Mt. Evans: Whose Land Are We Hiking On?
"Whose Land Are We Exploring On" is a series of blog posts dedicated to the historic significance of the wild places we love to explore. In this post we dig into the man Mt. Evans was named after, and the horrific events surrounding his "legacy".
WHOSE LAND ARE WE HIKING ON?
Mount Evans is located in Front Range of Colorado, within the Mount Evans Wilderness. The Ute Nation is thought to be the longest residing tribe in this area, dating back to as early as 8,000 years ago. However, many other tribes have at one time or another called this area home, including the Comanche, The Arapahoe, and The Cheyenne.
Mt. Evans was named after the second Governor of Colorado, John Evans. A little history of John Evans, he was forced to resign early due to his role in the Sand Creek Massacre. The Sand Creek Massacre was committed on November 29th, 1864. A Colorado Cavalry of 675, attacked and destroyed a village of the Cheyenne and Arapaho, killing and mutilating 70-163, about 2/3 of which were women and children. From there, soldiers decorated their hats and gear with scalps, human fetuses, and mutilated body parts, and then paraded throughout Denver, in celebration of their successful attack.
Today, activists are calling for Mt. Evans to be renamed to Cheyenne Arapaho Peak, Sand Creek Mountain, or Black Kettle Mountain (the Cheyenne Chief), in honor of the victims of The Sand Creek Massacre.