A vivid account of the rivalry between future president William Henry Harrison and the Shawnee chief Tecumseh—and of the Native American alliance that fought westward expansion—from the New York Times bestselling author of Astoria
The conquest of Indigenous land in the eastern United States through corrupt treaties and genocidal violence laid the groundwork for the conquest of the American West. In Gallop Toward the Sun, acclaimed author Peter Stark exposes the fundamental conflicts at play through the little-known but consequential struggle between two extraordinary leaders.
William Henry Harrison was born to a prominent Virginia family, the son of a signer of the Declaration of Independence. He journeyed west, became governor of the vast Indiana Territory, and sought statehood by attracting settlers and imposing one-sided treaties.
Tecumseh, by all accounts one of the nineteenth century’s greatest leaders, belonged to an honored line of Shawnee warriors and chiefs. His father, killed while fighting the Virginians flooding into Kentucky, extracted a promise from his sons to “never give in” to the land-hungry Americans. An eloquent speaker, Tecumseh traveled from Minnesota to Florida and west to the Great Plains convincing far-flung tribes to join a great confederacy and face down their common enemy. Eager to stop U.S. expansion, the British backed Tecumseh’s confederacy in a series of battles during the forgotten western front of the War of 1812 that would determine control over the North American continent.
Tecumseh’s brave stand was likely the last chance to protect Indigenous people from U.S. expansion—and prevent the upstart United States from becoming a world power. In this fast-paced narrative—with its sharply drawn characters, high-stakes diplomacy, and bloody battles—Peter Stark brings this pivotal moment to life.
About the Author
Peter Stark is a historian and adventurer. He is author of the New York Times bestseller Astoria and of Young Washington, finalist for the 2019 George Washington Book Prize. A longtime correspondent for Outside, he has written for Smithsonian, The New Yorker, and many other publications. His Gallop Toward the Sun was published by Random House in August 2023, and his The Last Empty Places was reissued by Mountaineers Books in March 2023.
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