About Pine Ridge


The Pine Ridge Reservation is the remnant of the once vast home of the Oglala Lakota people. Located near the southwest corner of South Dakota, Pine Ridge is about the size of the state of Rhode Island and is the 2nd largest reservation in the United States.

Pine Ridge stands out among Indian Reservations because of its symbolic importance to all Native Americans. This stems from the consequences of two incidents that took place on the reservation at Wounded Knee. In 1890, the U.S. Army massacred over 300 unarmed Indian men, women, and children. In 1973 a 71-day stand-off between Indians, the FBI, Federal Marshals, and the military became known as Wounded Knee II. The effects of these two events are still evident in the lives of the people on the Pine Ridge Reservation.

Many challenges impact the people of Pine Ridge today – isolation, political instability, extreme poverty, substandard housing, diabetes, 80% unemployment, devastating alcoholism, broken homes, shattered families, lack of adequate health care, and the unavailability of basic life needs. However, the people of Pine Ridge are resilient, proud of their heritage, and hopeful of the possibilities that their future may bring.



A Tour of Pine Ridge