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The Kiowa Verdict by Cynthia Haseloff

The Kiowa Verdict (1997)

by Cynthia Haseloff

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Like MAN WITHOUT MEDICINE, THE KIOWA VERDICT is fiction based upon an actual incident in American History. I have taken many liberties in creating the characters.
After an uneventful inspection tour of the Western line of Texas forts - Fort Concho, Fort Griffin, and the abandoned Fort Belknap - William Tecumseh Sherman arrived at Fort Richardson, his next to last stop, late on the afternoon of May 17, 1871.
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IN 1871 Satanta, a Kiowa war chief, boasted at the Kiowa-Comanche Agency that he had led a war party against a wagon train of freighters. When he repeated his boast to General W.T. Sherman, who was on a tour of frontier forts, the order was given for his arrest along with two other chiefs who were implicated. the killing, torture, and mutilation of the freighters was said to have been a ghastly crime. But never before had members of an Indian war party been put on trial to defend their brutal actions. The chiefs would be tried in a Texas courtroom, with a former Indian fighter to defend them.
Would a fair trail even be possible in such a setting?
And would the outcome be justice .. or vengeance?


Assembled on the shaded porch of Gierson's headquarters were more than a dozen of the most important and bravest Kiowa men and the staff of soldiers that surrounded Sherman and Grierson. the general watched the Kiowa's face as Jones spoke his words to them. Sherman continued: "I want to know which of you went on the Texas raid on the wagon train. Satanta and whoever else of the chiefs that took part in the attack are going back to Texas to stand trial for this crime."
Jones spoke to the expectant chiefs. "Satanta and whoever else led the raid are going to be taken back to Texas to stand trial for the attack on the wagon train."
Satanta spoke again "What right do you have to do that?"
As Jones translated, Sherman rose from the railing. "I have the right given by the treaty of Eighteen Sixty-Seven at Medicine Lodge. You know it as well as I know it. I believe you and Satank signed that treaty, knowing that it expressly prohibited raids in Texas."
"You have not kept that treaty!" snapped Satanta in reply. "Buffalo hunters are moving into the southern herd from Kansas every day.That was forbidden." the Kiowa stopped while Jones translated.
"I will not go to Texas," shouted Satanta angrily. "I will die right here." He threw back his robe, revealing the pistol at his waist. As his hand closed over the grip, the shades on the porch windows were thrown open. Twenty black soldiers pointed their rifles at Satanta and the Kiowas.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0843947675, Mass Market Paperback)

This Spur Award-winning novel is set in 1871, when members of an Indian war party are put on trial to defend their brutal attack of a wagon train. The chiefs are tried in a Texas courtroom, with a former Indian fighter to defend them. Will a fair trial be possible?

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:10:32 -0400)

(see all 3 descriptions)

The trial of Satanta, an Indian chief who led a war party against a wagon train in 1871 Texas, torturing and killing its occupants. Upon capture, far from denying the massacre, he boasted of his prowess. Despite this self-incrimination, lawyer Joe Woolfolk managed to save his neck.… (more)

» see all 2 descriptions

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