The Captured by Scott Zesch

The Captured: A True Story of Abduction by Indians on the Texas FrontierThe Captured: A True Story of Abduction by Indians on the Texas Frontier by Scott Zesch
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Describing a book as educational can be the kiss of death, but this book is educational as well as enjoyable reading. Perhaps informative is a better word. It is a non-fiction history of white children captured in Texas, mostly by Comanches, but also by Apaches, and who were returned to white society. It’s quite remarkable how quickly young children adapt to the Indian ways and even lose the ability to speak English. Some readjusted well after returning to their white families, but many others, especially the boys, always considered themselves Indians and preferred that way of life until their death, even those who watched their captors brutally slaughter their family members. I was surprised at how spoiled the children, especially the boys, were by their adoptive families. The Comanches had long raided other tribes or Mexicans to acquire more warriors to build up their tribe, even before the white Texans moved into Indian territory. They were equal opportunity employers and the captives became full-fledged warriors with all the rights and privileges thereof. Even those who readjusted to white society defended the Indians and their way of life. The biggest knock I had with the book is that it’s history, which is not a favorite subject of mine, and it becomes a bit repetitive.

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