Welcome to Iowa Public Television! If you are seeing this message, you are using a browser that does not support web standards. This site will look much better in a browser that supports web standards, but it is accessible to any browser or Internet device. Read more on our technical tips page.

Iowa Public Television


Contrary Warrior: The Life and Times of Adam Fortunate Eagle

PBS Video

« Upcoming Episodes

All Episodes

  • Contrary Warrior: The Life and Times of Adam Fortunate Eagle

    Contrary Warrior tells the story of Adam Fortunate Eagle, a contemporary activist, artist, author, ceremonial leader. At the age of five, his father dead and his mother unable to provide for eight children, Adam and his siblings are sent to an Indian boarding school where he spends his childhood. After graduating from Haskell Institute in Kansas he moves to San Francisco and becomes a successful businessman and the "perfect" urban Indian - a poster child for the Bureau of Indian Affairs. Injustices met by Urban Indians motivate him to become an advocate for the rights of urban Indians. Eventually he becomes one of the principle architects of the American Indian takeover of Alcatraz Island in 1969 - an action that brings about social change. Because of this the government declares him an "enemy of the state" and he loses his business and virtually everything he owns. Forced to go back to the reservation, he hones his skills as a ceremonial pipe maker, sculptor, and author and continues his calling as a ceremonial leader and statesman for his people. Vine Deloria, Jr., author of Custer Died For Your Sins wrote, "Fortunate Eagle is one of the most outstanding Indian leaders of this generation." [56 minutes]

« Upcoming Episodes

« Back to Programs A-Z

- display sidebar --->