Thursday, October 15, 2009

Cheyenne/Arapaho tribes in Wyo., Mont. and Okla. win preservation award

The Billings Gazette reports this:

The National Trust for Historic Preservation has presented its Preservation Honor Award to the Cheyenne and Arapaho Tribes of Montana, Wyoming and Oklahoma.

The award to the tribes was one of 23 bestowed by the National Trust during its 2009 National Preservation Conference in Nashville, Tenn.

On Nov. 29, 1864, U.S. military troops attacked a peaceful encampment of Cheyenne and Arapaho along Sand Creek in what is today southeastern Colorado.

More than 150 American Indians -- many of them women, children and the elderly -- were killed in the attack. Nearly four years later, Lt. Col. George Armstrong Custer led a surprise dawn raid on a sleeping Southern Cheyenne encampment along the Washita River in western Oklahoma.

Today, more than 140 years after the carnage, both the Sand Creek Massacre Site and the Washita Battlefield are National Historic Sites, thanks in large measure to the Cheyenne and Arapaho tribe members who would not let their history be forgotten.

Along with the Cheyenne and Arapaho Tribes, co-recipients honored were the National Park Service; Steve Brady; Otto Braided Hair; Ben and Gail Ridgely; Lee LoneBear; Richard Williams; Gov. Darrell Flyingman; and Chief Gordon Yellowman.

Winners of the National Preservation Awards will appear in the ovember/December issue of Preservation Magazine and online at