Indigenous Peoples and Human Rights

November 4, 2009

'In the Footsteps of Yellow Woman,' authentic account of the Longest Walk

By Brenda Norrell
Censored News

ROCKY RIDGE, Navajo Nation -- It is a story that the United States does not want to be told. Now, with authentic images and story, a young Navajo woman is telling it. Camille Manybeads Tso was 13 years old when she wrote and directed the film "In the Footsteps of Yellow Woman." She tells the story of her great-great-great grandmother Yellow Woman, as told to her by her grandmother Mae Tso.

Mae Tso tells how the young Navajo women, with their babies, were constantly on the run from the Calvary in the 1860s, hiding in the caves and rocks of Black Mesa. Then captured and forced on the Longest Walk, they were driven at gunpoint across the swift Rio Grande. Babies and elderly were swept away. Eventually after the harsh imprisonment at Fort Sumner, N.M., Navajos returned to their homeland.

In this brilliant work of film, a young Navajo woman has come forward to reveal the genesis of Hitler's concentration camps.
Hopefully, her art of storytelling with film will give birth to a new generation of filmmakers, Native youths telling their histories with clarity, passion and excellence.

"In the Footsteps of Yellow Woman," is a honorable memorial to the thousands of Navajos who died on the Longest Walk and during the cruel imprisonment at Fort Sumner. It is a testament to the courage and fortitude of the young Navajo women who survived with their children, and the Navajos who continue to struggle to protect and defend Black Mesa today.

With music by Blackfire, Brent Michaels David and Radmilla Cody, the film is a moving tribute to the legacy of survival.

Camille Manybeads Tso, in an eighth-grade project and trained at the Native youth media project 'Outta Your Backpack Media,' has produced a film that is authentic and a hallmark for our times.

Photos: The making of "In the Footsteps of Yellow Woman" courtesy Camille Manybeads Tso. Photo 2: Navajo woman and baby at Fort Sumner. Photo 3: Navajos with their shelter at Fort Sumner. Fort Sumner photos courtesy of New Mexico State Monuments.

Contact Camille Manybeads Tso:
More photos and film screenings:

1 comment:

Unknown said...

Many stories are out there and I think there also has to be a recorder out there, visiting the nursing homes and old peoples houses on the reservations, it is about time to record and make films of all, before it is to late