Chief Joseph

Guardian of the People

American Heroes (Volume 1 of 6)

Candy Moulton

Forge Books

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The Nez Percé people lived in peace with white intruders in their homelands from the time of Lewis & Clark until 1863 when a treaty called for the tribe’s removal to a reservation in Idaho. Chief Joseph (1840-1904), headman of the Nez Percé band in northeastern Oregon's Wallowa Valley, became the greatest diplomat, philosopher, and—from necessity rather than choice—war leader of his people and among the most respected Indian leaders of American history.

In this meticulous and moving new study of Joseph’s life, Candy Moulton—
who has traveled over all the trails he and his people blazed—emphasizes the pivotal year of 1877, when the frontier military tried to force Joseph and his people onto the reservation. Instead of meekly following these outrageous orders, he led 750 Nez Percés on a 1,500-mile, four-month flight from western Idaho across Montana and through the Yellowstone country and northwest Wyoming toward safety in Canada. After many battles, the flight ended at the Bear Paws mountains in north-central Montana, just forty miles from the Canadian border and potential refuge. There the U.S. Army surrounded the Nez Percés, captured their horse herd, killed all but two of their primary chiefs, and forced capitulation. When Joseph surrendered to military leaders he told them, "From where the sun now stands I will fight no more forever."

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Book Excerpts

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Chapter One

He Had Sharper Eyes

The old man’s eyes were clouded with age, but his vision had not failed. “My son,” he told the strong young man who held his feeble hand, “my body is returning to my Mother Earth. My spirit is going very soon to see the Great Spirit Chief. When I am gone, think of your country.”

There had been more such advice and instruction about dispensation of his property in that final message from father to son, from an old headman to a young one, who both used the same white name: Joseph. “You are chief of these people.

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Reviews

Praise for Chief Joseph

"The story of Chief Joseph is reflective of the forebearance and determination of the Nez Percé people. Candy Moulton has crafted a moving account of a major player in an epic chapter of American Indian history."—Jerome A. Greene, author of Nez Perce Summer, 1877

“Our written history goes from the 700 page history by Alvin Josephy to other shorter works but none is more comprehensive than Chief Joseph for American Heroes. I appreciate Candy Moulton including details about our stay in and return from Oklahoma Territory.”
—Charlie Moses, Jr. Chief Joseph Band, Nez Perce Colville Reservation, Nespelem, Washington
Treasurer, Nez Perce National Historical Trail Foundation

“A strong study of a brave man and his peole, as only a writer such as Moulton can express.” –True West

“Moulton writes with exquisite passion about one of America’s greatest freedom fighters. Impeccably researched, Chief Joseph: Guardian of the People, will stand for generations as a testament to one man’s heroic struggle to find a sanctuary for his people.”
--W. Michael Gear and Kathleen O’Neal Gear, Authors of People of the Raven

"Congratulations to Tor/Forge for their American Heroes series. I can't think of a publishing venture that America needs more than this. Chief Joseph by Candy Moulton is a perfect introduction to the series. It combines good history with deep emotion. It's a book that will live in every reader's mind."—Thomas Fleming, author of Dreams of Glory


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About the Author

Candy Moulton

Candy Moulton is the author of twelve Western history books including Everyday Life Among American Indians from 1800 to 1900, Writer's Guide to Everyday Life in the Wild West from 1840 to 1900, Roadside History of Wyoming, and Roadside History of Nebraska. Moulton makes her home near Encampment, Wyoming, where she edits the Western Writers of America Roundup Magazine, writes regularly for several magazines including True West, Wild West, Persimmon Hill, and American Cowboy. She is a member of the Nez Percé Trail Foundation, Lewis and Clark Heritage Trail Foundation, Oregon-California Trails Association, and Western Writers of America.

Candy Moulton

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Available Formats and Book Details

Chief Joseph
Guardian of the People
Candy Moulton

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Spur Awards - Winner

Trade Paperback

Trade Paperback
Tom Doherty Associates
Forge Books
June 2006
Trade Paperback
ISBN: 9780765310644
ISBN10: 0765310643
5 x 7 1/2 inches, 240 pages
$14.99

e-Book Agency

e-Book Agency
Tom Doherty Associates
Forge Books
May 2013
e-Book Agency
ISBN: 9781466845947
ISBN10: 1466845945
240 pages
$9.99
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