On the Border with CROOK (1891)

On the Border with CROOK (1891) John Gregory Bourke Was A Captain In The United States Army And A Prolific Diarist And Postbellum Author He Wrote Several Books About The American Old West, Including Ethnologies Of Its Indigenous Peoples He Was Awarded The Medal Of Honor For His Actions While A Cavalryman In The Union Army During The American Civil War Based On His Service During The War, His Commander Nominated Him To West Point, Where He Graduated In , Leading To Service As An Army Officer Until He Served As An Aide To General George Crook In The Apache Wars From To As Crook S Aide, Bourke Had The Opportunity To Witness Every Facet Of Life In The Old West The Battles, Wildlife, The Internal Squabbling Among The Military, The Indian Agency, Settlers, And Native Americans The Author Is Well Known In Literary And Scientific Circles By His Work, The Snake Dance Of The Moquis, And Other Ethnological Researches The Present Volume Tells The Story, In A Fascinating Way, Of Many Years Of Frontier Service With General Crook A Story That Is Far Less Known In The Country Than It Deserves To Be Endowed With Brilliant Talents And Devoted To His Chief, He Saw The Salient Points Of Every Movement In A Then Extremely Hostile Country, And Jotted Down In His Note Books, From Which This Book Is Written, All The Grave, And Various Incidents Which Distinguished General Crook S Campaigns Against The Apaches, And Afterward Against The Hostile Sioux Of The North He Kept Voluminous Notes During All These Years, And From Them Has Written A Book Of Surpassing Interest The Events Of Campaign After Campaign Are Related In Witty Narrative Form, Embracing Not Only Pleasant And Often Ludicrous Incidents, But Also Hardships Cold, Hunger And Dangers Borne By The Troops In These Little Appreciated Western Services Few, Except Those Who Followed General Crook In These Campaigns, Can Form Any Idea Of Their Hardships, And Fewer Still Realize The Unwearying Devotion Displayed By Him Under The Most Trying Circumstances Or His Entire Disregard Of His Own Personal Comfort And The Persistence And Courage With Which He Followed Out His Plans He Cared Nothing For Personal Distinctions, And Always Seemed The Embodiment Of Duty He Was Called A Great Indian Fighter, But He Was The Last One To Provoke An Indian Outbreak And Was Only Satisfied To Fight When All Means Of Preserving Peace Had Failed He Had A Wonderful Faculty For Gaining And Keeping The Confidence Of The Indians, And Seemed To Understand Their Nature Thoroughly For Nearly Twenty Years, In All His Hardest Indian Campaigns, From Mexico To The Yellowstone, From Lands Of Sun To Lands Of Snow Captain Bourke Was The General S Intimate And Trusted Friend, And This Book, While Not A Biography, Is Full Of Intensely Interesting Details Of One Of The Most Picturesque And Heroic Of Lives The Conditions Of Indian Warfare, Which He Had To Meet, Are Not Likely To Occur Again The Vast Regions Of Former Hostile Occupancy Have Dwindled Into Small Reservations, And Railroads And Civilization Have Marked The Indian For Absorption Into The Body Politic But This Story Of The Services Of General Crook And Those Who Served With Him In His Campaigns Is Not Likely To Be Forgotten This Book Is Written In A Happy Vein And The Narration Of Events Recorded, While Adhering To Strict Accuracy, Is Full Of Vivacity And Polish Of Diction There Is Not A Dull Page In It Frontier Life, In Its Most Picturesque Phases, With Packers, Teamsters, Scouts, Guides, Indians, And All The Incidents Of Campaigning In A Wild And Hostile Country Appear In Realistic Color

John Gregory Bourke was a captain in the United States Army and a prolific diarist and postbellum author he wrote several books about the American Old West, including ethnologies of its indigenous peoples He was awarded the Medal of Honor for his actions while a cavalryman in the Union Army during the American Civil War Based on his service during the war, his commander nominated him to West Po

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  • 524 pages
  • On the Border with CROOK (1891)
  • John G. Bourke
  • English
  • 23 February 2017

10 thoughts on “On the Border with CROOK (1891)

  1. says:

    Great first hand account from the Army pov of the Apache and Sioux Cheyenne wars George Crook was a rare leader of honesty and character Good material on early days in Tucson, AZ in there The thing I picked up, after having a minor in Native American Studies and History of the American West, is that scout Indians turned on their own tribes and helped Crook and the Army You won t find that fact in Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee, which portrays Indians as being in total solidarity to white advance But then one always gets a accurate view reading first hand sources like this one over interpretations like Bury My Heart The coverage of the second Apache campaign against Geronimo is a little weak, as Bourke covers the surrender and the politics and not much than that But what rings through is Crook s character and integrity.

  2. says:

    Tagged toreread too long since I took Bourke s tour of Apache southwest, wonder if could be considered classic Would like to ride mules then with John and the General.For a well written fiction perspective on what s On the Border, Watch , a noir Apache novel could provide an introduction to General Crook Watch for Me on the MountainThe second volume of the Spur winning biography about Crook, by Paul Magid, will be published by U Okla Pr, spring 15 Reread Bourke before new bio.General George Crook His Autobiography

  3. says:

    This is not just a classic historical reference, it is also a gem in terms of eloquent descriptive style As a staff officer with General Crook during the Indian wars of the late 19th century, John Bourke was perfectly placed to observe the transformation of the West Within three or four decades, the Rocky Mountains and Plains changed from the largely untrammeled terrain of itinerants and Native groups to a promised land for settlers, dreamers and opportunists of every stripe Campaigns and policies developed by General Crook played a notable part in compelling the tribes of that region to accept these new conditions As Crook s Boswell, Bourke makes a point of chronicling his commander s thinking as well as his characteristics Crook s first rule in dealing with Native Americans was honesty a quality not always employed in these circumstances Through this approach, he was able to recruit Indian allies This was a key to his success, for Indians were able to defeat their hostile brethren where orthodox cavalry and infantry could expect limited progress, if any.Crook is remembered in particular for his imposition of peace on the Apaches of Arizona and the surrounding area Bourke s account of conditions in central and southern Arizona excels Not only does he give a sympathetic view of the Native American perspective but he also leaves a rare sketch of Hispanic and American Arizonans For example, his description of Tucson of the 1870s and some of its colorful residents is a delight to read His observations and his skill in phrasing breathe life into a period that, in a state barely 100 years old, sometimes seems like prehistory Bourke wrote this memoir 20 years after Crook s initial campaigns, but he appears to have had vivid recall and has left a legacy deserving recognition from any reader interested in American expansion into the West.

  4. says:

    One of the best books ever written on the Indian Wars Capt John Gregory Bourke is half Amry Officer and half Anthropolgist

  5. says:

    John Gregory Bourke served under General George Crook as his aide de camp for thirteen years 1871 1883 during which time he kept a diary documenting his observations of everything from the general s character, temperament and achievements, to descriptions of topography and wildlife, to living conditions in the frontier forts and settlements of Arizona, the Dakotas, and Montana, to detailed accounts of the Apache, Sioux, and Cheyenne Published in 1892, On the Border with Crook General George Crook, the American Indian Wars, and Life on the American Frontier, is a firsthand account of the general and the Indian campaigns and has been recognized as one of the ten best western books of all time Having said that, readers will encounter extended passages listing the names of soldiers and Indian scouts involved in the various campaigns not just those whom history has identified as important, but every single individual involved Additionally, the first quarter of the book discusses life in the Arizona territory prior to General Crook s arrival with whimsical descriptions of Western characters many of whom have no relationship to the remainder of the book.These are minor quibbles Bourke brings to life the hardships endured with insights into specific engagements between the Indians and the military that could only be gained from eyewitness accounts His narrative doesn t gloss over the brutality of battle nor the savagery of outrages perpetrated by Native Americans, but it also highlights General Crook s faith in the American Indian and his advocacy for their full rights as U.S citizens Following their subjugation and placement on reservations he gives full shrift to their grievances against the actions of unscrupulous Indian agents, and he decries the imprisonment of Indian scouts who faithfully served the military.The numbers of Native Americans who actually took up arms against their own people came as a revelation I was aware of their involvement in tracking down hostile Indians attempting to elude pursuit by the U.S Army, but I hadn t realized the extent to which they fought alongside Their participation proved to be a deciding factor in ending the Indian Wars Many of the tribes gave voice to the conviction that they might have held out against white encroachment onto their lands, but the combined strength of Indian and white forces was too much to overcome.Bourke ends his book with the death of General Crook, March 21, 1890 at age sixty one He laments his passing with this comment Crook s modesty was so great, and his aversion to pomp and circumstance so painfully prominent a feature of his character and disposition, that much which has been here related would never be known from other sources.

  6. says:

    Great resource on Arizona History I found the writing well done and the historical descriptions of early Arizona, of cavalry life and the native American dilemma fascinating But the Native Americans were people to behold Their ingenuity and strength to live off the land, in harsh environments and their incredible endurance to maintain their way of life all while struggling with foreign invaders, who have advanced weapons and endless resources was equally fascinating and important I do have new admiration for General Crook, especially when I walked down his trail on the Rim It just opened my eyes to the great accomplishment of it all He also seemed to genuinely care for the native population and went out of his way to bring them up to speed with white Americans and society but as we all know many men in power looked to taking advantage of the native population as way to get rich, all while keeping them savage in everyone s eyes to maintain their crooked enterprises I have to thank the writer John Bourke for the vast amount of information he recorded in his notes through out his years with General Crook and for writing this historical narrative.

  7. says:

    A firsthand account of life in the U.S Cavalry fighting Apaches in Arizona and Sioux in South Dakota Wyoming Montana with General Crook Very well written as an historical account of life out West in the 1870 s Tucson is just a small hamlet of adobe huts, temperatures hit 120 degrees with no air conditioning, and the Apaches are masters at hit and run guerrilla warfare tactics The second half of this book concerns the war with the Sioux and Cheyenne at the time of the Custer massacre on the Little Big Horn Crook chased the Sioux and Cheyenne and finally vanquished them all in a series of military manoeuvres Capt Bourke does a good job of keeping this account interesting and accurate Very interesting read.

  8. says:

    Unsung hero of the Frontier Every red blooded American patriot needs to read this tome about this great mans life First, you will find yourself embarrassed at being so ignorant at the huge problems faced by red and white alike in this tumultuous period Next, maddened how biased post modernists have twisted this rich history and trampled underfoot men such as Crook, who should be exemplified as a model, as villains.

  9. says:

    Anyone interested in the Indian Wars needs this memoir in their personal library Crook has always seemed enigmatic, but Bourke even with all the hagiography brings him further to the surface than modern biographers have been able to Simply a gem of a time capsule covering the high water mark of frontier service.

  10. says:

    Wonderful eye witness account of the Indian Wars of 1870 1886 Outstanding description of character of the land and gives new meaning to hard marching Loved the writing and insight of the author The problems identified then are with us today Great history read

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