The primary Corps of Discovery contacts among North Dakota Native Peoples were, of course, the Mandan and Hidatsa. However, they also made contact with the Caddoan-speaking Arikara near the North Dakota-South Dakota border, as well with a number of Dakota (Sioux) bands, notably the Yanktonai and Lakota. In the decades after the expedition, Dakota power grew along the Missouri and increasingly hedged in the Mandan and Hidatsa. By the middle of the 19th century, Dakota power probably reached its peak with their ascendency as the regions’ most powerful Native American group.
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