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An American genocide
Between 1846 and 1873, California’s Indian population plunged from perhaps
150,000 to 30,000. Benjamin Madley is the first historian to uncover the
full extent of the slaughter, the involvement of state and federal
officials, the taxpayer dollars that supported the violence, indigenous
resistance, who did the killing, and why the killings ended. This deeply
researched book is a comprehensive and chilling history of an American
genocide. Madley describes pre-contact California and precursors to the
genocide before explaining how the Gold Rush stirred vigilante violence
against California Indians. He narrates the rise of a state-sanctioned
killing machine and the broad societal, judicial, and political support for
genocide. Many participated: vigilantes, volunteer state militiamen, U.S.
Army soldiers, U.S. congressmen, California governors, and others. The
state and federal governments spent at least $1,700,000 on campaigns
against California Indians. Besides evaluating government officials’
culpability, Madley considers why the slaughter constituted genocide and
how other possible genocides within and beyond the Americas might be
investigated using the methods presented in this groundbreaking book.
Author: Madley, Benjamin Year: 2016 ISBN: 9780300181364 Pages: 576 Language: English Publisher: Yale University Press Publisher's city: New Haven/London Publication date: