Outstanding Native Women

Zitkala-Sa (Gertrude Simmons Bonnin) 1876-1938

• Activist • Author • Musician • Educator • Reformer

*Co-composed the first Native American Opera*

"For untold ages the Indian race had not used

family names. A new-born child was given a brand-new name...for which she would not be required

to substitute another's upon her marriage,

as is the custom of civilized peoples."

- Zitkala-Sa, from American Indian Stories

Her Dakota/Sioux name (Zitkala-Sa, also spelled Zitkala-Sha) means "red bird," but she was renamed Gertrude Simmons by Euro-American missionaries-a common practice by missionaries of the day.

Born on the Pine Ridge, South Dakota Rese...

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