what event int the experience of her people did the narrator's grandmother miss by eight or ten years?  

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In The Way To Rainy Mountain by N. Scott Momaday , the author talks about his people, the Kiowas. He relates that the Kiowas have an old landmark in Oklahoma, north and west of the Wichita Range, that they call Rainy Mountain.

He tells us that he returned to Rainy Springs one summer because his beloved grandmother died in the spring of that year. He wanted to visit her grave to pay his last respects. He recalls being told that in death, his grandmother's face was as peaceful and innocent as a child's. He reminisces that his grandmother lived during the last great years of the Kiowas' history. The Kiowa alliance with the Comanches had allowed them full reign of the region in the Southern Plains. War was a matter of instinct for the Kiowas; they did not see war as a matter of survival, but as a part of the fabric of their culture. When the United States Calvary drove them back across the Staked Plains, the Kiowas abandoned their stores in Palo Duro Canyon. Pressed beyond endurance and despairing of victory, the Kiowas finally surrendered to the soldiers at Fort Sill, and were imprisoned 'in the old stone corral that now stands as a military museum.' The author states that his beloved grandmother was spared the humiliation of that imprisonment by eight or ten years.

Thanks for the question. I hope you have enjoyed reading the author's moving account of the history of his people and his loving account of his grandmother's life.

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