Oglala Chief Long Wolf (Shunkmanitu Hanska) and familyOglala Chief Long Wolf (Shunkmanitu Hanska)

Oglala Chief Long Wolf (Shunkmanitu Hanska) and family
Oglala Chief Long Wolf (Shunkmanitu Hanska) had been historically forgotten for about a hundred years, before in 1997 his name was mentioned in several newspaper articles. He died in 1892 as a member of “Buffalo Bill´s” Wild West show in London, England and had been buried there, but in the 1990s his descendants managed to get his remains re-buried at his home on the Pine Ridge reservation.
Long Wolf´s name first was recorded in 1870, when he was part of the delegation led by Red Cloud to Washington, probably a member of the Bad Face contingent.
In his earlier days he must have been in many battles, because it was later noted that his body was scarred by many wounds he received. Hence while he later was with William Cody´s Wild West show he was called “Lame Warrior” : “He was an Indian chief called Shug-a-man-a ´o-Haska or Long Wolf, nicknamed by the tribe of Ogalallas, Lame Warrior.“ (according to Dr. Maitland Coffin, 1892)
The Birmingham Daily Post stated in 1892: “Long Wolf is an “old-time warrior”, with a great record, which served him in good stead as a conciliator of the rebels.”
Some sources state that he was in the Battle at the Little Bighorn as well.
He started as a performer in the Buffalo Bill troupe as early as 1886 and continued to work for Cody until his death in 1892. At least in 1886 he took his family along, his wife Wants, his daughter Lizzie and two younger children.
Although he worked for white men, he continued to keep his traditions as a Lakota Indian. There is a short note, possibly by New York photographer D.H. Anderson or a fellow member of the Wild West show, on Long Wolf in 1886:
“When indians were sent back to reservation at end of season civilian clothes were given to all indians. This chief took the clothes but would not wear them or allow any of his family to wear them. He rolled all the clothes up in a blanket and went home as a real indian. Chief Long Wolf had very little to say to any of the Indians and could not speak English. This was in fall of 1886.”
(hand-written on back of a photo card by David H. Anderson, photographer of New York)
He already was acknowledged as a chief among the Wild West performers in 1886, alongside American Horse and Rocky Bear. Although later Lakotas like No Neck and Rocky Bear were more often cited as leaders of the show Indians, there are other sources that say that Long Wolf was the leading man of the Lakotas with Cody.
When he was not on tour with the show, he was a prominent man on the Pine Ridge reservation, being mentioned as a leading member in the Indian Police service.
According to Sam Maddra´s excellent book “Hostiles?: The Lakota Ghost Dance and Buffalo Bill´s Wild West” (Oklahoma Press) he had been admitted to the West London Hospital on 5 June 1892. He died there six days later, 59 years of age, on June 11th. While some sources say he caught a serious fever or of pneumonia , Maddra´s cites he died “due partly to old age, and partly to trouble caused by his numerous old wounds received in battle”.
He was buried in West Brompton Cemetery on June 13, 1892.

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