Published November 15, 2019
EVANSTON, Ill. — Descendants of Sand Creek Massacre victims will gather at Northwestern University Saturday (Nov. 16) to commemorate the 155th anniversary of the killings.
The massacre, in which U.S. Army cavalry soldiers slaughtered an estimated 150 Cheyenne and Arapaho Native Americans, most of them women and children, occurred on Nov. 29, 1864, in southeastern Colorado. John Evans, Northwestern’s founder, was governor of Colorado and territorial superintendent of Indian Affairs when the massacre occurred.
Saturday’s event is open to the public.
“We are grateful to the Cheyenne and Arapaho descendants who travel to Northwestern each year to share the painful story of the Sand Creek Massacre,” said Patty Loew, Professor in Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University and co-director of the Center for Native American and Indigenous Research (CNAIR). “It is through events like the commemoration that students, staff and faculty learn the true history of Sand Creek, acknowledge our founder’s role in it, and participate in healing ceremonies.”
Since the release of the Report of the John Evans Study Committee in 2014, Northwestern University has taken steps to advance Native American scholarship and research on campus, including the establishment of CNAIR, housed within the Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences. Other scholarship includes undergraduate and graduate fellowships, symposia and a graduate cluster.
At Northwestern’s 2018 commencement ceremony, then-University Chaplain Rev. Tim Stevens acknowledged publicly for the University for first time that the Evanston campus sits on the traditional Native American homelands.