Published on January 23, 2013 by Amy
Buffalo Calf Road Woman, or Brave Woman (b. c. 1850s? -d. 1878), was a Northern Cheyenne woman who saved her wounded warrior brother Chief Comes in Sight, in the Battle of the Rosebud (as it was called by the United States) in 1876. Her rescue helped rally the Cheyenne warriors to win the battle. She fought next to her husband in the Battle of the Little Bighorn that same year. In 2005 Northern Cheyenne storytellers broke more than 100 years of silence about the battle, and they credited Buffalo Calf Road Woman with striking the blow that knocked General George Armstrong Custer off his horse before he died.
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During the Battle of the Rosebud, the Cheyenne and Sioux, allied under the leadership of Crazy Horse, had been retreating, and they left the wounded Chief Comes in Sight on the battlefield. Suddenly Buffalo Calf Road Woman rode out onto the battlefield at full speed and grabbed up her brother, carrying him to safety. Her courageous rescue caused the Cheyenne to rally, and they defeated General George Crook and his forces. In honor of Buffalo Calf Road Woman, the Cheyenne called the Battle of Rosebud “The Fight Where the Girl Saved Her Brother”.
Buffalo Calf Road Woman is documented as also having fought at the Battle of Little Bighorn. There she fought alongside her husband Black Coyote. In June 2005, the Northern Cheyenne broke their more than 100 years of silence about the battle. In a public recounting of Cheyenne oral history of the battle, tribal storytellers said that Buffalo Calf Road Woman had struck the blow that knocked Custer off his horse before he died in the Battle of the Little Big Horn. Custer was said to have bad medicine, so the women took revenge.
Buffalo Calf Road Woman died of malaria in 1878.