Miss Ann Winfrey Editor —— Academic Division Savitar University of Missouri 303 Read Hall Columbia, Missouri 65201
Dear Miss Winfrey:

I am greatly pleased to have been selected as an outstanding educator in the College of Arts and Science by the editorial staff of the 1970 Savitar.

You asked why I have taught Twilight of the Sioux.

It is a tremendous human story dealing with a great nation's last years of triumph and defeat. While it is specifically about Indians, it is essentially the story of the human race itself struggling in the grip of fate to survive and achieve.

The course deals with the two final stories of my The Cycle of the West. "The Song of the Indian Wars" and "The Song of the Messiah." The former is concerned with the last great fight for the bison pastures between the Plains Indians and the westering white men. The second deals with the attempt of the Sioux to save their old way of life by appealing to the Spirit, the essential rightness of their last great dream and the tragedy of its worldly failure.

Great truths seem to have a way of triumphing in this world through apparent defeat.

That the course does have human significance is indicated by the fact that student interest has continued for fifteen years.

The foregoing is my reason for teaching Twilight of the Sioux. My reason for teaching at all is that I sincerely love students and have been happy with them.

With all kind thoughts,
JGN:fmb

John G. Neihardt

Please give my regards to Mr. Domly.

If this is not exactly what you had in mind ——if you would prefer to quote from my works ——just let me know how much space you wish to give me and I will suggest quotable passages.