An American Epic Cheyenne Autumn Author:Mari Sandoz History's cruelest pages — In quest of their homeland over 1500 miles distant, a band of Northern Cheyennes fled the Oklahoma reservation in September, 1878, on what would be one of the most harrowing and courageous treks in the history of the American West. The 278 Cheyennes, fewer than half of them adults, under the dual chieftancy of Little Wo... more »lf and Dull Knife, had been half-starved by their forced encampment. They had little ammunition and few guns and horses.
The United States Army, expecting to thwart the exodus with but a minor skirmish, first dispatched a few troops against the handful of warriors. Before the Cheyennes were contained months later, more than 10,000 soldiers had been called to the Great Plains. In the vicious campaign, most of the valiant Cheyennes were annihilated before reaching their home on the Yellowstone. CHEYENNE AUTUMN is a distinguished historian's tribute to a tiny band of persecuted people in their defiant struggle against the armed might of a great military power.