Tuesday, 19 July 2011

The Taking Of Indian Lands By The Americans.

I never fully understood the politics involved in the American Revolution until I read Simon Girty, Turncoat Hero By Phillip W. Hoffman. I guess it all depends on which side of the fence you are on, but from what I have read it was not Girty who was the traitor, it was George Washington. Washington was one of several land grabbers who wished to provoke the Indians into a war so he could wipe them out & take their land. King George was standing in Washinton's way, but Washington had already illegally surveyed land beyond the Ohio. It was not the French or the English who confiscated Indian lands, it was Americans after the Revolution.


Jenny said...

Per Morgan's writings (via Baker), the French had their own settlements all up and down the rivers. Spanish treatment of natives was infamous even in period (to the point c.1770's New Englander Americans prided themselves on their comparatively fair-handed treatment of natives)

Which doesn't mean King Phillip's war wasn't entirely justified, and in his place I'd not have done the same thing.

.. and lost, just like him.

Ultimately I don't think "hunter-gatherer/early agrarian cultures meet late agrarian/early industrial cultures" was going to play out any other way. The latter was going to displace the former - the only question was whether the people occupying the North American continent in 2011 would be speaking English, Spanish, or French. And come the Revolution - whether those settlements would be under a nominal republic or a continuation of European feudalism.

In other words - the Proclamation Line wasn't going to hold. If the Cherokee portion of my family tree wasn't going to be overrun by Scots-Irish line jumpers, it would have been English younger sons looking to build a new estate, Spanish or French plantation builders, or or or..

We never get 100%, and humanity white red black and yellow is deeply flawed. But given all the possible futures branching out from AD1750 - I think we occupy one of the least brutal possibilities on offer.

The more I read, the more depth I see to all sides - but I'll still take Washington, Jefferson, and Adams over North and Hanover any day.

Le Loup said...

Thanks for the feedback & another point of view, much appreciated.