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United States. Office of Indian Affairs / Annual report of the commissioner of Indian affairs, for the year 1864
([1864])

Colorado superintendency,   pp. 216-258 PDF (17.3 MB)


Page 218

218                COLORADO SUPERINTENDENCY. 
An attack made by the Indians upon a detachment of troops under Lieutenant
Dunn, sent out to recover stolen stock, and the numerous robberies at different
points which had occurred previously, taken in connexion with the murder
of the. 
Hunsgate family on Running creek ouithe 12th of June, and the statement of
Lieu- 
tenant Robert North, a copy of which, marked F, is herewith transmitted,
satis- 
fied me that, while some of the Indians might yet be friendly, there was
no hope of 
a general peace on the plains, until after a severe chastisement of the Indians
for these depredations. 
On the 14th of June I applied for permission to call the militia of Colorado
into the United States service, as the territorial law was defective, and
the 
facilities and means of mounting, arming, and equipping them wanting. I also
applied for permission to raise a regiment of United States volunteers for
one 
hundred days, without a favorable response at that time. I had been urging
the 
organization of volunteer militia companies with but partial success for
some time, 
but now renewed my efforts to do so. I telegraphed to Major General Curtis,
com- 
manding the department, and to Brigadier General Mitchell, commanding the
district of Nebraska, and also wrote to Brigadier General Carleton, command-
ing department of New Mexico, asking for troops. A copy of my letter to the
latter, marked G, is forwarded herewith. While a general Indian war was 
inevitable, it was dictated by sound policy, justice, and humanity, that
those 
Indians who were fribndly, and disposed to remain so, should not fall victims
to 
the impossibility of soldiers discriminating between them and the hostile,
upon 
whom they must, to do any good, inflict the most severe chastisement. 
Having procured the assent of the deDartment to collect the friendly Indians
of the plains at places of safety, by a telegraphic despatch reading as follows:
"Act according to your best judgment with regard to friendly Indians,
but do 
not exceed the appropriations," I issued a proclamation and sent it
by special 
messengers, and through every practicable channel of communication, to all
the 
tribes of the plains. 
The following is a copy of the proclamation:, 
COLORADO SUPERINTENDENCY OF INDIAN AFFAIRS, 
Denver, June 27, 1864. 
To the friendly Indians of the plains : 
Agents, interpreters, and traders will inform the friendly Indians of the
plains, 
that some members of their tribes have gone to war with the white people.
They steal stock and run it off, hoping to escape detection and punishment.
In 
some instances they have attacked and killed soldiers; and murdered peaceable
citizens. For this the Great Father is angry, and will certainly hunt them
out, 
and punish them. But he does not want to injure those who remain friendly
to 
the whites. He desires to protect and take care of them. For this purpose,
I 
direct that all friendly Indians keep away from those who are at war, and
go to 
places of safety. 
Friendly Arapahoes and Cheyennes belonging on the Arkansas river will go
to 
Major Colley, United States Indian agent at Fort Lyon, who will give them
provisions and show them a place of safety. 
Friendly Kiowas and Camanches will go to Fort Larned, where they will be
cared for in the same way. 
Friendly Sioux will go to their agent at Fort Laramie for directions. 
Friendly Arapahoes and Cheyennes of the Upper Platte will go to Camp 
Collins, on the Cache la Poudre, where they will be assigned a place of safety,
and provisions will be given them. 
The object of this is to prevent friendly Indians from being killed through
mistake. -None but those who intend to e friendly with the whites must come
to these places. The families of those who have gone to war with the whites
must be kept away from among the friendly Indians. 


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