Tan-go-ru-a: An Historical Drama In Prose, 1856 Henry Clay Morehead

Tan- go- ru- a: An Historical Drama In Prose, 1856 Henry Clay Morehead

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Henry Clay Morehead's Tan-go-ru-a An Historical Drama In Prose, 1856, is a dramatic novel in dialogue--a rare collector's book. Its theme follows the Indian problems in Colonial Pennsylvania.

Although no author is listed in Tan-go-ru-a, An Historical Drama, published by T. B. Peterson of Philadelphia, the author was, indeed, Henry Clay Morehead (1823-1861). He was a man of considerable experience with the Indian situation in Colonial America and supports his "historical drama" with scholarly documentation shown in his notes (pp. 251-280). .

When the drama was published in 1856, even the kindly disposed critic for Godey's Magazine (September, 1856, 276) found it undistinguished and lacking a "dramatic spirit." Quite true! Morehead writes a fair narrative prose, but he has no talent for dramatizing the action he imagines. The theme, however, makes this a distinctive book!

This antiquarian book is 280 pages long, measures 4 3/4 inches by  7 1/2 inches by 1 inch and is in excellent vintage condition. There is slight browning of the fly leaves, both front and back. A mylar cover protects the book cover which is unmarked. All is firm and strong.

The plot of Tangorua is carried by two Englishmen who explain the situations as they occur. Tan-go-ru-a is a powerful Indian chief, Christianized by a Moravian minister whose daughter loves Tan-go-ru-a. Wee-rah-oooch-wee, the tribal medicine man, supports Tan-go-ru-a as a leader of all Indians and is also loyal to him. Time passes; the Quaker dominated Council in Pennsylvania pushes for action against the Indians as Tan-go-ru-a endures a private struggle against his white friends and for his honor as an Indian. Eventually, misunderstood and betrayed by both Indians and Whites, his actions bring about his death. For both Indians and Whites the problems remain.

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