The Bitter Waters of Medicine Creek

The Bitter Waters of Medicine Creek

A Tragic Clash Between White and Native America

Book - 2011
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The story of a dramatic confrontation between Native Americans and white settlers in the newly created Washington Territory from 1853 to 1857. Washington's first governor, Isaac Ingalls Stevens, had one goal: to persuade (peacefully if possible) the Indians of the Puget Sound region to turn over their ancestral lands to the federal government. In return, they were to be consigned to reservations unsuitable for hunting, fishing, or grazing--their traditional means of sustaining life. The result was an outbreak of violence and rebellion. Social historian Richard Kluger recounts the impact of Stevens's program on the Nisqually tribe. His hasty treaty negotiations with the Indians, marked by deceit, threat, and misrepresentation, inflamed his opponents. Chieft Leschi, resolved to save more than a few patches of his people's lush homelands, unwittingly turned his tribe--and himself most of all--into victims of the governor's relentless wrath. The conflict would have echoes far into the future.--From publisher description.
Publisher: New York : Alfred A. Knopf, 2011
Edition: 1st ed
ISBN: 9780307268891
Call Number: 979.7004 K714b
Characteristics: xvi, 330 p., [8] p. of plates : ill., maps ; 25 cm


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Oct 10, 2016

I found this book an odd mix of fascinating, drudging, and textbook. There were certain chapters (mostly in the beginning) that really drew me in and I learned a lot about the origins of the state of Washington, where I now reside. Somewhere towards the middle, it slogged almost to a stopping point. It felt redundant and reminded me of the god-awful textbooks I used to have to read in high school about American Government. The author is certainly knowledgeable about the topic and has plenty of good informational sources- but it just didn't move quickly enough for me. I feel as though this book could have been cut down by at least 25% and it would have been a much better read. I became lost in the back and forth of the settlers and native americans and what Leschi might have done or said, or how vain and prideful Isaac Stevens was. Very informative, but just not super palatable to the casual reader.

KEVIN DOWD Jan 04, 2012

still reading.. takes a bit to get involved but well worth the effort.

Sep 18, 2011

Very interesting and well told. A pivotal moment in Pacific Northwest history. Sad still. And a very interesting epilogue.


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