Native Americans and Pioneers Cultures in Conflict
Utah becomes part of the U.S.A. • In 1846, the United States had gone to war with Mexico over the disputed territories of Texas and New Mexico (New Mexico included present-day Utah, Arizona, and New Mexico). • In 1848, The United States had control over all of the Western United States. • The California Gold Rush of 1849 brought a flood of people from east to west.
Clash of Cultures • The clash of cultures in Utah was different from other parts of the Western United States. • The Native Americans were displaced in Utah just like other places in the west, the way it happened was much different. • Native Americans and pioneers did intermingle for years.
Why didn’t Native Americans resist the pioneers at first? • Great Salt Lake City was in a neutral zone between the Ute and Shoshone tribes. • Because of this they were left alone until the pioneers began to expand settlements into Ute and Shoshone territories. • The Native Americans knew that they were there, but were peaceful with them because they were not on their land yet.
The First Skirmishes • Through 1847, and most of 1848 there were no problems between the two cultures. • After that Mormon pioneers started moving in to the Utah Valley where many Utes lived. • Some Timpanogot Utes began stealing cattle from the Mormon settlers.
Early changes in Indians’ lifestyle • A lot of the wild animals that the Native Americans depended on for survival were starting to disappear. • This was because of disease and also because Natives had also started to kill more so that they could trade with mountain men and pioneers. • Nature could have been a factor too.
Disease • Close association to the pioneers introduced diseases to which the native people had no resistance. • Typhoid, diphtheria, colds, influenza, chicken pox, tuberculosis, scarlet fever, measles, and smallpox could be deadly. • This had happened before with Spanish explorers, but nevertheless it produced an epidemic.
Clash of Culture • The Mormons (and whites in general) and the Native Americans had a huge cultural gap between them. • Native Americans did not understand why farming was so important to pioneers when food was provided by nature. • Natives believed in wisdom and traditions passed down over time.
Clash of Culture • The settlers’ cultural values did not allow them to understand Native American ways • Interference of the slave trade by pioneers was seen by the Native Americans as trying to stop their way of life. • In some cases, Native Americans threatened to kill slaves if the Mormons did not purchase them.
Conflict among tribes • Shoshones, Utes, and Paiutes were all traditional enemies who did not like each other at all. • Most of the fights between tribes were about territory, or in retaliation for something that another tribe had done. • Fighting with another tribe was part of initiation into manhood for boys.
Conflict among tribes • The Shoshones and Utes both regarded themselves as “the people”. • When the pioneers first came each tribe initially feared other tribes more than the pioneers. • Ute leader Walkara wanted the Mormons as an ally, and asked them to settle in the Sanpete Valley to help dominate the Paiutes. • Native Americans had been fighting with each other for centuries before the pioneers came.
Major Indian-White Conflicts • In most cases, the settlers won the battles because the other tribes were never totally united against the settlers. • Some times Native Americans would fight alongside the settlers against their own tribes because of rivalries or safety. • The pioneers usually had some sort of Indian support, even when fighting other tribes.
The Gunnison Massacre • John W. Gunnison was a federal government engineer, and he was to survey a route for the new transcontinental railroad. • In 1853, his group made their way to Manti, then onto the Sevier River. • While camping, the group was attacked by a group of Pahvant Indians.
The Gunnison Massacre • Gunnison and six others were killed. • Four of Gunnison’s men escaped. • Later reports showed that the attack was probably in revenge for an earlier attack on the Indians by white immigrants. • This would raise tensions between the whites and Native Americans in Utah.
John W. Gunnison Gunnison Massacre Site Gunnison Massacre
The Walker War • Cattle raids had continued by the Ute Indians, particularly in the Sanpete Valley. • A large number of Western Utes decided to drive the Mormons from their settlements. • Constant arrival of pioneers had lead to tension between Native Americans and pioneers.
The Walker War • Slave trading, loss of animals, and a decline in Indian population were all factors that caused the Walker War. • An Indian was killed in Payson (Utah Valley) by a settler over a trade dispute. • The Utes responded and killed a militiaman at Fort Payson. • The whole region became a battleground.
The Walker War • Brigham Young responded by having settlers start to build forts to protect themselves from Indian attack. • Brigham Young wanted the settlers to be pacifists, and to continue to make offers of peace. • Some individual settlers refused to follow this policy and continued to fight Indians.
The Walker War • Brigham Young and Chief Walker eventually agreed to have a peace conference. • The fact that Chief Walker was willing to meet and that Brigham Young was coming to him, at Chicken Creek in Juab County, helped both sided realize that they were willing to compromise. This lead to peace.
Chief Walker (Walkara) Cove Fort Walker War
Goshute War • There was an overland stage route that ran between California and Missouri, and part of that trail ran through Northern Utah. • Goshutes and Shoshones started attacking stagecoach stations in Nevada and Utah. • U.S. Army troops attempted to establish order along the trail.
Goshute War • In one encounter south of Simpson Springs Station, troops surrounded and slaughtered an entire Indian camp of men, women, and children. • The Goshute war resulted in the deaths of sixteen whites and over one hundred Indians. • Seven stagecoach stations were destroyed
Goshute People Overland Stagecoach Station Goshute War
The Bear River Massacre • The Oregon Trail ran through Southern Idaho, and there had been a lot of conflicts between the Shoshone and travelers on the trail. • There had also been some conflicts between the Shoshone and Mormon pioneers living in Cache Valley. • Both of these situations created tension.
The Bear River Massacre • The Mormons had requested some help with defense against the Indians. • They did not want a battle or a fight with the Indians. • Captain Patrick Edward Connor, who was in charge of Army troops in Salt Lake City was eager to respond to the call for help.
Bear River Massacre Site Colonel Patrick Edward Connor Colonel Patrick Edward Conner
The Bear River Massacre • Connor was disliked by the Mormons and the Indians, and the feeling was mutual. • The reasons that he decided to come up to Cache Valley were not entirely clear, but it was probably for two reasons. • Some Shoshones had been attacking people on the Oregon Trail. • Conner wanted some glory for himself.
The Bear River Massacre • In January of 1863 Connor marched his troops through the snow up to Cache Valley. • When they reached Franklin, Idaho (my hometown) they talked with Mormon settlers. • Connor had already determined what he would do before he talked to the Mormons
Massacre Site Franklin, Idaho
The Bear River Massacre • Early in the morning of January 29, 1863 Connor and his men went to the edge of a bluff overlooking the Bear River where the Shoshone had made their winter camp. • Connor placed his artillery on the bluff, and had his infantry cross the river to the Shoshone camp. The Shoshone were still fast asleep.
The Bear River Massacre • Connor had his men attack, and by the time the Shoshone realized what was happening it was already a slaughter. • The Shoshone did fight back, but ran out of bullets within two hours. • After that the soldiers searched through the willows and killed all the Native Americans they found including women and children.
The Bear River Massacre • After the massacre was over, some soldiers went back through raping Indian women and bashing in the heads of Indian children. • The soldiers then carried their dead and wounded out of the battlefield and back to Salt Lake City. • The Shoshone bodies were left to be consumed by wolves and crows.
The Bear River Massacre • Chief Bear Hunter and Chief Lehi were both killed. • Connor reported that there had been a battle and that Indians had provoked him. • It was not until 70 to 80 years later that the truth came out and the result was that it has been called a massacre, where before it had been called the Battle of Bear River.
The Bear River Massacre • Connor was promoted to Colonel because of this. It was thought that he was a hero. • Mormons who came to the site to help the Shoshone were sickened by the scene. • Over 300 people died including over 250 Shoshone men, women, and children. • This was not well known because it happened during the Civil War.
Posey Rebellion • This was the last resistance that any Native American group in Utah put up against white settlers. • In the 1880’s cattle companies, settlers, and Navajo herders competed for land with Utes and Paiutes in San Juan County. • Within ten years the lifestyle of hunting and gathering of the Utes and Paiutes had almost dissapeared.
Posey Rebellion • This problem reached a crisis when several Utes and Paiutes were killed. • Two Utes escaped following their arrest for robbing a sheep camp. • Posey and group of men fought to keep their land, but it was not much of a war. • Posey was wounded and then died.
Native Americans and Religious Conversions • These religious conversions involved Indians converting to the Mormon church. • There were two reasons why this happened. • #1: Indians experienced an actual conversion. • #2 The Native Americans joined to make peace with the Mormon settlers.
The conversions sometimes happened after Indian leaders would have dreams. A Goshute man related the following experience: “The Mormon’s God was the true God, and he and the Indians’ Father were one; that he must go to the “Mormons” and they would tell him what to do, and that he must do it; that he must be baptized, with all his Indians; that the time was at hand… and stop their Indian life, and learn to cultivate the earth and build houses, and live in them.” -Ech-up-wy, Skull Valley (Tooele), 1876
Jacob Hamblin, Friend of the Indians • Jacob Hamblin was called by Brigham Young to be a missionary to the Indians in Southern Utah. • He was respected by them because he spoke their language and he had always been fair with them. • He learned their culture and was sympathetic towards their difficulties.
Jacob Hamblin said the following about Native Americans in Southern Utah: “The watering places are all occupied by the white man. The grass that [produced] mutch seed is all et out. The sunflower seed is destroyed. In fact there is nothing for them to depend on but beg or starve.” -Jacob Hamblin, 1880
Jacob Hamblin’s home in Santa Clara, Utah Jacob Hamblin