"We are of opinion that instead of letting books grow moldy behind an iron grating, far from the vulgar gaze, it is better to let them wear out by being read." - Jules Verne
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Thursday, February 21, 2019


Published in 2013 by Eastern National

Manuelito (c. 1818 - 1893)
One of the best things about visiting a National Park is visiting the book section of the gift shop. If you visit a Civil War-related site, the book sections are a rare treasure trove of high quality books all gathered in one place.

Nestled in among the books are a series of attractive books printed by Eastern National. Physically, they remind me of the old style of National Geographic. They are bound similarly and, most importantly, they are chock full of color photographs like National Geographics were.

The pictures are truly the strong point in this book, however. The text of the book is a series of essays written by different authors from the points of view of several different Native American groups. There is a lot of overlap and a lot of gaps because they are not edited together into a coherent narrative.

The perspective provided by the book is a welcome one, but the book would have been much strengthened by the inclusion of an essay focusing on the Indian policies of the Lincoln Administration and how it was or was not implemented while the primary focus was on the war that was sometimes being fought just a few miles from the White House.

I particularly enjoyed the essay on the Navajo by Peter Iverson. I found the stories of their leaders Barboncito and Manuelito fascinating.

I rate this compilation 3 stars out of 5. It can be found on Amazon.com here: AMERICAN INDIANS and the CIVIL WAR: OFFICIAL NATIONAL PARK SERVICE HANDBOOK.

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