"In Search of Spirit; A Sioux Family Memoir" by V. Edward Bates. Pauline Bates had six sons and the author notes she was “Our Last Woman Warrior”.
Pauline Bates – Yankton Lakota
In Search of Spirit – A Sioux Family Memoir was written initially by Mr. Bates to preserve his family’s history. Mrs. Pauline Bates, depicted in the painting by S. L’Heureux, was his mother. Mr. Bate’s book is a very important part of telling the story and history of an important chapter in United States history. In the book is discussed: The Treaty Period 1789 – 1871; Reservation Period 1871 – 1887; Allotment Period 1887 – 1934; Reorganization Period 1934 – 1953; and Termination Period 1953 -1970.
The family patriarch was Pte Wakan Najin…White Medicine Buffalo that Stands, headman of the Wagmuha Oin Yankton Lakota. He died in 1898 from small pox at the age of 79 years old. In 1857 White Medicine Buffalo that Stands addressed the 39th U.S. Congress in Washington D.C. An excerpt: “Our [Indian} agents never give us what our grandfather [the President] sends us…The agents bring goods, but do not give them to us. When the agents brought us money…more than half was taken…we never received it…I think a great many have died of starvation. Burleigh [the Indian Agent] cleaned the agency of everything, and then the new agent has nothing to go with: no cattle, no wagons, and no plows, in fact nothing. Everything has melted away.”
Pauline Bate’s mother was Mary Virginia Selwyn [born 1884]. She lived at Pineridge with the Yellow Bird family. At the tender age of six years old on December 29, 1890, she hid in a two story schoolhouse at Pineridge Reservation, 200 yards away from howitzer cannons on a hill side. Through the window of the school house she witnessed the Wounded Knee.
Pauline Bates, Yankton Sioux
Original Painting with Gold Leaf by L'Heureux. For sale.