Tuesday, August 17, 2010

The Legend of Bass Reeves | Gary Paulsen

I have read this to my kids. It's hard to find a story based on the wild west suitable for kids and inspiring to boot. This is the story of Bass, an African American who was born a slave and grew up around taxes and Arkansas in the 1850's. His mother and Bass ran the ranch for a retired ranger who spent most of his time drunk. after a violent dispute Bass had to flee and he went to live in the Indian Territories of the North. There he learned of their way of life and had twenty five years to learn their languages and culture. 

After Abraham Lincoln issued the emancipation Proclamation freeing all slaves, Bass emerged and started life as a rancher and family man. 
When in his late fifties lawlessness in the Indian territories came to the attention of the government, Bass was asked to become a Ranger. He hunted and detained hundreds of outlaws, horse thieves and criminals who victimised the ranchers and homesteaders. He worked till he was over 70, when he had gone out on over three thousand missions. 

He went on to be the constable of Muskogee where between 1907-09 there were no crimes committed due to the fact citizens respected him and criminals feared him.
This is a great story to read with or by children from about six to thirteen. i will hunt down some other books by Paulsen.

The Legend of Bass Reeves: Being the True and Fictional Account of the Most Valiant Marshal in the West
Buy at Fishpond.co.nz

No comments:

Post a Comment