||2. Internal Military Interventions before 1877||Page 5|
Internal war and destruction of Native American societies also characterized early US history. A particularly brutal example was the Black Hawk War of 1832, as described by Mahon (1983, p. 86):
The Sauk and Fox Indians of Iowa, Illinois, and Wisconsin opposed removal in 1831 and 1832. The resultant Black Hawk War showed citizen soldiery at its worst. Many of the short-term irregulars considered these redmen to be animals, much lower on the life scale than man. They wanted this animal out of the way and welcomed the chance to kill it, especially since they could do so and prosper, for the United States took 10,000 citizen soldiers onto its payroll, 7,787 of them from Illinois.
An Indian War in Florida, known as the Second Seminole War, involved every unit of the US Army, along with about 1,000 sailors, some Marines and 30,000 irregulars, according to Mahon. In the federal reports, this war is called the 'removal of the Cherokees' (Reichley, 1939, p. 197).
Warfare against Native Americans continued at a high rate after the Civil War . According to one source, federal troops had 943 military engagements against Native Americans from 1865 to 1898 (Weigley, 1962, p. 267). Most of the engagements were small, but a few involved thousands of troops, including the Gibbon- Terry- Custer-Crook expedition against the Sioux and Cheyenne in 1876 and the campaign against Chief Joseph of the Nez Perce in 1877 (pp. 167-168). In recent years, the Indian occupation at Wounded Knee, South Dakota, in 1973, was suppressed by the National Guard with US Army support. In 1975, the National Guard intervened to suppress 'Indian takeovers' at Wagner, South Dakota, and Gresham, Wisconsin. And in 1990 the National Guard were called out in Massena, New York, because of 'Indian civil disturbance'.
As far as I know, there has never been a full review of the use of federal and state military force against slaves and Native Americans in the first century of US history. These types of interventions receive little space in the authoritative review of the domestic use of federal military forces by Coakley (1988). Coakley gives extensive accounts of other interventions which took place in that period, however: the Whiskey Rebellion of 1794; the Patriot War and Dorr Rebellion of 1837 and 1842; the Utah expedition against the Mormons in 1857; the draft riots during the Civil War; and the use of force during Reconstruction.
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