Matthew Power [1974-2014] was an award-winning freelance print and radio journalist and a contributing editor at Harper’s Magazine.

Ghosts of Wounded Knee

Harper's Magazine  |  December 2009


portfolio with photographs by Aaron Huey 

United States Post Office, Wounded Knee, South Dakota 57794 :
Metal letters on a low, windowless bunker of weathered concrete, a flagpole raised against a dark underbelly of cloud. The flag— seven stars more than the 7th Cavalry rode here under—hums in the Plains wind, fraying, fading, unstitching itself, the stripes splitting to ribbons.
Across the road, a large historic marker, filled with dates and details—Ghost Dance, Hotchkiss guns—green paint bleaching in the sunlight: massacre of wounded knee. The word “Massacre” is a patch, affixed to the sign, covering some earlier word. The sign’s final sentence reads, “The site of the last armed conflict between the Sioux Indians and the United States Army.” A further edit, scratched in the paint over the word “armed”: lies. ... [pdf]

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