North America 1890: Wounded Knee Massacre

Political map of North America & the Caribbean on 29 Dec 1890 (Closing the Frontier: Wounded Knee Massacre), showing the following events: Panama Crisis; Geronimo’s final surrender; Anglo-Venezuelan rupture; Canada (Ontario Boundary) Act; North & South Dakota become US states; Montana becomes US state; Washington becomes US state; Oklahoma Organic Act; Idaho becomes US state; Wyoming becomes US state; Wounded Knee Massacre.

By 1890, American Indian resistance in the western United States had been crushed and settlers and railways had closed the frontier. In this environment of despair, the apocalyptic Ghost Dance religion spread quickly among Indian communities from California to Oklahoma, alarming white authorities. When, in December, 500 US Cavalry intercepted a group of 350 Lakota, mostly Ghost Dance practitioners, in South Dakota, tensions quickly led to a one-sided battle at Wounded Knee. This massacre was the last major conflict of the Indian Wars.

Main Events

7–30 Apr 1885 Panama Crisis

In March 1885, the Colombian government moved troops stationed in Panama to deal with rebels in Cartagena, only to have Panama erupt into revolt. To protect its interests, the United States sent ships to Panama City and Colón in early April, occupying both towns around 27 April. In response to this intervention, Chile sent the modern protected cruiser Esmeralda to Panama, where it arrived on 28 April. Alarmed by Chilean actions—it was estimated that the Esmeralda could easily defeat the local US naval forces—but considering the revolt suppressed, the US withdrew from the isthmus two days wikipedia

4 Sep 1886 Geronimo’s final surrender

Apache leader Geronimo and his band officially surrendered to US General Miles at Skeleton Canyon, wikipedia

21 Feb 1887 Anglo-Venezuelan rupture

On 26 January 1887, the Venezuelan government demanded that Britain withdraw its settlers from the disputed region between British Guiana and Venezuela. Following the British government’s failure to accept this demand, Venezuela broke diplomatic relations in February 1887. Proposals to restore relations and resolve the dispute would fail repeatedly, turning the issue into a crisis between the two wikipedia

12 Aug 1889 Canada (Ontario Boundary) Act

The Canada (Ontario Boundary) Act defined the boundary between Ontario and wikipedia

2 Nov 1889 North & South Dakota become US states

The Dakota Territory was split in two and admitted to the US as the states of North Dakota and South wikipedia

8 Nov 1889 Montana becomes US state

The Montana Territory was admitted to the US as the state of wikipedia

11 Nov 1889 Washington becomes US state

Washington Territory admitted to US as state of Washingtonin wikipedia

2 May 1890 Oklahoma Organic Act

The Oklahoma Territory was organized from the western portion of the Indian wikipedia

3 Jul 1890 Idaho becomes US state

The Idaho Territory was admitted to the US as the state of wikipedia

10 Jul 1890 Wyoming becomes US state

The Wyoming Territory was admitted to US as the state of wikipedia

29 Dec 1890 Wounded Knee Massacre

The US 7th Cavalry killed about 300 Lakota near Wounded Knee wikipedia