This collection contains materials which may be disturbing to some users, including derogatory language and graphic descriptions of violence.

The University of Denver was founded in 1864 by John Evans. John Evans had been appointed by President Abraham Lincoln in 1862 to be the second territorial governor of Colorado. He served in that capacity until 1865.

This committee is inquiring into the nature of John Evans’ involvement in the political and economic processes that led to the appropriation of Native American Lands in Colorado and, more specifically, to the 1864 killing of Cheyenne and Arapahoe villagers at Sand Creek. It consists of faculty and staff from DU and other institutions. Given the impending 150-year anniversaries of the Sand Creek Massacre and DU’s founding, it is appropriate to evaluate John Evans’ place in the university’s history and the ways in which we recognize his contributions.

The committee is working in tandem with a similarly constituted committee at Northwestern University, which John Evans co-founded in 1853. The NU and DU committees will coordinate research and share information. The DU committee will generate a report of our findings and a set of recommendations for actions that the university should take as a result of our report.

Additional resources may be found at


Browse the John Evans Study Collections:

John Evans Study: Gallery

John Evans Study Report

John Evans Study: Supporting Materials