Picks and Pans Review: How the West Was Lost
updated 05/17/1993 AT 01:00 AM EDT
•originally published 05/17/1993 AT 01:00 AM EDT
This six-part documentary, airing over consecutive nights at the same time, details the subjugation and destruction of the major Native American nations by the waves of "white eyes" that swarmed in ever greater numbers from the East in the 19th century. It's a grim litany of broken promises, enforced relocations and search-and-destroy military campaigns conducted against the Navajo, the Nez Percé, the Apache, the Cheyenne and the Lakota. Just as devastating was the fact that the Europeans brought with them cholera, smallpox, measles and other diseases against which the Indians had no natural immunity.
This amply illustrated, well-researched series—produced and directed by Chris Wheeler—is a slow, thorough and distressing chronicle of our country's original sin.