In Memoriam

In Memoriam (HM2N73)

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N 48° 3.57', W 106° 1.107'

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In the summer of 1837 an American Fur Trading Company steamboat laden with trade goods made its way from St. Louis to Fort Union. Smallpox broke out among the crew, but the boat continued to its destination. Contact with the steamboat's crew during the distribution of trade goods exposed the Wichiyabina or Little Girls' Band of Assiniboine, starting a terrible epidemic which eventually affected all the tribes of what is now northeastern Montana. Many of the tribes had never been exposed to this virulent European disease and were extremely susceptible. The disease seemed to strike the young, vigorous and most able bodied family members with such swiftness that burial in many cases was impossible. Ninety four percent of the Wichiyabina or Little Girls' Band of Assiniboine died. By the winter of 1838, when the disease had run its course, the Wichiyabina or Little Girls' Band of Assiniboine were no more. The 80 remaining Band members banded with other smallpox survivors and formed the Redbottom Band (Hudesabina) of Assiniboines. Today the Assiniboine people still mourn the untimely passing of so many of their ancestors, innocent victims of this dreadful pestilence.
HM NumberHM2N73
Placed ByMontana Department of Transportation
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Tuesday, November 26th, 2019 at 1:01pm PST -08:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)13U E 424116 N 5323415
Decimal Degrees48.05950000, -106.01845000
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 48° 3.57', W 106° 1.107'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds48° 3' 34.2" N, 106° 1' 6.42" W
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Which side of the road?Marker is on the right when traveling West
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