Crow Killer

Crow Killer

The Saga of Liver-Eating Johnson
New Edition
Raymond W. Thorp and Robert Bunker
New Introduction by Nathan E. Bender
Distribution: World
Publication date: 12/29/2015
Format: paper 208 pages, 1 map
6 x 9
ISBN: 978-0-253-02083-3
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The movie Jeremiah Johnson introduced millions to the legendary mountain man, John Johnson. The real Johnson was a far cry from the Redford version. Standing 6’2” in his stocking feet and weighing nearly 250 pounds, he was a mountain man among mountain men, one of the toughest customers on the western frontier. As the story goes, one morning in 1847 Johnson returned to his Rocky Mountain trapper’s cabin to find the remains of his murdered Indian wife and her unborn child. He vowed vengeance against an entire Indian tribe. Crow Killer tells of that one-man, decades-long war to avenge his beloved. Whether seen as a realistic glimpse of a long ago, fierce frontier world, or as a mythic retelling of the many tales spun around and by Johnson, Crow Killer is unforgettable. This new edition, redesigned for the first time, features an introduction by western frontier expert Nathan E. Bender and a glossary of Indian tribes.

Author Bio

Raymond W. Thorp is author of Bowie Knife and Spirit Gun of the West: The Story of Doc W. F. Carver, among other titles.

Nathan E. Bender is an independent scholar and consultant in Laramie, Wyoming, who has written extensively on the Old West.


"It’s a robust story, almost incredible—a saga of hardship, cruelty and terrible dangers through which John Johnson, tough and shrewd as he undoubtedly was, did not emerge unscathed. This is the stuff of folklore at its authentic best." —New York Times Book Review , reviewing a previous edition or volume

. . . [Johnson] emerges as flesh and blood, with the emphasis on blood. His story is the material from which grand opera might be made." —Saturday Review , reviewing a previous edition or volume

. . . warrants a place on any shelf of Western Americana." —San Francisco Chronicle , reviewing a previous edition or volume

Spectacular to repellent, this is a part of Western life as it must have been. . ." —Kirkus Reviews , reviewing a previous edition or volume

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Table of Contents

Introduction by Nathan E. Bender
Foreword by Richard M. Dorson

Part One: The Young Trapper
1. The Making of a Legend
2. The Hair Merchants
3. An Apprenticeship
4. A Madness
5. Oath of Vengeance

Part Two: Liver-Eating Johnson
6. A Man’s Reputation
7. Twined Scalps
8. Crow Against Flathead
9. Winter Holiday, Spring Council
10. . . . A Missing Chapter

Part Three: A Man Among Men
11. The Eighteenth Warrior
12. Captive of the Blackfeet
13. Mountain-Man Rendezvous
14. Boots and Biscuits
15. Portuguese Phillips
16. A Sioux Liver
17. Monument for a Foe’s Friend
18. Target for Gray Bear

Part Four: Brother of the Crows
19. White Chief of the Shoshoni
20. Biscuits for Blackfeet
21. A Last Departure
22. Mariano and the Ute Chief
23. The Piegan Princess
24. Eight Scalps for the Crows

Part Five: The Old Trapper
25. Burial for Bear Claw
26. Sheriff Johnson
27. Last Trail
28. Lodge by the Sea

Glossary of Native Peoples in
Crow Killer
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