There is very little documentation or information on the contribution of indigenous women to the military. Historians have recently rediscovered the actions of Oneida, Tyonajanegen at the Battle of Oriskany during the American Revolution. Chief Hanyery's wife, she fought on these sides, loading her rifle and her husband's then seriously wounded.
The story of Sacajawea, Shoshone that accompanied the shippers Lewis and Clark is already more known. She served as a Scout and Interpreter during this military expedition.
Four Sioux from Fort Berthold, South Dakota, served as a nurse during the American Hispanic War (1898). Assigned to Jacksonville Military Hospital in Florida, they were transferred to Havana, Cuba. One of them, Sister Anthony, died of illness in Cuba and was buried with military honors.
At least 45 indigenous women served the Medical Corps during the Great War, and at least 12 of them went to Europe.
During the Second World War, there were nearly 872 to enlist in the various branches of the Canadian and American army.
Elva (Tapedo) Wale, a Kiowa, left her Oklahoma Reserve to join the Women's Army Corps. Private Tapedo became an Air WAC and worked on army air bases across the United States.
Corporal Bernice (Firstshoot) Bailey of Lodge Pole, Montana, joined the Women's Army Corps in 1945 and served until 1948. After the war, she was sent to Wiesbaden, Germany, to assist the occupation army.
Beatrice (Coffey) Thayer will also serve the occupation army in Germany. Beatrice was assigned to the military police and monitored the German prisoners of war and was accompanied at all times by armed guards. She left the army in 1970.
Alida (Whipple) Fletcher joined the army during the Second World War and trained as a medical specialist. She was assigned to the Camp Stoneman Hospital, California. Alida was on duty the night two ammunition ships collided, killing 400 sailors and wounding hundreds of others. Alida was responsible for treating most of the wounded. It remained the most tragic night of his life.
First Lieutenant Julia (Nashanany) Reeves, Potawatomie of Crandon, Wisconsin, joined the Nurses' Corps in 1942 and was assigned to a hospital ship sent to the Pacific. She was then transferred to a hospital in England to support the landing in Normandy on June 6, 1944. Back in the United States after the war, she re-engaged during the Korean War and was mobilized with 804th Station Hospital.
Private Minnie Spotted Wolf of Heart Butte, Montana, enlisted in the Marine Corps Women's Reserve in July 1943. She was the first Native American to enlist in this corps. Minnie drove 2-ton trucks and took care of the horses.
Ola Mildred Rexroat, Sioux Oglala of Pine Ridge, South Dakota, joined the Women's Pilotage Service. His job was to serve as a fictitious target for anti-aircraft fire students. After the war. She joined the US air force and served for more than 10 years.
Dorothy Asquith, a Métis woman serving in the RCAF Auxiliary, writes: Discrimination? Everyone was so engaged in everything around the war that no one had time for this kind of pettiness. I do not think anyone cared about the skin color of his comrades, especially among the men who were in combat. Cousins of mine told me, "Who could stop at the color of the skin of others? We were all so happy to find a place to shelter ourselves; no one cared who was with you. We were there together; two lives. That's what I think; it was all too serious to think of things so unimportant
During the 1950s and 1960s, Aboriginal women continued to enlist during the Korean War and the Vietnam War.
Sarah Mae Peshlakai, Navajo, enlisted in the Female Corps in 1951 until 1957. She was assigned to the Yokohama Military Hospital in Japan and cared for the wounded in the Korean War.
Verna Fender enlisted in the Navy during the Korean War. She was seriously injured during an exercise and treated at the naval hospital. She will continue her training and was assigned to the inventory department.
Shirley M Aviso, Navajo, served in the Navy from 1953 to 1963. She was the officer in charge of the team for encrypted messages.
Pearl Ross, Arikara, joined the forced air forces in 1953 and was assigned as a medical specialist. Pearl volunteered during the Vietnam War to go to the front, but her case was refused, the Air Force was reluctant to send women to Vietnam.
Barbara Monteiro joined the Women's Army Corps in 1963. She was assigned to the administrative service of the army during the Vietnam War.
Lance Corporal Valla Dee Jack Egge, served in the Marine Corps in the 1960s and was the personal secretary to the generals at the Parris Islands Marines Base.
The number of women on duty increased again in the 1970s and 1980s.
Patricia White Bear joined the Navy in 1981 and became a mechanic aboard the warships. Dolores Kathleen Smith, Cherokee, became a training pilot in 1982 and left the Air Force with the rank of Captain in 1990.
Aboriginal women also lost their lives in service. Katherine Matthews. Joined the Navy at the end of the 70s. She died in the crash of a test aircraft in 1985.
Terri Ann Hagen, an army doctor, was killed fighting a fire in Colorado in 1994.
Dawn Warren Misty enlisted in January 1998 and was selected for NASA the same year. On his 75th jump, Misty suffered a gear failure during a routine jump. Misty died in the service of his country.
Master Corporal Giesebrecht Brant Kristal Lee Anne, a member of the Mohawks of the Bay of Quinte, serving with the Canadian Medical Corps, was killed in an incident involving an improvised explosive device in Afghanistan in June 2010.
Since then, their numbers have only increased and they are now present in all branches of the army and even in the four American military academies. One of his wives is Micah Rae Highwalking, Cheyenne, who entered West Point in 2006. It is estimated that today 1,509 Native American women serve the armed forces.
Ironically, Aboriginal women faced denials from Indian nations and not from their comrades. War being a man's business, they could not carry flags in pow wows.
The Oglala Sioux Nation has created a modern war song especially for veteran women, earning them their own homage during pow wows.
The database on women only is available here: CLICK HERE FOR THE LIST OF WOMEN.