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Lewellen in Garden County, Nebraska — The American Midwest (Upper Plains)
 

The Battle of Blue Water

Nebraska Historical Marker

 
 
The Battle of Blue Water Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Barry Swackhamer, December 8, 2011
1. The Battle of Blue Water Marker
Inscription.  On September 3, 1855, the U.S. Army’s 600-man Sioux Expedition, commanded by Col William S. Harney, attacked and destroyed a Lakota village located three miles north on Blue Creek. The fight became known as the Battle of Blue Water, sometimes the Battle of Ash Hollow after the nearby landmark or the Harney Massacre.

The army’s attack avenged the Indian annihilation of Lt. John Grattan’s command near Fort Laramie in 1854. Harney concluded the more than 250 Brules and Ogalalas camped on Blue Creek were the guilty parties. He divided his force and led his infantry towards the village. While Harney engaged in a delaying parley with Chief Little Thunder, the mounted troops had circled undetected to the north.

The infantry opened fire with its new, long-range rifles and forced the Indians to flee towards the mounted soldiers, who inflicted terrible casualties. Eighty-six Indians were killed, seventy women and children captured, and their tipis were looted and burned. This first, yet often overlooked, military campaign against the Lakota kept the Overland Trail open, but only postponed until 1863-64 a war between the two nations.

Erected
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in memory of Dennis Shimmin, Ash Hollow State Historical Park Superintendent, 1968-1998. Nebraska State Historical Society
 
Erected by Nebraska State Historical Society. (Marker Number 403.)
 
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Wars, US Indian. In addition, it is included in the Nebraska State Historical Society series list. A significant historical month for this entry is September 1835.
 
Location. 41° 20.709′ N, 102° 10.675′ W. Marker is in Lewellen, Nebraska, in Garden County. Marker is on U.S. 26, on the right when traveling east. This marker is located approximately 1 mile northwest of Lewellen. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Lewellen NE 69147, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 7 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Ash Hollow Geology (approx. 4.2 miles away); Ash Hollow (approx. 4.3 miles away); Trading Post (approx. 5.1 miles away); Windlass Hill Pioneer Homestead (approx. 5.2 miles away); School District 55 (approx. 5.2 miles away); Oregon Trail (approx. 6.4 miles away); Wagon Ruts (approx. 6.6 miles away); Rough Going (approx. 6.6 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Lewellen.
 
Also see . . .  Battle of Ash Hollow - Wikipedia. (Submitted on January 1, 2012, by Barry Swackhamer of Brentwood, California.)
 
The Battle of Blue Water Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Bill Coughlin, August 3, 2015
2. The Battle of Blue Water Marker
The Battle of Blue Water Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Barry Swackhamer, December 10, 2011
3. The Battle of Blue Water Marker
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. It was originally submitted on January 1, 2012, by Barry Swackhamer of Brentwood, California. This page has been viewed 1,688 times since then and 205 times this year. Photos:   1. submitted on January 1, 2012, by Barry Swackhamer of Brentwood, California.   2. submitted on August 4, 2015, by Bill Coughlin of Woodland Park, New Jersey.   3. submitted on January 1, 2012, by Barry Swackhamer of Brentwood, California. • Craig Swain was the editor who published this page.

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Jul. 15, 2024