September 13, 1877 Battle of Canyon Creek






This battle was supposedly fought just west of present day Billings, Montana, near Laurel, Montana, and involved some 350 American Soldiers and their Bannock, Crow, and Nez Perze allies, against an unknown number of Ojibway Soldiers. Battle of Canyon Creek may have been a part of Siege of Great Falls. This battle may have actually been fought near another Canyon Creek, Montana location which is a 18 miles northwest of Helena. Canyon Creek, Montana location northwest of Helena, is on or near an old Anishinabe road (named Mullan Road) which leads to Missoula, Montana. Battle of Canyon Creek was a part of Mullan Road War. A list of Mullan Road War battles is above.



Americans obviously had many of their soldiers stationed in and around Helena during those times. General Howard probably led a large number of them up to Great Falls to reinforce those American Soldiers led by General Gibbon, during Battle of Big Hole. They reached Great Falls by August 11. In response to American Soldiers stationed near Helena being sent to Great Falls, Ojibway Soldiers were probably sent down to that location to attempt to inflict damage. There were 350 American Soldiers at that location and they had their idiotic Indian allies with them. Ojibway Soldiers reached Canyon Creek on Thursday September 13, 1877 and commenced to attacking white settlers in that location north of Helena. One of their plans was capturing horses which worked out well. American Soldiers and their idiotic Crow allies, were not far off and quickly went to investigate.



After learning Ojibway Soldiers were on a rampage, American Soldiers were ordered to split up to try and stop Ojibway Soldiers. What followed was a prolonged battle which inflicted few casualities yet led to large numbers of American horses being captured by Ojibway Soldiers. After Ojibway Soldiers prevented American Soldiers from defeating them, they commenced a trek back north with those horses they captured. They reached Montana's plains just south of Cascade, Montana with American Soldiers and their idiotic Indian allies following them, on Friday September 14, 1877. Crow Soldiers may have numbered up to 200. American military commanders wanted their horses back. They needed them. In disgrace, Colonel Sturgis ordered Crow Soldiers and a few Bannack Soldiers, to quickly find those Ojibway Soldiers who captured those American horses. He probably demanded their horses instead. Unfortunately, Bannack and Crow leaders had to give their American allies, 400 of their horses. Captain Benteen who fought at Battle of Little Big Horn, was among American military commanders during this battle. American casualties were 4 killed and 11 wounded. Ojibway casualties were probably fewer since they appear to have been on a mission to capture horses and other supplies. Ojibway casualties were estimated at 7 killed and 10 wounded yet was possibly fewer.