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A mound of buffalo skulls. In 1870 an estimated 30 million buffalo roamed the plains; by 1900 there

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A mound of buffalo skulls. In 1870 an estimated 30 million buffalo roamed the plains; by 1900 there were fewer than 1,000. During an eight-month period between 1867 and 1868, William F. Cody (Buffalo Bill) killed 4,280 buffalo, which fed construction crews for the Union Pacific Railroad. Tourists also took up buffalo hunting, often shooting them from trains. The depletion of the buffalo, the game on which the Plains Indians lived, was a major source of conflict with whites.
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