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"[...]neighbors being a band of Sacs and Foxes, -"Saukees." This was the beginning of my personal acquaintance with Indians. The stories that had kindled in my heart feelings of sympathy and commiseration for them were forgotten for a time in the present living history before my eyes. I was one of a party who in 1844 assisted the Government in removing Pow-e-shiek's band from the Iowa river to their new home in the West. The scenes around the Indian village on the morning of their departure were photographed on my mind so plainly that now, after a lapse of thirty years, they are still fresh in my memory, and the impressions made on me, and resolves then made by me, have never been forgotten, notwithstanding the terrible dangers through which I have since passed.[...]."
A Story of Genocide at the Dawn of America's Gilded Age
Author: Robert Aquinas McNally
Publisher: U of Nebraska Press
On a cold, rainy dawn in late November 1872, Lieutenant Frazier Boutelle and a Modoc Indian nicknamed Scarface Charley leveled firearms at each other. Their duel triggered a war that capped a decades-long genocidal attack that was emblematic of the United States’ conquest of Native America’s peoples and lands. Robert Aquinas McNally tells the wrenching story of the Modoc War of 1872–73, one of the nation’s costliest campaigns against North American Indigenous peoples, in which the army placed nearly one thousand soldiers in the field against some fifty-five Modoc fighters. Although little known today, the Modoc War dominated national headlines for an entire year. Fought in south-central Oregon and northeastern California, the war settled into a siege in the desolate Lava Beds and climaxed the decades-long effort to dispossess and destroy the Modocs. The war did not end with the last shot fired, however. For the first and only time in U.S. history, Native fighters were tried and hanged for war crimes. The surviving Modocs were packed into cattle cars and shipped from Fort Klamath to the corrupt, disease-ridden Quapaw reservation in Oklahoma, where they found peace even more lethal than war. The Modoc War tells the forgotten story of a violent and bloody Gilded Age campaign at a time when the federal government boasted officially of a “peace policy” toward Indigenous nations. This compelling history illuminates a dark corner in our country’s past.
The Epic Story of the Indian Wars for the American West
Author: Peter Cozzens
*Winner of the Gilder Lehrman Prize for Military History* *A Smithsonian Top History Book of 2016* *Finalist for the Western Writers of America 2017 Spur Award in Best Western Historical Nonfiction* Bringing together a pageant of fascinating characters including Custer, Sherman, Grant, and a host of other military and political figures, as well as great native leaders such as Crazy Horse, Sitting Bull, Geronimo, and Red Cloud, The Earth is Weeping—lauded by Booklist as “a beautifully written work of understanding and compassion”—is the fullest account to date of how the West was won…and lost. "[S]ets a new standard for Western Indian Wars history..." —Stuart Rosebrook, True West Magazine With the end of the Civil War, the nation recommenced its expansion onto traditional Indian tribal lands, setting off a wide-ranging conflict that would last more than three decades. In an exploration of the wars and negotiations that destroyed tribal ways of life even as they made possible the emergence of the modern United States, Peter Cozzens gives us both sides in comprehensive and singularly intimate detail. He illuminates the encroachment experienced by the tribes and the tribal conflicts over whether to fight or make peace, and explores the squalid lives of soldiers posted to the frontier and the ethical quandaries faced by generals who often sympathized with their native enemies.
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