Nineteenth-century History

The Modocs – Introduction

“Well, I tell you what I will do. I give you twenty-five head of ponies if you take my place today, as you say Heaven is such a nice place. Because I do not like to go right now.” These were the words of the Modoc chief Keintpoos – or “Captain Jack” as he was nicknamed – spoken to the Christian minister on the day that he was hanged.

The story of the Modoc tribe and their eventual submission to the white Americans is quite a heroic one. Unlike many other tribes, the Modocs were generally not hostile towards the whites when they first began to invade and eventually settle on their land. For many years this pleasant relationship was sustained with the Modocs adopting several white traditions and trade between the two societies flourishing.

An artistic depiction of the surrender of the Modocs.Unfortunately, as quite often occurs, all good things must come to an end. The US government rounded up the Modocs and displaced them to a reservation with their traditional enemies, the Klamath tribe. Relations between the US government and the Modocs quickly deteriorated. Unable to bear living with their hated enemies, a group of Modocs lead by Captain Jack left the reservation and fled to their native land near Tule Lake. Captain Jack’s flight from the reservation eventually led to military action between the Modocs and the US government and ultimately ended in defeat for the Modoc peoples.

Other parts of this series

Post a Comment

Your email is kept private. Required fields are marked *

*
*

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

Explore History Rhymes
Random Featured Articles
Life in Nineteenth Century Mining Towns

Life in Nineteenth Century Mining Towns

One of my biggest fascinations with the Old West is with what life in a Rocky Mountain mining town in nineteenth century would have been like. It would have been a life full of filth, rough characters and hard work combined with drinking, fighting and gambling as pastimes. Of course these are stereo...
The Rise of Democracy in England

The Rise of Democracy in England

Today’s idea of democracy has taken centuries to develop and no other country has such a unique history with democracy as that of England. From the first Norman kings in the eleventh century CE, to today’s complex relationship between the English people, the monarchy and the Parliament, the proc...
Indians and the Imperial Powers of Europe

Indians and the Imperial Powers of Europe

At the university library, I came across a book by the title A Companion to The American West, edited by William Deverell, and have been slowly working my way through it. The book is a series of essays that talk about what the American west is, how the west is defined and how the definition...
Kit Carson

Kit Carson

No one person in the history of the American west played so many important roles in the shaping of this vast American landscape than Kit Carson. Despite his modest upbringing and the modest attitude he would carry with him throughout his life, the epic adventures he would lead in his lifetime would ...