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Looking at the conceptual drawing of the monument published in the Sons of Colorado publication Vol, 1 #12 pg. 31 , the Indian on the back of a horse reared up on his back legs, pushes the definition of "final".

A few excerpts from that same issue provides insight into the mindset of the pioneers.

"the Eastern point of view, a view, we venture to believe, shaped more familiarly with popular romance than by actual knowledge gained by contact with real conditions. And of course such a conception is, as
might be expected, vitally lacking in realism and cannot be satisfactory to a Western, and particularly a frontier constituency."
"To them the red man is a myth, a creature of the poet's fancy, the hero of a great story. The Indians who lend poetry to beautiful western tales are not the men who massacred the defenseless women and children forty-five years ago. They are not the hostile creatures who kept the stalwart men who had
blazed the trail to the far West constantly in fear in trembling.
This is the sort of Indian the pioneer knew."
Mr. W. R. Head, of Jefferson, Park county, Colo., an old and honored pioneer, writes:
“I like the stand that our association took in regard to the proposed monument. Men that never rode in anything rougher than a Pullman car or an auto have little idea of what we have had to go through. I have seen enough men, women and children killed by Indians to make a good-sized grave yard”.

Viewing historic figures like Kit Carson, and John Evans filtered through lenses of contemporary sensibilities does disservice to history. If those figures who made numerous contributions to the development of Colorado and the West are condemned for one or two actions then it would only be fair to likewise condemn the natives for their actions.

I would think a way on honoring the history of that time would be to return Kit Carson to his place on the Pioneer Monument (if indeed that is Kit Carson) and build a new monument nearby celebrating the earlier culture.

Thank you for reading and sharing. Your thoughts on how to best honor history are felt by many and systemic issues are complicated knots to unravel. Though I would point out that we cannot condemn all "natives" for the actions of some, while only judging Carson and Evans on their own personal actions. Part of this is focusing on indigenous people as humans like us, something that was missing from both the "eastern" and "pioneer" viewpoints you reference.


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