Bozeman Trail Indian Battles, Wyoming

A wagon train on the Bozeman Trail, 1883

A wagon train on the Bozeman Trail, 1883

After Chief Red Cloud’s defeat in the Wagon Box Fight in Wyoming, Indian hostilities were reduced for a time. Though harassment continued along the Bozeman Trail, there were no more open attacks except against small parties, and generally, the warriors avoided pitched battles.

However, in October 1867, several events occurred. On October 1, warriors raided against troops carrying hay, and 14 mules and seven horses were runoff. A few weeks later, on October 12, Indians attempted to capture several mules belonging to the “Pinery,” located about five miles west of the Fort Phil Kearny, where logs were cut and hauled by mule-drawn wagons back to the post. The following day, 41 mules were run off by Indians at Fort Reno.

On October 17, warriors killed and scalped one man at the “Pinery” near Fort Phil Kearny. Three days later, on October 20, a detachment of the Second Cavalry was attacked at Crazy Woman’s Fork. On October 25, hostile bands attempted to run off the stock of three wagon trains en route from Fort Reno.

Along the line of railway construction, hostilities also continued, generally against unarmed men. Emigrants along the trail also suffered the loss of their stock; occasionally, a scalp was taken.

By Kathy Alexander/Legends of America, updated March 2023.

Also See:

Indian War Campaigns and Battles

Indian War Timeline

Wyoming – The Cowboy State

Wyoming Indian Battles