Annuities Distribution to the Cheyenne . Circa 1860 . Fort Larned . Kansas . Watercolor & Gouache . 40" x 21"
... annuity payments were established by the United States Government throughout the 1800's as a means of bribing the indigenous Native American People to cease hostilities against the United States... as settlers, the railroad and industry increasingly encroached upon their territories... and as a meager form of payment for the land that was simultaneously taken from them... a practice that in a more sophisticated application, continues to this day. At Fort Larned, Kansas... Indian Agent Edward Wynkoop administered these distributions to the Cheyenne and Arapahoe Tribes & Jesse Leavenworth conducted transactions for the Comanche, Kiowa and Plains Apache. Wynkoop, a man of integrity, abruptly resigned his position after receiving news, 2 days following George Armstrong Custer's ruthless, pre-dawn massacre of peaceful, Black Kettle Cheyenne, men, women & children at their winter camp along the Washita River, in 1868... in what is now Oklahoma. This illustration was created for the National Park Service interpretive museum at Fort Larned, Kansas.