Black Hawk helicopters are named for Black Hawk, a Sauk Native American leader who fought for the British in the War of 1812.
Black Hawk was a bandleader and warrior of the Sauk Native American tribe in what is now the Midwest of the United States. Although he had inherited an important historic sacred bundle from his father, he was not a hereditary civil chief. Black Hawk earned his status as a war chief or captain by his actions: leading raiding and war parties as a young man, and a band of Sauk warriors during the Black Hawk War of 1832.
During the War of 1812, Black Hawk had fought on the side of the British against the U.S., hoping to push white American settlers away from Sauk territory. Later he led a band of Sauk and Fox warriors, known as the British Band, against European-American settlers in Illinois and present-day Wisconsin in the 1832 Black Hawk War.
The Army's helicopters and fixed-wing aircraft bear names that reflect fierce and courageous warriors who also have fought well as part of the United States because there was a Army Regulation about the name giving. Regulation cancelled but the tradition has continued and Black Hawk was one of those enthusiastic names'.