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Full-Court Quest: The Girls from Fort Shaw Indian School Basketball Champions of the World Hardcover – November 10, 2008

4.8 out of 5 stars 11 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Adult/High School—At the turn of the 20th century, an important aspect of the federal policy toward many American Indian tribes was assimilation through education. Boarding schools were established off reservation, as well as on, and government officials actively and aggressively recruited children to attend them. Among the students in the school established at Fort Shaw in Montana were a group of young women who would become famous in Montana, and a popular attraction at the 1904 World's Fair. Their story is told in this well-researched and well-documented book. Leaving their families and arriving at different ages for different reasons, they came together to play the new game of basketball and were quite successful. Peavy and Smith's book is a remarkably rosy picture of an Indian boarding school. While the authors mention that students ran away, that they were separated from their families for long periods of time, and that they were required to speak only English and leave behind traditional dress and culture, these factors seem not to have affected these talented athletes. It is not until the last few pages that the authors specifically, and briefly, address the cost of the success of the girls' team, and the federal Indian educational policy. Still, the book tells a story long forgotten about these "world champions."—Mary Ann Harlan, Arcata High School, CA
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Review

"Once the authors introduced me to the players on the basketball team named world champions at the 1904 World's Fair, I found myself immersed in the players' lives as they transitioned from life on reservations and farms with their families to their coming of age at a boarding school, separated from their own cultures. Their biographers and descendents deserve our praise. Recommended for women's, multicultural, and regional history collections." --Susan Andrus, Story Circle Book Reviews.org
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 496 pages
  • Publisher: University of Oklahoma Press; 1st edition (November 10, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0806139730
  • ISBN-13: 978-0806139739
  • Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 1.4 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,135,514 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
A find of several arrowheads on our land in western NY sparked my interest in reading Full Court Quest: The Girls from Fort Shaw Indian School: Basketball Champions of the World by Linda Peavy and Ursula Smith. Once the authors introduced me to the players on the basketball team named world champions at the 1904 World's Fair, I found myself immersed in the players' lives as they transitioned from life on reservations and farms with their families to their coming of age at a boarding school, separated from their own cultures.

Because different tribes had been settled in one location at the Fort Shaw Indian School, there existed the potential for conflict, but instead these girls supported one another while negotiating the illnesses that plagued them from time to time, as well as surviving the deaths of parents, siblings, and friends. Starting with a soccer ball and a basket nailed to the wall, they progressed through and over many obstacles to become the "champions of the St. Louis world's fair." Not only did they play two twenty-minute, full-court basketball halves, several times a week and sometimes twice in a day, they also performed pantomime, played musical instruments, and recited poetry as part of their "demonstration" of how Indian girls could become "civilized." They raced up and down the court and through the Northwest exhibiting their talents, recruiting new students, accepting challenges from whites who could barely score against them, showing grace and modesty each time they won.
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By Redline on January 23, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I have also read "Shoot Minnie Shoot", it was OK but very disappointing that the author chose to take "artistic license" with the story. The facts are so much better then fiction.

I have been waiting for years for this book and I am not disappointed.

My grandmother played on this team. I learned things about her I never knew.

If all someone is looking for is a girls basketball story, you can find that anywhere.

This is HISTORY.
The history of a bunch of girls that changed they way people viewed Indians at the turn of the century.
The history of our families, our grandmothers, aunts, cousins finally told after over 100 years.
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Format: Hardcover
Had enough of football, can't wait for basketball? Full-Court Quest is the perfect gift book for any sports fan who loves inspirational stories this time featuring young women who played full court basketball and won while wearing dresses.
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Format: Hardcover
FULL-COURT QUEST: THE GIRLS FROM FORT SHAW INDIAN SCHOOL BASKETBALL CHAMPIONS OF THE WORLD tells how ten girls shattered prevailing perceptions towards Indian peoples and women athletes one game at a time, but it's more than a recommendation for sports libraries alone. Included in the assessment of the Fort Shaw Indian School winners is an overview of native politics, life, and women's issues alike, making FULL-COURT QUEST a wide-ranging assessment for any college-level collection strong in women's issues or Native American rights.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
As a Montanan who likes the game of basketball, I found this to be an inspiring, well-written story and one I had never heard. I had no idea! The individuals involved were "fleshed out" so they took on personality and I began rooting for them to overcome and triumph in their game of life. It's also terrific Montana history. I am so impressed with the book that I ordered a copy for each of my children (and their families) and we will use it as the basis for our family book club.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I was disappointed as the book was very factual but became very repetitous. The program before the games & and the performances at the World Fair, were itemized each time. The reader got bogged down with these details. I felt the book should have been edited more. Having read "Shoot, Minnie, Shoot" and disappointed that it was a novel and introduced the author's imagination, I was very interested in the "facts", just not that many repeated so often. However, I did enjoy the newspaper articles that were included in "Shoot, Minnie, shoot" rather than the "notes" in Full Court Quest. The book definitely cleared up some misconceptions that I had about the team, including that they did not play any boy's teams or have a championship game as such at the World Fair. It was very interesting that the Government Indian School was presented in such a good light and prepared the young people with skills and confidence. I also enjoyed "The Years Thereafter", a nice follow-up on the members of the team. My expectations may have been a bit high for the book, based on a review in Montana I had read.
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