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Massacre of U.S. Troops
Frank Leslie's Illustrated Newspaper
01/19/1867 No. 590 vol. XXIII pg. 280-281
Kansas State Historical Society
Film Number LM132

The Massacre of U.S. Troops at Fort Philip Kearney

Our full-page illustration represents this massacre. A detachment of nearly ninety soldiers was surrounded about four miles from Fort Philip Kearney, in Dakotah Territory, by the Sioux and Cheyenne Indians. Not a man escaped to tell the tale. It is now reported that Colonel Carrington, who is in command of the fort, has been relieved, and will be ordered under arrest for trial on charges of carelessness in the performance of his duty, it being claimed that he could have prevented the massacre.

It would seem as though it might be possible to so arrange matters as to preclude these constantly occurring massacres. Either the Indian tribes should be treated with such constant and uniform justice and firmness as would make them strongly our friends, or else, when the necessity arises, with such severity as would show them how much for their disadvantage it is to be hostile. It is difficult to dispossess ourselves of the idea that the first course would be successful if really tried. The Indians are, of course, still savage, and consequently not entirely amenable to the rules which govern civilized nations; but all men are naturally affected by justice, and they are not probably an exception to this universal rule. We cannot claim that we are not to blame in many cases where the disputes have arisen, and a want of justice in us is as bad as a massacre is in them.