Who are the People of the Wind River Reservation?


(soft music) – [Narrator] In the
middle of Wyoming sits a vast and beautiful land known as the Wind River
Indian Reservation. – Wind River is very unique
because you have two tribes that manage its join
assets on the reservation. – The Wind River Indian
Reservation is shared by the Northern Arapaho
and the Eastern Shoshone. – [Narrator] The two
tribes began sharing the land in the 1870s. But their unique and
separate histories go back long before the reservation
was established. – Wyoming became
a state in 1890. The Wind River Reservation
was established by earlier treaties
but really solidified by the 1868 Treaty. So their government proceeds
that of the state of Wyoming. – [Narrator] In the 1800s,
settlers came from the East to make a better life. And these immigrants
encountered people with their own history,
languages and culture. – As more and more
non-Indians started moving to the New World, back in the
1830s there was a big push to just push Indians west
and to deal with them later. But as more and more
non-Indians continued to settle through the West, they
realized that maybe a more permanent solution
would be to set aside certain land reserves
where Indian people could live and
maintain their ways. – [Narrator] The two
tribes, who for many years had been considered enemies,
set aside their differences, and more than 100 years later,
they share a reservation, not only surviving
but thriving together. – The Wind River
Reservation is located in one of the most pristine
areas in the whole world. 86 percent of our reservation is wilderness area, forest area. – There is a lot of natural
resources upon the reservation. There’s timber, there’s
hunting, there’s fishing. – Fishing, recreation, all
these things are just amazing. The people of the
Wind River Reservation are wonderful stewards of it. – People come from
all over the country, and then they come
here, and they’re like, wow, this place
is just beautiful. – [Narrator] Valued for
more than just the beauty of natural features like
rivers, cliffs and mountains, much of the land is
considered spiritual space. Certain sites, sacred to
the tribes of Wind River, can be found within
the reservation and throughout the
state of Wyoming. – There’s several very
important native locations that people can go to
and see for themselves. Most famous is the
medicine wheel. There are pointer arrows
scattered around the state that point to this
very special place. And that’s exactly what it is, a very special place to do
prayers and spiritual rites. Many tribes honor that place. Another that everyone
knows is Devil’s Tower. Sacred times happen
there in June. Another one would
be Dinwoody Canyon. Very sacred to Shoshone people it’s where many of the people
are buried in caves there. Bull Lake, which is located on
the edge of the reservation, very sacred to both tribes. Those are just four,
but they’re very special to native people in Wyoming. – [Narrator] Today, the
tribes focus on raising future generations that will
carry on their heritage. – On the Wind River Reservation, you have about 10,000
Northern Arapaho members and roughly 5,000
Eastern Shoshone members. – [Narrator] Both
tribes that share the Wind River
Reservation want to create a bright future
for their children. – Education has become
a very important part of the reservation. I think today you would
see that most parents expect their kid
to go to college. Both tribes have put a lot
of money, a lot of resources, continue to, to make
sure that their kids are given every
chance to succeed. – [Narrator] The story
of the reservation is a story of resilience. – If history is important
in any capacity, then why isn’t tribal
history equally as important? – The more we know
about our neighbors, the more cooperation we
have with each other. The only way for people
to really understand who Indian people are
today is to understand how we got to where we are. (audience applause)

6 thoughts on “Who are the People of the Wind River Reservation?

  1. guns don't make you a hunter God bless all the people who respect mother earth and all the creature s of the land air and sea

  2. The people on this reservation seem to be happy and thriving. So very different from the despicable conditions and the people of Pine Ridge.

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