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While the history of Yosemite Valley is essentially the history of the Earth itself, this epic historical novel spans a mere 3,000 years. In a parade of adventurous and bold characters, both fictional and real, the story begins in 1100 B.C. at the foot of glacial Mt. Shasta in northern California, when Tokok, a curious young Yana Indian begins to explore the possibility that life would be less harsh and the seasons much milder if he moved his tribe farther south. His story is followed by that of Choluk, a strong young interior Miwok chief who, in 812 A.D., becomes the first human being to enter the awesomely stunning Yosemite Valley, the Indian name of which is Ahwahnee. Choluk forms his own tribe , the Ahwaneechees, establishes a moiety on each side of the Merced River, and discovers the fearful specter of the mighty grizzly bear, known in the Miwok language as uzumati. (Future white men couldn’t pronounce it properly, and it came out as "Yosemite.") However, war and pestilence decimated Choluk's tribe, which dispersed into surrounding villages and Mono Lake until wily Tenaya, a royal descendant of Choluk, in 1786 visits the neighboring villages, gathers members of Choluk's family lineage, and returns them to the impossibly beautiful Ahwahnee. Now we meet James D. Savage, born in 1824 in southern Illinois and essentially raised by an Indian hired hand. Handsome and adventurous, Savage joins a wagon train with the ill-fated Donner Party and discovers the wonders of California. He settles in the north Fresno area and runs two trading posts. When the '49er Gold Rush hits, new settlers begin cutting down oak trees for wood, which the Miwoks depend on for their staple food, a kind of acorn mush. Hostilities break out, to Savage's displeasure, and he accepts a commission as Major to lead the hastily formed Mariposa Battalion. Sympathetic to the Indians' plight, it is all Savage can do to prevent an all-out massacre of the Miwoks by the angry settlers. The recollections of Lafayette H. Bunnell, as described in his seminal 1911 book, Discovery of the Yosemite, provide the historical accuracy of the movements of the Mariposa Battalion as they try to capture the evasive Chief Tenaya. Joining the battalion as its medical officer, Bunnell is with Savage as they become the first white men to enter the mysterious valley. Bunnell was also witness to the historic face-to-face meeting of Chief Tenaya and Major Savage. The ensuing action-packed Mariposa Indian War of 1851 provides the thrilling but tragic climax of this fascinating, captivating novel.
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Edmond G. Addeo is a journalist, author and editor, has been a newspaper reporter and columnist, a McGraw-Hill science reporter and editor of a trade journal, and executive editor of a chain of local newspapers. He has written four novels, several non-fiction books, two screenplays (optioned) and both technical and general interest articles on subjects as varied as health & nutrition, travel, transportation, bio-tech, instrumentation, celebrity interviews and sports. He has also ghost-written books on hospital management, auto sales training and nutrition. He lives in Mill Valley, California, with his wife Jovita.
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Book Description CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform, 2013. Paperback. Condition: Brand New. 480 pages. 9.00x6.00x1.20 inches. This item is printed on demand. Seller Inventory # zk1492149047