- The Oxford Handbook of American Indian History
- America in 1492
- European Invasions and Early Settlement, 1500–1680
- Living in a Reordered World, 1680–1763
- The Age of Imperial Expansion, 1763–1821
- US Expansion and Its Consequences, 1815–1890
- Surviving in the Twentieth Century, 1890–1960
- The Indian Renaissance, 1960–2000: Stumbling to Victory, or Anecdotes of Persistence?
- Contemporary History: Native America in the Twenty-First Century
- The Great Lakes
- The Southwest
- The Plains
- The Pacific Northwest
- The South
- The Atlantic Northeast
- Indian Territory and Oklahoma
- The Great Basin
- Gender, Sexuality, and Family History: Naynaabeak’s Fishing Net
- Population, Health, and Public Welfare
- Native American Expressive Arts
- Collectors and Museums: From Cabinets of Curiosities to Indigenous Cultural Centers
- Indians in the Marketplace
- Intellectual History
- Treaties and Treaty Making
- Urban Native Histories
- American Indians in Popular Culture
- American Indians in World History
Abstract and Keywords
This chapter surveys the history of Plains Indians from the 1400s to the present, focusing on the period from the acquisition of the horse in the mid-1700s through the early reservation period in the late 1800s and early 1900s. The chapter emphasizes Indians’ spiritual and material relationships to the land, focusing on equestrian tribes who depended on buffalo hunting, as well as village tribes who developed a mixed economy of horticulture and hunting. The chapter also explores the uneven impact of settler expansion on Plains tribes, analyzing disease, commerce, the destruction of material resources, intertribal warfare, and settler violence, as well as describing conditions on reservations. Plains Indians pursued various strategies to survive the challenges of colonialism, including accommodation, militant resistance, and the Ghost Dance. The chapter concludes with an overview of historical writing on the Plains and a description of primary resources available for further study.
Jeffrey Ostler is Beekman Professor of Northwest and Pacific History at the University of Oregon. He is the author of The Plains Sioux and U.S. Colonialism from Lewis and Clark to Wounded Knee(2004) and The Lakotas and the Black Hills: The Struggle for Sacred Ground (2010). He is currently working on a book about the problem of genocide in U.S. history.
Access to the complete content on Oxford Handbooks Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.
If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.