Chicago - Oct. 15, 2018
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Interrupted Odyssey: Ulysses S. Grant And The American Indians

"In this first book devoted to the genesis, failure, and lasting legacy of Ulysses S. Grant's comprehensive American Indian policy, Mary Stockwell shows Grant as an essential bridge between Andrew Jackson's pushing Indians out of the American experience and Franklin D. Roosevelt's welcoming them back in.

"Situating Grant at the center of Indian policy development after the Civil War, Interrupted Odyssey: Ulysses S. Grant and the American Indians reveals the bravery and foresight of the eighteenth president in saying that Indians must be saved and woven into the fabric of American life."

interruptedodyssey.jpg

"In the late 1860s, before becoming president, Grant collaborated with Ely Parker, a Seneca Indian who became his first commissioner of Indian affairs, on a plan to rescue the tribes from certain destruction.

"Grant hoped to save the Indians from extermination by moving them to reservations, where they would be guarded by the U.S. Army, and welcoming them into the nation as American citizens. By so doing, he would restore the executive branch's traditional authority over Indian policy that had been upended by Jackson.

"In Interrupted Odyssey, Stockwell rejects the common claim in previous Grant scholarship that he handed the reservations over to Christian missionaries as part of his original policy.

"In part because Grant's plan ended political patronage, Congress overturned his policy by disallowing Army officers from serving in civil posts, abandoning the treaty system, and making the new Board of Indian Commissioners the supervisors of the Indian service.

"Only after Congress banned Army officers from the Indian service did Grant place missionaries in charge of the reservations, and only after the board falsely accused Parker of fraud before Congress did Grant lose faith in his original policy."

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Posted on September 28, 2018


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BOOKS - Chicago Book Haul: The Dial.

PEOPLE PLACES & THINGS - Chicagoetry: West Town Blues.


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