Drive By History, Part 2: Camp Weld

It says thusly:

This memorial is the property of the State of Colorado

This is the Southwest corner of
Camp Weld
established September 1861 for
Colorado Civil War Volunteers,
Named for Lewis L. Weld, first
Secretary of Colorado territory.
Troops leaving here Feb. 22, 1862
Won victory over Confederate Forces
at La Glorieta, New Mexico. Saved
The Southwest for the Union
Headquarters against Indians 1864-65
camp abandoned 1865
_

erected by
The State Historical Society of Colorado
from
The Mrs. J.N. Hall Foundation
and by
The City and County of Denver
1934

B50 Note: This monument is located at the corner of 8th and Vallejo Streets in an industrial section of Denver criss-crossed by highways and overpasses. Check out the “Drive By History” series of unnoticed monuments in Denver.

On September 28th, 1864, the Camp Weld Council was held at this location. At this meeting, territorial governor John Evans met with Cheyenne and Arapaho Chiefs, including Black Kettle and White Antelope. The Arapaho and Cheyenne left the council believing that if they returned to Fort Lyon (in what is now Southeastern Colorado) they would be able to live in peace with the white settlers. Two months later (on November 29th, 1864), their camp at Sand Creek was attacked and many were massacred by Colorado Volunteers under the command of Colonel John Chivington.

A transcript of the meeting is available on Kevin Cahill’s very informative site, kclonewolf.com. This photograph was taken following the Camp Weld Council, and includes many of the participants (photo courtesy of the Colorado Historical Society).

Camp Weld Council, September 28th, 1864. Standing L-R: Unidentified, Dexter Colley (son of Agent Samuel Colley), John S. Smith, Heap of Buffalo, Bosse, Sheriff Amos Steck, Unidentified soldier. Seated L-R: White Antelope, Neva, Black Kettle, Bull Bear, Na-ta-Nee (Knock Knee). Kneeling L-R: Major Edward W. Wynkoop, Captain Silas Soule.
Camp Weld Council, September 28th, 1864. Standing L-R: Unidentified, Dexter Colley (son of Agent Samuel Colley), John S. Smith, Heap of Buffalo, Bosse, Sheriff Amos Steck, Unidentified soldier. Seated L-R: White Antelope, Neva, Black Kettle, Bull Bear, Na-ta-Nee (Knock Knee). Kneeling L-R: Major Edward W. Wynkoop, Captain Silas Soule.

5 Replies to “Drive By History, Part 2: Camp Weld”

  1. My great great grandparents,the Milisons, purchased Camp Weld after the U.S.Army abandoned the use of this facility sometime in the late 1880’s. The used it as a trading post for income. My Grandmother used to tell me about how she and her two brothers would go there from their home in Indiana to visit. She would tell me about how when they (the children)would see the Indians coming to trade, they would run into the house to tell their grandmother Milison. She would put coffee on the stove and biscuits in the oven for the Indians. She also told of how the squaws would leave their papooses (infants laced in the “carriers” in the sun. The children would move them into the shade and the squaws would scold the kids for doing this.

    I only wish I had more information to share with my daughter and granddaughters about this personal family history. They live in Thornton CO — which, coincidentally,was my grandmother’s maiden name. I would be thrilled to receive any additional information you may have about Camp Weld that I can pass on to my grandkids and adult cousins.

    Thanks for your website!

    Yours truly,
    Molly Martin

  2. I grew up in Denver. My father drove past this monument every day on his way to work in the railroad yards. I asked him many times why that monument was there — he couldn’t tell me. Now that I am 72 years of age my curiosity has been satisfied by the wonder of the internet. Thank you.

  3. My Grandmother was a Weld, so I have been interested in the history of Lewis Ledyard Weld. My 8 year old grandson is researching Lewis for a class project. We will be visiting this location today to take photos.

  4. This is not where the meeting was held
    It was actually held in bijou basin at the now elbert/elpaso county line
    The building still stands
    Everything in the picture including the position of nails shows that it was done where the giant willows were(south side of the bijou basin). Notice all natives are also toed and soldiers are armed
    Now look up bijou basin all the men in picture are depicted in the basin This was actually done in the peaceful place known as the fremont fort house

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