The next phase of research for my topic, Native Americans and the West, was an online interactive activity. The interactive activity focused on “The Long Walk” which was in 1864 when thousands of the Navajo Indians were forced to leave their land and walk 450 miles to a reservation called Bosque Redondo. Other parts of the activity were some historical documents, an image gallery, and a map of the route the Navajo’s took on “The Long Walk”. This activity helped to increase my understandings of what it was like for Native Americans to be forced out of their land. It also provided more information on Western settlers taking over and expanding into Native American land. Here is a link to the interactive activity: http://reta.nmsu.edu/modules/longwalk/default.htm
Key Terms and Definitions(added and edited):
- eventual assimilation of Indians was the goal (The Indian Question, 220)
- they would be required to learn industrial skills until one generation had been self improved (The Indian Question, 220)
- government planned their educations and trained and reformed them on the plantations (The Indian Question, 220)
- wanted to destroy tribal system because it was barbaric and savage like (The Indian Question, 221)
Multiple battles took place between Native Americans and new settlers because of push and pull factors.
- Custer supported the extension of the west but he also recognized that Native Americans would rather be dead than be confined in a reservation (The Indian Question, 218)
- Walker believed the government should pursue a Peace Policy to buy off and feed Indians and avoid any violent conflicts (The Indian Question, 219)
- Walker explained the ultimate goal as the eventual assimilation of Indians (The Indian Question, 220)
The government had most of the power during this period and used it in a negative way that was unfair to Native Americans.
- “We have marked off a reservation for you, including the Canon de Chelly and part of the valley of the San Juan, it is about (100) one hundred miles square.” (“The Long Walk” Council Proceedings, May 30, 1868)
- The Navajo were forced out of their homeland by the government and crammed into a small reservation, Bosque Redondo. (“The Long Walk”)
- Escorted by the military on a 450 mile long walk to the reservation. During the walk some people suffered with starvation or disease, some were killed, and some were captured and held captive. (“The Long Walk”)
After doing the interactive activity, it is easy to picture what it would be like to actually experience what the Navajos went through. It would be miserable being forced to walk 45o miles to a place that they did not even want to go to. They had to leave behind their homes and land to go to a small reservation. On the walk it would also be horrible because people were starving and thirsty and their were diseases going around.They were constantly treated negatively by the military who were also violent at times. Everyone would be upset too because they had to leave land that was rightfully theirs and that they grew up on.