Sondra Jones traces the metamorphosis of the Ute people from a society of small, interrelated bands of mobile hunter-gatherers to sovereign, dependent nations—modern tribes who run extensive business enterprises and government services. Weaving together the history of all Ute groups—in Colorado, Utah, and New Mexico—the narrative describes their traditional culture, including the many facets that have continued to define them as a people. Jones emphasizes how the Utes adapted over four centuries and details events, conflicts, trade, and social interactions with non-Utes and non-Indians. Being and Becoming Ute examines the effects of boarding—and public—school education; colonial wars and commerce with Hispanic and American settlers; modern world wars and other international conflicts; battles over federally instigated termination, tribal identity, and membership; and the development of economic enterprises and political power. The book also explores the concerns of the modern Ute world, including social and medical issues, transformed religion, and the fight to maintain Ute identity in the twenty-first century.
Neither a portrait of a people frozen in a past time and place nor a tragedy in which vanishing Indians sank into oppressed oblivion, the history of the Ute people is dynamic and evolving. While it includes misfortune, injustice, and struggle, it reveals the adaptability and resilience of an American Indian people.
The study of the last remaining Ute wickiups, or brush shelters, along with the historic artifacts found with them has uncovered an understudied chapter of Native American history—the early years of contact with European invaders and the final years of Ute sovereignty. Ephemeral Bounty is the result of this archaeological research and its findings on the protohistoric and early historic Ute Indians of Colorado.
The Colorado Wickiup Project is documenting ephemeral wooden features such as wickiups, tree-platforms, and brush horse corrals that remain scattered throughout the mesas, canyons, and mountains of the state. They date from when European newcomers first arrived with a bounty of new things—horses, metal knives and axes, guns, and brightly colored glass beads—which were readily adopted by the Utes.
The Project is unique in using the techniques of metal detection, historic trade ware analysis, and tree-ring dating of metal ax–cut wickiup poles to distinguish the Ute sites from historic Euro–American ones. Through this analysis, researchers have demonstrated that not all Utes left Colorado for the reservations in Utah during the “final removal” in 1881, as has been generally believed. A significant number remained on their homelands well into the early decades of the twentieth century, building brush shelters and living much as they had for generations, but with new tools and weapons.
Robert Emmitt's The Last War Trail: The Utes and the Settlement of Colorado is one of the most important and innovative books written on Ute Indians from Colorado. Saponise Cuch, Chief of the White River Utes, said to Robert Emmitt in 1948, "I am an old man now, and I am the only one left who remembers this. I have known that someone would come to tell this story; now you will write it out, as I have told it to you." Drawing upon historical documents, transcripts, and letters as well as interviews with Northern Ute elders, Emmitt describes the tragedy of United States Indian Agent Nathan Meeker's plan to "civilize" the Utes, and the resulting military intervention in which fifty Ute warriors held off the U.S. cavalry and killed Meeker, Major Thomas Thornburgh, and others. Ute warriors sought only to defend their families and their way of life, but the price for that defense was forced removal from Colorado and the loss of over twelve million acres. "The Utes Must Go" became a rallying cry for white settlers who coveted the lands of peaceful Utes.
Written with the care and precision of a finely crafted novel, The Last War Trail was nominated for the Pulitzer Prize when it was first published in 1954. Long out of print and now brought back with new rare photographs and illustrations, The Last War Trail will be eagerly read by anyone trying to understand conflicts of the nineteenth century between Native American and encroaching settlers.
On Zion’s Mount shows how, paradoxically, the Mormons created their homeland at the expense of the local Indians—and how they expressed their sense of belonging by investing Mt. Timpanogos with “Indian” meaning.
One Voice Rising is a memoir by Ute healer, elder, and historian Clifford Duncan, as told to Anglo writer, Linda Sillitoe. Duncan (1933–2014) was an inspiring leader and a powerful medicine man, and he was, as Sillitoe wrote, “simultaneously one of the most bicultural and traditional American Indians in the West.” Duncan here covers both personal and tribal history during a crucial period in the tribe’s development. His discussions with Sillitoe offer a unique look at individual and societal issues, including the Native American Church, powwows and tribal celebrations, and interactions with the larger world. George Janecek’s photographs of Clifford Duncan and his world expand the impact of Duncan’s words.
“Everything was Indian then, when I was a boy. They had to explain to us about the white man's side. Now everything is in the white man's world and we teach Indian ways.”
—Clifford Duncan (from the book)
Philo T Farnsworth
Donald Godfrey University of Utah Press, 2001 Library of Congress TK6635.F3G64 2001 | Dewey Decimal 621.3880092
Philo T. Farnsworth (1906–1971) has been called the "forgotten father of television." He grew up in Utah and southern Idaho, and was described as a genius by those who knew and worked with him. With only a high school education, Farnsworth drew his first television schematic for his high school teacher in Rigby, Idaho. Subsequent claims and litigation notwithstanding, he was the first to transmit a television image.
Farnsworth filed ten patents between 1927 and 1929 for camera tubes (transmitting), circuitry, and the cathode ray tube (viewing). After his early years as an inventor in San Francisco, he worked as an engineer, doing battle with RCA in the 1930s over patent rights, formed the Farnsworth Television Company in the 1940s, and worked for IT&T after their purchase of the Farnsworth enterprises. Every television set sold utilized at least six of his basic patents.
Because of endless legal wrangling with RCA over patent rights, he received very little financial reward for his television patents. Donald Godfrey examines the genius and the failures in the life of Philo Farnsworth as he struggled to be both inventor and entrepreneur.