So you’ve learnt about the rise and fall of the cattle industry – but that’s not all, as you need to know specifically about who the cowboys were and what they did, as well as their equipment, etc. As a result, we’ve got this article for you – a guide to the ins and outs of cowboys.
So, you’ve probably heard of Custer… some western movie somewhere? No idea? Well, you need to know who he is – because he’s often a focus for an exam question. Ready to learn all about Custer, his successes, and his failings? Then here we go…
It’s probably one of the most annoying topics for people to know about, with a whole bunch of dates you need to know, but it’s important – so we’re going to cover it here. Dates and events of Little Crow’s war, Red Cloud’s war, and the Great Sioux War – and everything you need to know for the exam.
So you’re taking the American West course, and you need to revise groups of settlers in North America. Well, here we’re going to talk about the first settlers – those that ignored the Plains and went straight across to the West, including Mountain Men and Early Pioneers. Ready? Here we go…
Cattle ranchers were another big group of settlers on the Great American Plains – raising cattle to be slaughtered and sold for meat and hide. But how did it begin, and how did it all come to an end? We shall find out here…
So, you know that there was a lot going on on the Great Plains mid-1800’s. The Native Americans lived peacefully there, hunting buffalo, mountain men lived with the Native Americans and worked in the Rockies collecting beaver fur. But why exactly were the Great Plains so important to white people:? I mean, they described it as “the great American desert”, it’s not like there was much there for them – yet they felt it necessary to disrupt the Native Americans, and wished to control the plains themselves (roll on the homestead act of 1862!) – why?
Sometimes it can be helpful to put things in context, especially if you’re trying to support an argument your making. So it may be helpful to know a bit more about who The Native Americans were, so you can support any arguments you make better. Right now we know that The Native Americans lived in tribes on The Great Plains, and really – that’s about it!
The Native Americans, like any other civilization, needed ways to deal with sickness and injury. Now, generally, the ways that the Sioux treated injuries or sickness are classed into two categories: rational medicine, and irrational medicine.
Let’s be honest: if you investigate most conflicts throughout history, you’ll find religion following them like a shadow at midday. Newsflash! It’s no different here! And that is what makes Sioux religion so important when studying this period. With this in mind, I’ll try and link most of my explanation back to war and how the Sioux religion could influence their actions – however, their religion was peaceful, and their religion was used in day to day life, too (see ‘Dances’). This should be borne in mind.
So what makes the buffalo so important? I mean, it’s not like buffalo feature in Cowboys vs. Indians films. However, as it turns out, there simply wouldn’t have been any Cowboy films if the buffalo hadn’t pitched up on the Great Plains. They’re simply that important!