Whatever Happened at Blackbird Hill? Part I

If you travel about eight miles north of Decatur, Nebraska , you’ll find the Omaha Indian Reservation. However, there is a specific location about this region that might interest you. It’s a simple hill and it overlooks the Missouri River. Besides the view, the hill also serves as the site, where a good ghost legend has stirred for quite some time.

At the summit of the hill, a mound of dirt measuring 45 feet high marks the burial location of a well-known Omaha Indian Chief named Blackbird. He was so honored that when he was buried, he was sitting upright on his favorite horse. The gravesite was mentioned in many different circles, including in 1804, when Lewis and Clark visited the burial mound and left decorations for commemoration.

It is believed that Blackbird Hill is haunted and as a result, handfuls of people make their way to the site on October 17th, in hopes of catching sight or feeling the presence of a resident ghost. While you may think that it is the spirit of Chief Blackbird that haunts the hill, it is actually that of a young lady who lost her life on top of the hill when she was murdered more than a century and a half ago.

As the story goes, it starts in the early 1840s. A young couple had fallen in love with one another. The young lad decided that when he finished his education, he would travel across the country and then return to take the hand of the young girl he wanted to marry. The sad thing about it is that the boy never returned from that trip. The young girl was heartbroken and waited for several years before she finally accepted that her love was gone. In time, she married another man.

The future saw the newly married could traveling west, eventually setting up a home in the northeast part of Nebraska , right on top of Blackbird Hill. Then, on October 17, 1849, the woman was taken aback to see her old flame walking up the winding path that led from the Missouri River. He was making his way to her cabin. He was actually surprised because he had no clue that she was living there.

With great joy to see him, she confessed that she had never stopped having feelings for him. She also told him that she only married another man because she thought he was dead. This is when she learned what had become of him. He said that he had been traveling all over, even managing to survive a wrecked ship. It took him about five years to actually make his way back to America. When he finally reached home, he was quite sad to learn that he had not only lost his mother, but his fiancée as well. He learned that she had moved west with her new husband and decided to travel west to find her.

The man had joined a wagon train and made his way to California. He searched high and low for her. By the time he had reached the west coast, he hadn’t found his lost love, so this is when he began to make the long adventure home, following the Missouri River. One day, he came across the foot of Blackbird Hill, and decided to follow the winding path up the slope. He called it fate that he had found her at long last.