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The Sioux Nation

The Sioux, or the Lakota, are a nation made up of different clans and tribes living in the Great Plains region of the Americas.

There are three main divisions of the Sioux.

Chief Black Tail Deer And His Family

Where did the Sioux live?

The Sioux lived in Great Plains in the states of North Dakota, South Dakota, Wisconsin and Minnesota.

Sioux Treaty Lands

The Sioux lived in tents like tepees made from long wooden poles covered in bison hide.

The tepee is like an upside-down cone. There was an air gap in the top to help with fires.

They could be taken up and down very quickly, so the Sioux could move whole villages very quickly.

Red Cloud And Other Sioux

What did the Sioux eat?

Most Sioux ate from hunting. They mostly hunted the bison, which was very important in Sioux culture. The Sioux would also hunt deer and elk.

They also farmed beans, squash and corn.

white-lipped deer

Bison was one of the most important parts of Sioux life. The Sioux used the skin to build their homes and make clothing.

They used fur to make coats to keep warm. Bones were used to make tools and bison hair was used to make rope.

It was very difficult to hunt bison, so the Sioux had to be very skilled. They would track the bison (follow them) and use a bow and arrow or a spear to catch one.

What did the Sioux make?

Chiefs Red Cloud And American Horse

Sioux artwork was made on the hide of animals and they also made beautiful beadwork.

The Sioux on horseback

Crazy Horse And His Band Of Oglala


Europeans brought horses to the Sioux and this changed their culture. The Sioux could now use horses to fight, hunt and travel. Before this, they had walked everywhere.

Red Cloud’s War

Map Showing The Major Battle Fields Of Red Clouds War


Red Cloud’s War was a war in 1868 fought between the Lakota Sioux, the Northern Cheyenne and the Northern Arapaho against the United States.

Fetterman Massacre

The Crow tribe held a treaty to the Powder River Country, which meant the land was theirs, according to the U.S. government.

However, the Sioux had recently taken control of this area.

The war was called Red Cloud’s War after an Oglala Lakota (Sioux) chief made an alliance with the Cheyenne and Arapaho.

Fetterman Monument On Massacre Hill

The attacks made on European forts in Powder River Country resulted in the worst military defeat for the U.S. until the Battle of Little Bighorn.

The biggest battle was the Fetterman Fight (with 81 men killed on the U.S. side).

Charles Marion Russell The Custer Fight

It was a short victory for the Sioux, as the Americans took control again after the Great Sioux War of 1876.

Quiz – Test What You’ve Learned!


Where did the Sioux live?

What did the Sioux eat?

What did the Sioux make?

What did Europeans bring to the Sioux?

When was Red Cloud’s War?

Native Americans

US Army Troops With A Seminole Guide

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