As friends of the white American, the Nez Perce (Nee-Me-Poo) Indians aided the exhausted explorers Lewis and Clark during their epic journey westward to the Pacific in 1805. Over much of the next seventy years, however, the Nez Perce found themselves continually provoked and misled by white treaties and encroachment upon their ancestral lands. In June 1877, a handful of renegade warriors struck back by massacring eighteen settlers in Idaho. The murders quickly escalated into one of the bloodiest and most tragic Indian wars of the century, resulting in a dramatic twelve-hundred-mile chase as some eight hundred Nez Perce men, women, and children attempted to fight their way to freedom in Canada.
Drawing upon original documents - letters, diaries, manuscripts, and previously overlooked oral histories - author Bruce Hampton has created a richly detailed narrative history in this enthralling account, a triumph of research, passion, and fine writing. Flesh-and-blood characters emerge from both sides of the war - including Looking Glass, White Bird, and the legendary Chief Joseph, who led fewer than three hundred warriors against the world's most modern army, commanded by such famous generals as William Sherman, Philip Sheridan, Oliver Otis Howard, and Nelson Miles.
From eyewitness accounts and close study of the rugged terrain - the author has traveled the entire war route through Idaho, Montana, and Wyoming - Bruce Hampton has re-created scenes of such immediacy that readers can almost feel the ground tremble under the hooves of thousands of horses and hear the anguished cries of women and children who fell to U.S. Army bullets.
This story captures the plight of the common soldier, largely foreign-born and inexperienced, a reluctant instrument of a government policy gone wrong; and the reason behind the indecisiveness of General Howard, who quickly became the scapegoat of Washington and the press. Howard's solid achievements after the Civil War - Freedmen's Bureau and founder of Howard University - did not prepare him for the uncertainties of guerrilla warfare against such a determined and skilled adversary. And we also witness the treachery of fellow Native Americans: the Crows, Bannocks, Cheyennes, Gros Ventres, Assiniboines, and Flatheads who helped the U.S. Army block the escape of the Nez Perce as they fled toward Canada.
Children of Grace is a harrowing picture of bravery and horror, perfidy and pathos - a dramatic page of American history no reader will soon forget.
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A scholar of the American West, Bruce Hampton lives in Wyoming.From Kirkus Reviews:
A comprehensive, meticulously researched history of the 1877 war between the Nez Perce and the US government. For decades, the Nez Perce had befriended whites (including Lewis and Clark) who crossed their territory in what's now the Northwest; in turn, explorers and settlers had praised the Nez Perce's peaceful, patriarchal society. But when the federal government, breaking a number of treaties, demanded that the Nez Perce surrender their homeland and move onto reservations, the alliance shattered. Violence erupted with the massacre of 18 white settlers by a band of Nez Perce warriors, an atrocity described in vivid detail by Hampton (who teaches at the National Outdoor Leadership School in Wyoming). The US Army--an undisciplined, uneducated, poorly supplied force in those post-Civil War years- -swung into action, and the Nez Perce retreated into Montana, Wyoming, and Canada on a 1200-mile march punctuated by cruelty and kindness on both sides. Hampton offers an hour-by-hour account of the major battles, as well as crisp portraits of the principal figures in the conflict. At first, the Indians placed their hopes in the silver-tongued Chief Joseph, forever identified in the popular imagination with the Nez Perce cause, but the author makes it clear that the disaffected warriors soon turned to other chiefs like Poker Joe and Looking Glass. Meanwhile, against the Indians stood a number of notable cavalry officers, including Nelson Miles and Oliver Howard. The outcome was predictably sordid, as the few hundred remaining Nez Perce surrendered and suffered a long internment at Leavenworth Prison before returning, with their society in shambles, back to the Northwest. Exciting and fair-minded: the definitive account of a dark hour in American history. (Sixteen pages of b&w photographs--not seen) -- Copyright ©1993, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.
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Book Description Henry Holt & Co 1994-01-01, 1994. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. 1st. 080501991X BRAND NEW! In Protective Shrinkwrap! A Hardcover with Dustjacket in NEW, pristine condition. We ship all orders with delivery confirmation!. Bookseller Inventory # YA6-077
Book Description Henry Holt & Co, 1994. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # M080501991X
Book Description Henry Holt & Co, 1994. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # DADAX080501991X
Book Description Henry Holt & Co, 1994. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Never used!. Bookseller Inventory # P11080501991X