Thursday, January 24, 2013

Jan. 24 – On this day in Montana history in 1870 word began to trickle back in brief news accounts of what was one of Montana’s darkest hours. On Jan. 23 Maj. Eugene Baker and troops from Fort Ellis near Billings attacked a peaceful Blackfeet encampment on the Marias River and slaughtered 173 women, children and old men. Today it is known as the Baker Massacre. Sent to locate Piegan (pronounced Pie-gun) Indians suspected of attacking some settlers, Baker reportedly said when told it was not Piegans: “That makes no difference, one hand or another of them. They are all Piegans, and we will attack them.”

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