''Red Cloud's War'' was a period of conflict which was part of The Native American Wars, and was the beginning of The ''Great Plains War''. It was fought from 1866 to 1868 – between The US Army and a combined Force of Warriors from The Sioux, Arapaho and Cheyenne Nations. These groups were led by Oglala Sioux Chief Red Cloud. The development of The War was spurred by several factors. The first, was the increased movement of Eastern Settlers along what was known as The Bozeman Trail. Elements of this passage went thru Sioux (and others) Territory. While initially disregarding such immigration, the numbers grew to such a size, that The Tribes tried to petition (via Treaty) to stop the flow. This was agreed too (but never enforced). The Tribes took matters into their own hands (and justice). This caused The US Army to enforce Settler safety.
However, the recently ended American Civil war (1865), put a strain of the numbers of Soldiers which could (or would) be fielded for protection. In addition, too few Frontier Forts either remained or needed to be built. This coupled with the discovery of Gold in the ''sacred'' Black Hills of The Dakota Territories – brought thousands more ''would be'' Prospectors and Miners. Red Cloud had had enough. Open warfare was declared. Effective in their tactics, The Bands held control of The Northern Plains. Despite such ''bravado'' by Army Commanders such as Carrington and the doomed Fetterman, it took The ''Fort Laramie Treaty'' (in all it's later infamy) to end Red Cloud's War in 1868. While the exact number of Native American casualties is still unknown, Army records cite 200 were lost in The War (with most of these from The ''Fetterman Massacre'').