The Fowler Family story continued westward with Johnny Osage, originally published in 1960 with later reprints. In it Janice Holt Giles departed from her usual pattern to feature a male as the central character, Johnny Fowler who was known as Johnny Osage. Johnny, son of Tice and Hannah Fowler and youngest brother of Rebecca Fowler Burke, came by his nickname because of his friendship with members of the Osage tribe. Along with his brother-in-law Stephen Burke, he ran a trading post in the western reaches of the Arkansas Territory.
In 1821 the Arkansas Territory was rapidly changing. None were more affected by those changes than the Osages who were being squeezed and pinched by white settlers, their time-old enemies, the Pawnees, and by the Cherokees, newly removed west of the Mississippi by the U. S. government. Their friend Johnny Fowler understood the threat and attempted to act as their intermediary with the U. S. Army which represented law and order in the Territory.
At the same time Johnny could appreciate the efforts of the white settlers in building a new place for themselves. While he was not enthralled with New England missionaries attempting to establish their church and a school near his trading post, he did admire their diligence and steadfastness. One of them, lovely and opinionated Judith Lowell quickly figured into all of Johnny's thoughts and actions. But even her love and convictions could not keep him from the ultimate showdown with Blade, the notorious leader of the Cherokees.