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White Man Runs Him

 White Man Runs Him was born in the Crow nation, the son of Bull Chief and Offers Her Red Cloth. No one seems to be sure of the date of his birth, or even the year. I have seen 1854 through 1858 published as the year of his birth. Before joining the US Army as an Indian Scout, he was well known for his many successful horse-raiding operations against the Sioux.

He enlisted in the US Army on April 10, 1876 as an Indian Scout, to participate in the campaign against the Sioux and Northern Cheyenne, who were traditional enemies of the Crow. White Man Runs Him was originally assigned to the infantry, and was later transferred to General George Custer’s US 7th Cavalry. On June 25, 1876 White Man Runs Him accompanied Lt Charles Varnum and General Custer to the Crow’s Nest to scout the Indians who were deemed as hostile by the US Army.

 

Crow's Nest - July 2008

White Man Runs Him, and the other US Army Indian Scouts on Crow’s Nest, were alarmed at the number of hostile Indians they were able to see. The white men with them, including General Custer, could not see as well as the Indian Scouts and were unable to see the shear number of ponies, Indians, and the camp size. When the decision was made to continue with the advance, the Indian Scouts took off their uniforms and donned their Crow war clothes. When General Custer inquired why, he was told the Indian Scouts were convinced they were going to die in battle and that they desired to die Indian Warriors instead of US Army Troopers. About one hour prior to the Battle of The Little Big Horn commencing, White Man Runs Him and most of the other Indian Scouts were relieved from duty. White Man Runs Him and other Indian Scouts hung around the battlefield and engaged in the battle briefly, most surviving the engagement.

After the battle, White Man Runs Him lived on the Crow reservation near Lodge Grass, Montana, a few miles from the site of the famous battlefield. He was the step-grandfather of Joe Medicine Crow and grandfather of Pauline Small. White Man Runs Him’s recollections of the battle and the events leading up to it were extremely valuable to historians and were passed on directly to Joe Medicine Crow who became a tribal historian.

Two years prior to his death, White Man Runs Him appeared in a movie, "Red Raiders". White Man Runs Him passed away on June 2, 1929. As a member of the US Army Indian Scouts, he was buried in Custer National Cemetery, inside the Little Big Horn Battlefield.

 

  White Man Runs Him

 

White Man Runs Him grave

 

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