Offering detailed descriptions of their battles, negotiations, trading practices, and survival strategies, Smith traces the Wichitas' struggles to adapt to rapidly changing circumstances and defend themselves from encroaching tribes and white settlers. A companion to Smith's other works on the early Caddos and the post Wichita and Caddo peoples, The Wichita Indians fills a gap in the history of Native Americans by focusing on this important tribe whose influence peaked on the Southern Plains long before the United States came into being.
In members of the thriving Caddo Indian culture came face to face with Luis de Moscoso, successor to Hernando de Soto as leader of a Spanish exploration party.
Books by F. Todd Smith
That encounter marked a turning point for this centuries-old people, whose history from then on would be dominated by the interaction of the native confederacies with the empires of various European adventurers and settlers. Much has been written about the confrontations of Euro-Americans with Native Americans, but most of it has focused on the Anglo-Indian relations of the eastern part of the continent or on the final phases of the western wars.
This thorough and engaging history is the first to focus intensively on the Caddos of the Texas-Louisiana border area.
Primarily from the perspective of the Caddos themselves, it traces the development and effect of relations over the three hundred years from the first meeting with the Spaniards until the resettlement of the tribes on the Brazos Reserve in In an impressive work of scholarship and lucid writing, F. Todd Smith chronicles all three of the Caddo confederacies—Kadohadacho, Hasinai, and Natchitoches—as they consolidated into a single tribe to face the waves of soldiers, traders, and settlers from the empires of Spain, France, the United States, Mexico, and the Republic of Texas.
It describes the delicate balance the Caddos struck with the various nations claiming the region and how that gradually evolved into a less beneficial relationship. Caught in the squeeze between Euro-American nations, the Caddos eventually sacrificed their independence and much of their culture to gain the benefits offered by the invaders.
Falling victim to swindlers, they at last lost their lands and were moved to a reservation. This intriguing new view of a little-known aspect of history will fascinate those interested in the culture and fate of American Indians. Thorough in its research and comprehensive in scope, it offers valuable insight into the differing approaches of the various European and American nations to the native peoples and a compelling understanding of the futility of the efforts of even some of the most sophisticated tribes in coping successfully with the changes wrought.
In , when the various Indian tribes of Texas signed a far-reaching treaty with the United States, the Wichitas and Caddos both also had a history of relations with the Euroamericans.
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For this new book, historian David La Vere has gathered a wealth of vivid detail about life among the former Texas Indian peoples. Culled from volumes of the Indian-Pioneer Histories in the Indian Archives at the Oklahoma Historical Society, these oral histories also include some interviews with non-Indian neighbors. Together, their recollections provide an exceptional picture of the details of daily life -- war and raiding, hunting and planting, foodways, dress, parties and spiritual practices, education, health, and housing.
La Vere has edited the narratives to group excerpts topically. Under farming, for example, he gives this report from a Wichita man: We raise corn, pumpkin, sweet potato. I don't know where we got corn, probably given to my people four hundred years ago. Shop By Category. My Orders. Track Orders.
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