Perhaps it is not necessary to say that the events mentioned in the letters are not imaginary--perhaps the letters themselves tell that! They are truthful accounts of experiences that came into my own life with the Army in the far West, whether they be about Indians, desperadoes, or hunting--not one little thing has been stolen. They are of a life that has passed--as has passed the buffalo and the antelope--yes, and the log and adobe quarters for the Army. All flowery descriptions have been omitted, as it seemed that a simple, concise narration of events as they actually occurred, was more in keeping with the life, and that which came into it.
t they all marched again, quickly and silently, just as they had come in. They instantly mounted their ponies, and all rode down the street and out of sight at race speed, some leaning so far over on their little beasts that one could hardly see the Indian at all. The pony that was ridden into the store door was without a bridle, and was guided by a long strip of buffalo skin which was fastened around his lower jaw by a slipknot. It is amazing to see how tractable the Indians can make their ponies with only that one rein.
The storekeeper told us that those Indians were Utes, and were greatly excited because they had just heard there was a small party of Cheyennes down the river two or three miles. The Utes and Cheyennes are bitter enemies. He said that the Utes were very cross--ready for the blood of Indian or white man--therefore he had permitted them to do about as they pleased while in the store, particularly as we were there, and he saw that we were frightened. That young man did not know that his own
One of the most compelling naratives describing the lives of the army men and their familes who were sent out to tame the old west in the 19th century. In this distinct genre of the literature of the American West, Roe's work stands out as one of the best. Thought of as a 'woman's book', this work probably has never gained the attention it deserves. Literate, descriptive and compelling, I honestly could not stop reading. Enjoy!
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