An American Genocide: The United States and the California Indian Catastrophe, 1846-1873
The first full account of the government-sanctioned genocide of California Indians under United States rule
Between 1846 and 1873, California’s Indian population plunged from perhaps 150,000 to 30,000. Benjamin Madley is the first historian to uncover the full extent of the slaughter, the involvement of state and federal officials, the taxpayer dollars that supported the violence, indigenous resistance, who did the killing, and why the killings ended. This deeply researched book is a comprehensive and chilling history of an American genocide.
Madley describes pre-contact California and precursors to the genocide before explaining how the Gold Rush stirred vigilante violence against California Indians. He narrates the rise of a state-sanctioned killing machine and the broad societal, judicial, and political support for genocide. Many participated: vigilantes, volunteer state militiamen, U.S. Army soldiers, U.S. congressmen, California governors, and others. The state and federal governments spent at least $1,700,000 on campaigns against California Indians. Besides evaluating government officials’ culpability, Madley considers why the slaughter constituted genocide and how other possible genocides within and beyond the Americas might be investigated using the methods presented in this groundbreaking book.
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AN AMERICAN GENOCIDE: The United States and the California Indian Catastrophe, 1846-1873User Review - Kirkus
It was no accident that California's Indians were slaughtered by the droves in the mid-19th century, writes UCLA historian Madley, but instead the product of design.We know the heyday of genocide ... Read full review
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According American American Indians Appendix April Army attacked August Bancroft calculate California Indians campaign Captain Chief Clear command continued Correspondent County Creek Daily death December early Eel River estimated Expedition extermination February federal five force Fork four genocide gold Governor Herald History Humboldt hundred hunting included January John Journal July June Kelsey Klamath labor Lake land later least legislators Library major March massacre miles military militia militiamen Modoc months mountains murder North Northern Note November number of California October October 24 officers operations Owens Owens Lake Pomo Quechans Ranch Red Bluff region reported Reservation Round Valley Sacramento Second Senate September Shasta Courier Smith soldiers soon Stone summary took treaties tribes Trinity Union United Unreported Unreported Unreported vigilantes village violence Volunteers West whites women wounded Wright Yreka