Descriptions by escaped and repatriated captive settlers (including
the James Smith journals) of Indian customs and manners.
Originally printed in 2 volumes in 1808 and 1811, Indian Narratives
is one of the most famous books on Indian warfare. This collection
of Indian captivity stories, many in the “first person”, contain
some of the most fascinating frontier stories ever told and found
nowhere else. Of particular interest is the 114 page saga of Col.
James Smith’s 5 year captivity among the Ohio Indians.
Over 25 stories describe many Indian customs and manners including
their games, meals, clothes, fishing methods, dances, songs, dwellings,
marriages and funerals, titles, and medicines. Methods of crossing
deep rivers, Indian musical instruments, details how to make a fire
by rubbing two sticks together, as well as the explanation of why
Indians mount a horse on the off side and instances of Indian fortitude
at death, are but a few of revealed interesting facets of everyday
This book would not be complete without the chapters describing
the infamous Indian tortures. With his race and culture at stake,
the Indian became the scourge of the frontier. Prolonged pain, expressed
rage, indignant intimidation, was all a part of his torture; and
prodded along by the insufferable white arrogance on the frontier,
made his gruesome terror all so very easy to do.
Paperback, (1808) reprint, 658 pp., $49.95. (cover of paperback
is different than what is shown here)