Month of the Freezing Moon: The Sand Creek Massacre, November 1864

Duane P. Schultz, Author
Duane P. Schultz, Author St. Martin's Press $19.95 (229p) ISBN 978-0-312-04351-3
Reviewed on: 05/01/1990
Release date: 05/01/1990
The summer of 1864 was an uneasy one in Colorado Territory. Raiding bands of Arapaho and Cheyenne ``dog soldiers'' attacked settlers and travelers; the U.S. Army was authorized to burn lodges and kill Indians wherever it found them. A proclamation from Governor John Evans offered to provide friendly Indians with places where they would be safe from attacks by Americans. Cheyenne Chief Black Kettle, who had sued for peace earlier, applied for protection for his band and was directed to Sand Creek. In late November, Colonel John Chivington led 700 cavalry troops in a daybreak attack on the unsuspecting Indians; more than 100 old men, women and children were killed, their bodies mutilated, the camp looted. In recounting this atrocity, Schultz ( The Doolittle Raid ) focuses on Indian-white relationships, the fears of the settlers and three white men who were determined to ``finish'' the Indians. He describes the aftermath of the massacre: official investigations that discredited Chivington, and the start of the Plains Wars that would culminate at Little Big Horn. This is a gripping account of a shameful event in American history. (June)
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