Resolution No 1190: A Resolution Declaring the Second Monday of October of Each Year to Be Indigenous Peoples Day

  • WHEREAS, Indigenous People in Boulder respect the interdependence of all humanity and living things and celebrate a vast and rich living tradition through ancestral recognition and diversity of knowledge and perspectives, including sustainable practices; and
  • WHEREAS, Indigenous People in Boulder have, as in all parts of Americas, endured centuries of cruelty, exploitation and genocide; and
  • WHEREAS, the Boulder area encompasses ancestral homelands of Indigenous Peoples' Nations; and
  • WHEREAS, facing and acknowledging our past, good as well as bad, makes our community stronger and more resilient; and
  • WHEREAS, Southern Arapaho Chief Left Hand notified a party of Nebraska gold seekers that they could not remain on Indian land at what is now known as Settlers Park, but the gold seekers planned to go into the mountains in the spring in search for gold(1); and
  • WHEREAS, after gold was discovered at Gold Run in January of 1859, Boulder City Town Company was founded by settlers on February 10 of 1859, thereby going against the agreement of the 1851 Treaty of Fort Laramie (also known as the Horse Creek Treaty)(2,3); and
  • WHEREAS, in August of 1864, nearly 100 Boulder County residents mobilized into Company D of the Third Colorado Cavalry of U.S. Volunteers at Fort Chambers (near 63rd and Valmont Streets), to become "Indian Fighters" (4,5,6); and
  • WHEREAS, under the command of Colonel John Chivington, on November 29 of 1864 an estimated 230 peaceful Arapaho and Cheyenne people were killed along the Big Sandy Creek in southeastern Colorado by the First and Third Colorado Cavalry of U.S. Volunteers(7); and
  • WHEREAS, Captain David Nichols, a former Boulder County Sheriff, led the Company D volunteers, including 46 Boulder residents, in what is now known as the Sand Creek Massacre from which the Boulder troops enjoyed a heroes welcome upon their return(8,9,10); and
  • WHEREAS, Boulder has benefited directly from Indian removal policies that violated human rights, broke government treaties and forced Arapaho People from their homeland; and
  • WHEREAS, Boulder is honored to be home of several prominent Native organizations including the Native American Rights Fund founded in 1970, which is the largest nonprofit law firm dedicated to asserting and defending the rights of Indian tribes, organizations and individuals nationwide.

Now therefore, be it resolved by the Council of the City of Boulder:

  • Section 1. That those now living on these ancestral lands recognize that harm was done and acknowledge that we have a shared responsibility to forge a path forward to address the past and continuing harm to the Indigenous People and the land.
  • Section 2. That in the pursuit of shared responsibility and of promoting knowledge about Indigenous Peoples, unifying communities, combating prejudice and eliminating discrimination against Indigenous Peoples, the City of Boulder does hereby resolve the second Monday in October of each year to be Indigenous Peoples' Day.
  • Section 3. That on the second Monday in October of each year the City of Boulder will support events that encourage understanding and appreciation of Indigenous Peoples, their traditions, culture and our shared history in these ancestral lands known as the Boulder Valley.
  • Section 4. That City Council directs its City Manager to work with City departments, Native Americans and historians to correct omissions of the Native American presence in public places, resources and cultural programming.
  • Section 5. That as a first step, in recognition of a Memorandum of Understanding that the city entered into with Indigenous tribes concerning open space lands, the city requests input from representatives of those tribes and other interested parties regarding a name that commemorates the Indigenous presence on the park land known as Settlers Park and second, the city manager considers any application submitted to rename the park land based on the input of the Indigenous tribes and interested parties.
  • Section 6. That the City of Boulder, will work together in partnership with Native Americans to encourage all educational institutions in the city to implement accurate curricula relevant to the traditions, history and current issues of Indigenous People inclusive of and as part of our shared history.

Download the official PDF.


  1. Coel, Margaret. Chief Left Hand. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 1981. Pages 66-67. Print
  2. Coel, Margaret. Chief Left Hand. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 1981. Pages 80, 83. Print.
  3. Sand Creek Massacre National Historic Site. National Park Service. Web. 13 July 2016.
  4. Oliver, Arch. Roster of Company D, Third Colorado Cavalry from Boulder, Colorado Territory, 1943. Carnegie Branch Library for Local History, Boulder Public Library. (BH S 328-9-34). Print.
  5. Valentine, Jane Barker. "Chambers Homestead." Historic Homes of Boulder County. Boulder: Pruett Publishing, 1979. Page 143. Print.
  6. Attention! Indian Fighters. Poster. August 1864. Denver: History Colorado. (Military Wars-Indian Wars-Sand Creek-posters, Scan #10025731). Print.
  7. Sand Creek Massacre National Historic Site. National Park Service. Web. 13 July 2016.
  8. Limerick, Patricia Nelson. Whats in a Name? Nichols Hall: A Report. Boulder: University of Colorado. September 1987. Page 55. Print.
  9. Coel, Margaret. Chief Left Hand. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 1981. Page 280. Print.
  10. Coel, Margaret. Chief Left Hand. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 1981. Page 291. Print.