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This is a portrait of Sophia Louisa German, who was taken captive with her sisters, Catherine, Julia, and Adelaide, by Cheyenne Indians after their family was killed. Sophia was born on August 1, 1862. On September 11, 1874, the John German family, consisting of his wife and seven children, were attacked by a band of Cheyenne east of Ft. Wallace, Kansas. Only four of the children, Catherine, Sophia, Julia, and Adelaide, were spared and taken captive. The two youngest, Julia and Adelaide (aged 7 and 5), were subsequently abandoned on the prairie in what is now the Texas panhandle. Catherine and Sophia were kept by their Cheyenne captors. Fort Wallace received word of the killings, and began the search to find the girls, and to negotiate their release. They found Julia and Adelaide, who had survived on their own for 6 weeks, and on March 1, 1875, the Cheyennes formally released Sophia and Catherine German at the Darlington Agency in Indian Territory (Oklahoma). The two girls were reunited with their younger sisters, Julia and Adelaide, at Ft. Leavenworth, Kansas in June of 1875.


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Kansas Memory has been created by the Kansas State Historical Society to share its historical collections via the Internet. Read more.



Kansas Memory Blog

250,000 images!

Posted by Jocelyn Wehr (Digital Archivist) on Sep 6, 2012

Congratulations are in order to the visitors, volunteers, and staff who support and work to improve digital access to the collections of the Kansas Historical Society. We now have over 250,000 digital images available on Kansas Memory, which continues to expand since it was created in 2007. Just in the past two months we've added over 26,000 images! The 250,000th image is...

Brookdale Rice Co Kansas

Jany 1st 1871

Governor Harvey

Dear Sir

Enclosed please find petition for the general distribution of arms among the citizens of Rice Co. necessary for their defence against any raid or raids by the Cheyenne Indians.

Most of the settlers located in this vicinity are unable to purchase the arms and ammunition necessary, hence the petition.

Should you not decree it advisable to send the arms, a small detachment of troops sent here would allay all anxiety on the part of the people located in this vicinity. 

Trusting that you will give this matter your careful

[Page 2]

consideration I have the honor to be very truly yours

D.H. Bowdoin


Brookdale P.O.

Rice County

By way of Ellsworth  


This letter is part of the Kansas Adjutant General's correspondence collection, containing 50 years of letters from 1861-1910, now available on Kansas Memory. Events highlighted in this collection include the militia companies involved in the Civil War, including colored units, and Price’s Raid claims for compensation for lost property and militia service rendered during Price’s Missouri Expedition. Reports of Indian conflicts continued well into the 1880s, as the presence of the reorganized Kansas National Guard expanded across the state and beyond, including the Spanish-American War in 1898. The Kansas Adjutant General’s correspondence collection is one of many found in the State Archives which preserves the records of all three branches of state government, including the official records of nearly every Kansas governor.

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