Glenn Frankel: "The Searchers"

Glenn Frankel: "The Searchers"

A classic Western called "The Searchers" dramatized the true story of a young girl kidnapped by the Comanche Indians. How a film helped shape the myth of the American West.

Life in the 19th century American west was hard. Settlers struggled to farm and feed their families, and Indian tribes fought to keep control of shrinking land. The two sides feared each other and clashed frequently along borders. In 1836, a 9-year-old Texas girl was kidnapped by a Comanche tribe. She lived with them for 24 years before she was recaptured, and her story was told to generations of Texans. In the 1950s, a novel about the abduction, titled “The Searchers,” was made into a hit movie starring John Wayne. A new book explores how and why the film changed the story, and its role in shaping myths of the American west.

Guests

Glenn Frankel

director of the School of Journalism, University of Texas, Austin.

Read An Excerpt

Reprinted from "The Searchers" by Glenn Frankel. Copyright © 2013 by Glenn Frankel. Used by permission of Bloomsbury USA.

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