The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 78, July 1974 - April, 1975 Page: 101

Book Reviews

(p. xi), and they have followed the same guideline in preparing the general
introduction and the prefatory statements for each selection. This is un-
fortunate, for the book should have great appeal to generalists and laymen,
most of whom will bemoan the lack of bibliographical and biographical
data on the authors and selections. A little more time and effort on the part
of the editors would have considerably increased the usefulness of the work.
However, this fact should not deter anyone interested in the archaeology
and ethnohistory of the Southwest from adding the volume to his collection.
University of Texas at Arlington SANDRA L. MYRES
The Red-Bluecoats: The Indian Scouts. By Fairfax Downey and J. N.
Jacobsen. (Fort Collins, Colorado: The Old Army Press, I973. Pp.
204. Illustrations, appendix, bibliography, index. $7.95.)
The Red-Bluecoats, a well-written yet disappointingly slender volume, is
comprised of a series of anecdotes that emphasize well-known military cam-
paigns in which Indian scouts played key roles. Going well beyond George
Bird Grinnell's pioneering study, Two Great Scouts and Their Pawnee Bat-
talion, Downey and Jacobsen cover the entire period of scout history from
1866 to the dissolution of the unit during World War II.
For three-quarters of a century, young warriors from every major tribe
on the Great Plains and in the far Southwest served Uncle Sam with cour-
age and with pride. Indian scouts were valuable adjuncts of the army as
guides, as gatherers of military information, and, in emergencies, as combat
soldiers. In peacetime they were employed to maintain law and order on
reservations. Some of the scouts served for thirty years or longer. Sixteen of
their number, ten of whom were Apaches, won the Congressional Medal of
Honor. The long and commendable record of the scouts was marred only
once, when a group of Apaches mutinied after suffering ample provocation.
But this episode was an aberration from the norm; even on occasions when
blundering commanders led them into death traps, the Indian scouts re-
mained steadfast in their duty.
Of all the officers who used Indian scouts, only General George Crook
seems to have been troubled by the questionable practice of using Indians
to wage war against other Indians-sometimes, incredibly, even against
members of their own tribes. The authors of The Red-Bluecoats brush aside
the moral issue with the (to this reviewer) callous comment that, "All the
history of warfare offered precedent for the use of individuals and factions
deserting from the enemy" (p. Io).
The book is illustrated with nearly one hundred rare photographs which


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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 78, July 1974 - April, 1975, periodical, 1974/1975; Austin, Texas. ( accessed December 19, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History,; crediting Texas State Historical Association.

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