The Destruction of the Bison explains the decline of the North
American bison population from an estimated 30 million in 1800 to
fewer than 1000 a century later. In this wide-ranging,
interdisciplinary study, Andrew C. Isenberg argues that the
cultural and ecological encounter between Native Americans and
Euroamericans in the Great Plains was the central cause of the near
extinction of the bison. Drought and the incursion of domestic
livestock and exotic species such as horses into the Great Plains
all threatened the Western ecosystem, which was further
destabilized as interactions between Native Americans and
Euroamericans created new types of hunters in both cultures:
mounted Indian nomads and white commercial hide hunters. In the
early twentieth century, nostalgia about the very cultural strife
that first threatened the bison became, ironically, an important
impetus to its preservation.
Cambridge University Press (Virtual Publishing)
|Country of origin:
||Studies in Environment and History
Andrew C. Isenberg
(Professor of History)
||Electronic book text
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