Chief Ouray was acknowledged by the United States government as a chief of the Ute and he traveled to Washington, D.C. to negotiate for the welfare of the Utes. Ouray met with Presidents Lincoln, Grant, and Hayes and was called the man of peace because he sought to make treaties with settlers and the government, and was a constant force for peace. He tried to secure a treaty for the Uncompahgre Ute - who wanted to stay in Colorado - but was unsuccessful. His band was forced to a reservation in Utah in 1881. Chief Ouray had been a negotiator during the Treaty of Conejos (1863), wherein the Utes exchanged the loss of 50% of their land for the right to live in Western Colorado in perpetuity.
Ouray was known as the "White man's friend," and his services were almost indispensable to the government in negotiating with his tribe, who kept in good faith all treaties that were made by him. He protected their interests as far as possible, and set them the example of living a civilized life, making him a Native American Historical Figure.
This Notable Native American History Poster Series is meant to educate individuals on the important Native American Historical Figures that have paved the way for American Indians and others today by being involved in political issues, science, and other important academia in our society today.