MARY'S GENEALOGY TREASURES
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BULL HEAD--Stamikso--Toosan

(Reference: Portraits from the Plains by
(Reference: Portraits from the Plains by
J. W. Grant MacEwan, 1971)

Bull Head was a Sarcee Warrior who had many scars from fighting Crees and Black Foot. The Sarcees were noted as warfare specialists and were very bold. They were originally from a northern tribe, part of which came southward into buffalo country and became the Sarcees.

This small group could have become significant in number but instead was decimated by disease such as smallpox and scarlet fever, and by warfare and famine.

The Sarcees numbered about 250 when they came to Blackfoot Crossing to negotiate Treaty #7 in 1877 under the direction of Chief Bull Head who was huge in stature and vocally loud.

He reluctantly marked his "x" on the treaty on September 28, 1877 as he could see no alternative.

Due to the small number of the Sarcee tribe they were not placed westward on the Bow River as Bull Head and his tribe wished but were put on the south side of Blackfoot Crossing by government officials.

In 1879 hunting of buffalo ended, and government rations were insufficient. The Sarcees were facing starvation and became very discontent. In November 1880 the entire Sarcee band with all their belongings travelled to the Elbow River just outside of Fort Calgary and set-up camp. Chief Bull Head demanded rations from the four Mounted Police who were occupying Fort Calgary or he and his Indians would raid the nearby Hudson's Bay Company and the R.I.G. Baker store.

Farmers rode to Fort Macleod for help and 32 soldiers responded. Indian Agent Norman Macleod demanded that the Chief and his followers accept a temporary camp close to Fort Macleod if they wanted winter rations.

The Chief and followers didn't want to go south for fear they would not be able to return to the Elbow River District which was their camp preference. When a showdown came Chief Bull Head ordered his unhappy tribe to load up carts and wagons and travel south instead of opening up fire on the Mounted Police. They were assured of enough beef for the winter if they complied.

In the spring of 1881 Bull Head and his Sarcees moved to a new reservation southwest of Fort Calgary as promised by government officials. Bull Head was frequently listed in the Calgary Herald for his misconduct, his physical strength, his individuality and his strong convictions of Indian rights.

He died in 1911 age unknown.

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Mary Tollestrup