Killers of the Flower Moon: The Osage Murders and the Birth of the FBI
by David Grann
338 pages. Doubleday
I can’t believe there was a time in my life when I wouldn’t read nonfiction. If I still thought nonfiction was boring, I would have missed out on this important book.
Killers of the Flower Moon is the true story of the Osage Native American murders referred to as the Reign of Terror.
David Grann does a wonderful job explaining this highly convoluted story about how the Osage tribe gained wealth in the early 1900’s from selling oil rights on their land. From approximately 1910 to 1930 their white neighbors prayed on them, by either having them declared unfit to manage their own money to downright murder.
More than sixty people were killed in calculated, cold blood in a plot that seemed to involve most of the people in the area including criminals, lawmen, doctors, politicians, and local businesses. Not to mention, it was a long game, some of the plots taking years to deploy. The depravity is heartbreaking.
And sadly, this story only touches on part of what happened. There were so many people involved we don’t know the full extent. What we know is only due to the efforts of Hoover’s FBI and that only went as far as getting the minimum solved.
This is one of the biggest cover-ups in history and has largely been swept under the rug. I hope the movie will bring it the attention it deserves. Killers of the Flower is a must-read.