Minnie Spotted-Wolf

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Minnie Spotted-Wolf
Born 1923
Heart Butte, Montana
Died 1988 (aged 64–65)
Allegiance United States of America
Service/branch United States Marine Corps
Years of service 1943-1945
Rank Private
Battles/wars World War II
Other work Teacher

Private Minnie Spotted-Wolf (1923–1988) was the first Native American woman to enlist in the United States Marine Corps.


Minnie Spotted-Wolf enlisted in the Marine Corps Women's Reserve in July 1943.[1]

Spotted-Wolf, from Heart Butte, Montana, was a member of the Blackfoot tribe. Prior to joining the Marines, she had worked on her father's ranch doing such chores as cutting fence posts, driving a two-ton truck, and breaking horses.[2] Known for her skill for breaking horses, she described Marine boot camp as: "hard but not too hard."[3]

She served on military bases in California and Hawaii. She was a heavy equipment operator, and as a driver for general officers.[2]

Press coverage of her wartime service included headlines like Minnie, Pride of the Marines, Is Bronc-Busting Indian Queen.[4] According to her daughter, "she could outride guys into her early 50s."[4]

After her military service, she earned a degree in Elementary Education, and spent 29 years as a teacher.[2]

See also


  1. ^ "History of the Women Marines". Women Marines Association. Archived from the original on 2006-06-16. Retrieved 2006-08-10. 
  2. ^ a b c White, Cody (25 July 2013). "Minnie Spotted Wolf and the Marine Corps". Prologue: Pieces of History. National Archives.
  3. ^ "WWII – First USMC Native American Minnie Spotted Wolf". Armed Forces History Museum. 29 July 2013.
  4. ^ a b Montana Historical Society (26 August 2014). ""You Have to Take What They Send You Now Days": Montana Women's Service in World War II". Women's History Matters. Montana Historical Society


  • "Circle of Honor". Native American Women with Military Service. Archived from the original on 2016-10-15. Retrieved 2016-10-18. 
  • Simpson, Peggy (May 26, 2003). "Native American Veterans Honored Today". Women's eNews. Retrieved 2006-10-08. 
  • Rae, Callum (29 December 2015). "Minnie Spotted Wolf". The Female Soldier.
  • Holm, Tom (2007). Code Talkers and Warriors: Native Americans and World War II. New York: Chelsea House. pp. 34–35. ISBN 978-0-79-109340-5. OCLC 77270989.

Further reading

External links

  • Photograph of Three Marine Corps Women Reservists, Camp Lejeune, North Carolina at the National Archives and Records Administration, Record Group 208:Records of the Office of War Information, 1926 - 1951. Feature Story Photographs, 1942 - ca. 1945. 16 October 1943.
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