Michael Finley's thesis advisor at Eastern Washington University told him that if he wanted to be an authority in Native history of the Inland Northwest, he had to know who the authorities were.
probably meant pick up their books," says Finley
also took his
advisor literally, personally contacting Trafzer, Scheuerman, and Robert H. Ruby, another prolific scholar of Northwest Indians.
After finishing his thesis, on the three chiefs of the Colvilles, Skolaskin, Moses, and Joseph, Finley went to work for the Colville tribe in the history and archaeology division.
"I had some extra time on my hands outside of work.
Coupled with that, I did a lot of research in my work.
I'd come across references to Kamiakin
," which he
started e-mailing to Scheuerman.
also had access to genealogy records, which interested Scheuerman very much.
said this is wonderful stuff, says Finley
What should we do with it?
Finley is currently vice chairman of the Colville Business Council for the Colville Confederated Tribes.
"The rapid dispossession of Puget Sound tribal domains," write Scheuerman and Finley
, "confirmed Kamiakin's suspicion that the polite rhetoric of White officials concealed other motives."
Whether it was that threat or the combined advocacy of the other leaders, muse Scheuerman and Finley
finally signed with an X. According to one of the priests present, he
was in such a rage that he
lip until it bled.
"As word spread," write Scheuerman and Finley
, "Army officials railed again against Stevens and the volunteers' methods, which were 'to provoke a continuance of the war and to plunder the Indians of their horses and cattle.'"
"On a grand scale," write Scheuerman and Finley
, "epidemics demoralized and decreased Native populations, adversely affecting their overall social organization and strength."
Wright's strategy had relied on overwhelming force and a "focused assault on Tribal leadership," write Scheuerman and Finley
Scheuerman and Finley
give slightly different answers.
Some of the reason for the biography's slow coming is simply a matter of privacy, says Finley