These are the Black Hills. Ceded in 1868 to the noble Sioux Nation in perpetuity. If the Sioux were not entirely clear on how long perpetuity was, they soon learned. It was exactly seven years. 1875, being the year the news got out. There was gold in those hills. And those half-naked savages were doing absolutely nothing about it. We moved in to show them how. There are only two things wrong with those Black Hills mining camps. They weren't in United States territory, so...
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In this episode, Jack Kelly, as Bart Maverick, arrives on horseback in the Black Hills of South Dakota. In his narration at the start of the episode, Kelly states that in 1868, the United States turned over the rights to the Black Hills to the Great Sioux Nation "in perpetuity", which he describes as a phrase that no one, including the Sioux, actually new the meaning of. Everyone finds out, he continues, eight years later when in 1875, gold is discovered in the Black Hills, and the return of the white man to claim that gold is inevitable.
Bart proceeds to stake a claim, along with occasional friend and nemesis, Efrem Zimbalist Jr. as Gentleman Jim Buckley. A pretty good who-done-it ensues, but as you watch this episode, you will be struck by the significance of Bart's opening remarks. And how they seem so out of place for the times in which this show first appeared.
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