In Charles Eastman, we have one of the earliest Native American writers whose fictitious characters come from the Great Plains Sioux. Eastman (Sioux Ohiyesa) had, beside his Indian forebears, a Caucasian grandfather in New England. Eastmanís Native American father encouraged Eastman to relate and educate himself to both cultures. Charles Eastman married a New Englander who, though white herself, was empathetic to the plight of the Minnesota and Dakota Indians. The life and marriage of this couple is poignant, that is, noble goals, tragedy and heart-warming truth molded their lives. The numerous books they collaborated on are all interesting and well written.
Charles Eastman published Old Indian Days in 1907. This collection of short stories features the customs of warriors, lovers, elders and children of the Sioux on the Dakota Plains. Eastman was a physician on the Pine Ridge Reservation and his wife was an educator for Pine Ridge and other reservations. Their tales of the customs and values of the Sioux draw upon real-life events and action encountered while working and raising a family in Dakota Country.