The Sheepeater (Tuka Dika) tribe of the Shoshone-Bannock lived sustainably for at least 11,000 years in the lands we now know as Grand Teton, Yellowstone, NW Wyoming, S Montana, and E Idaho. A semi-nomadic people, they hunted and gathered in balance with the climate, topography, and dangerous megafauna of these rugged and beautiful lands. They are best known for their fine winter clothing, obsidian tools, sheep traps, and small yet powerful bows made out of rendered and straightened big horn sheep horns.
When their 11,000 year stewardship was interrupted by foreign invaders the Tuka Dika didn’t have time to clean up after themselves, but all they left behind were beautiful petroglyphs, biodegradable wickiup homes, high quality tools and clothing, a network of trails, and ingenious terrain traps for sheep and fish.
White folks driven mad by their lust for profit, power, and territory genocided the Tuka Dika and stole their lands with the stroke of a pen and a subsequent military occupation as the US Congress passed “An Act to set apart a certain Tract of Land lying near the Head-waters of the Yellowstone River as a public Park” in 1872.
The first government expedition to Yellowstone took place in 1871. The next year these lands were stolen from the Natives and rendered off limits to future settlement by all Americans under the guise of protecting them. Genocide and theft is similarly green-washed today.
For the last 131 years the sacred, bountiful, beautiful, unforgiving, and geothermally powerful lands stolen from the Tuka Dika have been exploited and degraded by people claiming to “protect, conserve, and preserve them”. The Sheepeaters have been here since the last Ice Age and embody true stewardship.
The blood lines of the Tuka Dika still exist and the spirits of their ancestors speak to more people of all races every day. This website is devoted to exposing the cultural insanity that ended the Sheepeater’s stewardship of Yellowstone and to regaining the wisdom lost through the industrial genocide of native cultures.
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