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7. The Powder River Expedition

Edited and Annotated by Charles M. Robinson III University of North Texas Press PDF

Chapter 7

The Powder River Expedition

The Powder River Expedition of the winter of 1875–76 was

Crook’s last field operation during the Great Sioux War, and is remembered for Col. Ranald Mackenzie’s destruction of the main

Cheyenne winter camp on November 25, 1876. Known as the Dull

Knife Fight, because of one of the principal Cheyenne chiefs present, it effectively broke Cheyenne military power.1 Bourke, who accompanied Mackenzie’s cavalry column as a volunteer observer, used it as the basis for his article “Mackenzie’s Last Fight with the

Cheyennes, A Winter Campaign in Wyoming and Montana,” which appeared in the Journal of the Military Service Institution of the

United States. A very lengthy article, it has since been reprinted several times in book form.

Bourke was not the only officer to keep a journal during this campaign. Lieutenant Colonel Richard Irving Dodge, 23rd Infantry, who commanded the infantry battalions, kept a daily record, which has been published as The Powder River Expedition Journals of Colonel Richard Irving Dodge. It would be difficult to find

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14. Religion

Bob Hammel Indiana University Press ePub



I’ve had a great time and enjoyed every minute of my life. If that’s heaven, I’ve had enough of it. And if there is an afterlife, that’s great.

—Bill Cook

For most people, one of the most private of personal matters is religion. Sometimes it’s not left that way, even among the best of friends.

Bill Carper and Bill Cook grew up together in Canton, Illinois. The closeness they have maintained has put Carper in an awkward spot a few times in recent years. “At our church, or even in other things around town,” Carper said, “when we’re raising money to pay for special projects, people know we’re good friends, so they look at me and say, ‘Bill Cook has all kinds of money. Why don’t you see if you can get something from him?’ I always say, ‘No way. He’s a friend. I’m not going to do that.’

“But a few years ago, our church had a major building campaign. This is the church he went to when he was a kid, and he was very active in it. You never know. I thought there was at least a chance he would want to do something. So I let myself be talked into saying I would see. And the next time I talked to him I said, ‘Here’s the deal …’ and told him the details of what we were doing. Bill listened, laughed a little bit, and said very nicely, ‘Well, I’ll tell you what: you do churches, and I’ll do schools.’ And that was fine. I hated like the dickens to impose.”

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Chapter 13

Mark T. Smokov University of North Texas Press PDF


Finis of the Ketchum Gang


bout early May 1899, during the time Kid Curry was preparing for his strike at the Union Pacific near Wilcox, Elzy Lay gave notice to manager William French of his intention to quit his horse-breaking job at the WS Ranch near Alma, New Mexico.1 He was going to join Sam

Ketchum and Will Carver in Cimarron for their strike at the Colorado and Southern Railway near Folsom. The latter two had recently broken with Tom Ketchum owing to his brutal and erratic behavior, and were setting up camp at their Turkey Creek Canyon hideout.2

Some authors have stated that Kid Curry participated in the robbery, or at least was onsite for the later gun battle at the hideout instead of

Carver. This is easily refuted in that the Pinkertons followed Curry’s trail

(Wyoming, Utah, and Colorado) for weeks after the Wilcox robbery, well into the month of July. In addition, Bob Lee stated in a deposition to authorities after his arrest, that Curry went to visit his sister Allie in

Kansas City, Missouri, shortly after the Fourth of July (just before the

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8 Learning to Love the Bomb

Rudolf A. Raff Indiana University Press ePub

As I was completing my Ph.D. dissertation in the spring of 1967, I uneasily awaited my orders to report for active duty in the U.S. Navy. The anticipation was tense because I was a line officer and thus could have been sent to serve in a warship cruising off the Vietnam coast, a depressing thought. The Vietnam War was every day becoming ever more obviously a futile exercise made up of empty victories and doctored body counts. Each night statistics were reported in television briefings featuring confident and heavily be-medaled generals who jabbed pointers at authoritative-looking multicolor charts. No matter how glorious the assertions, effective victories were elusive. The war was a waste of life without any claim to a valid purpose. There were fevered references to hapless countries succumbing to communism like falling dominoes if American troops went home, but in reality combat churned on only to protect the reputation of a president who couldn’t admit defeat. The fateful orders finally arrived. The envelope lying on my desk held my future – orders were orders. It seemed like the famous box containing Schrödinger’s cat, which existed in an undecided state between life and death. I opened the envelope; the cat was alive. I had been assigned to a research institute at the National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland, which had a slot for a line officer. With my assignment to active duty, Beth got a booklet in the mail called Welcome Aboard to the Navy Wife. She was incredulous at the instructions about when and how to wear white gloves and, worst of all, that she should respond to the wishes of her commanding officer’s wife as her husband did to his commanding officer’s orders. Actually, nothing of the sort happened, and we shared social occasions with friends serving similar tours of duty.

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Appendix 2 • Orders of particular importance to Bourke's narrative—Arizona

Edited and Annotated by Charles M. Robinson III University of North Texas Press PDF







their desire and the desire of their people to conclude a permanent peace.

These propositions are made in the midst of a campaign in which they have been severely punished, and the Department Commander, believing in their sincerity, announces and hereby declares peace with the tribes referred to.

The basis of this peace is simply that these Indians shall cease plundering and murdering, remain upon their several reservations, and comply with the regulations made by the Government, through authorized agents, for them.

So long, therefore, as they remain true to their agreement, they will be protected by the Military of this Department in the enjoyment of all their rights under the law.

After sufficient time shall have elapsed to enable the friends of any renegades still at large to bring them in upon their proper reservations, post commanders will use the troops at their command to pursue and force them in, and in case any such straggling bands continue to remain absent without proper authority, they will be forced to surrender or be destroyed.

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