Pushed: Miners, a Merchant, and (Maybe) a Massacre (Paperback)

Pushed: Miners, a Merchant, and (Maybe) a Massacre By Ana Maria Spagna Cover Image

Pushed: Miners, a Merchant, and (Maybe) a Massacre (Paperback)


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A personal investigative journey into the so-called Chelan Falls Massacre of 1875.

"The particulars of the crime, Spagna's work suggests, matter less than understanding how something awful can change a place and its people. Pushed is a compelling true crime book that explores issues of race and justice in the American West."

--FOREWORD REVIEWS, starred review

Amid the current alarming rise in xenophobia, Ana Maria Spagna stumbled upon a story: one
day in 1875, according to lore, on a high bluff over the Columbia River, a group of local Indigenous people murdered a large number of Chinese miners--perhaps as many as three hundred--and pushed their bodies over a cliff into the river. The little-known incident was dubbed the Chelan Falls Massacre. Despite having lived in the area for more than thirty years, Spagna had never before heard of this event. She set out to discover exactly what happened and why.

Consulting historians, archaeologists, Indigenous elders, and even a grave dowser, Spagna uncovers three possible versions of the event: Native people as perpetrators. White people as perpetrators. It didn't happen at all. Pushed: Miners, a Merchant, and (Maybe) a Massacre replaces convenient narratives of the American West with nuance and complexity, revealing the danger in forgetting or remembering atrocities when history is murky and asking what allegiance to a place requires.
Ana Maria Spagna is the author of nine books including the young adult novel The Luckiest Scar on Earth and most recently the poetry chapbook Mile Marker Six. Her work has been recognized by the River Teeth Literary Nonfiction Prize, the Society for Environmental Journalists, the Nautilus Book Awards, and as a four-time finalist for the Washington State Book Award. A former backcountry trails worker, Ana Maria now teaches in MFA programs at Antioch University, Los Angeles, and Western Colorado University.
Product Details ISBN: 9781948814690
ISBN-10: 1948814692
Publisher: Torrey House Press
Publication Date: February 7th, 2023
Pages: 232
Language: English