Crow (or Absaroke) Indians, a tribe of the Siouan language family. According to tradition, they were once part of the Hidatsa tribe. Their ancestors originally lived in the northeast, but were forced westward by the pressures of colonial expansion. The Crow called their tribe Absaroke, meaning "children of the large-beaked bird." They were hunters and fierce warriors. The Crow lived in southwestern Montana and northern Wyoming and numbered about 4,000 when the first whites entered the area in the early 19th century. They were friendly to the whites, and eventually were granted 38.5 million acres (156,000 km 2 ) of land by the United States government. By the early 20th century, however, they had been forced to cede or sell most of it to the government. In the 1960's, they were awarded some $11 million in compensation.
Most Crow live in Montana, on or near a reservation of some 1.5 million acres (6,000 km 2 ). Some of the land is used for agriculture, some for commercial and industrial enterprises. Little Bighorn Battlefield National Monument and part of Bighorn Canyon National Recreation Area are located within the reservation. There are about 4,000 Crow.