In the spring of 1805, the Lewis & Clark Expedition spent 29 days and nights traveling through traditional Nakoda or Assiniboine hunting territory.
They noted many signs of the people that lived on these upper Missouri River plains but made no effort to reach them when they saw the smoke from their lodges camped north on Big Porcupine Creek.
Through their field glasses they watched the smoke and knew they were in turn being watched when an Indian dog wandered into their camp.
This is the story of the Nakoda hunters nearly running into the first white expedition hunters theyd ever seen along the Wiota river bottom of the Minnishoshe. The Rock Band Chiefs, Iron Arrow Point, Rosebud and Grey Eyes as well as scouts, hunters, warriors, women and children who remembered the excitement in their camp told the story through the generations.
The survival of this story is indicative of a larger story of survival of a culture against all odds. In the 200 years that have passed since this story, many tribes have vanished.
Today the Nakoda people celebrate survival. Tomorrow, we will thrive.
Proceeds from this project pay for the preservation of the Chief First To Fly Joshua Wetsit Collection at the Valley County Museum in Glasgow, Montana.
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