Book Review: Modoc Vengeance, by Daniel Woodhead III

Modoc Vengeance: The 1873 Modoc War in Northern California & Southern Oregon, compiled and edited by Daniel Woodhead III, self-published in San Francisco, 2012, $19.95,

The subtitle says it all: As Reported in the Newspapers of the Day. The Modoc War was well covered by reporters at the front, and their most descriptive day-to-day accounts in the San Francisco Chronicle, New York Herald, New York Times, San Francisco Call-Bulletin, Yreka Union and Yreka Journal appear here, arranged chronologically by dateline. Author Daniel Woodhead III provides brief background information on the war and the aftermath. He points out the war was costly both monetarily ($420,000) and in casualties (68 soldiers killed, 75 wounded). Captain Jack’s Modoc might have lost as few as 16 of his followers. The back of the book is loaded with period sketches, modern color photographs and maps. A Modoc War Map makes a fine touring map. Most of the area where the Modoc War was fought is now the Lava Beds National Monument, well worth a visit.


2 Responses

  1. Frank Humiston

    I would like to purchase “Modoc Vengeance” but can’t find where I can do so with my mastercard. Thanks.

  2. Historical Explorer

    For a current look at some of the key places where the Modoc War was fought see and check out: Captain Jack’s Stronghold, Gillam’s Camp and Thomas-Wright Battlefield. These places, and more, are easily accessible in the Lava Beds National Monument. If you take Woodhead’s book and the historical map you can get at the visitor center, you can almost step into the shoes of those reporters and imagine what they witnessed.


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