If you'd guess that Yale or Harvard ruled the college gridiron in 1911 and 1912, you'd be wrong. The most popular team belonged to an institution called the Carlisle Indian Industrial School. Its story begins with Lt. Col. Richard Henry Pratt, a fierce abolitionist who believed that Native Americans deserved a place in American society. In 1879, Pratt made a treacherous journey to the Dakota Territory to recruit Carlisle's first students.
Years later, three students approached Pratt with the notion of forming a football team. Pratt liked the idea, and in less than 20 years the Carlisle football team was defeating their Ivy League opponents and in the process changing the way the game was played.
The Real All Americans is about the end of a culture and the birth of a game that has thrilled Americans for generations. It is an inspiring reminder of the extraordinary things that can be achieved when we set aside our differences and embrace a common purpose.
"The most fascinating piece of sports history ever written!" (Lance Armstrong)
"This is historical sports-writing at its finest. Populated with all-stars like Jim Thorpe and Dwight Eisenhower but also with many captivating lesser-knowns, The Real All Americans brings a single historic game to life on the page, and in doing so captures a brutal clash of cultures still raw from the frontier. Sally Jenkins' stirring narrative belongs on a shelf with Seabiscuit and The Greatest Game Ever Played". (Hampton Sides)
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