Ohiyesa: The Soul of an Indian

Ohiyesa: The Soul of an Indian




Release Date: 
Sunday June 17, 2018

More information about this film will be posted as it gets closer to broadcast.

This documentary follows Kate Beane, a young Dakota woman, as she examines the extraordinary life of her celebrated relative, Charles Eastman (Ohiyesa). Biography and journey come together as Kate traces Eastman’s path—from traditional Dakota boyhood, through education at Dartmouth College, and in later roles as physician, author, lecturer and Native American advocate.


Crew Statements: 

Producers Statement:

There have been a number of books and scholarly papers written about Charles Alexander Eastman based primarily upon his books and other resource materials without consulting family descendants or other relatives. In May of 2007, HBO Films released the docudrama Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee based on the book by Dee Brown, which chronicled the history of Native Americans being driven from their lands depicting both military intervention and congressional legislation. The film weaved in a story of Charles Alexander Eastman as a central character, along with his wife Elaine Goodale Eastman, but with inaccurate historical material throughout the script. This Eastman story was developed again without consulting family members.

It became clear that a story about Charles Eastman developed and told from the perspective of family members was needed to help set the record straight. It was also possible to develop a documentary film from the Eastman Dakota family perspective with a group of family professionals familiar with the history, storytelling and the filmmaking process. The family group involved in making this film includes: Syd Beane. William Beane, Kate Beane and Carly Eastman Bad Heart Bull direct descendants of John Eastman and Gail Johnsen and Ginny Risk, direct descendants of Charles Eastman. This film is their story.