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Crossing the Pond: The Native American Effort in World War II (War and the Southwest) Hardcover – April 1, 1999


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Product Details

  • Series: War and the Southwest
  • Hardcover: 232 pages
  • Publisher: University of North Texas Press; 1st edition (April 1, 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1574410652
  • ISBN-13: 978-1574410655
  • Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 6.5 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,051,905 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"This solidly researched study provides a good overview of the World War II era of American Indian history." -- Wyoming History Journal

From the Publisher

"Crossing the Pond" is a term Native Americans used to describe the process of being transfered overseas for military duty. This was both an event and a duty taken quite seriously by tribal memebers, who participated in every aspect of wartime America. On the homefront, Native Americans gave comparable and sometimes exemplary contributions to civilian defense work, Red Cross drives, and war bond purchases.

Crossing the Pond also chronicles the unsuccessful efforts of Nazi propagandists to exploit Native Americans for the Third Reich, as well as the successful efforts of the United States government and the media to recruit Native Americans, utilize their resources, and publicize their activities for the war effort. Franco's research indicates that Native Americans fully intended to return to their reservations after the war, where they believed they, as the "First Americans," would be able to participate in a "better America." Attention is also given to the postwar experiences of Native American men and women as they sought the franchise, educational equality, economic stability, the right to purchase alcohol, and the same amount of respect given to other American war veterans.

This meticulously researched study utilizes oral history narratives and interviews, along with documents from the congressional Record, papers from various state museums, collections of various tribal councils, and records from the Bureau of Indian Affairs and the War Relocation Authority.


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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Brian Bull on April 4, 2000
Format: Hardcover
Jere' Franco has illustrated the sacrifice and important contributions Native Americans have made to the war effort, both in combat and on the home front. This book highlights the fact that despite centuries of warfare and oppression, Native Americans revitalized the warrior code and demonstrated their patriotism by fighting for the same U.S. Government their forefathersopposed. The photos capture the faces of the dedication and purpose Indians brought to the war effort, and Franco's writing reflects the extensive research she invested into telling this important, but often neglected, segment of history. Of unique interest to me was was how the Third Reich attempted to sway Native Americans against the American government, even to the extent of declaring the Sioux Nation "Aryan" and promising to repatriate the annexed lands back to native people should they rebel against their country. The cultural observances Indian people remark on in the course of the war are particularly intriguing, and following the reading of the book one is left with a profoundly-lasting appreciation of Native people and the role they played in protecting the interests of their nation. Whether your interest is in Indian culture, military history, anthropology, government reforms, or international relations, Crossing the Pond displays all of these elements in telling detail and challenges the assumption that Indian people have not contributed to America's security. In fact, given their consecutively high-enlistment rates in the military across the 20th Century, many have given their lives to protect the land and values of the ancestors. A wonderful book and an appropriate tribute to Native veterans.
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