Press Release

History Colorado and National Park Service Open Sand Creek Massacre Exhibition in Partnership with the Cheyenne and Arapaho Tribes

DENVER — December 8, 2023 — History Colorado is partnering with the National Park Service (NPS) to open a satellite version of the national award-winning The Sand Creek Massacre: The Betrayal that Changed Cheyenne and Arapaho People Forever exhibition at the Sand Creek Massacre NHS Visitor and Education Center in Eads, Colorado. Opening on December 8, 2023, this exhibition recounts the deadliest day in Colorado history—Nov. 29, 1864—when U.S. troops brutally attacked a peaceful village of Cheyenne and Arapaho people who were promised military protection. More than 230 women, children and elders were murdered that day. 

Luke Perkins, Manager of Communications and Public Relations
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In addition to recounting the events of November 29, 1864, The Sand Creek Massacre: The Betrayal that Changed Cheyenne and Arapaho People Forever spotlights the living culture of the Cheyenne and Arapaho, two separate Tribes with distinct histories that were bound together forever after the tragedy at Sand Creek. Forced to leave Colorado after the Massacre, the Cheyenne and Arapaho people exist today as three sovereign Tribal nations in Montana, Oklahoma, and Wyoming. 

The satellite version of The Sand Creek Massacre: The Betrayal that Changed Cheyenne and Arapaho People Forever opening in Eads presents a condensed view of the larger display at the History Colorado Center in Denver, and builds onto the National Park Service’s existing interpretation both at the Massacre site and at its downtown Eads’ Visitor and Education Center that focus on the causes and consequences of the massacre. 

“This exhibit is one more important step in our efforts to provide meaningful education about the atrocities of the Sand Creek Massacre,” said Janet Frederick, Site Manager of the Sand Creek Massacre NHS. ”The NPS would like to extend our sincere thanks to the Sand Creek Massacre Foundation and the National Park Foundation whose generosity funded this satellite exhibition as well as History Colorado for their time, talent and assistance in creating this exhibit. We'd also like to acknowledge the assistance of our long time partners, the Northern Cheyenne Tribe, the Northern Arapaho Tribe and the Cheyenne and Arapaho Tribes.  This exhibit would not exist without their valuable input.”

The result of a ten-year partnership process that began in 2012 between History Colorado, National Park Service, and the three Tribal nations, this exhibition is a rare opportunity to explore the events of the Sand Creek Massacre based on Tribal accounts and oral histories from the descendants of those who survived the Massacre.

“The ​Sand Creek Massacre​ exhibition demonstrates that people can work humbly together to remember and begin to heal from atrocities and betrayals such as this,” said Shannon Voirol, Director of Affiliates for History Colorado. “It has been a pleasure to work in partnership with the Tribes as well as the NPS through the consultations that led to this exhibition, as well as on continued efforts to elevate this challenging part of our shared history.”

The Sand Creek Massacre: The Betrayal that Changed Cheyenne and Arapaho People Forever opens December 8, 2023, at the Sand Creek Massacre NHS Visitor and Education Center located at 1301 Maine St., Eads, CO. The Visitor and Education Center is open Monday - Friday from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. and is free to the public.

The Sand Creek Massacre: The Betrayal that Changed Cheyenne and Arapaho People Forever was made possible by substantial grants from the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Institute of Museum and Library Services.

About History Colorado
History Colorado is a division of the Colorado Department of Higher Education and a 501(c)3 non-profit that has served more than 75,000 students and 500,000 people in Colorado each year. It is a 144-year-old institution that operates eleven museums and historic sites, a free public research center, the Office of Archaeology and Historic Preservation which provides technical assistance, educational opportunities, and other access to archaeology and historic preservation, and the History Colorado State Historical Fund (SHF), which is one of the nation’s largest state funded preservation programs of its kind. More than 70% of SHF grants are allocated in rural areas of the state. Additionally, the offices of the State Archaeologist and the State Historic Preservation Officer are part of History Colorado. 

History Colorado’s mission is to create a better future for Colorado by inspiring wonder in our past. We serve as the state’s memory, preserving and sharing the places, stories, and material culture of Colorado through educational programs, historic preservation grants, collecting, outreach to Colorado communities, the History Colorado Center and Stephen H. Hart Research Center in Denver, and 10 other museums and historic attractions statewide. History Colorado is one of only six Smithsonian Affiliates in Colorado. Visit, or call 303-HISTORY, for more information. #HistoryColorado