The Woman Who Loved Mankind


The Woman Who Loved Mankind

The Life of a Twentieth-Century Crow Elder

Lillian Bullshows Hogan
As told to Barbara Loeb and Mardell Hogan Plainfeather

496 pages
23 illustrations, 1 map, 5 figures


July 2012


$65.00 Add to Cart
eBook (PDF)

July 2012


$65.00 Add to Cart

About the Book

The oldest living Crow at the dawn of the twenty-first century, Lillian Bullshows Hogan (1905–2003) grew up on the Crow reservation in rural Montana. In The Woman Who Loved Mankind she enthralls readers with her own long and remarkable life and the stories of her parents, part of the last generation of Crow born to nomadic ways.

As a child Hogan had a miniature teepee, a fast horse, and a medicine necklace of green beads; she learned traditional arts and food gathering from her mother and experienced the bitterness of Indian boarding school. She grew up to be a complex, hard-working Native woman who drove a car, maintained a bank account, and read the local English paper but spoke Crow as her first language, practiced beadwork, tanned hides, honored clan relatives in generous giveaways, and often visited the last of the old chiefs and berdaches with her family. She married in the traditional Crow way and was a proud member of the Tobacco and Sacred Pipe societies but was also a devoted Christian who helped establish the Church of God on her reservation.

Warm, funny, heartbreaking, and filled with information on Crow life, Hogan’s story was told to her daughter, Mardell Hogan Plainfeather, and to Barbara Loeb, a scholar and longtime friend of the family who recorded her words, staying true to Hogan’s expressive speaking rhythms with its echoes of traditional Crow storytelling.

Author Bio

Barbara Loeb taught Native art history at Oregon State University. She is the author of Felice Lucero-Giaccardo: A Contemporary Pueblo Painter and numerous writings on Crow and Plateau Indian art and culture. Mardell Hogan Plainfeather is the daughter of Lillian Bullshows Hogan. She is retired as a supervisory park ranger with the National Park Service and as a Crow field director of the American Indian Tribal Histories Project at the Western Heritage Center in Billings, Montana.


"This fascinating book is part autobiography, part history, part memoir, part cultural guide, and part poetry. . . . Loeb and Plainfeather made the wise decision to adopt an ethnopoetic approach to the reminiscences, thus preserving not only Lillian's words but also the rhythm and structure of her speaking. This choice elevates the book. The stories themselves are interesting, but the preservation of oral performance lends an intimate and important cultural feel to the work."—J. B. Edwards, Choice

"Essential reading for new and seasoned students and scholars of American Indian cultures."—Kelly M. Branam, Great Plains Quarterly

"A must read for anyone interested in native, feminist, or humanistic studies."—Timothy P. McCleary, Montana, The Magazine of Western History

"Hogan's stories read like an epic poem."—Cal Cumin, Billings Gazette

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations 
Introduction by Barbara Loeb 
Thoughts about My Mother by Mardell Hogan Plainfeather 
Chapter One: My Birth and Infancy 
Chapter Two: My Mother 
Chapter Three: My Father 
Chapter Four: My Parents Meet and Marry 
Chapter Five: My First Memories 
Chapter Six: Boarding School 
Chapter Seven: Memories of Youth 
Chapter Eight: My Mother Teaches Me to Be a Good Woman 
Chapter Nine: Tobacco Iipche (Sacred Pipe Society) and the Medicine Dance (Tobacco Society) 
Chapter Ten: We Were Always Hard Up 
Chapter Eleven: The Last Years in School 
Chapter Twelve: My First Marriage Was to Alex 
Chapter Thirteen: We're Adopted into the Tobacco Society 
Chapter Fourteen: I Married Robbie Yellowtail 
Chapter Fifteen: Paul 
Chapter Sixteen: George 
Chapter Seventeen: The Kids Are Growing Up 
Chapter Eighteen: Sacred Experiences 
Chapter Nineteen: Traditional Healing 
Chapter Twenty: I Gave Indian Names 
Chapter Twenty-One: I'm an Old-Timer 
Chapter Twenty-Two: Education 
Chapter Twenty-Three: Life as an Elder 

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