Hills. We can see how much they lost and we can understand the bitterness they suffer. Our prayer is that forgiveness and healing will eventually take place with whomever it needs to, and the Native Americans will be able to move on and become all they can be. They are wonderful people and many are working towards that healing and the true peace that will come with that.

No comments: