Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.
The Great Flood, Denver, Colorado Territory happened May 19, 1864, just three years after the territory was created.

Native History: Colorado Territory Created Amidst Gold Rush

Christina Rose

Ten years later, the 1861 Treaty of Fort Wise reduced the massive land allotted to the Cheyenne and Arapaho to a barren reservation in southeastern Colorado. Many of the tribes’ leaders had refused to sign that treaty, but according to Convery, any tribes that ignored it were deemed enemies of the United States. The refusal to relocate may have contributed to Colonel John Chivington’s justification to be mired in the innocent blood of Black Kettle’s Band at the Sand Creek Massacre in 1864.

“A lot of us were able to survive Sand Creek,” William C’Hair, historian for the Northern Arapaho, said. “Many were unarmed, they thought they were under protection of the United States. The government took that land away, the land they set up in the Laramie Treaty, and in 1861 they illegally made it Colorado. That was a nation-to-nation treaty, and they didn’t honor it.”

The transcontinental railroad was a major factor in the gold rush in California and then at Pike’s Peak, C’Hair said, adding, “Each time the government needed more land they made another treaty, until the tribes ended up with nothing. They were never given a reservation. It was all illegal and contrary to the constitutional convention.”

The Arapaho website states that the Treaty of 1868 left the Northern Arapaho without a land base, and they were placed with the Shoshone in west central Wyoming, on the Wind River Reservation.


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larrymoniz's picture
Submitted by larrymoniz on
I'm sorry to have to say this, but as a retired newspaper editor I fail to grasp the point to this article. It appears to be just a stream of disconnected paragraphs without even transitions from one topic to another and little identification of who the numerous subjects are.