Denver's "Dark Knight"
The forgotten massacre
The Firpo Files
(Sentinel, July 26, 2012)
During a Denver-area midnight showing of The Dark
Knight Rises, James Holmes massacred twelve unsuspecting moviegoers, injured many others, and traumatized
a nation in one of America's darkest nights.
Cell phone videos have etched the
horrific scenes in our minds; seared them indelibly into our collective psyches. A global village prays
for victims' families.
But there was another Denver-related
massacre--even more horrific than Holmes'--that the world knows little or nothing about.
Sand Creek Massacre: While Holmes grew up in San Diego, he studied for his Ph.D. in Denver.
The city of Aurora, not far from Denver, is about 100 miles from the site of
the Sand Creek massacre that occurred on November 29, 1864.
Denver families were behind this mass murder of Cheyenne and Arapaho men, women and children," states
one Native American writer.
"In the spring of 1864
the Cheyenne and Arapaho were ready for peace. They met with US Officers, Evans and Chivington, at Camp
Weld outside of Denver.
"No treaties were signed. The Indians were offered
a sanctuary at Fort Lyon.
"Black Kettle and over 500
Cheyenne and Arapaho travelled south to set up camp on Sand Creek, near Eads, the town later built on top of the massacre
site. Some dissenters headed north to join the Sioux."
Samuel Curtis sent a telegram, ‘I want no peace till the Indians suffer more.' [Seven hundred] Cavalry volunteers called
‘100 Dazers' assembled in Denver.
"The camps of Chief Black Kettle,
White Antelope, Left Hand and others lay in the valley before them.
with mostly drunken troops, headed to Sand Creek with 4 Howitzers. Black Kettle raised both flags of
peace. Chivington raised his arm for attack.
rifles pounded the camp. The Indians scattered. The frenzied soldiers hunted down and murdered the men, women and children.
"A few warriors managed to fight back. Silas Soule of Massachusetts did
not allow his soldiers to fire into the crowd.
continued the murders all day. One bragged about killing 3 women and 5 children who were screaming for mercy."
"They murdered all the wounded, mutilated and scalped them. They cut open the
pregnant women's bellies and laid the fetus on the bodies.
tipis and divided up the herd of horses. Black Kettle's wife was shot 9 times and survived. The Cheyenne
Dog Warriors who opposed the peace treaty provided sanctuary for the survivors.
Denver's Dark Knight: "The Colorado volunteers returned to Denver as heroes, with scalps
of women and children. Colorado residents celebrated.
on a Denver stage telling war stories and displayed 100 Indigenous scalps, including pubic hair of
"Many of the elite of Denver society today
are the children of these murderers. Eyewitnesses came forward and reported the murders.
Soule testified against Chivington, and was murdered by Charles Squires. It was found to be a carefully
"As word of the massacre spread, the Indigenous
resistance to white expansion stiffened.
led to the Little Big Horn battle on June 25-6, 1876, where General George Custer and his men were wiped
out by the Lakota lead by Crazy Horse and Sitting Bull. In December 29, 1890, the US 7th Cavalry commanded by Samuel
M. Whitside lead the massacre of over 350 Lakota at Wounded Knee Creek."
Soldiers Black Embarrassment?: "That mindset to slaughter people was brought here....On
December 26, 1862, Lincoln sanctioned the hanging of 38 randomly picked Indian men and boys without trial, the largest mass
hanging in US history.
"One week later, January 1, 1863, Lincoln signed
the Emancipation Proclamation to free the slaves. The Blacks then formed the regiment called the Buffalo
Soldiers who proudly massacred the Indigenous for their masters.
both races celebrate their plunder with medals and the theft of our land."
Indeed, the indigenous peoples on this continent called the Buffalo Soldiers "Black White men."
"Was James Holmes trying to mimic the mindset of those Denver people? If he
is insane, then Washington, Grant and Lincoln, and all the other presidents who gave orders to totally annihilate
us, are all insane as well.
"The Americans must be
reminded of this continuing genocide. If they don't know their history, it is bound to repeat itself.
The lesson is: be careful what you ask for, you might just get it.
moviegoers went to the theatre to see murder, death, chaos and plunder. Then they got it for real!"
concludes the Native American writer.
My prayers go out for all. Peace and blessings.