by Jack Bryant
in war and peace, the
last great comanche
Marker of the Texas Historical Commission:
comanche chief quanah parker was a son of two
cultures. he was born about 1845 along elk creek, indian
territory (oklahoma). his anglo mother was cynthia ann
parker, taken captive in a may 1836 raid and adopted by qua-
ha-di (antelope) comanches, and his father was comanche
chief peta nocona. texas rangers reclaimed cynthia ann in
an 1860 fight at the pease river. nocona died soon after,
and cynthia ann lived with relatives near birdville in
tarrant county before dying with no further contact with
her comanche family.
becoming chief upon his father's death, quanah refused
to sign the 1867 medicine lodge treaty that sent many plains
indians to reservations. instead, he led raids in texas and
mexico for another seven years, likely including the last
foray into tarrant county in june 1871. that winter,
quanah's band eluded col. ranald mackenzie's fourth u.s.
cavalry across the texas panhandle. comanche losses
during the 1874 panhandle battle of adobe walls, in which
quanah was wounded, followed by a harsh winter, finally
brought him and fewer than 100 remaining qua-ha-di to the
reservation at fort sill, indian territory in may 1875.
quanah served as liaison between his people and the
bureau of indian affairs. he proved to be a pragmatic
leader, encouraging the comanches to take up ranching
and farming, and to educate their children in government
schools. quanah prospered through his investments and
built his spacious "star house" near cache, ok. he traveled
widely, giving speeches and interviews and participating in
wild west shows, the texas state fair, texas cattle raisers
association gathering and the fort worth fat stock show.
quanah visited fort worth and the stockyards on many
occasions. he died in 1911 and is buried at fort sill.
An plaque added in 2008 reads:
acknowledging that chief quanah parker|
was the son of two cultures it is only right
that we recognize those who taught us
about the comanches and inspired fort
worth to celebrate the contribution of
these two cultures.
brad patterson, doug harman, chris farkas, ("The People")
eddie sandoval, and ben tahmahkrera, three
anglos, one apache, one comanche-together
for the numunu.
Jake, Janet, and Jim Lane
- Jack Bryant, Jr.,
American sculptor and wildlife artist
Sources & Information
- The Historical Marker Database, Quanah Parker.
- Richard F. Selcer, Fort Worth Characters (Denton: University of North Texas, 2009), pp. 149-173.
Location N 32°47'18" W 97°20'47"
Item Code: ustx36; Photograph: 8 October 2010
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