ethanessig Feb/ 26/ 2018 | 2
Any of us who have taken a history class have learned of Crazy Horse, one of the most famous Sioux warriors of his time. We learn about his great deeds in battle from books and movies like Bury my Heart at Wounded Knee. Crazy Horse has a spectacular history. Here is a list of some of the things you may not know, and then we will get into the story.
You might not know:
1. An introvert and kind- Crazy Horse spent the vast majority of his time alone. He was so distracted from day to day Indian life, that he rarely participated in rituals and other social engagement. He kept his clothing simple, typically giving anything of value to the unfortunate in his tribe. The only moments he revealed himself to others was for war. I mean show himself in the sense of his true nature.
2. Never took a scalp- Possibly the best warrior of his time, and he never claimed a scalp or counted kills. These were trophies in Sioux culture. He often let other warriors count his kills. Crazy Horse cared about doing, and not the fame that would result.
3. A cautious warrior- This may not be surprising now that you have read the first two, but Crazy Horse did not consider himself invincible. Those who fought with him gave an account of how tactical and safe he was. He did not do battle unless the odds were in his favor.
Now the Crazy Story:
The famous introverted warrior named Crazy Horse did take a significant risk in his life, and it was for a woman. He had fallen in love with a married woman named Black Buffalo Woman, and she was also the niece of Red Cloud, the only Indian to defeat the US in open war. So, Black Buffalo Woman was high up the food chain.
To add to the drama of being in love with a married woman who is the blood of the most powerful Sioux chief, her husband was Crazy Horse’s rival as a war leader. A fact may have added to his drive to win her over.
Black Buffalo Woman’s husband was away fighting the Crows. Crazy Horse to the opportunity to run away with her. They lived in happiness for a short time until the husband returned from the war, and tracked Crazy Horse and Black Buffalo Woman down. The result was Crazy Horse getting shot in the head. One would assume that would have been the end of Crazy Horse, but he survived and continued to do great things.
Crazy Horse was a great leader and had a weak moment. The event had a negative impact on the tribe. With time he did recover his reputation and continued to lead the tribe’s warriors.
The introverted, war loving leader that was Crazy Horse had some exciting moments, but this might be the most unconventional and thrilling. Running away with the woman you love and surviving a bullet to the head, pretty darn badass.
It is clear that Crazy Horse indeed made his path and it worked out well for him. He accepted his true nature, used it to become an iconic figure of the American West. Something we see in the people we admire in our own time in history. A lesson we can all take for ourselves.
This blog was inspired from the book The Earth is Weeping, by Peter Cozzens