Masters Thesis

Drudgery, drama and war Camp Sheridan and Camp Robinson

The purpose of this thesis is to interconnect and enhance the narrative related to Camp Sheridan and Camp Robinson during the latter half of the nineteenth century. Original endorsement journals and post returns from these two camps are utilized, as well as existing literature about each and about the history of the Plains Sioux. These sources provide an intimate glimpse into the daily routines, often marked by drudgery and danger, required to maintain military camps whose purpose was to protect the Indian agencies with which they were associated. More importantly, elements of the broader history of the United States government’s determination to expand westward during the latter half of the nineteenth century are discussed. Historical background and context for the formation of Indian agencies are provided, in addition to discussions related to the necessity and purpose of their associated military camps, the growing tension between Indians and Whites and the onset and aftermath of the Great Sioux War.