Frontier Army-Destruction of the Buffalo

THE FRONTIER ARMY – DESTRUCTION OF THE BUFFALO: 1865-1883 DAVID D . SMITS SCHOLARS OF WESTERN AMERICAN HISTORY have long recognized the post-Civil War frontier army’s complicity in the near-extermination of the buffalo. Historian Richard White represents the scholarly consensus in stating that “various military commanders encouraged the slaughter of bison” by white hide hunters in order to cut the heart from the Plains Indians’ economy. Some scholars implicate the army’s high command more directly in the annihilation. Retired Brigadier General S. L. A. Marshall, for instance, claimed that Generals William T. Sherman and Philip Sheridan viewed the eradication of the buffalo as “the critical line … Read more