After our taco dinner tonight, we packed up the car and headed out to Singing Horse Trading Post, a local craft store for people to gather supplies and sell their crafts. As we walked in we saw many beautiful things. Many of us were impressed with the crafts available and were able to purchase a bunch of different things ranging from coyote tails to hand carved jewelry. I had the pleasure to talk to Rosie, the store owner who had many great stories about the people who trade with her and her business. This year marks her 20th year open for business…what a great accomplishment!
As we got back in the car to head to Wounded Knee, Mrs. O’Hare pointed out signs located in various places on the road saying, “THINK!” These signs represent individuals that have unfortunately lost their lives on the road, with most of them losing them from walking into town since there are no sidewalks. As we past each sign, it really made me think about how families and friends were affected by these tragedies and reminded me about the importance of driving safely.
As we parked at Wounded Knee, we all got out and read the memorial. The sign was hand carved, and really sparked an impression of the importance that the community wants to share with their families and travelers as they pass through. As we walked up to the burial grounds, the sun began to set and so did the emotions. Many of the graves had beautiful flowers placed on them, fruits, tobacco and other offerings for the spirits that have passed. After we viewed the burial grounds, we headed down to the Visitor’s booth where two Lakota were. The Lakota woman shared with us a book that contained old articles that went through the history of all that happened at Wounded Knee, as well as the events that are current to date to remember their loved ones. Hearing her explain about her family and her tribe and how this affected them was one of the most powerful stories I have ever heard, and really made Wounded Knee become more alive. As the students came down and heard her story I got to step aside and hear from her husband. The two are crafters within the area, and had a few beautiful items on display, like dream catchers, bracelets and necklaces. He explained the meanings of the colors and how they were Lakota colors, but set up in a healing pattern instead of the traditional way. He also explained the process of making the dream catcher’s from the Willow trees, and what each pattern within the dream catcher meant. Before we left, I was able to buy a beautiful dream catcher with a Teepee design, something that represented woman within the tribe. Hearing their stories made me appreciate the Lakota on a whole new level, and I was honored to get a souvenir from them.