Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Day 7 - Rapid City SD to Billings MT

September 2017 - Billings MT
Day 1 - Toronto to Chesterton IN
Day 2 - Chesterton IN to Rochester MN
Day 3 - Rochester MN to Lincoln NB
Day 4 - Lincoln NB to Denver CO

September 11

We were up early and John went to get the oil changed in the car and a car wash!

Packed up and we were on the road by 9 and the temperature was a comfortable 22C as opposed to yesterday's 30s in the early morning.

We've decided to go to Crazy Horse which we could have done yesterday but it slipped our minds and anyway it would have been around noon and way too hot.







Crazy Horse (Lakota: Tȟašúŋke Witkó in Standard Lakota literally "His-Horse-Is-Crazy"; c. 1840 – September 5, 1877) was a Native American war leader of the Oglala Lakota in the 19th century. He took up arms against the United States federal government to fight against encroachment by white American settlers on Indian territory and to preserve the traditional way of life of the Lakota people. His participation in several famous battles of the American Indian Wars on the northern Great Plains, among them the Fetterman massacre in 1866, in which he acted as a decoy, and the Battle of the Little Bighorn in 1876, in which he led a war party to victory, earned him great respect from both his enemies and his own people.

In September 1877, four months after surrendering to U.S. troops under General George Crook, Crazy Horse was fatally wounded by a bayonet-wielding military guard, while allegedly resisting imprisonment at Camp Robinson in present-day Nebraska. He ranks among the most notable and iconic of Native American warriors and was honored by the U.S. Postal Service in 1982 with a 13¢ Great Americans series postage stamp.

The view from the highway as we paid the entrance fee of $22 US for the two of us.

The car in front of us was from Alberta and there was another Ontario in the line as well.







We paid an additional $4 per person to take the bus for a closer view.

The Crazy Horse Memorial is a mountain monument under construction on privately held land.It will depict the Oglala Lakota warrior, Crazy Horse, riding a horse and pointing into the distance. The memorial was commissioned by Henry Standing Bear, a Lakota elder, to be sculpted by Korczak Ziolkowski. It is operated by the Crazy Horse Memorial Foundation, a nonprofit organization.




The monument is being carved out of Thunderhead Mountain, on land considered sacred by some Oglala Lakota, between Custer and Hill City, roughly 17 miles (27 km) from Mount Rushmore. The sculpture's final dimensions are planned to be 641 feet (195 m) wide and 563 feet (172 m) high. The head of Crazy Horse will be 87 feet (27 m) high; by comparison, the heads of the four U.S. Presidents at Mount Rushmore are each 60 feet (18 m) high.

The monument has been in progress since 1948 and is far from completion. If completed, it may become the world's largest sculpture as well as the first non-religious statue to hold this record since 1967 (when it was held by the Soviet monument The Motherland Calls).






Henry Standing Bear ("Mato Naji"), an Oglala Lakota chief, and well-known statesman and elder in the Native American community, recruited and commissioned Polish-American sculptor Korczak Ziolkowski to build the Crazy Horse Memorial in the Black Hills of South Dakota. In October 1931, Luther Standing Bear, Henry's older brother, wrote sculptor Gutzon Borglum, who was carving the heads of four American presidents at Mount Rushmore. Luther suggested that it would be "most fitting to have the face of Crazy Horse sculpted there. Crazy Horse is the real patriot of the Sioux tribe and the only one worthy to place by the side of Washington and Lincoln." Borglum never replied.Thereafter, Henry Standing Bear began a campaign to have Borglum carve an image of Crazy Horse on Mt. Rushmore. In summer of 1935, Standing Bear, frustrated over the stalled Crazy Horse project, wrote to James H. Cook, a long time friend of Chief Red Cloud's "I am struggling hopelessly with this because I am without funds, no employment and no assistance from any Indian or White."


On November 7, 1939, Henry Standing Bear wrote to the Polish-American sculptor Korczak Ziolkowski, who worked on Mount Rushmore under Gutzon Borglum. He informed the sculptor, "My fellow chiefs and I would like the white man to know that the red man has great heroes, too." Standing Bear also wrote a letter to Undersecretary Oscar Chapman of the Department of the Interior, offering all his own fertile 900 acres in exchange for the barren mountain for the purpose of paying honor to Crazy Horse. The government responded positively, and the National Forest Service, responsible for the land, agreed to grant a permit for the use of the land, with a commission to oversee the project. Standing Bear chose not to seek government funds and relied instead upon influential Americans interested in the welfare of the American Indian to privately fund the project.







It's about 11:15 and we got back on the road.


Wyoming (again).


Red Giant Oil Refinery in Newcastle



Buffalo WY





Montana!





We decide to stop at the Little Big Horn Monument $20 a car.
This is a incredibly well done national park.

The Little Bighorn Battlefield National Monument was originally named Custer Battlefield National Monument. President George H.W. Bush renamed the site on December 10, 1991. It is now representative of those who were in the battle, Native Americans and the 7th Cavalry.

Little Bighorn Battlefield National Monument preserves the site of the June 25 and 26, 1876, Battle of the Little Bighorn, near Crow Agency, Montana. It also serves as a memorial to those who fought in the battle: George Armstrong Custer's 7th Cavalry and a combined Lakota-Northern Cheyenne and Arapaho force. Custer National Cemetery, on the battlefield, is part of the national monument. The site of a related military action led by Marcus Reno and Frederick Benteen is also part of the national monument, but is about three miles (5 km) southeast of the Little Bighorn battlefield.



A visitor center and museum contains exhibits relating to the 1876 Battle of Little Bighorn in which a total of 263 US Cavalrymen, of the regiments 650 men, were killed in action by Sioux and Northern Cheyenne warriors. Lieutenant Colonel G.A. Custer was killed leading a contingent of 209 men. The Museum features exhibits of the history of the battle, Custer, weapons, archaeology, Plains Indian life, and a walking tour with interpretive markers. It is wheelchair accessible. Adjoining the visitor center is Custer National Cemetery, which includes interments from abandoned frontier military posts, the world wars, Korea and Vietnam.


A 4.5 mile self-guiding tour road connects two separate battlefields, the Custer Battlefield and the Reno-Benteen Battlefield.
It was really hot 33C or 91F at 4PM and it was so silent!
 




There will be a separate post with lots more photos!

Billings is the largest city in Montana.

Billings was nicknamed the "Magic City" because of its rapid growth from its founding as a railroad town in March 1882. The city is named for Frederick H. Billings, a former president of the Northern Pacific Railroad.

We check in around 6:30.

Suites feature separate living and sleeping areas. Each has a fully equipped kitchen with full size refrigerator, microwave, two burner stove and dishwasher. All the comforts of home including two remote control TVs, complimentary internet access and two phones with voice mail. Enjoy a complimentary hot full breakfast seven days a week and evening social served Monday through Thursday.


Homewood Suites by Hilton Billings, MT Hotel - Hotel Exterior Day Shot

3 comments:

  1. Great recap after a long days travel. Well done.

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  2. Even as a work in progress, the Crazy Horse monument is impressive. I'd love to see the Little Bighorn someday. Stephen Ambrose once wrote a dual biography on Custer and Crazy Horse that I liked.

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  3. What a great trip so far. Love seeing your journey through your camera. I haven't seen the Crazy Horse carving in person.

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