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Reservation Towns

Wood was a small town on the Rosebud Reservation, although boundary changes mean that it is now off-reservation. Rosebud is the reservation of the Upper Brule tribal division, and Wood was in the Okreek (that's Oak Creek in full) community. Oak Creek community in turn is descended from a Brule band called Isanyati or Santee - probably descendants of Santee/Eastern Dakota families that joined the Brules in the 18th Century. The Black Bulls and Little Crows were prominent tiwahe (extended families) within the Isanyati band.

Regarding Little Bighorn connections, the numbers of Upper Brules in the Northern or 'hostile' village in summer 1876 was very low - maybe 50 or 60 lodges out of the 1000-or so lodges at Greasy Grass on June 25. Moreover the Isanyati band was part of the Brule Loafer village, people who were more or less fixtures at the Spotted Tail Agency in the 1870s. Fairs and celebrations of the sort illustrated attracted visitors from across the reservation and beyond, so it's impossible to say for sure whether the man in the picture [below] was a local resident - but on the face of it I would doubt whether he was a Little Bighorn veteran. — Kingsley Bray


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