The Martyrdom of Collins Catch the Bear

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Product Details

$18.95  $17.43
Seven Stories Press
Publish Date
5.6 X 8.4 X 0.7 inches | 0.55 pounds

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About the Author

Gerry Spence is legend among the trial bar, recognized to be one of the greatest trial lawyers of our times. His civil and criminal practices have gained him an international reputation for his high profile cases and record results. His trials have been celebrated in books and on television. Author of nineteen books, a poet, artist and photographer, Gerry Spence received the first Lifetime Achievement Award from the Consumer Attorneys of California. In 2009 he was inducted into the American Trial Lawyers Hall of Fame. In 2013 he received the Lifetime Achievement award presented by the American Association for Justice. He is the founder of the nonprofit Trial Lawyers College in Wyoming, founding member of The Spence Law Firm, LLC, and practices in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. Spence served as one of Collins Catch the Bear's lawyers on the Yellow Thunder case.


"In a story chock full of vengeance, treachery, racism, tragedy, and despair, Gerry Spence recounts the torments endured by his young client, Oglala Lakota Collins Catch the Bear, before, during, and after his court room battles in 1982-1983. The trials occurred near the end of a period of intense Indigenous activism spearheaded by the American Indian Movement. Catch the Bear was unjustifiably prosecuted for events that had taken place when he was living at the Yellow Thunder Camp of Native activists in the Black Hills of South Dakota, lands held as sacred by the Lakota and other Tribal nations. Over those years, Spence witnessed, fought, and chronicled the personal and institutional racism that continues to typify the experience of Indigenous peoples living in the U.S. There are no heroes in this intimate, unvarnished account, and Spence spares no one, not even himself. He has thus managed to evoke the dark and lonely struggle that will be all too familiar to Natives and is critical reading for those non-Natives who seek to understand more about Indigenous experiences and history." --David Wilkins (Lumbee), professor, University of Richmond