Jacob Downing felt the Cheyenne and Arapaho should be exterminated

Excerpts from my book, Forgotten Heroes and Villains of Sand Creek (June 11, 2010).

In 1911, Mrs. Caroline Downing, widow of Jacob Downing, donated an object to the Colorado Historical Society. Identified as Object E.1748.1, the donation is labeled as a “scalp taken from the head of an Indian warrior at the Battle of Sand Creek, Colorado, November 29, 1864.” Mrs. Downing presumably inherited the scalp from her husband, who accompanied Chivington to Sand Creek.

When she donated the scalp, Mrs. Downing must have been unaware that Jacob Downing had sworn in an affidavit taken during the Sand Creek investigations: “I saw no soldier scalping anybody but saw one or two bodies which had evidently been scalped.”

Jacob Downing

Cover for THE TROUBLE WITH HEATHER HOLLOWAY Check out my novel, THE TROUBLE WITH HEATHER HOLLOWAY, available on amazon kindle or on any device using the amazon kindle app.

Her first week on the job, and Marshal Beth Mayo is hit with a sex assault case. It’s a nasty shock for the bucolic mountain town of Sugarloaf and for Mayo, who is still recovering from her husband’s death. Her initial skepticism grows into disbelief over the victim’s zany story, and she dismisses the case as a false report. Unfortunately, the same woman is soon discovered in the ruins of a ghost town, most definitely murdered.

Mayo unravels the complex case through a parade of colorful suspects and misfit family members, all the while following a common thread from 150 years earlier — Colorado history’s most notorious event, the Sand Creek Massacre.


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