The Sand Creek Massacre | Rebellion Records
Major Scott Anthony Report to General Curtis - Nov. 24, 1863
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The War of the Rebellion: A Compilation of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies,
Series I, Vol. XXII, Part II, pp.571-72. - Excerpts relevant to the Sand Creek Massacre
One year before the Sand Creek Massacre, Major Scott Anthony, commanding Fort Lyon, sent the
following report to General Samuel Curtis, indicating a generally favorable relationship between the
Army and Indian tribes in the area.
Anthony's report seemed to contradict the rumor of an alliance forming among Plains tribes for the purpose of waging war in the
Kansas and Colorado territories. That rumor, first reported to Colorado Territorial Governor John Evans by Arapaho squaw man
Robert North, prompted Evans to write a series of letters to Washington officials urgently requesting more military troops for the
protection of Denver City. (Read Evans wire to Commissioner William P. Dole, regarding Robert North's allegation.)
Page 571 Chapter XXXIV. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC. - UNION.
Fort Lyon, Colo., September 24, 1863.
SIR: I have the honor to report to headquarters of the district my return from a trip down the Arkansas River.
Have been as far as Fort Larned. Visited the Kiowa, Comanche, Apache, Caddo, and Arapaho Indians. The head
chiefs of all these tribes requested, as soon as they
Page 572 MO.,ARK.,KANS.,IND.T.,AND DEPT.N.W. Chapter XXXIV.
learned that a command of troops was on the road, that they might have a talk with the officer in command. I
have talked with them all, through the United States interpreter, J. S. Smith. They all express the utmost
friendship for the whites; say they have been offered the war-pipe by the Sioux of the Platte, and all refused to
smoke, except the Northern Cheyennes. They say they are aware that some of their young men have committed
depredations upon the road, and, in order to prevent a repetition of these officers, the Kiowas and Comanches
will all leave the main traveled road; that they know they cannot live long while at war with the whites; that they
must depend upon the Government and the friendship of the whites in a great measure for their support,
especially the coming winter, as the buffalo have all left their accustomed ranges, owing to the unprecedented
drought upon the Arkansas, the river being perfectly dry for 400 miles. They have promised to hunt up the
authors of the depredations which have been committed, and to see that they are not repeated.
The Kiowa band, under La-tan-ka, one of the chiefs of the Kiowas, has done more damage than all the others,
but he had left the road before I came up. The Comanches, and particularly the Apaches, appear very loyal; they
offered all their warriors to aid me at the time they supposed the Texans were coming up, and went out as scouts
to reconnoiter. They also went with me through their herds to look for white men's stock; we recovered ten head
of Government mules and three Government horses, which have been turned over to assistant quartermaster at
this post. I saw a good many head of Confederate States stock among the Comanche and Apache tribes; they
had stolen it from the borders of Texas. This accounts for their "great scare" when they supposed the Texans
were coming up from Red River.
The Arapahoes, to the number of 2,000, are moving up this way, under Little Raven, Left Hand, and Neeva. They
expect to receive their annuities at this post next week. The band of Arapahoes who committed the depredations
at Maxwell's and in vicinity of Colonel Boone's belong to the North Platte, and are now on the Smoky Hill. They
are very destitute, and, from all reports, are suffering terribly from disease and hunger. With the force now here
and at Fort Larned, I do not think any trouble need be feared from any band on the Arkansas. They were badly
frightened when we went down. I could have wiped them all out with my force, and probably should have
commenced upon the Kiowas, after their robbery of the wagon-master of Honore's train, had it not been for the
interpreter, who explained the matter better than I could have understood it without his aid.
The Caddo Indians, numbering about 500, will arrive here in about ten days, and will go into a permanent
settlement about 20 miles above the post. They suffered terribly from the hands of the rebels in Texas last winter.
They have adopted many of the customs of the whites, and are well behaved.
Lieutenant [John A.] Edington, with his command, will reach here by the 30th instant, leaving the road almost
clear of Indians except the Arapahoes in the immediate vicinity of the post and the Caddoes above.
The Indians are all very destitute this season, and the Government will be compelled to subsist them to a great
extent, or allow them to starve to death, which would probably be much the easiest way of disposing of them.
I am, sir, with much respect, your obedient servant,
SCOTT J. ANTHONY,
Major, Commanding Post.
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