"I don't go so far as to think that 'the only good Indians are dead Indians', but I believe nine out of ten are, and I shouldn't like to inquire too closely into the case of the tenth." -Theodore Roosevelt
The 1492 voyage of Columbus ushered in an era of mass genocide and colonization committed by peoples of European descent against Native peoples living the Western hemisphere.
Journals documenting his exploits detail horrific acts of savagery committed by his men that include chopping Native bodies into pieces to feed their dogs, setting entire villages on fire, kidnapping pre-teen girls to sell into the sex trade, enslavement, testing the sharpness of their blades by seeing if they could slice through a Native persons body in one blow.
On the Island Nations Columbus and his crew sought to colonize, an estimated 3-5 million Natives peoples had perished by 1508, a result of his ruthless and brutal campaign of subjection.
European, later White American, campaigns of genocide against Native peoples persisted throughout the Western Hemisphere over the course of several centuries leaving in its wake history's greatest genocide resulting in the loss of over 100 million Native peoples.
In North America alone, an estimated 20-50 million peoples were lost to campaigns of genocide.
The historic erasure of the genocide against Native peoples exists and is perpetuated from classrooms to popular culture. Post any mass shooting in the United States it is common to read headlines such as “Worst Shooting in US History”.
What is neglected in headlines like these, is the overlooking and complete erasing of mass killings of Native peoples committed by Euro Americans.
Below is a summary of mass killings against Native peoples located within the United States. The list is incomplete and represents just some of mass direct killings inflicted on Native peoples.
1539 Napituca Massacre: 200 killed
1541-42 Tiguex Massacres: 250 killed
1599 Acoma Massacre: 800 killed
1601 Sandia Mountains Tompiro Indians massacre: 900 killed
1623 Pamunkey Peace Talks: the English poison wine at peace talks with Powhatan 250 killed
1637 Mystic Massacre: colonist set fire to Pequot village 600-700 killed
1644 Pound Ridge Massacre: Lenape village burned by colonist 500 killed
1675 Great Swamp Massacre: Narragansett village attacked 340 killed
1676 Massacre at Occoneechee Island: Nathaniel Bacon turns on Occaneechi allies 100 killed
1676 Turner Falls Massacre: Indian fishing camp 100 killed
1676 Rhode Island: militia attacks band of Narragansetts 126 killed
1689 Zia Pueblo: Governor of New Mexico orders attack on Pueblos 600 killed
1704 Apalachee Massacre: Former Governor of Florida orders attack on Apalachees 1,000 killed 2,000 enslaved
1712 Massacre at Fort Narhantes: North Carolina Militia attacks Tuscarora village 300 killed
1712 Fox Indian Massacre: French Troops attack Fox Indian village 1,000 killed
1713 Fort Neoheroka: Militia attacks Tuscarora village 1,100-1,200 killed
1730 Massacre at Fox Fort: French Troops attack Fox Indian village 500 killed
1747 Chama River Massacre: Spanish Troops attack Ute village 100 killed
1774 Spanish Peaks: Spanish Troops attack Comanche village 300 killed
1782 Gnadenhutten Massacre: Pennsylvania militiamen attack Lenape village 100 killed
1805 Canyon del Muerto: Spanish Troops attack Navajo village 115 killed
1813 Tallushstchee: Tennessee Troops Attack Creek Town 200 killed
1813 Autossee Massacre: Georgia militia sets fire to Creek village 200 killed
1813 Hillabee Massacre: Tennessee Troops attack Creek village 65 killed
1818 Chehaw Massacre: US Troops attack Muscogee village 50 killed
1826 Dressing Creek Massacre: Texas settlers attack Karankawa village 50 killed
1832 Bad Axe Massacre: US soldiers attack Indian village 150 killed
1840 Council House Massacre: Attack against Comanche 88 killed
1840 Colorado River: Volunteer Rangers attack Comanche village 140 killed
1840 Clear Lake Massacre: Mexican Posse attacks Pomo and Wappo village 150 killed
1846 Sacramento River: US soldiers attack Yanas village 200 killed
1847 Storming of Pueblo de Taos: US soldiers attack Pueblo de Taos 180 killed
1850 Bloody Island Massacre: US soldiers attack Pomo village 100 killed
1851 Old Shasta Town: Miners set fire to Wintu village 300 killed
1852 Hynes Bay Massacre: Texas militiamen attack Karankawa village 45 killed
1852 Bridge Gulch Massacre: California posse attacks Wintu village 150 killed
1852 Wright Massacre: White settlers attack a Modoc peace party 40 killed
1853 Howonquet Massacre: California settler’s attack and burn Howonquet village 70 killed
1853 Yontoket Massacre: Posse of California settlers attack Tolowa prayer ceremony 450 killed
1853 Achulet Massacre: White settlers attack Tolowa village 150 killed
1854 Chetco River Massacre: White settlers attack Chetco village 40 killed
1855 Harney Massacre: US soldiers attack Sioux village 90 killed
1856 Grande Ronde River Valley Massacre: Washington volunteers attack Cayuse and Walla Walla village 60 killed
1858-1859 Round Valley Massacres: White settlers wage continuous attacks on Yuki villages 600 killed
1859 Pit River Massacre: White settlers attack Achomawi village 70 killed
1860 Massacre at Bloody Rock: White settlers attack Yuki village 65 killed
1860 Indian Island Massacre: White settlers attack Wiyot villages 250 killed
1861 Horse Canyon Massacre: White settlers attack Wailaki village 240 killed
1862 Tonkawa Massacre: Union soldiers attack Tonkawa village 400 killed
1863 Bear River Massacre: US soldiers attack Shoshone village 280 killed
1864 Oak Run Massacre: White settlers attack Yana’s at spiritual ceremony 300 killed
1864 Sand Creek Massacre: Colorado militia attacks Cheyenne village 160 killed
1865 Owens Lake Massacre: White vigilantes attack Paiute village 40 killed
1868 Washita Massacre: US soldiers attack Cheyenne village 140 killed
1870 Marias Massacre: US soldiers attack Piegan village 173 killed
1871 Camp Grant Massacre: White and Mexican posse attack Apache village 140 killed, 40 sold into slavery
1872 Skelton Cave Massacre: US troops attack Yavapai’s living in a cave 76 killed
1877 Big Hole Massacre: US troops attack Nez Perce village 90 killed
1879 Fort Robinson Massacre: US troops kill Northern Cheyenne’s fleeing imprisonment 77 killed
1890 Stronghold Massacre: South Dakota militia men attack village in Pine Ridge 75 killed
1890 Wounded Knee Massacre: US troops open fire on Lakota at Wounded Knee 300 killed
by Wakíƞyaƞ Waánataƞ (Matt Remle- Lakota)
Matt Remle - (Hunkpapa Lakota) - lives in Seattle, WA. He is a writer and editor for Last Real Indians at www.lastrealindians.com and runs an on-line Lakota language program at www.LRInspire.com. He is a father of three and the author of Seattle's Indigenous Peoples' Day resolution and the Seattle city council resolution to call on Congress to enter into reconciliation with Tribe's over the legacy of the Boarding School era. He has been organizing around issues of environmental, social and tribal justice for over 20 years. In 2014, he was awarded Seattle's Individual Human Rights Leader award.