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Children's LiteratureIn the pages of American history very few words have been dedicated to those individuals possessing a racial heritage combining Native American and African American ancestry. Yet, as William Loren Katz adamantly posited twenty years ago in this powerful book, such an oversight cannot be supported by historical fact. Now, twenty years later, a republication of Katz's pathfinding work has occurred. In the pages of Black Indians readers young and old will once again encounter the biracial heritage that was and is a vibrant part of American society. In Katz's book the story of escaped slaves who settled with Native peoples is brought to life. Whether the merger of Native and African folks occurred during the Seminole Wars, on the Trail of Tears, or during the cowboy days, the end result was a voluntary sharing of lives and cultures. Unlike the enforced cohabitation that slavery created in the antebellum South, the emergence of Black Indians was an expression of voluntary joining and love. In this powerful, illustrated book, readers will come away with insights not only into a little known aspect of American history, but also the way in which historical memory is shaped. This republication of William Loren Katz's seminal study is one that will be of value to students interested in not only the history of the American West but the nation at large as well. 2006 (orig. 1986), Atheneum Books, Ages 12 up.
—Greg M. Romaneck