Quotes from Kiowa Chief Santana

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Here are some wisdom quotes from the great Kiowa war chief, Santana. Satanta was one of the most complicated men ever to rise from the Great Plains–a diplomat and orator who spoke eloquently in treaty negotiations, and was also a war chief who led his people at some of the bloodiest battles fought by the Kiowa warriors.

 

A long time ago this land belonged to our fathers, but when I go up to the river I see camps of soldiers on its banks. These soldiers cut down my timber, they kill my buffalo and when I see that, my heart feels like bursting.


 

I am a great chief among my people. If you kill me, it will be like a spark on the prairie. It will make a big fire – a terrible fire.


 

I love this land and the buffalo and will not part with it. I want you to understand well what I say. Write it on paper…I hear a great deal of good talk from the gentlemen the Great Father sends us, but they never do what they say. I don’t want any of the medicine lodges (schools and churches) within the country. I want the children raised as I was.


 

I have heard you intend to settle us on a reservation near the mountains. I don’t want to settle. I love to roam over the prairies. There I feel free and happy, but when we settle down we grow pale and die.