Oglala Lakota Archival Material
The Independent Oglala Nation
(c) Akwesasne Notes. All rights reserved. Permission to reprint required.
Oscar Bear Runner, Oglala,- A guard at the Negotiations

By March 10, [1973] the resistance at Wounded Knee had been front page news for two weeks. The Government had failed to force the native people out of the village, and with support for them growing, the military stalemate looked as if it might drag on indefinitely. The federal officials then agreed to a Wounded Knee proposal to lift the roadblocks and allow free access in an out of the village. The officials had said the “militants” were only “seeking publicity” and would leave if given the chance to do so without the risk of arrest.

But the Oglalas were not about to leave until something had been done about the issues that had brought them there, including Tribal President Richard Wilson, whose “goon squad” was still terrorizing those who opposed his administration. For many Oglalas, it was safer in the village. So those in Wounded Knee were willing to see the siege lifted, knowing that supporters from around the reservation would then be able to join them.

The Federal roadblocks were lifted on Saturday afternoon, March 10. Some people did leave the village, but hundreds of thers poured in including many of the Oglala chiefs and headmen. That night, too, some local white ranchers made their way into the now open area and set fire to the trading post. The fire was put out quickly and the warriors spent the rest of the night battling vigilantes who were shooting into the village. As a result, the people in Wounded Knee were forced to send out patrols and man their roadblocks once more.

It was a tense night, and the next day the drums beat as the defenders danced and sang, celebrating a victory. But the government still considered Wounded Knee its own territory, and open to a “police sweep.” Several times Sunday morning, according to his official report, FBI agent Trimbach tried to drive into the village. On his last attempt he was told at the checkpoint to “…immediately leave the area and that when any law enforcement officers were found at Wounded Knee they were to be arrested.”

The Oglala chiefs met all day in the tipi and then announced that they would now be negotiating with the United States, nation to nation.
(c) 1974 Akwesasne Notes. All Rights Reserved. Reprint Permission Required.
Oscar Bear Runner, Oglala, and Stan Holder, Wichita, Embrace in celebration as Federal lawmen take down their roadblocks.
revive the Treaty of 1868 and that it will be the basis for all negotiations.

Let the Declaration be made that we are a sovereign nation by the Treaty of 1868.

We intend to send a delegation to the United Nations as follows: Chief Frank Fools Crow; Chief Frank Kills Enemy; Eugene White Hawk, District Chairman (of the Wounded Knee District Council); Meredith Quinn, international advisor; Matthew King, interpreter…

…[We want] to abolish the Tribal Government under the Indian Reorganization Act. Wounded Knee will be a Corporate State under the Independent Oglala Nation.

In proclaiming the Independent Oglala Nation, the first nation to be called for support and recognition is the [Iroquois] Six Nation Confederacy. [We] request that the confederacy send emissaries to this newly proclaimed nation immediately to receive first-hand all the facts pertaining to this act…
Akwesasne Notes.
Voices from Wounded Knee, 1973. Akwesasne Notes: Rooseveltown, NY. 1974. pp.54-55.
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