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The last chief of the Comanches and the fall of an empire - Dustin Tahmahkera


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Late one night in 1871, a group of riders descended on a sleeping army camp, stole about 70 horses, and disappeared. Led by a young chief named Quanah Parker, the raid was the latest in a long series of altercations along the Texas frontier between Indigenous people and United States forces. Who was this brave warrior? Dustin Tahmahkera details the life of the last chief of the Comanches.

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Quanah Parker (ca. 1848-1911), the son of a Comanche leader and a white captive-turned-Comanche, is recognized as the last “chief” of Comanches. A direct descendant of Quanah Parker, Dustin Tahmahkera speaks about the famous Comanche leader who defended his people’s way of life, forged cross-cultural relationships, and left a legacy of leadership alive today in the sovereign Comanche Nation.

The short film Quanah Parker: The Last Comanche Chief (2012), by Quanah’s great-grandsons Ron Parker and the late Vincent Parker is available at

For more information on Quanah Parker and his family, see Bill Neeley’s book The Last Comanche Chief: The Life and Times of Quanah Parker (1995).

On Comanche history, see Pekka Hämäläinen’s book The Comanche Empire (2008).

Quanah’s co-starring role in the silent film The Bank Robbery (1908) can be viewed at For more on Quanah’s role in The Bank Robbery and his children’s roles in other films, see Dustin Tahmahkera’s article “Hakarʉ Marʉʉmatʉ Kwitaka? Seeking Representational Jurisdiction in Comanchería Cinema” (2018) in the journal Native American and Indigenous Studies.

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Meet The Creators

  • Educator Dustin Tahmahker
  • Director Tomás Pichardo-Espaillat
  • Narrator Dustin Tahmahker
  • Animator Tomás Pichardo-Espaillat
  • Storyboard Artist Tomás Pichardo-Espaillat
  • Art Director Tomás Pichardo-Espaillat
  • Compositor Tomás Pichardo-Espaillat
  • Music Cem Misirlioglu
  • Sound Designer Cem Misirlioglu
  • Director of Production Gerta Xhelo
  • Editorial Director Alex Rosenthal
  • Producer Bethany Cutmore-Scott
  • Editorial Producer Elizabeth Cox
  • Script Editor Soraya Field Fiorio
  • Fact-Checker Eden Girma

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