Biographical / Historical
Tichkematse a.k.a. Squint Eyes, Quchkeimus (1857-1932) was one of the best known groups of Plains artists was among the men held prisoner at Fort Marion in Saint Augustine, Florida, from 1875-1878. Tichkematse, a Cheyenne, was one of these prisoner artists. While imprisoned, he learned to speak English and to read and write. Upon release he attended school at the Hampton Institute in Virginia for about a year before coming to the Smithsonian. There he was trained in the preparation of bird and mammal specimens for study and display. During his time at the Smithsonian, he also produced drawings illustrating his old life on the Plains, full of buffalo hunts and battles as well as everyday camp life. In 1880 he returned to the Cheyenne and Arapaho Reservation in what is now Oklahoma, but he continued his affiliation with the Smithsonian. He was active in collecting bird and mammal specimens as well as craft items acquired from Cheyenne friends and relatives, which he shipped to the museum. For additional information on Tichkematse, see Plains Indian Art from Fort Marion by Karen Daniels Petersen (University of Oklahoma Press, Norman, OK 1971), "Squint Eyes: Artist and Indian Scout" by Bob Rea, (2002) www.nmnh.si.edu/naa/scout, and "Tichkematse: A Cheyenne at the Smithsonian" by Candace Greene, (2000) www.nmnh.si.edu/naa/squint_eyes/squint_eyes.htm. For further information on the Cheyenne scouts and their artwork, see "Artists in Blue: the Indian Scouts of Fort Reno and Fort Supply," by Candace S. Greene (American Indian Art Magazine, Winter 1992, pp.50-57) Major John Dunlop was a supply sergeant in San Antonio before the Civil War, then went to Mexico, and later to Washington. While in Washington he met Col. Bliss and the maintained a friendship over time, resulting in his visiting Bliss in Indian Territory and participating in the hunt depicted.
Biographical / Historical
Fort Supply, established in 1868, was initially designated as a supply camp where U.S. Cavalry troops could restock and refresh themselves. It was from this post that Custer and the Seventh Cavalry marched to the Battle of Washita. Over the next twenty-five years, soldiers from Fort Supply performed duties that included peace-keeping and monitoring of the Cheyenne and Arapaho reservation and the Cherokee Outlet as well as monitoring the Land Run of 1893. From 1869 to early 1870, the post served as the temporary location for the Cheyenne and Arapaho Indian Agency. For more information on Fort Supply see Fort Supply, Indian Territory: Frontier Outpost by Robert C. Carriker, 1990 Norman: University of Oklahoma Press; and "History of Fort Supply" at http://www.ok-history.mus.ok.us/mus-sites/fshistory.htm.