Saturday, November 24, 2012

roadtrip - red rock canyon and roman nose state parks

tumbleweed highway!
red sandstone
we headed to the 'red rock canyons' in hinton, oklahoma.

(These canyons date back 260 million years when an extensive shallow sea covered the region, 
bordered on the east by the Ouachita and Ozark Mountains. Sediment eroded from these mountains 
was carried westward by rivers as the sea receded. This sediment was worked into sand dunes by wind 
and water and eventually transformed into rock. After millions of years of erosion the canyons became 
what we see today. Before the mid-1800's, Plains Indians used the canyon as a winter camp for shelter 
from the cold and as a place to hunt game. With the discovery of gold in California, overland wagon trails were established, such as the California Road, which passed through the current site of the park. Gold-seeking forty-niners used the canyon as a natural landmark for guidance, and a favorite stop 
 for fresh water, as well as a place to stop  and repair their wagons.)

 lunch, then onto the 'roman nose' state park in watonga.

fallen leaves, sunshine, wind, running springs,
red earth, canyons, mesas, blue skies,,,

Born June 30, 1856, Henry Roman Nose was reared in the nomadic environment of buffalo hunting and tipi dwelling. In 1868, his tribe was forced to give up their nomadic ways and locate in what is now western Oklahoma.

Roman Nose's camp was located in the large canyon which later would become part of Roman Nose State Park. The canyon was an ideal camp site since its high walls protected the Indian lodges from the cold winter winds. The canyon also had plenty of good running water near the grass country of the buffalo.

Despite constant cavalry patrols of the area, conducted by the infamous George Armstrong Custer and the Seventh Calvary Unit, the Cheyenne continued their raids on the white settlements. In 1875, as a result of these raids, several Cheyenne chiefs and warriors were imprisoned and shipped to St. Augustine, Florida. One of these Chiefs was Henry Roman Nose.

After three years of imprisonment, several captives were sent to Hampton Institute in Virginia. Roman Nose was one of these few fortunate captives. Later he went to Carlisle Institute in Pennsylvania, and in 1881, returned home, fully qualified as a tinsmith. The next years were full of change for Roman Nose. He married Red Paint Woman, who soon died. His tinsmithing abilities proved to be unproductive in a land where the Indian had little use for his skills and the white man would not do business with Indians. For the next four years he worked as a scout for the cavlary and as policeman for the Indian Agency. In June 1891, he received his allotment and began using his education by trying to preserve parts of the Indian way of life. In 1889, he became chief of the Cheyenne, serving until his death in 1917.

Roman Nose's life spanned the most turbulent times for Cheyenne people. He can be remembered as a great peacemaker who helped his people make the transition from a nomadic lifestyle to the settled existence of the whites.

1 comment:

  1. Gosh, I love a history lesson! Poor Henry. When I read he was removed from his Tipi home and shipped to FLORIDA! Talk about a fish out of water!
    What a colorful life, nothing you'd expect, but he endured didn't he? The things that were forced upon him. Kinda sad.
    Lovely Sunday to ya'll