CRC Information

Dzani Yazhi Book Cover

Dzani Yazhi Naazbaa’s Little Woman Warrior Who Came Home
Evangeline Parsons Yazzie
Salina Bookshelf, Inc.
March 2005

Pages 116
Grade: 3-8

Rating:  Good - The story is very good,
the drawings are derogatory



In 1856 Dzanibaa’(Little Woman Warrior Who Came Home), a young Navajo girl, was taken from her beautiful home in the Black Mesa’s by United States soldiers and taken to Fort Canby.  Soon after her whole family was brought to Fort Canby and then forced to walk 450 miles to Fort Sumner in New Mexico.  Dzanibaa saw the old and sick fall behind and the soldiers shoot them, as they walked to New Mexico.  Four years the people tried to plant crops in the hard and alkaline ground without success, making sure the children did not forget the to plant.  Since the crops failed the Naabeeho, (Navajo people) had to rely on the rations provided to them by the soldiers.  The Naabeeho were given rations that were foreign to them, bug infested, and rotten. With the strength of the people, the clan system, their songs, and prayers the people survived extremely desperate times.  On June 1, 1868 the Naabeeho were allowed to return home between the sacred mountains, with the Treaty of 1868.

This is a book is written in two languages, Navajo and English, offering Native voice and a way for children to connect to the story in both.  My favorite part was the description of how Native People were given Commodity food with out cooking instructions.  They boiled the black beans, dumped out the water added new water, and boiled them again and they never got soft.  They were Coffee beans.  I’ve heard stories about flour being used as paint, cause the Native people thought that the soldiers wanted them to be white, not knowing they were to cook with the stuff.

  Marlette Grant-Jackson – ITEPP-CRC

More Resources

Navajo Long Walk by Bruchac & Begay

Navajo Nation Website

Shonto Begay - Illustrator