Wah-to-yah, and the Taos Trail; or Prairie travel and scalp dances, with a look at Los Rancheros from Muleback and the Rocky Mountain Campfire

Wah-to-yah, and the Taos Trail; or Prairie travel and scalp dances, with a look at Los Rancheros from Muleback and the Rocky Mountain Campfire
Author
: Lewis Hector Garrard
Publisher
: Mesquite Press
Pages
: 0
Category
: Non Fiction : General
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“the book is a minor classic of great charm, which has never had anything like the currency or critical recognition it deserves” The New York Review of Books



On September 1, 1846, seventeen-year-old Lewis Garrard, set off on the journey of a lifetime into the Far West.

Beginning in what is now Kansas City he joined a caravan headed for Bent’s Fort in southeastern Colorado near the Spanish Peaks, which was known to the Native Americans as Wah-to-Yah.

Just before Garrard had arrived in the southwest Charles Bent, who was the recently appointed Governor of the newly acquired New Mexico Territory, was scalped and killed by Pueblo warriors during the Taos Revolt.

Garrard’s account is therefore a vivid first-hand account of the Taos Revolt and its aftermath.

Through the course of Wah-to-yah and the Taos Trail Garrard explains how he came into contact with some of the most famous figures of western history, including Kit Carson, Jim Beckwourth, Ceran St. Vrain, George F. Ruxton, William Bent, and others.

Scholars like Robert Gale have highlighted how the book provides “anthropologically accurate” descriptions of the Cheyenne Indians and other Native American tribes in the southwest of America.

This book is essential reading for anyone interested in the history of the old west, for as the Pulitzer Prize winning author A. B. Guthrie Jr. stated, it is “the genuine article” and brilliantly depicts “the Indian, the trader, the mountain man, their dress, and behavior and speech and the country and climate they lived in.”

Lewis Hector Garrard was the son of a prominent family from Cincinnati, Ohio. In 1846 he set out for a ten-month trip to the southwestern United States. While in Taos, Garrard attended the trial of some of the Mexicans and Pueblos who had revolted against U.S. rule of New Mexico, newly captured in the Mexican-American War. Garrard wrote the only eye witness account of the trial and hanging of six convicted men. His book Wah-to-Yah was first published in 1850 and he passed away in 1887.




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