Which one is White Antelope?

Although fans of Colorado history have probably heard of the most significant Native American leaders — Black Kettle, Left Hand, White Antelope, One Eye, and so on — portraits from the era are frustratingly undocumented. It would be nice to be able to point at a particular picture and say with certainty that this fellow is White Antelope and that fellow is Neva, but it hasn’t happened so far and probably never will.

Case in point: Two important portraits were taken in the fall of 1864 of the “peace chiefs” who had come to Denver to talk peace with Chivington and Evans (fruitlessly, as it turned out). A stenographer was present at this session, so we know at least the following chiefs were present: Black Kettle, White Antelope, Bull Bear. We know Left Hand wasn’t there, and there’s no mention of One Eye being there.

Here’s the most famous portrait taken, focusing just on the fellows in the middle row: Continue reading

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Memorial for Captain Silas Soule Finally a Reality

This article first appeared in the Broomfield Enterprise.

If you’ve read my previous columns, you’ll remember the story of Silas Soule, a true Colorado hero who blew the whistle on John Chivington after the massacre of peaceful Cheyenne and Arapaho at Sand Creek in 1864.

Every year, the Cheyenne and Arapaho hold the Sand Creek Massacre Spiritual Healing Run to commemorate the massacre and honor Silas Soule and others who spoke up against the actions of the cavalry that day.  Every year the event is both moving and distressing, but for many, this year’s was particularly emotional — for two reasons. Continue reading

Chief White Antelope: His peace efforts brought him death and abuse

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

Born around the turn of the century, White Antelope spent his early years as a headman of the Dog Soldiers, the most fearsome of the Cheyenne warrior clans. Continue reading

Captain Silas S. Soule: Paid with his life to do the right thing

This article first appeared in the Broomfield Enterprise in 2008.

Early on a snowy November morning, about 70 people gathered around a soldier’s grave in the Civil War section of Denver’s Riverside Cemetery. The date was November 29, 2008, and the grave belonged to Silas S. Soule, who died from an assassin’s bullet on April 23, 1865. Continue reading