Compiled by Peg Luke Brunnemer
The illegal sale of firearms and ammunition to the Indians and their dissatisfaction with the terms of the Medicine Lodge
Treaty provided the ingredients which led to the general Indian uprising in Kansas during the fall and winter of 1868, according
to Marvin H. Garfield in his "Defense of the Kansas Frontier, 1868-69".
He told of illegal sales of arms and ammunition by Indian agents and traders, though the practice had been outlawed by Gen.
W. T. Sherman in January, 1867. Major Douglas, commander at Ft. Dodge, had written his superiors that through these unlawful
sales the "Indians were never better armed than at the present time" and that the braves were openly boasting of preparedness for war.
Kansas Territorial Gov. S. J. Crawford complained bitterly to Washington.
A band of 200 Cheyennes, under the leadership of Dog Soldier Chief and The-Man-who-breaks-the-marrow-bones, went on the
warpath in the Solomon Valley. In a matter of a few days, they had killed at lease a dozen settlers, burned and ramsacked homes,
stolen livestock and driven hundreds of settlers out of the region and paralyzed the rest with fright. The Bell-Bogardus families,
two brothers and two sisters and their families, had three members killed and two kidnapped who were later set free. While the worst
of the Indian threat had passed in Mitchell County by mid-August, 1868, the sorely-tried settlers' tribulations were far from an end.
Garfield in his "Defense of the Kansas Frontier' points out "by October the inhabitants of NCK were so destitute as a result of the
Indian raids and crop failures that it became necessary to send them financial relief." Organizations in the eastern part of the state
sprang up to raise funds to help these pioneers cling to their claims through the winter.
The Bell Bogardus family members who died in the massacre are buried in the Bell Bogardus cemetery. The site is on private land.
An in depth brochure of this massacre may be obtained from the
Beloit Area Chamber of Commerce
P O Box 582Beloit, Ks. 67420