Colonel Richard Irving Dodge: The Life And Times of a Career by Wayne R. Kime

By Wayne R. Kime

Few infantrymen observed extra of the late-nineteenth-century West and its peoples or made extra pals and friends, civilian and armed forces, than the vigorous and sociable Col. Richard Irving avert. during this first biography of the soldier-author, Wayne R. Kime describes Dodge’s early years, reviews as a author, and forty-three-year occupation as an infantry officer within the U.S. military, environment his lifestyles tale in a wealthy old context.Between 1848 and 1891 keep away from participated within the nice Sioux conflict, explored the Black Hills, commanded infantry regiments, and served as an aide-de-camp to normal William Tecumseh Sherman. He used to be in my opinion engaged within the ongoing energy fight among the military and the Bureau of Indian Affairs over how top to unravel the country’s so-called Indian problem.Dodge was once a paradox. He favourite Plains Indians and lamented the top in their lifestyle as a result of confinement on reservations and the slaughter of buffalo. but he additionally thought of Indians to be “savages” who may be “civilized” simply by way of possibility of strength. As Kime finds, the contradictions in Dodge’s lifestyles and concept reflected the ambivalence that many american citizens felt approximately Indian coverage and westward growth.

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It consisted of forked poles driven into the ground, with other poles set over the forks and leafy branches laid atop the resulting structure. For walls, poles were tied to the forks at angles, and straight sticks were woven between them. Seated comfortably one night in his ramada, Dodge unwittingly had a narrow brush with death. With his dog lying at his feet, he was filling out quartermaster’s papers when suddenly the dog made a furious rush at the door, as if to thwart an intruder. Startled, Dodge opened the door and looked out into the darkness.

And applied there for a second medical leave of absence. ”48 Frustrated by his own weakness, he must have recalled the seemingly interminable weeks four years earlier, when he had traveled from south to north and back again in search of a regular regimental assignment. Fears for his life had not yet been expressed, but clearly a return to frontier duty might permanently weaken the health of this otherwise promising young officer. 49 Fortunately, the indulgence of the authorities at Washington yielded the favorable results all had hoped for, and by spring he was back to full strength.

To the astonishment of all the whites the Indian won by a neck. Another race was proposed by the Officers and, after much “dickering,” accepted by the Indians against the next best horse of the garrison. The bets were doubled and in less than an hour the second race was run by the same pony, with the same apparent exertion and with exactly the same result. The officers[,] thoroughly disgusted[,] proposed a third race and brought to the ground a magnificent Kentucky mare, of the true Lexington blood, and known to beat the best of the others at least forty yards in four hundred.

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