Society of the Old West

From early westward expansion through the early 20th Century.

During the first half of the 19th century the U.S. government, in response to public pressure for land and resources, began a program of concentrating Indian tribes on reservations. After the Civil War, an evergrowing number of settlers made it difficult for Native Americans to survive on the Plains. There was resistance from many Plains Indians, eventually resulting in open warefare.
Several times during the summer of 1874, warriors left the confines of thier reservations in present-day Oklahoma and moved north into western Kansas. Some 27 settlers were killed and many farms were destroyed.
On August 24, 1874, a band of 25 Cheyennes led by Chief Medicine Water ambushed six men of a surveying company 11 miles southwest of this marker. The men fled, trading shots with the Indians. After three miles the oxen pulling the surveyors' wagon were shot and all six men were killed. Two days later thier bodies were found and buried near a solitary cottonwood five miles south of here. The lone tree gave its name to this incident and was for mant years a famous prairie landmark.

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Amazing this marker was placed so far from the actual site of the historical event. Perhaps due to the fact that the site was so remote in it's time, that today it is still impossible to access the site even now, by car. Thus they placed the marker where it could be easily viewed by those passing on a remote road.

The markers for The Battle of Big Dry Wash in central Arizona (the last major engagement of US Cavalry vs. Apache Indians) and Council Rocks in southern Arizona (where Cochise made peace with General Howard) come to mind just to name a couple off the top of my head that are erected miles from the actual site due to inaccessibility. 

History out of view so to speak but not forgotten thanks due to these markers and those people who built them. They have all helped preserve history so that generations will never forget the lives and sacrifices of the people who came before us. 


Well said.


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