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Indians on Horseback

Indians on Horseback

In this photograph a Plains Indian family on horseback moves its belongings. The vast majority of eastern Indians had been forced west during the period of the 1830s, and settled on the lands that the federal government allotted to them. "There, beyond the limits of any state," promised President Andrew Jackson, "[they shall be] in possession of land of their own, which they shall possess as long as grass grows or water runs." But Jackson's fine words were just that. As soon as white settlers needed lands in the West, treaties were broken and reservations broken up or made smaller. Between 1860 and 1890 there erupted terrible Indian wars in the West. In the end, the Indian was simply outnumbered and outarmed.

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