Lisa Combs, December 8, 2014 (view all comments by Lisa Combs)
Stories in our early American History seldom told are riveting. That is the case with Jim Fergus's story of the 1000 White Women Ulyesses Grant used as a means to assimilate the Cheyenne Indians. In a time when women could be locked away in an asylum for the slightest of reasons, May Dodd volunteered to particiapte in Brides for Indians to gain her release. Fergus researched the Cheyenne, the land, the times and customs in order to weave a jouney that plunges the reader into at the gritiest of details. Read here about May Dodd, her group of women bound for a different life, Little Wolf and Grant. Fergus does a compelling job settign the stage, and wrapping the reader in a wonderful read. He researched to write on Little Wolf, non-fiction when he learned he had requested women for brides. Fergus pondered the outcomes of the request being met or not. He went with the story of what it was like for the women. Who assimilated whom? Fact blended with Fergus's imagination turns into a read one will recommend to others again and again.
Turn the page . . .
L Jean, January 2, 2013 (view all comments by L Jean)
Many people who have read this book thought it was true. I can see why. The idea for the book was true - that an Indian chief would be so far-thinking is very interesting. He knew what was happening to the Indians and tried to save his race. The women in this book were strong - and very unique.
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Curtis Martin, July 6, 2012 (view all comments by Curtis Martin)
I was intrigued by the true event that sparked the idea behind this story. An Indian Chief thought that a marital exchange would help bridge the gap between the Native-American and White cultures. The exchange never happened, but it is still a good idea. Inter-racial, international, inter-religous or intercultural exchange marriages could go a long way toward bringing peace in the world. (I'm speaking from my personal experience in a mixed race and international family.) What I thought was interesting was the way the white women were assimilated into the tribal culture of their husbands. The husbands also were forced to grow and change their ways to accomodate their new, white wives. I've read a couple of other Jim Fergus books, but this is my favorite.
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kiwigrower, January 1, 2011 (view all comments by kiwigrower)
This was a book club selection that I was reluctant to read, but I absolutely loved it. It is the story of a fictional government "mail order bride" program to the Cheyenne tribe in the mid nineteenth century told in the form of the journal of one of the brides. It is well researched, fascinating, and emotionally charged with its exploration of bigotry.
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One Thousand White Women: The Journals of May Dodd
Used Trade Paper
0 stars -
St. Martin's Press -
One Thousand White Women is the story of May Dodd and a colorful assembly of pioneer women who, under the auspices of the U.S. government, travel to the western prairies in 1875 to intermarry among the Cheyenne Indians. The covert and controversial Brides for Indians program, launched by the administration of Ulysses S. Grant, is intended to help assimilate the Indians into the white man's world. Toward that end May and her friends embark upon the adventure of their lifetime. Jim Fergus has so vividly depicted the American West that it is as if these diaries are a capsule in time.
Based on an actual historical event, "One Thousand White Women" tells the story--in diary and letter form--of a young woman, who in 1875, travels to the American West to marry Little Wolf, the chief of the Cheyenne nation.
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