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Top Customer Reviews
This then is the story of the early west, when the first white emigration was necessarily in balance not only with the aboriginal inhabitants but also with the valid claims of Spain, Mexico, Great Britain and Russia. It is a story of intense competition, the story of a hugely successful commercial empire that really opened this vast section of the American West. It is the story of the Santa Fe Trail, the main route of commerce between St. Louis and Santa Fe, and the people who sought to control it. It is the story of men and women, of the lives and fortunes of those who developed and experienced this commercial thoroughfare.
As a history it is mesmerizing. As a yarn it is eye popping. As a series of events it is unbelievable. A critical part of the Nation's Manifest Destiny, it is the story of human endurance, of culture clash, war, survival, success and failure. But mostly it is the story of a very logical, continual development, a transition, one that will make you proud to be an American.
David Lavender's family were early settler/ranchers in the Four Corners area of southwest Colorado. In Canyon Lands National Park Lavender Canyon is named after his ancestor who ranched there. He became an historian, a friend and colleague of Bernard De Voto, and an excellent storyteller. His book (one of several), Bent's Fort, was source material for James Michener's Centennial. In places it looks as if Michener did little more than change the names and disconnect the characters from their historical context.
If you're interested in the fur trade, mountain men, the Mexican War, Santa Fe, Taos, the Taos Rebellion, the plains indians, Kit Carson, Uncle Dick Wooten, Old Bill Williams, Brokenhand Fitzpatrick, Stephan Watts Kearney, George Crook you'll be fascinated by this book. I've bought it five or six times. I keep lending it and not getting it back. What can I say? My friends are as taken with it as I am, and maybe (probably) I told them they could keep it.
The story discusses William Bent's family relationships.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
An interesting history of Bent's Fort, the Santa Fe Trail, New Mexico, and the American west & southwest. Read morePublished 8 months ago by V. O. Ritter
The most comprehensive and scholarly book I have yet to read, not only of the Bents, but of that fascinating time in our history.Published 10 months ago by Amazon Customer
Having visited Bent's Fort several times. I finally took time to really delve into the history of this frontier fort. Read morePublished 10 months ago by Francile Cook
This is a must read for any serious student of the Plains Indians and the Santa Fe Trail. This is simply magnificent!Published 11 months ago by Steve Woolf
This is a well written and easy to read book about Bent's Fort. It tells of the southeast US before, during, and after the Mexican American War of 1846 to 1848 as well as some... Read morePublished 13 months ago by Charles L.
This book is a wonderful achievement. If you have already read a lot about the old West or you want to know about it now, this is a book for you. Read morePublished 14 months ago by David H. Eisenberg