Sitting Bull, aka Tȟatȟáŋka Íyotake, born Hoka Psice

Sitting Bull, aka Tȟatȟáŋka Íyotake, born Hoka Psice
c.1834
1890

Hunkpapa Lakota Sioux Chief and Holy Man who had premonition of defeating the cavalry which motivated his people to a major victory at the Battle of the Little Bighorn

Author Quotes

What white woman, however lonely, was ever captive or insulted by me? Yet they say I am a bad Indian.

When I was a boy, the Sioux owned the world. The sun rose and set on their land; they sent ten thousand men to battle. Where are the warriors today? Who slew them? Where are our lands? Who owns them?

You come here to tell us lies, but we don't want to hear them. If we told you more, you would have paid no attention. That is all I have to say.

You think I am a fool, but you are a greater fool than I am.

We are an island of Indians in a lake of whites. We must stand together, or they will rub us out separately. These soldiers have come shooting; they want war. All right, we?ll give it to them!

We have plenty of game. We want no white men here. The Black Hills belong to me. If the whites try to take them, I will fight.

What treaties that the whites have kept, that the red man broken? Not one. What treaties that the white man gave to us they kept? Not one.

What white man can say I never stole his land or a penny of his money? Yet they say that I am a thief. What white woman, however lonely, was ever captive or insulted by me? Yet they say I am a bad Indian.

What white man has ever seen me drunk? Who has ever come to me hungry and left me unfed? Who has seen me beat my wives or abuse my children? What law have I broken?

I wish it to be remembered that I was the last man of my tribe to surrender my rifle.

The life of white men is slavery. They are prisoners in towns or farms. The life my people want is a life of freedom. I have seen nothing that a white man has, houses or railways or clothing or food, that is as good as the right to move in the open country, and live in our own fashion.

If a man loses anything and goes back and looks carefully for it, he will find it.

The white man knows how to make everything, but he does not know how to distribute it.

If I agree to dispose of any part of our land to the white people I would feel guilty of taking food away from our children's mouths, and I do not wish to be that mean.

There are things they tell us that sound good to hear, but when they have accomplished their purpose they will go home and will not try to fulfill our agreements with them.

If the Great Spirit had desired me to be a white man he would have made me so in the first place. He put in your heart certain wishes and plans, and in my heart he put other different desires. Each man is good in his sight. It is not necessary for eagles to be crows.

Therefore, I do not wish to consider any proposition to cede any portion of our tribal holdings to the Great Father.

If we must die, we die defending our rights.

These dead soldiers are the gifts of Wanka Tanka. Kill them, but do not take their guns or horses. Do not touch the spoils. If you set your hearts upon the goods of the white man, it will prove to be the downfall of this nation.

In my early days, I was eager to learn and to do things, and therefore I learned quickly. Each man is good in the sight of the Great Spirit.

They claim this mother of ours, the earth, for their own and fence their neighbors away; they deface her with their buildings and their refuse. That nation is like a spring freshet that overruns its banks and destroys all who are in its path. We cannot dwell side by side.

Inside of me there are two dogs. One is mean and evil and the other is good and they fight each other all the time. When asked which one wins I answer, the one I feed the most.

They claim this mother of ours, the Earth, for their own use, and fence their neighbors away from her, and deface her with their buildings and their refuse.

Is it wrong for me to love my own? Is it wicked for me because my skin is red? Because I am Sioux? Because I was born where my father lived? Because I would die for my people and my country? God made me an Indian.

They want us to give up another chunk of our tribal land. This is not the first time or the last time.

Author Picture
First Name
Sitting Bull, aka Tȟatȟáŋka Íyotake, born Hoka Psice
Birth Date
c.1834
Death Date
1890
Bio

Hunkpapa Lakota Sioux Chief and Holy Man who had premonition of defeating the cavalry which motivated his people to a major victory at the Battle of the Little Bighorn