Q´Orianka Kilcher Reads Chief Joseph (Video)

Q’Orianka Kilcher reads Chief Joseph’s account of his 1879 trip to Washington, DC.

Part of a reading of Voices of a People’s History of the United States (Howard Zinn and Anthony Arnove) at All Saints Church in Pasadena, CA. 

chief jospeh

The excerpt is from Voices of a People’s History of the United States edited by Howard Zinn and Anthony Arnove.

Chief Joseph, also known as In-mut-too-yah-lat-lat (which means “Thunder-Traveling-to-Loftier-Mountain-Heights”), surrendered on October 5, 1877 in Idaho. Realizing his Nez Perce tribe could not keep their lands against the US army, he said, “Hear me, my chiefs; my heart is sick and sad. From where the Sun now stands, I will fight no more forever.” These heartbroken words are not in the formal speech he later delivered in Washington D.C.

Let me be a free man, free to travel, free to stop, free to work, free to trade where I choose, free to choose my own teachers, free to follow the religion of my fathers, free to talk, think and act for myself — and I will obey every law or submit to the penalty.

Hin-mah-too-yah-lat-kekht has spoken for his people.


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