Life Among the Sioux Indians. Newell, icero.
Life Among the Sioux Indians.

Life Among the Sioux Indians.

New York: Popular Publishing Co., [ca. 1890]. 16mo, original illustrated wrappers. 13 pp., 3 pp. of ads.

A popularly published account of the Sioux people written by one of the more colorful Indian Agents on the plains

Newell provides seven brief biographies of Sioux individuals, twelve short entries on aspects of the Sioux way of life, and most interestingly an account of Custer’s Last Stand which is highly unsympathetic to Custer, saying “but his haste to get all the glory of killing these people, led him to make the attack against the orders of his superior officers.” Newell goes on to call Custer a murderer of women and children. A striking hand-colored portrait of a buckskin-clad Newell is featured on the upper wrapper with a woodcut scene of the Little Bighorn on the lower.

After serving as a cavalry officer in the Civil War, Cicero Newell (1840-1913) moved West, becoming agent of the Rosebud Indian Agency in 1879. At Rosebud, Newell was considered highly ineffectual by his fellow agents; preferring to spend his time, and the government’s money, tending to his own pet projects like damming a nearby river and erecting a bakery on the agency grounds. Newell’s lack of leadership left the Brulé Sioux under effective self-government, which, given Newell’s assessment of Custer, may very well have been as much a result of human sympathy as it was lax leadership. Also published in a different edition under the title Sitting Bull and His Sioux Indians (Milwaukee, 1884), featuring a different illustration on the wrappers.

Scarce. OCLC locates four copies of this edition, and two copies of the Milwaukee edition. Newell also wrote a children’s book, published in 1912, entitled Indian Stories.

CONDITION: Good, creased corners, pencil marks on covers, losses to the margins of two pages.

Item #2798

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