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500 Nations: An Illustrated History of North American Indians
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500 Nations: An Illustrated History of North American Indians

4.29  ·  Rating details ·  491 Ratings  ·  20 Reviews
The story of Native American leaders, customs, political systems, and ways of life, this is American history from the Native American perspective: friendship, betrayal, war, and ultimately, the loss of homeland. A companion volume to the CBS series produced by Kevin Costner, Jack Leustig, and James Wilson scheduled to air in 1995. Illustrations & photos.
Hardcover, 468 pages
Published November 15th 1994 by Knopf (first published 1994)
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Jenny Nay
Apr 29, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book is truly inspiring. Between the amazing illustrations and photos to the depth at which the Native American people are looked at, this book gives the reader necessary insight into an amazing and misunderstood world. Everyone should read this book and familiarize themselves with their native brothers and sisters. Their plight is ongoing.
Ted Luster
Jun 09, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: All
Recommended to Ted by: Selected reading note, in Library newsletter
A worthwhile pictorial history of the "HUMAN BEINGS", and
their relationship, with the CIVILIZATION which was forced
upon them.
Christine D
Mar 22, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book is big. It is an extremely comprehensive history of native people in North America. This is a bear of a book with a lot of information, not exactly bedtime reading but very thorough nonetheless. I had this book checked out from my local library for over two months, that's how long it took me to page through it.
Bill
Sep 22, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: american-history
Very interesting; does a good job of summarizing the "entirety" of The Indians of North America. It does have a rather left-wing bent to it (and I can be very left wing). It treats in almost all cases the Indians as if they are noble and beautiful and somehow more spiritual than the average human while describing in some detail the various atrocities, holocausts, ethnic cleansing, cruel torture etc. that they inflicted upon themselves and others. This does not, of course, excuse any of the abuse ...more
Chrisl
Sep 05, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: history, natives, 1990s, usa
When glancing at the Goodreads entry for 500 Nations, after skimming the library's copy for a second time recently, I was surprised to see Josephy's encyclopedic tome included in an expansive list of "Westerns

... well, OK, definitely useful background for much HF-USA, my category for novels that includes Indians

... Good book to begin learning about the rise and fall of pre-Euro Americans.
Zmuda
Dec 09, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
What an enjoyable book! It has important information supplemented with fascinating photographs & illustrations. I would suggest picking this book up at your local library before buying it. The information is good, but the book never goes into great detail about any of the events.
Heath Lowrance
Apr 21, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is an amazingly exhaustive history of Indians in the Americas, tracing their various cultures from the very first civilizations thousands of years ago to the final series of blows to their ways of life in the very late nineteenth century. It's lavishly illustrated on every single page and is a bit of a wrist strainer.

Josephy does an admirable job of detailing the amazing diversity of Indian life across geographical lines- the way various tribes interacted with one another in both negative
...more
Marc
May 02, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned
I read (or rather, enjoy looking at) this thumping great volume not as a work alone, but as a visual aide memoire accompanying Josephy's masterly works on the history of First Nations in the americas.

Sadly, I am reminded that one of the three books I have lent, never to be returned, was a similarly named, unillustrated and more detailed history of the first nations (published by Penguin, I think) which I lent, alongside two other books, to a television producer colleague.

When he returned the two
...more
Kathy
Aug 28, 2008 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: native-americans
Okay, so, this is the kind of giant reference book that I'm certain NOONE reads cover to cover, and I would be counted amongst those. However, it does have what I expect to be a permanent home on my bookshelf.
Carol
Sep 07, 2007 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
The show was awesome, too.
Big
"I am Wind In His Hair. Do you see that I am your friend? Can you see that you will always be my friend?"
Julia Wherlock
Dec 24, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A very informative book. Well illustrated. A must for scholars and enthusiasts alike.
Charlane Brady
Apr 15, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Moving. Well written and great art.
David Stephens
Jun 17, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: american-history
500 Nations covers the history of the Native Americans from pre-Columbian times to the massacre at Wounded Knee Creek in 1890 and lays a nice foundation for understanding many of the tribes that existed up through the nineteenth century. It does a fantastic job exploring the amazing amount of variety that existed in terms of geographic spread, population, culture, economy, and overall complexity of society. Anyone who believes Native Americans simply lived in tepees and hunted buffalo (me up unt ...more
Sam
Apr 27, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Great history illustrating the suffering and murder we inflicted upon the Native peoples of the Americas under religious (specifically, Catholic) motivation and guidance. Good read if you want to develop empathy for the indigenous people with thousands of years of history, culture, and civilization before we violently wiped them out and placed the dregs of survivors that weren't slaughtered into Reservations to fall victim to chronic alcoholism.
Fredrick Danysh
Here is a collection of information about many of the Native American nations and confederations of theAmericas. It is a handy reference tool to get a scope of Native American relationships and ways of life.
Doris Raines
Apr 06, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A. Book. To. Remember. Thanks. Doris.
Rachel
Feb 28, 2015 marked it as will-not-finish  ·  review of another edition
Gorgeous pictures, banal text.
Colleen
Sep 24, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: history
heartbreaking but informative and filled with the voices of Native Americans
Shel
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An American historian who specialized in Native American topics. He served as a combat correspondent during World War II and was awarded the Bronze Star for his coverage of the U.S. capture of Guam. His interest in Native American history started during an assignment from Time Magazine.
More about Alvin M. Josephy Jr....

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