Skip to main content
Cover for Indian Chiefs

Indian Chiefs

Russell Freedman


List Price: 27.95*
* Individual store prices may vary.


A narrative biography of six native leaders facing an historical moment of crisis, by award-winning historian Russell Freedman
As pioneers began to head westward in the mid-1800s, they came in contact with the native inhabitants of those territories—a meeting that was often peaceful at first, until white settlers began to lay claim to the land and the United States government built forts to defend them. 
It was up to the leaders of these western tribes to decide how to react—whether to cooperate peacefully, agreeing to live on ever-shrinking reservations granted to them, or to fight back and defend their right to the lands they'd always lived on.
Illustrated with numerous historical photographs and prints, Indian Chiefs tells the stories of six western chiefs who led their people through this turbulent time.  The biography focuses on Red Cloud of the Oglala Sioux, Satanta of the Kiowas, Quanah Parker of the Comanches. Washakie of the Shoshoni, Joseph of the Nez Perce, and Sitting Bull of the Hunkpapa Sioux.
Meticulously researched, this narrative account of the lives of these early leaders balances contemporary historical accounts with more recent reflections, focusing on the choices leaders made in these times of crisis and how these conflicts shaped our modern nation. 
ALA Notable Book
ALA Best Book of the Year for Young Adults

Holiday House, 9780823406258, 160pp.

Publication Date: March 1, 1987

About the Author

Russell Freedman (1929-2018) transformed non-fiction for children through his insightful narrative, comprehensive research, careful selection of photographs, and deep understanding of his subject matter. He was well known for his riveting biographies and masterful accounts of the history of the United States. One of the most honored writers for children, his many awards include the Newbery Medal, three Newbery Honor Medals, the Laura Ingalls Wilder Award, the May Hill Arbuthnot Honor Lecture Award and a National Humanities Medal. Major works include Freedom Walkers; Lincoln: A Photobiography; Because They Marched; The Wright Brothers: How They Invented The Airplane; Vietnam: A History of the War.