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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Official Report of Sameul P. Heintzelman, 1853

  • Author(s): Heintzelman, Samuel P.
  • et al.

The report reprinted here was originally written by Samuel P. Heintzelman, the commanding officer of Fort Yuma, in 1853, although it was not published until 1857. It gives the reader a fascinating and relatively objective view of the state of interethnic relations, tribal life, and American military activities along the Colorado River during the early part of the 1850s; it also touches briefly on such disparate topics as Spanish attempts to establish a mission in the area, the Garra revolt, and the Oatman massacre, as well as on the effects of American emigration, floods, earthquakes, and geothermal events. Heintzelman's untitled report originally appeared in Indian Affairs on the Pacific, pp. 34-58. [U.S. Congress. House. 34th Congress, 3rd session. House Exec. Doc. No. 76. (Serial No. 906.) Washington: U.S. Government Printing Office.] The interested reader can find further details in Samuel P. Heintzelman's Journal, 1851-1853, Fort Yuma. [Creola Blackwell, transcriber. Yuma: Yuma County Historical Society, 1989.] Several tables in Heintzelman's original report dealing with climatological data and troop deployments have been deleted.

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