Sand Creek Massacre: Film Analysis

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One November Morning was created by descendants of survivors of the Sand Creek massacre. The artwork depicts the events of that day. The works by artists Brent Learned (Arapaho), George Curtis Levi (Cheyenne), and BJ Stepp (Cheyenne) focus on the remembrance, honor and strength of their ancestors and leaders. Levi and Learned organized the exhibition which changed slightly at each venue based on which other artists could participate. In order to create this exhibition, Levi and Learned requested permission from the elders of the Northern Cheyenne, Southern Cheyenne, Northern Arapaho, and Southern Arapaho tribes. This exhibition, documentary, and program marked the first time in 150 years that the tribes had told their side of the story outside …show more content…
This hour-long documentary is available to view for free on YouTube. Learned and Levi created a program consisting of a slideshow presentation showing photos of their ancestors and today’s elders. They also shared oral histories passed down generation to generation. Learned and Levi are both talented, professional artists with works in the collection of the National Museum of the American Indian. Their typical artwork focuses more on traditional daily life. Creating the artwork for One November Morning was an act of determination and resilience. The paintings depict atrocities that were enacted upon their ancestors from only a few generations back. George Levi shared the story of how his Great-great-grandmother slept fully dressed every night of her life for fear that the soldiers would come …show more content…
It was situated in southeastern Colorado Territory, in country integral to overland mail and emigrant routes. Conflict between Cheyenne, Arapaho, and other Natives in the region and Colorado settlers had been growing more and more violent over the decade leading up to the massacre. Though it is not known for sure, many speculate that the military action against the band of Arapaho and Cheyenne camped outside Fort Lyon on the Sand Creek was meant to serve a decisive notice and warning to all “troublesome” tribes: Cease fighting and surrender or this will be your fate. Instead, Sand Creek is commonly considered to be the event that sparked the Great Plains Indian Wars that raged for over a decade, shaping an entire region’s settlement and thus its history. The massacre’s significance to the history of the American West is

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