• Fort Dearborn

The current week’s best show of intellectual fireworks has boomed and sparkled over a question I’d never heard argued before: Was the Fort Dearborn Massacre a massacre?

I’m sure I haven’t read everything. But here’s my scorecard to date:

Official history now says no. The voice of official history seems to be professor Ann Durkin Keating, whose book Rising Up From Indian Country calls it an act of war. Yes, women and children were butchered, but war is hell.

Hell yes it was a massacre, says Dennis Byrne, Tribune.

Not when understood in context, responds Patrick Reardon, Tribune.

At any rate, it was damned violent: Bill Kurtis, Sun-Times.

Don’t be so precious, Ms. Keating: Lee Sandlin, Wall Street Journal.