News and Opinion from Sisters, Oregon

Sisters writer launches history podcast

A new podcast is exploring frontier history across three centuries and several continents. Jim Cornelius, editor in chief of The Nugget and author of “Warriors of the Wildlands: True Tales of the Frontier Partisans,” recently launched The Frontier Partisans Podcast.

“Podcasting is a medium I have come to love and I consume history shows like a trapper guzzling busthead whiskey at rendezvous,” Cornelius said. “It is, in many ways, the ideal medium for delivering historical frontier storytelling.”

The first series in the podcast explores the controversial life and legacy of Kit Carson — Mountain Man, explorer and guide, Indian agent and soldier.

“Carson seemed like a good place to start because he is such a representative — and polarizing — figure,” Cornelius said. “In the 19th and early 20th century, he was regarded as a kind of knight in buckskin, who opened the West and made it safe for civilization. When revisionist history flipped the coin, he came to be widely regarded as an agent of genocide, particularly for the harsh campaign he led against the Navajo people of the New Mexico Territory in the 1860s.

“As always, the truth is more complicated — and much more interesting — than ideologically shaped and driven narratives.”

Subsequent podcast series will focus on the Scottish Highlanders as a frontier people and on the Loyalist Frontier Partisans of the American Revolution.

“The Scots were a frontier people from the time the Romans built Hadrian’s Wall. The English often described Scottish Highlanders, the ‘wild Irish’ and the first peoples of North America in almost identical language. They regarded them as savages and impediments to ‘civilization.’ As for the Loyalist Rangers of the American Revolution era, these were people — white and Indian — whom traditional American history has demonized as renegades. But they all had their reasons for choosing their side in what was really America’s first civil war,” Cornelius said.

The Frontier Partisans Podcast is hosted at Podbean at or on Spotify or Google Podcasts. For more information, visit


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