THE NORTH AMERICAN BISON
National Republican Wa DC Jan 28 1876 Indian Massacre
The Weekly Ansonian -Polkton, N.C. Feb 23 1876
Feb 26 1876 The Pittsburgh Commercial
The Galveston Daily News
Galveston, Texas Mar 11 1876
The Gazette weilds a free lance, and goes for the Hon. John H. Reagan in this wise:
The Hon. John H. Reagan had sat still for two mortal hours. It became irksome to him, for he regards Congress as an institution created for his special benefit, and a piece in which to air his oratorical powers, which are of the loudest calibre. He has been popping up like a legislative jack in the box more or less all the session, but had it been known that he was lying in ambush for a speech, the moment he rose he would have stampeded the house. But he was burning Ford distinction. Like the boy who stood upon the burning dock when all but he had fled. He was longing to extinguish himself. Casablanca was nothing to him and heroism. The grand opportunity arrived, a bill was introduced for the protection of the buffalo. Reagan’s grand for portions rise, his noble boson swells with thoughts of the mighty bison. He catches the eye of the speaker, or rather lassoes him into recognition with his hoarsert bass. His “Mr. Speaker” startles the astonished Kerr like a low murmur of a herd of real buffalo on there’d native prairies, and Reagan, better known under the newspaper sobriquet of the “Texas steor steak,” then comes a torrent of mighty eloquence. He lashes the air with his hands and buffaloes swing their mighty tales when infuriated by the unfeeling hunter. He pleads for the poor buffalo. He weeps for him; and this strong, this massive brained, determined looking man from the Lone Star State all alone, too, of all the representatives of that state, stands up, praise that cruel man may no longer extirpate the buffalo.
Gods Cattle Apr 6 1876 Wichita Eagle, Kansas
The Galveston Daily News May 6 1876
Harpers Weekly May 15 1876, Unpacking Bison Statuary
Ashtabula Weekly Telegraph
Ohio, May 17 1876
THE NORTH AMERICAN BISON
The Indian and the “buffalo” are ever associated in the mind and characteristic and inseparable features of the great interior of the North American continent, and especially of the so-called ”boundless plains” that extend from Mexico on the one hand nearly to the Arctic regions on the other, and from the Mississippi River to the Rocky Mountains. And in many respects is this Association by no means a fanciful one, the one depending in great measure for its existence upon the other, and both alike fading away before the rapid westward advance of civilization— driven into the remoter wilds, as it is usually expressed, but, in reality, wiped out of existence —- only the so-called remnants of the once populous bands of either remaining when a westward migration is forced upon them. The same thing evidently awaits both — complete extermination. Though both are noble in their way, both in a measure cumber the ground, and disappear but to give place to a higher grade of life and a fuller development of the natural resources of the continent.
Whenever civilized man has held away, the fate of the larger animals has always been the same — to wit, a more or less speedy and annihilation. In his subjugation of new countries not alone are the dangerous wild beast of the forest, for those who products rendered their destruction a source of rapid increase of wealth, sacrificed, but the inoffensive and less useful herb eating species also whether before him as before a fatal blast, the prudent suggestions of self interest yielding to the stronger love of destruction.
The history of our American bison but repeats the history of his congeners and affines elsewhere. His nearest relative, the aurochs of the old world, which and no very remote times roamed over the greater part of temperate Europe, survives now only through careful protection, in the royal parks of the Czar of Russia in Lithuania, where its present representatives number but a few hundred individuals. The urus, which in prehistoric times existed over a much larger area, and which had a few survivors as late as the conquest of Caesar, long cents became extinct in the wild state, and has having representatives only in our domestic races of cattle, from which they are in part dissented. In our own country the elk, formerly numerous over the greater part of the northern and western portions of the United States, is now nearly extinct East of the Mississippi River, and is rapidly approaching extermination elsewhere. The common Virginia deer, formally abundant in all the older States of the Union, exist now only here and there in the least settled districts. From the newer trans-Mississippian States and Territories come reports of the rapid disappearance of not only the elk and deer of those regions, but of the mountain sheep in the prong horn. In many of the parks and valleys within the Rocky Mountains, from New Mexico to Montana, where, but a few years cents, these animals existed in seemingly exhaustless numbers, they have already been extirpated. But the case of the “buffalo,” as our bison will always be commonly called, will doubtless be one of the most remarkable instances of extermination recorded or ever to be recorded, in the ______ of zoology. At the beginning of the 18th century, this animal occupied fully two thirds of the temperate portions of North America; since which time its range has become reduced to an area not larger than that of the three territories of Dakota, Montana and Wyoming; while another decade or two, at its present rate of decrease, will be sufficient for its total extermination.
As is well known, the whole area between the Mississippi River and the Rocky Mountains has ever been the region of their greatest abundance, over almost the whole of which vast territory they roamed till within the last half-century. Prior to 1830 they had already been pressed back for some distance west of the Mississippi, along nearly its whole length. The overland emigration that set in so vigorously about 1849, and the construction of the Union Pacific Railroad, served to greatly lessen their numbers, and to divide them into two distinct bands, known commonly as the great northern and southern herds. Incessant persecution on all sides, and especially of late along the lines of the Kansas Railways — Kansas Pacific and Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe — has reduced the southern herd to a mere remnant of its former magnitude. While they are now massed principally south of the Canadian River, in Northern Texas, where for a time they may enjoy comparative immunity from the white hunter, they are still also scattered irregularly and sparsely over the Western third of Kansas and along the eastern border of Colorado. The whole area occupied by the southern herd, which ranged but a few years cents from the Staked Plains to the Platte, and from Eastern Kansas to the Rocky Mountains, does not embrace a region larger than that present State of Kansas.
The northern herd has suffered a like reduction in its range. As late as in 1850, it extended, in the United States, from the Platte to the British boundary, and from the Rocky Mountains to the plains of the Upper Mississippi and the Red River of the North, beside spreading far northward into the British possessions. South of the northern boundary of the United States it is now limited to the region drained by the principal southern tributaries of the Yellowstone — the Big Horn, Tongue, and Powder rivers — and to a narrow belt extending thence northward, across the Yellowstone, the Musselshell, the Missouri and Milk river’s, white been somewhat to the northward.
The vast restriction in its range that the bison has suffered, especially when it is remembered that this restriction has taken place mainly within the last fifty years, and chiefly within the first twenty-five years, is certainly a striking fact; yet, by this statement the destruction of life thus implied is by no means impressively indicated. The Buffalo, as is well known, is, like other bovine creatures, eminently gregarious, roaming always in herds, which usually number thousands, and sometimes millions of individuals. Some writers speak of having seen millions of buffaloes in sight at once; others have described the plains as literally blackened with them in every direction as far as the eye could reach. Others still speak of meeting with herds several miles broad; others of traveling through continuous bands for days together. It was not uncommon in former days for emigrant trains to be detained for hours by the passage of large herds across their route, while in later times the same experience has often befallen the trains on the Kansas railways. It is not to be inferred, of course, that the habitat of the buffalo was ever wholly covered by dense herds; but the whole region above indicated as its habitat was roamed over by them, and all parts more or less frequently visited, the greater part of it annually.
The Indians have of course shared largely in the work of destruction, since the tribes that have lived within or near its range have depended largely upon these animals for subsistence, there flesh furnishing them with the chief part of their food, and their skins with clothing, beds and lodge coverings. Though far less wasteful of the buffalo than the white man, the Indian often indulges in needless slaughter, generally killing far more than he needs or can use. When buffaloes are plentiful, the Indians commonly select only the choicest parts, and during the season when they killed for their skins they rarely save any portion of the meat. Caitlin relates an incident that came under his notice in may, 1832, near the mouth of the Teton river, which forcibly illustrates their improvidence. A party of five or six hundred mounted Sioux Indians crossed the river at mid-day, for an attack upon a herd of buffaloes in sight on the other side. After spending a few hours among them, they recrossed the river at nightfall, and came into the Fur Companies Fort with fourteen hundred fresh buffalo tongues, which were thrown down in a mass, and for which they required but a few gallons of whiskey– not as skin nor a pound of meat, besides the tongues, being saved.
But the want, or at least reckless and almost useless, destruction of the buffalo I the Indians is scarcely comparable to that of the white man, whose contact with the buffalo has brought a constantly increasing rate of fatality to the doomed beast. About a century ago, the white hunter, and what is now the state of Kentucky, first met with the buffalo, since which time his extermination has progressed with marvelous rapidity. At the beginning of the present century, this useful animal had already been exterminated East of the Mississippi River, in great part, too, wantonly. West of the Mississippi they continued to recede before advancing settlements, when, about 1820, their destruction, became greatly accelerated by the trade in robes, which about this time began to assume considerable importance. From this date on word till within the last few years the destruction of the buffaloes for their skins has done more than all other influences to hasten their extirpation — the slaughter for this object alone causing the destruction of hundreds of thousands each year. Throughout much of this time the number of roads actually purchased of the Indians has exceeded one hundred thousand annually, while as many more has been used by the Indians themselves. When it is remembered that the skins are in good condition during only one third of the year — the portion of the year, too, when the smallest number are taken– and that good robes are furnished by only the females, those of the Bulls been generally worthless for robes — some idea may be formed of great number of animals annually destroyed by the Indians in pursuit of furs. Of late the trade in robes has greatly declined, owing mainly to the demise number of buffaloes, but in part to the great reduction of the Indian themselves; but the difference has been more than made up why the wholesale destruction of the buffaloes on the plains of Kansas by the white men. No sooner had the railroads penetrated the habitat of the buffalo, then hunters swarmed to the region thus so favorably thrown open to them, and making these highways the basis of their aspirations, begun in exterminating war upon the vast herds, which ceased only with the supply of victims. In three or four years the buffaloes were swept from the country immediately adjoining these roads; nearly all being sacrificed for their hides, which, at most, are worth but little more than the cost of gathering. It is said that during the season of 1872-73, not less than two thousand hunters were engaged in hunting the buffaloes along the lines of the Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe railroad alone; and that during this year not less than two hundred and fifty thousand buffaloes were slain, simply for their hides, their carcasses been left untouched on the plains. In a few years the buffaloes were wholly annihilated over hundreds of square miles of territory; and now, as if to hide even the evidence of their former existence there, their very bones are being gathered up and shipped to Eastern markets for the manufacture of manorial phosphates. The best available statistics indicates an average annual destruction of between three and four millions for the last thirty or forty years. At this rate of decrease it is evident that the complete extermination of the buffalo will be soon effected, and thus an animal which, but a few years since, was the most numerous of its size in the world, will be swept out of existence.
The American bison, with his huge bulk, his immense, shaggy mane, and particularly vicious looking eyes, presents a far more formidable and dangerous aspect than his real character warrants, he being in reality timid and inoffensive. With lowered head and sullen mien, the old Bulls will face an approaching enemy with a great show of determination and bravery, only to flee most ignominiously if their threatening demonstrations fail to appall their assailant. Indeed, one’s nerve is put severely to the test when approaching a herd of these formidable looking beast for the first time. Only when wounded, however, and very sorely pressed, will they turned upon their pursuer; and then woe the to the luckless horse and rider, or the more helpless footman, if they fail to escape the onslaught of one of these furious beast. Ordinarily, however, they are far less dangerous to encounter than the half wild domestic cattle of the Texas plains.
Like most bovine animals, the bison is sluggish and stupid, lacking in great measure the sagacity that so effectually protects most wild animals, and he hence falls and easy prey to his human foes. If the hunter is careful to approach the herd from the leeward, he usually has little difficulty in getting near it, the bison being not easily frightened by the site of men or by the report of firearms, while the sent of an enemy, if unseen and 80 miles distant, will set them fleeing and headlong haste.
If thus happens that the hunter, in stocking the buffalo, approaches easily within close range, even without cover, by simply creeping on the ground; and with a breech-loading arm, loading without rising, often succeeds in killing from five or six to a score or more, before the herd finally takes to flight. If it slightly recede, the hunter creeps up undercover of the slain, and continues his murderous work. So when different are the buffaloes to the death of their companions, or so stupidly unconscious of what has befallen them, that they will not only stand and see them shot down around them, but the living have been known to playfully gored the dead, so little do they comprehend the situation. A single hunter will often killed fifteen to thirty at a single “stand,” and sometimes sixty to eighty in a day. A hunter who acts as shooter for the party to which he belongs, will frequently kill two thousand to three thousand in a single season.
A moving herd of buffaloes will blindly follow their leaders, those in the rear pressing on unconscious of the danger into which they sometimes force their comrades at the front. Herds thus rushed into the pounds prepared for their destruction by the Indians, or are decoyed by the same wile foes to the brinks of precipices, the presence of which those at the front discover too late to avoid, being pressed on why the main body of the panic stricken herd, who in turn, follow their leaders in the unlooked-for fatal leap.
Again, in crossing treacherous streams, whole herds will heedlessly rush into the quicksands, or with similar blindness dash across the track of an approaching railway train. It has hence been said, and with some degree of truth, that the buffalo is only endowed with the smallest degree of instinct, and that this little seems rather to lead him into difficulties than out of them. — This, however, is not quite true, since the blind rushing of a herd into danger results not so much from the stupidity of those in the front ranks as from their inability to turn aside after the danger is discovered, in consequence of the irresistible mass behind, unconscious of danger, forcing them onword.
As may be well imagine, the habits of the buffaloes, in their undisturbed daily lives, are not far different from those of grazing herds of domestic cattle. They indulge in similar gambols, and, when belligerent, and similar blustering demonstrations. The Bulls are excessively fond of pawing the ground and of throwing up the earth on their horns, which they readily accomplish by lowering themselves upon one’s knee. Particularly bovine also is the satisfaction they take in rubbing themselves against whatever will oppose resistance, whether it be rocks, trees, bushes, or the corner of a hardened olay bank; the telegraph poles, however, which have been erected along the railroads that cross their range, afford them special delight as convenient scratching post, and may be seen as well smoothed and covered with tufts of hair and greases from their hides, and are the post about a farmers cattle yard. But what is very unlike anything in the habits of domestic cattle is their propensity to roll themselves on the ground; which, notwithstanding their seemingly inconvenient form, they accomplish with the greatest ease. But their greatest pleasure consist and rolling in the mud, or in “wallowing” as it is termed, from which exercise they arise looking more like an animated mass of dripping the mud than their former selves. The object of these peculiar ablutions is doubtless to cool their heated bodies and to free themselves from troublesome insects; the coding of adhesive mud they thus obtain securing them immunity, for many hours after, from the attacks of herds of mosquitoes and flies with which they are not so much harassed.
Despite the apparently an wildly form and awkward, lumbering gait of the bison, his speed far exceeds the speed he appears to make, while his endurance is so great that this swiftness and bottom of a well-trained horse will be severely tested in an attempt to overtake him. When pursued, or when urged on by thirst, rough ground and a tumble now and then seems hardly to retard him; plunging down the steep sides of abrupt ravines and up the opposite slopes, as though irregularities of the surface were no obstacle to his progress. The buffaloes also exhibit astonishing experience at climbing; often, when inquest of water, making precipitous descents, where it would be impossible to follow with a force, and even where a man would clamor down with difficulty. Ordinarily, however, the bison shows commendable sagacity in his choice of routes, usually choosing the easiest grades in the most direct courses; so that a “buffalo trail” way be depended upon as affording the most direct road through the region it traverses.
That the buffalo is capable of complete domestication has been most thoroughly demonstrated; but as yet there have been no persistent, systematic attempts to perpetuate either a pure or mixed race, nor to test its value as a drought animal, or for other purposes. But the buffalo is susceptible of domestication, and that it will breed freely with our domestic cattle, was well-known in Kentucky and West Virginia nearly a century ago. As early as 1730 buffalo calves had frequently been taken by the settlers, and brought up among the domestic cattle; being, however, mainly as objects of curiosity. According to Gallatin, a mixed breed was quite common ninty years ago in some of the north-western counties of Virginia; but they gradually became merged into the common domestic herd, through lack of fresh supply of wild blood. Other writers also referred to its susceptibility of domestication, and of the probability of its forming, through crossing with the domestic cattle, a superior breed of working oxen. More recently a most thorough test of the domesticability of the buffalo was made in Kentucky, by Mr. Robert Wickliffe, who bred them for a period of over thirty years, obtaining his wild stock from the upper Missouri country. The experiment was entirely successful, but the herd at last became merged with his common stock through neglect. The mix breed proved larger than either the wild or tame stock, but were inferior in milking qualities, though they gave promise of forming a stronger breed of working oxen.
As yet no attempts appears to have been made to perpetuate and unmixed domestic race of the buffalo. Such a project, however, is not only feasible, but would doubtless be attended with profitable results. Experience shows that even the first generations are no mere dangerous to handle than ordinary cattle; being far more traceable, in fact, than the half wild stock of the Texas plains. If they should chance to prove incapable of rivaling our domestic race — the result of centuries of careful breeding– it might still be profitable, as well as attractive addition to our domesticated animals. Is capabilities as a mixed race should certainly be thoroughly tested, and no time is more favorable than the present. Many of our frontier settlers in Kansas, Colorado and Texas live on the very borders of its range, thus enabling them to supply themselves with the young animals necessary for the enterprise with little cost or trouble, and the experiment could be tried under the most favorable circumstances possible, of waiting all the risk attending change of habitat and acclamations.
If the buffalo is due to be soon added to the list of animals known only in history or from their fossil remains, he will not disappear without having played an important part in the history of the region he inhabited, or without having contributed something to the advance of civilization. After having formed for thousands of years the main subsistence of hundreds of thousands of the native inhabitants of this continent, his products have added greatly to the comfort of more civilized humanity, and rendered possible the exploration and development of our vast plains at a much less sacrifices of comfort and pecuniary means than could otherwise have been the case. Besides furnishing the pioneer settler with a sure means of subsistence in till other resources became available, he has furnished fresh food to the numerous private and government exploring parties, where it could not have been otherwise accessible. Hardly less important to the explorer has been its dried excrement- the bois des Vaches of the Voyageur — which has proved and unfailing and invaluable substitute for would, over the hundreds of thousands of square miles of treeless plains. In the narratives of military reconnaissance and other government explorations of this region, as well as those of private explorers and travelers, the first meeting with “buffalo chips” in Chronicled as an item of importance, infinitely affecting the welfare of the party, as it not only generally gives promise of soon meeting with herds of the animals themselves, but ensures fuel for the campfire and for culinary purposes, in regions where supplies of firewood are either precarious or entirely wanting.
The presence in any country of immense herds of wild herbivorous animals, is of course incompatible with the simultaneous existence there of agriculture, and that the bison has virtually disappeared from the more versatile portions of our plains and prairies before vast fields of wheat and corn appeared over the same areas, shows that the time for his restriction has already come. If, however, he is allowed to become extinct without some effort to preserve for a time is existence in the more worthless portions of public domain — portions but for a long time, if not forever, will be useless for agricultural purposes — it will be a truly lamentable and disgraceful fact in our nation’s history.
From the facts already given it is evident that the buffalo cannot long survive unaided by government protection, and it is greatly to our disgrace that nothing has yet than done to check the wholesale and almost useless murder of these defenseless beast. No adequate law for its protection has yet been enacted, either by the general government or by that of the different States and territories which includes portions of its range. How to best protect it, and region so sparsely populated, and where laws are so easily set at defiance, presents by no means an easy problem, and yet one not hopeless of solution. The great traffic in hides could easily be checked and wholly controlled. F allowed at all, the killing should be restricted to certain seasons of the year, and the destruction of the females in the young wholly prohibited. Government inspectors should be appointed, and no sale of hides be allowed without their examination by these officers, while a suitable fine or other penalty should follow each violation of the law. Buffalo hunting should also be wholly prohibited during the period between June and October, and the destruction of females wholly prohibited after the beginning of December. It should be further made a grave offense to kill a buffalo at any time wantonly, or without properly utilizing it. In addition to this, certain portions of the public land now within the range of the buffalo, might be set apart as protected ground, within which no buffalo should on any condition be killed, and within which the pursuant of them should be prohibited. It is a matter that demands prompt attention, and it is to be hoped that the present Congress will give it the consideration its importance merits. J. A. Allen
The Inter Ocean. May 19 1876 BBCody denies he shot a Tx Sheriff
The York Daily May 24 1876
The Weekly Commonwealth -Topeka K.S. Jun 22 1876
The Daily Commonwealth Topeka Ks June 10 1876
The Coffeyville Weekly Journal
Coffeyville, Kansas Jul 1 1876
Fight with a Buffalo
We learn from Mr. H. C. Allen, of this city, the following facts concerning a rough and tumble fight between W. N. Morphy, late of this city, and a nearly full-grown buffalo calf , which for cool daring beats anything we have as yet heard of. On Tuesday last, Messrs. Allen and Morphy were driving along the prairie between Buckner and the Saw Log a herd of buffalo were seen approaching. As soon as the animals came in sight a thirst for blood was aroused within the minds of the travelers. The only weapons in the outfit worry thirty-two caliber revolver and a ripping knife. Morphy jumped on his pony with the revolver, and struck out for the game, Allen following with the ripping knife as soon as he could detach one of his horses from the wagon, and secure the other. Morphy soon had a victim singled out and fired at him five times; but the pony jumped up and down in such a manner that not one of the shots took effect. Soon getting tired of the running, the animal turned and charged on the pony. He tried this several times, until the matter the coming somewhat monotonous to the recipient of its attentions, he charged on the buffalo. They collided, and the pony, buffalo and Morphy were scattered all over the ground. All three regain their footing at the same time; and each commenced business; the buffalo to butting the pony, and Morphy to kicking the buffalo. While busily engaged in this pleasing entertainment the animal, turning quickly, made for Mr. M. the latter seized him around the neck and a loving embrace and they went to the earth together, the man uppermost. Just at this stage of affairs Mr. Allen arrived and while the bison was down thrust his knife into his vitals, thus ending one of the most novel struggles ever heard of outside of the ten cent novel. Hays City (Kan.) Star, June 15th
Aug 2 1876 Juniata Sentinel and Republican Mifflintown Pa Destruction of the Buffalo
THE CENTENNIAL STATE
The Times Pennsylvania
Aug 3rd 1876
All About Colorado-It’s Soil, Climate, Agriculture and Mineral Resources and Wonderful Parks
Colorado, the twenty-sixth State which has been admitted to the Union since Vermont became a State, in 1792, lies in the centre of the Rocky Mountain region, between the thirty-seventh and forty-fifth parallels of north latitude and the one-hundred-and-second and one-hundred-and-ninth meridian of west longitude, covering an area of 104,500 square miles, a territory nearly equal in extent to the four central States- New York, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Delaware. The snow-capped peaks of the Rocky Mountains form of water-shed, running nearly north and south through the centre of the State, the highest elevation being 15,000 feet- nearly equal to that of the much-sought king of the Alps, Mont Blaine. To the east of the central range and the mountains gradually fall off in height until the country becomes simply hilly, then rolling, and finally, on the eastern border, it shades off into Kansas an immense elevated plain, a portion of the formally so-called “Great American Desert.” Over all this district grows a tall, rich grass, upon which vast herds of buffalo and other graminivorous animals have lived for centuries, and upon which domesticated animals thrive as well as upon indigenous herbage. To the west the country is more mountainous and made less easy of access by several transverse ranges of mountains of no small dimensions.
Colorado can scarcely be called treeless, for although upon its vast Eastern prairies it is rare that a tree is to be seen, the river bottoms, which are often quite broad and considerably below the level of the surrounding plains are always well timbered, and upon the mountain sides, even to the line of perpetual snows, are found almost every variety of the pine family. The soil is rich and especially adapted to cereals and vegetables, and fruits, except perhaps the peach, do exceedingly well. The native grass is remarkably nutritious and furnishes the best of pasture, winter as well as summer, for the rapidly increasing herds of cattle and sheep. The climate is remarkably healthful. The air is clear, dry and pure, the very best for those afflicted with diseases of the throat and lungs, and notwithstanding the altitude the changes of temperature are neither sudden nor great, the thermometer rarely writing above 80° or falling below 20°, Fahrenheit. Owing to the dryness of the atmosphere the intermitting and remitting beavers and agues, which have been the unfailing companion of pioneers, on account of the miasma arising from tracts of newly-tilled earth, have not been known there.
The agricultural resources of the State are being sold rapidly developed that it is difficult to ascertain at any time the value of the farms, their stock, implements or products. Of the latter the most important are wheat and corn, tobacco, wool, potatoes, butter, cheese and hay. Stock raising is at present Colorado’s most important resource. The average fall of rain on the plains and in the valleys is twenty inches, but this falls almost entirely during the rainy season, which embraces the months of May, June and July, and in the snows of early winter. So for several months artificial irrigation is an absolute necessity for abundance and crops, and in many seasons is all that can prevent complete failure, and the farmer in selecting lands must do so having in view the convenience with which water can be introduced by artificial means. The acquias or irrigating canals are constructed chiefly with the plow and scraper, and operation costing but little compared with their intrinsic value to the farmer. Acquias have been constructed thirty or forty miles in length, with the fall of four feet per mile, and watering from 20,000 to 25,000 acres, each adjoining proprietor paying his proportional share to its construction and maintenance. The South Fork of the Platte, the Arkansas, and the Rio Grande and the Grand rivers rise nearer to the centre of the State, and are the middle lines of its four great water-sheds.
The parts of Colorado are a distinct and remarkable feature of the mountainous region, being apparently the basins of former lakes, deprived of their waters by volcanic agency, retaining their original outlines, and their lowest depths are from 6000 to 9000 feet above the level of the sea. Many of these, of course, are small, but four of them possess an area varying from one to twenty thousand square miles. These four parks-the North, Middle, South and Luis Parks-possess the richest soil, the most perfect climate, plenty of game, wood in every variety, the most delicious water, and have been, since emigrants first began to start their slow caravans from St. Louis or St. Joe, the cases in those vast prairies which they have sought most assiduously and when they had found them settled and almost reveled in.
The gold and silver mines were supposed to be confined to the park and mountain region, commencing in Summit and Boulder counties and extending to the south, with of width of from thirty to sixty miles, to the northern boundary of New Mexico, but in 1873 another extensive gold district was discovered in Conetos county, in the southwest corner of the State, South of the Sierra de la Plata, which has proved itself particularly rich in gold and silver. The total yield of gold before 1873 was more than sixty millions, and the yearly product now is more than two millions. This silver production scarcely less importance. The gold is generally found in copper and iron pyrites and silver is alloyed with galena and zinc. The northeast portion of the State is rich in red hematite and magnetic iron ores, while further south, among the foot-hills of the mountains, are the outcropping of the immense lignite and albertite coal beds.
In 1873 there were about 600 miles of railroad in the State, mostly belonging to the Denver Pacific, the Kansas Pacific, and the Denver and Rio Grande Railroads. The population of the State in 1873 was over 80,000, although the country did not commence to attract emigrants particularly until 1858-9.
In educational matters Colorado has always been forward and liberal, and libraries, academics, newspapers and churches are, in proportion to the population, both numerous and flourishing.
The Inter Ocean Chicago Aug 17 1876 Sitting Bull as a Prisoner
Sept. 23rd 1876
The Inter Ocean
The Commissioners Have Another Big Talk Regarding the Black Hills
Under Protest the Chiefs Affix Their Signature to the Treaty
Another Big Tale
Red Cloud Agency, Sept. 20, via Fort Laramie, Wy. T., Sept. 22.-10:30 this morning the Indians sent word to the commission that they were ready for another council, and the Commission at once prepared for a “talk.” The attendance of the Indians was much larger than yesterday.
The First Speaker
was Little Wound, who said yesterday that he heard something that made him almost cry. He has always considered that when they Great Father made arrangements for the railroad through the Indians country, he would pay for it for fifty years. He has always considered this his own country, it made him cry. The different kinds of animals that he wanted were not for one band, but for all the bands, for all time. He wanted the President to give them, each year, three kinds of wagons. He wishes that all the white men who married into the tribe would live with them always, and that it be not possible to send them away at any time. “Whenever you have set bounds to our reservations, you make a law that we should not go beyond them, and we wish you to give $25 each year to each of our women and children.” He wished that the white men who are living among the Brules, who are married to the Ogaliala women, to come and live with them. He was willing to sign the papers which the Commission had brought here, on condition that while the young men are gone into Indian country, those who stayed here should be fed, and that the commission should see to it that rations are brought here until spring, and he wanted the annuity goods issued to them before the end of the present new moon, as though weather will soon be cold. “You have forbidden us to hunt the buffalo.” He understood that there was $25 each to be given them yet, in addition to the $25,000 that they had already received for hunting privileges in Nebraska. When the agency was established here they had a right to go and hunt, but he understood when the new agency was established that they would be deprived of $25 per head in place of it.
on the part of the commission, replied that with reference to the things which he asked for, they are all, and more, provided for in the paper which they are asked to sign. This commission will use all their power to secure rations for them through the winter, and he himself would promise to go to the Great Council at Washington to do all he could in behalf of their people. With reference to the annuity goods, the commission could not say what time they would get here. The Commissioner of Indian Affairs had gone to New York to purchase them. They might now be on the way, and the commission would write a letter today about the matter. As for the white men who had married into tribe, they would not be interfered with, but bad white men who come here to stay a few days, and do the Indians injury, would not be allowed to stay.
Little Wound then said he wanted the commission to make haste and lay the matter before the Great Council, and the Indians themselves desired to go to Washington and see the Great Father. They also wished a copy of everything that was said here given to them, so that they could take it to Washington, so there could be no mistake.
Colonel Boone said that the commission had no right to change the paper presented to them. He was glad that they had shown an interest in the half-breed children. A full copy of all that was said should be given to them, and the paper presented for them to sign, as soon as the Secretary could make it out.
Bishop Whipple said it was for them to select the Indians whom they wish to sign the treaty, and it would be presented to them in the afternoon. In the meantime, the provision for the feast would be given them.
Little Wound said that the Commission had said nothing about the additional $5000 that was promised them for their hunting rights; to which Judge Gaylord replied that the President had tried to get it for them last winter, that could not. The Commission would do all they could this winter to secure them that money, but could not promise than any money certainly.
The Indians were then informed that the Commission wanted the chief and two headmen of each band selected to sign the treaty at 3 o’clock this afternoon.
Red Cloud Agency, Neb., Sept.20, via Sidney, Neb.,Sept. 22. –This evening
The Commission Consummated A Treaty
with the Sioux, Cheyenne, and Arapahoe’s at this agency, the Indians agreeing to the propositions made to them on the 7th inst. without the change of a single word, which proposition has already been published in full. The following named Indians were selected by their people to sign for the Ogallalas, after the treaty had been read over, and interpreted to them before signing. Red Cloud, Young-Man_Afraid_of-his-Horses, Red Dog, Little wound, American Horse, Afraid-of-the-Bear, Three Bears, Fire Hunter, Quick Bear, Red Leaf, Fire Eyes-Man, White Bow, Good Bull, Sorrel Horse, Weasel Bear, Two Lance, Bad Wound, High Bear, He-Takes_The-Evenving_Solider, Slow Bull, High Wolf, Big Foot. The Cheyennes and Arapahoe’s will not sign until tomorrow, after which the Commissioners will start at once for the Spotted Tail Agency in consummate the treaty there.
To the surprise of the commissioners, after they had offered their signatures to the treaty,
The Indians Hung Back
and speeches were made by a number of them before they would touch the pen and make their mark. Red Cloud said: “I am the friend of the President, and you men who have come here to see me are the chief men and men of influence. You have come here with the words of the Great Father; therefore, because I am his friend, I have said yes to what he has said to me, and I suppose that makes you happy. I don’t like it that we have a soldier here to give us food. It makes our children’s hearts go back and forth. I wish to have Major Howard for my agent, and I want to have you send word to Washington so that he can come here very soon. If my young men come back and say teat country is bad, it will not be possible for me to go there. As for the Missouri River country, I think if my people should move there to live they would all be destroyed. There are a great many bad men there, and bad whiskey: therefore, I don’t want to go there. A great many of my white relatives have no money: if they are employed to go to the Indian Territory and look at the country, I hope they will be paid out of the money of the Great Father that you have with you. In addition to this, I mentioned yesterday that I want to go with my young men, who are Mr. Foot, Charlie Gneru, E.W.Raymond, Austin Leodean, and Sam Don.
Young-Man-Afraid said: “This is the country where I was born. I have never made any man’s heart feel bad. I have thought the Great Spirit intended I should.
Live Here And Raise My Children Here
I wish that the Great Father should take care of me, and I should leave here with my children. These white people who have married among us give notice that it will take me a long time to learn to labor, and I expect the President will see me for hundred years- perhaps a great deal longer. The promises that have been made by the Great Father heretofor have not been carried out: therefore, I have been unwilling to go see him, though I have been often invited. Dr. Daniels will remember bringing back from Washington the word that there was where we were to raise our children. I have appointed to live here: therefore, I have never traveled about to see other countries. You never heard of me behaving badly.” With this he took the pen in his hand, and, as he made his mark, said: “That a is to signify that the Great Father has fed and clothed me 100 years, and given the wagons and cattle.”
Red Dog said; “I want the Great Father to make haste and send me that Man-Painting (Maj. Howard) for Agents also Bennett and Daniels, to assist me.”
Little Wound: “I told you before that I must have my annuities within two months, and provisions to last me until spring.”
American Horse said: “In regard to this arrangement about the Black Hills,, it is to last along as we last.”
Man-Afraid-of-the-Bear took hold of the pen, saying: “The others have said enough,” and signed and returned to his seat.
Three Bears inquired for how many years they would stay. He thought it should be for five generations.
Fire Thunderer came up holding his blanket over his eyes and signed blindfolded, returning to his place in silence.
Big Foot, who has been engaged in agricultural several years, said: “I am a farmer. I wanted 100 wagons, but have never seen them yet. I am the man that is going down to see that country.”
Crow, with a good voice, refused to sign the treaty, and walked away with quite a show of indignation, but all the others who had been solicited and were present affixed their cross paper, a copy of which was given to them at their request.
Bull Eagle And The Band
Special Telegram to the Inter Ocean}
Sioux City, Iowa, Sept. 22.- Since Bull Eagle and his band refused to surrender their ponies and guns to General Buell at Cheyenne Agency, nothing has been heard from there or any other point where trouble was anticipated.
The Chicago Daily Oct 2 1876
The Inter Ocean Oct 7 1876
Reading, Pennsylvania Oct 21 1876
DEMOCRATIC BUFFALO FEAST
The Democratic leaders of the Berks are smart! The party has been out in the cold so long, and has grown so lean and hungry that it is deemed absolutely necessary to give the rank and file a good ‘feed” before election day so as to prepare them for the struggle. To this and the leaders have invested in a pair of lean scraggy buffaloes — the same that were tramped through the country by the California Troupe of “rough riders,” who gave several exhibitions a month or so ago on the Reading Fair Ground. The Buffaloes have been “lassoed” so often and works so hard that they look no more like the great Bison of the plains than Barnum’s “Woolly Horse.” The “Buffalo Feed’ is to take place on the Fair Ground, on Thursday of next week, on which occasion there is to be a grand mass meeting in the Reading of the friends of Tilden and Hendericks, including 100 young ladies, if so many can be found, who are to sing patriotic airs from the grand stand. As we have said the Democrats are smart. It has always been customary hitherto to have Ox or Buffalo Roast, after great battle had been fought– and won! But the Democrats well know that they cannot afford to wait. If they can’t have their buffalo meat in advance, they are fearful of not getting it at all ! They will “eat, drink and be happy” – before they die- politically speaking. They propose to gorge themselves with roast buffalo next week – preparatory to another four years of exile at the headwaters of Salt River ! It was a happy thought, and we hope our friends of the Tilden persuasion will have a ”good time” – for one day at least. After that – the deluge !
The Evening Gazette
Port Jervis, New York Oct 28 1876
WHERE THE ________________________
A paragraph in Sunday morning Pioneer Press and Tribune _______ the fact that the
St. Paul fur house of H.B. Young & Co., had no in store something like 12,000 buffalo robes, which were preparing for the markets of the United States. The traffic in buffalo robes formerly passed through St. Paul in bulk to Chicago, New York, and other Eastern cities, where they were overhauled and prepared for market. Now, however, a very large proportion of the robe trade of the Northwest is carried on here, the house alluded to above securing annually from 12,000 to 20,000 robes direct from Indian traders. Several other ____ in St. Paul consumed large quantities of robes in the manufacture of overcoats and other articles, which are distributed to dealers throughout the country.
Major F.H. Eastman is the collector of robes for the house of Young & Co., and he secures his collections personally from the original sources of supply, the principal one being Fort Belton. From this port the robes are shipped by host to Bismarck and thence to St. Paul and from St. Paul to Chicago and New York.
The buffalo ranges are annually becoming more circumscribed and their ultimate exhaustion is merely a question of time. Formally the bison roamed all over North American continent; while now, according to Major Eastman, this animal can only be found in about three localities. One herd ranges is along the headwaters of the Arkansas and Platte rivers; a smaller one browses among the Big Horn Mountains and the valleys and plains in that region, while the great mass make their home North of the Missouri and spread themselves to the Saskatchewan and westward to the Rocky Mountains. Formerly too, it was supposed that the buffalo spent the winter on the plains of Texas and the Southwest, but lately the buffalo have changed their habits, and the immense herds north of Missouri stay there all year round. There seems to be no difficulty in securing forage in the North during the winter, for buffalo killed in January are as fat as any other season, while the meat is much better in winter than in summer. The buffalo, with their feet and horns scraped the snow from the prairies, and eat the dried grass with a relish. Maj. Eastman says that the domestic cattle in Montana also run wild, and live through the winter unprotected and uncared for, and in the spring are found in comparatively good condition.
This theory of those most familiar with the subject is that the buffalo and the Indian will perish together. Though the Indian is in constant pursuit of this noble game, the buffalo never avoids his Savage prosecutor. On the contrary, the Indian will establish his camping ground and then actually drive the buffalo to within a short distance of his wigwam before he kills him, thus avoiding any extended transportation of the raw hides to the place where they are dressed by the squaws. Now, on the other hand, the buffalo like the Indian, seem to have an instinctive aversion to the white man, and when the emigrant wagon and the railroad car shall people the West and Northwest, the buffalo will seek new and more invisible fields; and finally, when he is surrounded on all sides, he will lie down and die, and will have no more buffalo robes. Men now living will remember when the Pacific slope was one vast buffalo range, while to-day there is scarcely a buffalo to be seen West of the Rocky Mountains. But it is admitted that it may be a long while before the last buffalo shall pass in his robe, for the vast range of country spreads out between the Missouri River and the Saskatchewan, which is a natural feeding ground for the buffalo, and there is no perceptible diminution of the prodigious, herd that roams over this spare. There are collected annually at Fort Benton alone about 120,000 robes, nearly all of which are taken from the great northern herd, and yet the Indians and traders find no greater difficulty now in getting them from their original owners than they did years ago. — St. Paul Pioneer Press.
The Austin Weekly Statesman
Nov 2 1876
Domestic Markets What hides?
Hides Steady; dry selected 17c; lightly salted 14 1/2c ; stack salted 12 1/2c ; wet salted 8 1/2c ; butchers green 7c.
Buffalo and Bison are quite different The Cincinnati Enquirer Ohio Dec 19 1876