Heart of the Rock: The Indian Invasion of Alcatraz

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9780806139890: Heart of the Rock: The Indian Invasion of Alcatraz
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In 1969, Ricahrd Oakes and Adam Fortunate Eagle, then known as Adam Nordwall, instigated an invasion of Alcatraz by American Indians. From the mainland, Fortunate Eagle orchestrated the events, but they assumed an uncontrollable life of their own. Fortunate Eagle provides an intimate memoir of the occupation and the events leading up to it. Accompanied by a variety of photographs capturing the people, places, and actions involved, Heart of the Rock brings these turbulent times vividly to life.

From the start, public support was strong. Money poured in from around the country. Sausalito sailors and their "navy" transported supplies and people to the island. San Fransisco restaurants sent Thanksgiving dinner. A school was started; chores and responsibilities were shared by everyone. Alcatraz became home, and American Indians of all tribes became a family.

But the occupation lasted two years, and Oakes, who had become it spokesman, left after his stepdaughter's death on the island. Memoranda from the White House recommended doing "anything" to turn the public against the occupation so it could be ended. Water and electricity were cut off, reports of conflict on the island began appearing in the press, and suspicious fires burned five buildings. Nevertheless, the occupation of Alcatraz remains what historian Vine Deloria, Jr. has called "perhaps the most significant Indian action since the Little Bighorn."

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About the Author:

Adam Fortunate Eagle is an Ojibwe artist, writer, and frequent guest lecturer. As an advocate for Native civil rights throughout his life, he was awarded an honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters from the State University of New York, New Paltz. He is the author of Heart of the Rock: The Indian Invasion of Alcatraz and Pipestone: My Life in an Indian Boarding School.

From Publishers Weekly:

When Native American activists took over Alcatraz Island in 1969, they drew unprecedented attention to the poverty and widespread disaffection on contemporary Indian reservations, as well as to the historic injustices perpetrated by the American government. Fortunate Eagle, a member of the Ojibwa Nation, organized the nearly two-year occupation, and gives a stirring account of the Alcatraz affair in this memoir. For much of the 1960s, Fortunate Eagle, then called Adam Nordwall, was pursuing the suburban dream: he owned his own termite extermination business and competed for bowling trophies in the Bay Area, where he lived with his wife and children. At the time, the Indian population of many American cities was exploding; in the early 1950s, the U.S. government had launched a program to lure Indians off of reservations with the promise of technical training and jobs, so that the U.S. could then buy up resource-rich Indian land. The inadvertent result of the policy was that many Indians, lonely and uprooted in unfamiliar cities, began to socialize and then organize politically. Fortunate Eagle describes his political awakening in the San Francisco Indian social clubs and gives a play-by-play of the occupation, from sneaking past the Coast Guard to the political fallout, which culminated with Nixon condemning the oppression of Indians and restoring millions of acres to various tribes. Fortunate Eagle's witty and impassioned recollections will be appreciated by anyone interested in American history or the political upheavals of the 1960s. (Apr.)Forecast: Native American political and social history is coming to the fore now more than any time since the 1960s, as academic and memoir work accumulates. While the debate has not reached Canadian proportions, look for some attention to this book along with Larry Nesper's The Walleye War: The Struggle for Ojibwe Spearfishing and Treaty Rights, coming in May (Univ. of Nebraska, $60 256p ISBN 0-8032-3344-2).
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

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Book Description University of Oklahoma Press, United States, 2008. Paperback. Condition: New. Reprint. Language: English . Brand New Book. In 1969, Ricahrd Oakes and Adam Fortunate Eagle, then known as Adam Nordwall, instigated an invasion of Alcatraz by American Indians. From the mainland, Fortunate Eagle orchestrated the events, but they assumed an uncontrollable life of their own. Fortunate Eagle provides an intimate memoir of the occupation and the events leading up to it. Accompanied by a variety of photographs capturing the people, places, and actions involved, Heart of the Rock brings these turbulent times vividly to life. From the start, public support was strong. Money poured in from around the country. Sausalito sailors and their -navy- transported supplies and people to the island. San Fransisco restaurants sent Thanksgiving dinner. A school was started; chores and responsibilities were shared by everyone. Alcatraz became home, and American Indians of all tribes became a family. But the occupation lasted two years, and Oakes, who had become it spokesman, left after his stepdaughter s death on the island. Memoranda from the White House recommended doing -anything- to turn the public against the occupation so it could be ended. Water and electricity were cut off, reports of conflict on the island began appearing in the press, and suspicious fires burned five buildings. Nevertheless, the occupation of Alcatraz remains what historian Vine Deloria, Jr. has called -perhaps the most significant Indian action since the Little Bighorn.-. Seller Inventory # AAS9780806139890

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Book Description University of Oklahoma Press, United States, 2008. Paperback. Condition: New. Reprint. Language: English . Brand New Book. In 1969, Ricahrd Oakes and Adam Fortunate Eagle, then known as Adam Nordwall, instigated an invasion of Alcatraz by American Indians. From the mainland, Fortunate Eagle orchestrated the events, but they assumed an uncontrollable life of their own. Fortunate Eagle provides an intimate memoir of the occupation and the events leading up to it. Accompanied by a variety of photographs capturing the people, places, and actions involved, Heart of the Rock brings these turbulent times vividly to life. From the start, public support was strong. Money poured in from around the country. Sausalito sailors and their -navy- transported supplies and people to the island. San Fransisco restaurants sent Thanksgiving dinner. A school was started; chores and responsibilities were shared by everyone. Alcatraz became home, and American Indians of all tribes became a family. But the occupation lasted two years, and Oakes, who had become it spokesman, left after his stepdaughter s death on the island. Memoranda from the White House recommended doing -anything- to turn the public against the occupation so it could be ended. Water and electricity were cut off, reports of conflict on the island began appearing in the press, and suspicious fires burned five buildings. Nevertheless, the occupation of Alcatraz remains what historian Vine Deloria, Jr. has called -perhaps the most significant Indian action since the Little Bighorn.-. Seller Inventory # AAS9780806139890

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