Author: George Franklin Feldman
Publisher: Alan C. Hood & Co, Inc.
ISBN:  978-0-911469-33-2

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Most modern Americans believe the Indians were peaceful savages who lived an ideal life with nature that was destroyed by the white folk.  To some extent, they did fit into that picture. There can be no doubt of the horrible decimation of the Native Americans by the Europeans who took their land, dignity, and very lives.  But, there was also a darker side to the placid natives.

George Franklin Feldman, the author, has loved archeology since he was a boy and Dr. Glenn Black let him dig around an Angel Mounds site. His love of American history continued into adulthood and his focus turned to the dark site of the American Indians and their relations with the invaders.  He has found people ranging from relunct to even defiant at the suggestion that the Native Americans were anything other than passive victims.  They were anything but passive.

Before the Europeans meddled into their affairs, the Indians were massacring each other with regular frequency.  In warfare, often whole villages were murdered.  The gentler option was death to the men and slavery to the women and children.  And, of course, let’s not forget the cannibalism and human sacrifice.

Human sacrifice and cannibalism served many functions.  Some tribes killed their own people for rituals or sacrificed slaves.  Cannibalism often occurred in an attempt to gain the bravery of the person eaten or to strengthen the warrior about to fight.  And,  as European Americans did later, they turned to cannibalism to survive starvation.  Cannibalism also was religiously-based.  There were gods and goddesses who were cannibals and humans who worshiped them by becoming cannibals themselves.

 As Europeans met with the headhunting ways of the Native Americans they were at first appalled, then they learned to be as savage.  At first shocked by the use of scalp collecting, white Americans took it to new heights.  The European Americans wanted to destroy the Indians for various reasons and soon they put a price on the Indians’ head.  The average reward was $200 for a warrior, but even a child’s scalp earned money.  Vicious men, eager for money, began the slaughter.  This led to Indians fighting back, more of a call for scalps, and death everywhere.

 In his research, George Franklin Feldman found accounts of unspeakable horror and wondered how to find the words to describe it.  He wondered whether or not he should even write about those things.  In the end, he did pursue the work, using the words of first hand accounts to stay unbiased.  He continued because he knew this story had to be told and history should not be censored.  He reports the grizzly facts with compassion and detail.  It is complex and not an simple read; it takes an concentrated effort but is well worth the time spent.  Through and well-written, this book helps fill in the blanks of American Indian history and shed a new light on our country’s past.

           
Click Here To Purchase Cannibalism, Headhunting and Human Sacrifice in North America