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Yellowstone Mountain Renamed To ‘First Peoples’ Mountain’ in order to Honor the Victims' of 1870 Montana Massacre

By Emily Kawamoto 8/11/20

A federal commission has renamed a mountain in Yellowstone National Park that was formerly named after a US Army colonel who participated in a massacre of Native Americans.

The National Park Service said Thursday that Mount Doane will now be known as First Peoples Mountain, following a unanimous decision by the United States Board on Geographic Names.

Lt. Gustavus Doane, who led an attack on a tribe of Piegan Blackfeet in northern Montana in 1870, was honoured with the name of the 10,551-foot (3,200-meter) mountain in southeastern Yellowstone, Wyoming.

Doane boasted about what became known as the Marias Massacre for the rest of his life.

According to Yellowstone officials, the attack in retaliation for the suspected murder of a European fur trader killed at least 173 American Indians, including many women, elders, and children who were sick with smallpox.

In 1872, Yellowstone was designated as the world's first national park.

Yellowstone authorities talked with 27 tribes about the name change.

Piikani Nation Chief Stan Grier said, “This name change is long overdue. We all agreed on ‘First Peoples’ Mountain’ as an appropriate name to honor the victims of such inhumane acts of genocide, and to also remind people of the 10,000-year-plus connection tribal peoples have to this sacred place now called Yellowstone,”