tv Lectures in History CSPAN August 31, 2016 12:46pm-2:01pm EDT
>> commissioner of the internal revenue service for high crimes and misdemeanors. >> we'll review the expected congressional debate with the senior congressional correspondent for "the washington examiner." join us thursday night at 8:30 p.m. on c-span for congress this fall. next on lectures in history, william and mary professor paul mapp talks about interactions between european and colonial powers and native american tribes on the late plains in the 1700 and 1800s. he describes the importance of owning horses and guns and who had the upper hand in both trade and war. this class is about 1 hour and 10 minutes. >> let's go in to this lecture about the great plains. as you know, unlike some of the classic really american history courses, we have a somewhat more expansive view of early america.
and that includes the great plains. this is fun, this is fun material to look at so i think we will enjoy this. we have a couple of starting anecdotes. the first one has to do with the year 1720. and the spanish in new mexico are hearing more and more about french activities coming out of louisiana and canada, particularly they're hearing these rumors that french traders are moving west towards new mexico, that they are aligned with indians on the great plains providing them with weapons. in 1720 the governor of new mexico sends an expedition east on to the plains to investigate led by pedro de villaseur. they probably get into what is now western nebraska, the intersection of the platte and loop rivers. they encounter a large group of indians who are probably
pawnies. they set up camp. they negotiate. there is no effort by the spanish to cause any problem. but the next morning the pawnies attack the spanish with both arrows and muskets. they're heavily armed, unusually armed. about two-thirds of the spanish are killed in the battle. of the survivors it is estimated about six of them or half-a-dozen get back to santa fe. it is basically a bit of a disaster for the spanish. the survivors contribute to a painting of the expedition. it was hard for me to get a good re resolution copy. there is a group of spanish and pueblo indians, surrounded by allegedly some french people who probably aren't there. some of the pawnie indians have bows and some of them have guns. one thing the indians don't seem to have.
and what might you guess that that is that's sort of significant? what would you expect? >> who ares. >> horses. >> exactly. in 1720 the spanish are out on the plains by indians who don't seem to have horses. that's significant. the implications of this expedition, one, is you can see spanish fear of the french presence in western north america, spanish fear of west expansion and particularly spanish fear of french guns and french alliances with indians. you could also see this absence of horses in western nebraska at this time apparently. you also notice that a group of plains indians can defeat a spanish expedition pretty easily. the spanish don't have any particular military plains on the plains at this time. in the aftermath of this expedition, the spanish have no desire to venture out on to the plains and have a repeat of this experience. that's our first starting point. the second starting point has to do with a group of explorers with the last name verendre.
that's a pawnie village. this will be poimportant later we go on. but also give some aspect of the habitations. in habitations. next starting point is in the early 1740s. the winter of 1742 and 1743. two french brothers, sons of the explorer whose document we read for today, go out into probably south dakota, north dakota, it's uncertain, but this area around the black hills. they're looking for a number of things. in particular, they're looking for the head waters, some kind of western water that would lead to the pacific. that's their ultimate objective. they're in the vicinity of the black hills in south dakota, and they report back, if we can climb the black hills, i bet we could have seen the pacific from the top. if you know the geography of north america, it's not the case, unless you the jump really high.
as they're moving around, their guides, the bow indians, receive reports of the indians known as the snakes. who are probably what we call shoshone indians. so the bow indians want to go back and protect their villages. the exploration has to be abandoned, as these bow indians go back to their home. interestingly enough, at this time, all the indians have horses. this is about two decades later. little farther north. at this time, the indians that the french explorers encounter have horses. one way we know, just to show you how cool this is, one way we know about the location of the exploration is -- well, actually, this is a great map. one reason these french guys are optimistic that maybe they can see the pacific from the black hills is because there are some french views of north america that are a little different than the views we have today. in particular, there are these
rumors in the first half of the 18th century that there is an inland sea in north america. the leading geographer put this together in france. feeling a little bit nervous, your state is under water. but one point this gets across is europens at this time don't really know very much about the geography of western north america. it's plausible that explorers think they can reach the waters of the pacific or inland extension of it relatively easy. any idea what might give rise to this image? anybody been to utah? you have that salt lake, which looks really big. in the sort of standard, if you've been out there, and the way that stories travel, you could imagine how stories of salt lake could be sort of magnified. puget sound is something that seems like an inland body of water. salt and sea in southern
california isn't always there, but it is occasionally. it is called salt and gives you some idea. there are some basis for these rumors, but they're a little farfetched. this is a lead plate, which was left by the expedition, which was found by school kids during recess in pierre, south dakota, in 1913. as i said, back in the days when everything was totally cool and you could find relics when you were playing tag or something. everybody has this idea that virginia has the historical sites. pierre was probably psyched about this. as late as the middle of the 18th century, the french who know a lot about world geography, are confused about western north america. you can also see the french presence out west is meager and dependent. you have two french explorers dependent on the indians they're working with.
this is not the impo significance, this is a few scouts trying to figure out what is go on out there. the other thing, horses, pretty far north by the 1740s, and there's indications of warfare on the northern and western plains by this time. with these anecdotes, we can address questions. one question, why -- when does our study of the spanish start? oh, the first half of the course. yeah. it's like 1520s, 1530s. there's the coronado expedition, the early 1540s. one question, the spanish have been in western north america for over two centuries at this point, or close in 1720. why are they still largely confined to places like new mexico and texas, as we'll talk about in a second?
why isn't there more of a spanish presence as you go to other areas of the plains? that's one question we want to look at. the other question is why are the french moving west, and what are the consequences of this movement in the 18th century? what does it matter that the french are pushing west from canada and louisiana? the final question, what's the relationship between what happens in the 18th century on the plains and the kind of iconic image of north american indians that most, i think, americans have, which is someone like a warrior on a horse. that's the image that comes into your head when i say indian. what's the relationship between all those things? we'll start with the spanish. why is the spanish only reaching to new mexico and southern texas? let me give you a couple of images to orient you and then i'll turn this thing off. this is a mandan indian village from the 19th century.
that will be something you can have in mind when we talk about the document, where la verendrye is talking about his own visit from the village. it would have looked something like that. this is just a quick image of sort of the spanish expansion in texas in the late 17th century and early 18th century. it's moving along the costal plain. key places. we're going to talk about san sava, up here, and the missions around san antonio, which are the most significant ones. get the sense of this expansion of spanish missions up into texas. the alamo, attractive historical post guard. i'm not sure it looked like this in 1740. it looked like when they did this postcard. this is to get in your head. a representation of the movement of horses north. you get the idea of horses starting here, the southern parts of north america, new mexico, mexico. we don't need to get into
details but you see the movement of horses to the north. we'll talk about that as one of the developments of the 18th century. have a sense of what that looks like physically. not the best map, but something we haven't talked about too much in class, but there is this great inland body of water in canada. hudson's bay. there are these british trading posts in the late 17th and 18th century. they'll be involved in the story when we discuss the document. get a feel for those. the final image, basically, i want you to have a sense of new mexico as moving up in southwest north america, a colony that's surrounded by areas that are not controlled by the spanish. that'll situate our discussion when we get into the document from 1754. that should be all we need for the moment. let's talk a little bit about why the spanish presence is halting.
one thing you have to consider, if you look at the empire as a whole, what is the top priority as an imperial official in madrid or mexico city? protect the mines. places like mexico and peru. are there any lucrative mines in places like mexico and texas? yeah. much later on, but not in the 17th and 18th centuries. if you think about the spanish empire as a whole, it's enormous. it extends to the southern portions of south america, includes peru, bolivia, chili, mexico, central america. this fringe, mexico and texas. it tends not to be the priority for spanish official planners. in that sense, it's not surprising that it takes a while for the spanish to begin launching forays out into the plains. there's other ways the spanish can allocate their resources. if you recall, for example, the coronado expedition to the plains in the 16th century, one
we didn't talk about much, in the early 1600s, do you recall how those went? not great. the spanish went out there, and they discovered thousands of pretty formidable plains indians who weren't going to welcome the spanish on to the plain. the spanish found the plains were an area sort of meager reward and also significant danger. that, i think, is one factor that held spanish expansion back until the 18th century, when they were worried about the french. texas just gets going in the early decades of the 18th century. early decades of the 1700s. what do you think is the impetus for the spanish mission in texas? what's happening east of texas that might inspire you? >> [ inaudible ]. >> that's exactly it. the french begin a colony in louisiana in 1699.
there are french explorations down the mississippi, even before 1699. the spanish are nervous about the presence of these french guys, the presence of a french colony, that might conceivably be a threat to mexico and new mexico. that's the primary reason. the spanish expansion into texas is generally a few missions with a small number of soldiers to go with them. good day to remember is the founding of san antonio in 1718. probably the most significant example of the spanish expansion. it's a site that -- well, what did the spanish look for before they found a mission? do you recall for new mexico, for example? >> establish a settlement already. >> that's exactly what they find. san antonio is already a place of irrigated field that's been
established by local indian communities t. spanish are trying to move into an area that seems compatible to move the mission. the hope again is also, the spanish is looking for settled agricultural indians. that's who they'd like to find. they're compatible with the way of life and to christianization. it's easier to establish a church that can work with them. in fact, the way the spanish missions in texas work, they're not a great success. generally speaking, it's only the most desperate indians who go there. they don't have a choice. they go to the missions for lack of anything better. the population doesn't increase. by 1760, san antonio has 1,000 people. any idea what would bring texas i indians to spanish missions? >> [ inaudible ]. >> yeah. this is actually a big factor.
for reasons we'll talk about in a second, texas is a dangerous place in 1700s. the spanish missions are one potential place of refuge. there's fortifications, spanish soldiers with guns, there's an alliance with the spanish empire. you get indians who are looking for a place where they can take refuge from some of the other indians on the southern plains or texas in the 18th century. another way to think about this, something that historians have talked about recently and it makes sense, is for indians who went to the texas missions, it wasn't a huge change in how they lived. there's the season of migration of indian groups from one place to another. maybe they'd be getting nuts from one particular place, when moving inland. the indians viewed the missions as another stop in their seasonal migrations.
you could show up there, there would be food, a place of refuge. they viewed them as an adaptation of their lifestyle, rather than a total change in it. you do get some of these spanish missions. they weren't a great success. they don't generate a lot of wealth, don't get a lot of people. they're vulnerable to indian raids. they don't establish a dominating spanish presence in texas. trar they're pretty precarious or vulnerable to indians. one way to get a sense of the vulnerability is look at the san saba fiasco, essentially a spanish effort to move north well beyond san anton yarone he. what happens is, at the request of apache indians, the spanish build a mission in 1757. spanish mission, 1757. in 1758, one year later, a group
of indians, most likely an alliance of other groups from the north, annihilate the san saba mission, which is a bad way to start out. it's an indication on even the spanish fortified places in texas. viewing that as unacceptable, the spanish try to pursue the comanches and their indian allies north. what they find is a well fortified indian camp. stock aid, ditch and walls. it's flying a french flag. it is not clear where it came from. the spanish who attached this fortification name there were all kinds of guns and ammunition, and there was a lot of french there. there is no evidence for that. they claim there were people carrying french flags and wearing french uniforms. the spanish are repelled.
the key point is, again, the weakness of the spanish in texas, and also the fact that the indians of texas are formidable. they have fortifications. mobile striking power on horses, and they can also rebuild fortifications. the spanish don't have clear military advantage in places like texas. that explains why there's sort of the spanish moving to texas but why it's not many. new mexico, the other key spanish salient in north america at this time, we'll talk about california on wednesday, new mexico remains, as you see from the map, relatively similar to what it's been throughout the course. it doesn't have the massive extension in the 1700s. new mexico, as was the case in the 17th century, is never a big revenue generator for the spanish empire. french, louisiana, they're convinced they're trying to get
to it but it never is. new mexico is a poor frontier colony at the end of a long supply route from mexico. i doesn't find the silver lines the spanish were hoping for. it's up in the north. 1765, there's only about 10,000 people of spanish decent. it's relatively poor and small in terms of population. isolated at the end of a long supply route from mexico city and doesn't have a burning commodity. there's some trade. any idea how new mexico as a colony would make money? economic basis? >> [ inaudible ]. >> there's some production of local crops, but that's not a great export commodity. there is a small fur trade. there's actually a slave trade in new mexico, sending indian slaves, taken in raids, around new mexico, down into mexico itself. in that sense, from the sort of brutal logic of an early modern
colony, the fact that new mexico was up there, sort of middle of indians who are not part of the spanish alliances in some cases, means that there are more indian groups to raid for slaves. that is part of new mexico's economy. the biggest problem that new mexico has, in addition to the fact that economically, it's meager, is what would you guess? just looking at that map. >> so far away from -- >> yeah. it's a long ways away from the center and all that goes with it. like help. if it's a long way from the centers of spanish power, what is it close to? >> lots of very angry indians. >> yeah. that's exactly right. there's a lot of indian peoples surrounding new mexico who become more and more formidable as the 1700s go on. new mexico has to worry about the utes to the north, the comanches to the west, the apaches, who are all over the
place, the navajos, who are to the northwest. there's a lot of indian groups that the governor of new mexico has to be concerned about. new mexico is a vulnerable colony. it's a little surrounded. what it's concerned about is some of these indians who were surrounding it, increasingly, are carrying french weapons. one difference between the spanish colonies in new mexico and texas and the french colonies in places like louisiana is the spanish discourage trading guns with western indians because they think they'll be a threat to the colonies. the french encourage it, which makes the spanish nervous. it means their potential enemies are much better off. let's talk now about -- let's shift from the spanish colonies and talk a little bit about the indians on the plains themselves. you can already see, we've already had little hints of very interesting story that's going on. let's first go back in time a little bit and talk about some of the developments that lead up
to what happens. what we see in the 1700s. the first thing to talk about is that when we're talking about the 1700s, there are a number, a lot of indian communities on the great plains who are growing crops. agricultural, you have big towns surrounded by fields, growing things like corn. this development starts 1700 a.d. going way back. pre-history of the course. what you see is very gradually, this movement of the growing of corn kind of moving up mississippi, and moving west along the tributaries of mississippi, to the point where a river like the missouri has the significant villages that are growing a lot of corn around it.
these mandan villages, for example, are surrounded by corn fields. so the pawnees, another example of these communities. what tends to happen to communities that grow a lot of food? thanksgiving is the perfect preparation. they're sluggish. can't move quickly. their population grows. one thing you get is that these pawnee and mandan towns and the other towns of peoples like this are often really big. hundreds or thousands of people living in these, some cases, fortified, substantial villages or towns along the tributaries of the missouri and mississippi. it's a formation of a new style of life, at least from what had been in the region before 1700. the villages aren't just growing corn, but they're hunting buffalo. buffalo provides protein. they're also making stuff, involved in handicrafts, basic
production. by the 18th century, they get horses. the spanish see some of this see it in the 17th and 18th century. big towns out on the plains. that's one big sort of feature of the plains at this time. there's another big feature of the plains, and this is what makes the plains an exciting place and a dramatic place. it's one of those things in the 1700s. that is, let's go back to your iconic image of the north american indian, which is a guy on a horse, okay? the question is, when does that start? well, when the spanish arrive, when the french arrive, when europeans arrive in north america, are there horses in north america? there are not. shortly thereafter, there are horses in north america. there used to be horses a long time ago but went extinct. when the spanish arrive, they bring horses with them. what would happen, would you guess? spanish move to new mexico, horses are part of what gives them the military advantage over their neighbors, what would happen to some of the horses,
just in normal run of events? >> they'll escape. >> they'll escape. horses can move. that's part of their appeal. they can be stolen. it was another possibility. even before, even by the middle of the 17th century, some horses are getting away from the spanish. some cases, they're getting into possession of some of the indian peoples around new mexico. some of the apaches seem to have horses even before the pueblo. that's one thing that happens. then there's the other thing that happens, right, the pueblo revolt of 1680, when the spanish are driven out of new mexico. in addition to the spanish being temporarily driven out of new mexico, or at least santa fe and the northern settlements, lots of horses get away from spanish control in 1680 and end up dispersing to the regions around new mexico. now, for a few moments, i want you to think of yourself as a horse. it's always constructive. all right. so you get away from the
spanish, you're feeling good, maybe you cross that little range of mountains and take a good look over the plains. what do you think? >> this is my lucky day, okay? i just found one of the best places in the world to be a horse. what is there on the plains? lots and lots of grass. not lots of horses, right? there are the buffalo things, but you can deal with them. they're funny looking. when the horses get away from new mexico, especially those on the plains, this is a great place to be a horse. consequently, horses multiply quickly on the plains, as you would expect. that's the horse side of the story. which is important. there's this other side of the story as well. if you're one of these indian groups around new mexico, north of new mexico, maybe moving to the plains yourself, suddenly, you see these big animals.
you have some knowledge maybe that they can be domesticated and you pick up the horse for yourself. all of a sudden you have people who for a millennia lived on foot and all of a sudden they have the more formidable creatures of the early modern world. if you wanted a good example of people who prophet from spanish horses, the comanches are a good one. they get down onto the plains by around 1700. they've been living in the great basin. they moved to the plains at a time when the horses are already there. the comanches quickly in the 1700s adopt horses for themselves and make it a critical part of their life-style and essentially become a mounted people. what's the advantage of being a mounted people on the plains in the 1700s? what can you do if you have horses? you can hunt buffalo.
what are the advantages of hunting buffalo? yeah? absolutely, yep. yep, yep, absolutely. you've got a great source of protein which is critical and you have all kinds of items that you can sell to other people. you can sell buffalo hide. you have people like the comanches and other people and suddenly they can hunt at a greater distance more efficiently and take advantage of the buffalos on the plains who when the horses got there they said this is a great place to be a buffalo. that's one thing. that's nice, okay, you can hunt buffalos. that's good. what else can you do with your horses? yeah? that's kind of, you know, kind of neutral language.
you can expand your control. what would that expansion of control feel like? you can get a gun and you can move very quickly and all of a sudden you've got a big military advantage over the folks you've had a quarrel with over the past two decades. the comanches, one group moves to west texas. one group hangs on the plains near new mexico. they move around a lot. but these comanches are now militarily an extremely formidable group of people. they can move fast and they can attack isolated spanish settlements, hit an outlying ranch, take what they want and disappear. they can choose the point at which they can attack. they can also for example, attack the apache settlements. prior to the movement of the comanches, the apaches had been
the dominant group in that area. after they get horses, the apaches are no longer the dominant group and they disperse off the southern plains. some of them move into the more mountainous areas south of new mexico, west of new mexico. they are driven away essentially by the comanches who become this dominant force on the southern plains over the course of the 1700s. it's important to know that comanches can raid other places but that trading point is important as well. in some years the comanches or groups like them will show up at a trade fair like new mexico and they'll be peaceful. they'll exchange buffalo items for various things which we'll talk about in a second. other years they'll raid the spanish. it depends on a variety of factors. there's an alternative that's
true on the plains as a whole. one of the great ironies of all this, this comanche development extends to a number of different plains peoples over the course of the 1700s. if you recall that map i showed you at the beginning of the class, as the horse moves north, different peoples adopt horses. the sioux will adopt horses. the cheyenne will adopt horses. the black feet will adopt horses. different groups see the horse as a potential advantage. you get a lot of tumult on the plains. some groups profit from horses. some groups are terrified by groups that have horses. you can see some of the consequences of people beginning to move easily across the plains and raid one another. one of the great ironies of this. who are the baddest people in history? >> [ inaudible ]. >> i think they are -- you get
into the 20th century, there's a lot of competition. before the 20th century, i think genghis khan you could argue. if you want to go further back, you can argue that attila and the huns are the baddest. what characterizes the baddies? i mean no quarrel with mongolia. i think if you took a poll, they'd come up. i think they're pumped about this in mongolia. but what characterizes some of the baddest -- yes >> [ inaudible ]. >> absolutely. so one of the great continuities of eurasian history is they get horses and that enables them to be these formidable mounted people. they don't have guns but these compound bows. terrifying weapons. 12 horses at a time to ride at a sprint and then shift horses. you'll see this alteration in
between the nomads and the settled peoples who always have to deal with this presence to the north. any idea when the step nomads are done as a feature of eurasian history? basically -- yeah, go ahead. >> [ inaudible ]. >> even earlier, actually. it's really the 18th century where china launches this expansion out to the west and destroys the major step empires out there in the west. this goes well beyond our course. this feature of eurasian history ends. they are no longer worried about step nomads after the 1700s. what is ironic is that exactly the moment that a certain kind of lifestyle, certain kind of military technology or tactics, exactly the moment it's over, finished, antiquated in eurasia,
it suddenly appears on the plains of north america. there's this balancing mechanism in the world where horses crop up and they have their heyday in north america. should we take a break? what is fun about the heyday? >> [ inaudible ]. >> i didn't think about that. i didn't think about that. let me look at a few more points. where do the french fit into this whole story? the french are trying to expand from louisiana and canada. they have a number of objectives. finishing up the discussion of the spread of the horses on to the plains. people rising and falling very quickly. the shoshoni indians with the bow indians i talked about at
the beginning, everyone was so frightened of. when lewis & clark go west, the shoshonis are hiding in the rockies trying to survive. people with a brief moment of dominance on the plains, it's often brief. the acquisition of horses and rifles. it leads to a lot of conflict. and that leads to a lot of instability. that's going to lead into the 19th century. the other factor, what i talked about how -- if you are a horse and you imagine you go out in the mountains and plains and say this is totally excellent, assuming there's two horses, what happens relatively quickly after the horses get on to the plains and start eating grass? and then indian groups breeding horses. you have a lot of horses on the plains. already a lot of buffaloes on
the plains. they seem to have no apparent end. they do have an end and so what happens, and also the climate is highly unstable. wet periods, dry periods, hot periods, cold periods. what happens when you have thousands of new -- yeah? >> [ inaudible ]. >> exactly. so certainly by the 19th century you have hints of an eco crisis on the plains when there's too many grass eating animals out there. there's only so many animals the plains can sustain. it just gives you a sense of introducing something like the horse into a new environment, the consequences are endless. ecologically, militarily, culturally. it's a big change in many ways. let's briefly talk about the french and then go for discussion.
the french are expanding west from louisiana and canada. it's a little different than what you saw in the 17th century. there are still missionaries involved but a bit less of an emphasis. the furs and human beings as well. emphasis on missionary, conversion of indians. the french are quite happy to trade guns. that does give them an advantage. what do you figure the french are looking for as they go west into north america? why would they bother to go at all? yeah. >> pacific. >> they're still hoping there's going to be some passage to the pacific. some easy water route leading to the pacific. this seems far-fetched. jefferson in the first decade of the 19th century is still thinking lewis and clark might find a gentle plateau and then there will be this nice navigable river.
what do they discover when they get west of the rockies? idaho which is just one range of mountains after another. the french don't know that so they're still hoping for a relatively easy way to get to the pacific. i'll talk more about the pacific on wednesday. they are hoping for a route to the pacific. they're also hoping for new trading partners. they've heard rumors there may be elaborate civilizations on the pacific coast. they're thinking from what they heard from second and third and fourth-hand indian accounts, they think maybe japan or china might have outposts in the pacific northwest. maybe there's some kind of indian civilizations. what might give rise to that kind of places in stories farther to the east. anybody from british columbia or washington state? you do have in the northwest, we'll talk about this, big
sophisticated indian towns in the pacific northwest with monumental architecture, big ocean going canoes, fantastic sculpture, living in really fantastic wealth. you just have to dip your hand in the water and you find salmon. you do have communities, you are talking about information traveling hundreds and hundreds of miles, could set up stories, i think, very sophisticated indians peoples or lead to resumers of other peoples in the northwest. so the french are very curious. they've heard there may be europeans somewhere in the west. spanish somewhere, russian some place else. they're trying to figure this out. the french are moving to the west. the big limitations on the french, there's not a lot of them. they are beyond the range of french power. these are very small parties. as we know, what do the french do to compensate for the fact there aren't that many of them?
>> exactly. they try to make friends and become the allies of those indian groups. what's the same problem? so in the 17th century, the french allied themselves with different indian groups and that makes them enemies of -- >> the iroquois. >> they align with different groups on the plains. they're trying to work with all these groups. who do they antagonize? the sioux. bad call. it's the french in certain ways are along the least lucky. the enemies they make are formidable enemies. and that's one thing, as they're moving out, one of his sons. killed by a sioux war party as part of this exploration. even as the sioux make certain allies they also antagonize other groups.
if we wanted to summarize the takeaway points, the first thing is regional dynamism. the plains are not static in the 1700s. all kinds of changes are going on. long-term dynamism, corn-based agriculture. the horse coming out on to the plains in the late 17th and 18th century. this is a very different place. regional dynamism. a second point is the presence of crop-growing peoples which is different than your iconic image of the plains indians. look at how many of these kinds of indian people we've seen. the folks desoto met, coronado met. pueblo indians in new mexico. different groups in arizona. the iroquois. we're seeing these groups of indians who are different from the classic stereotype. it's worth noticing how many examples we're talking about. and the third point is the
formation. this is a crucial development and it does set the stage for a lot of what you see in the 19th century. that's enough of me talking. now i'm going to make you guys perspire. shift a little bit to discussion and we'll see how much fun you had over thanksgiving. these documents were very short. no extra essays. these should be a pleasure. even if not, i can guide us through because these i quite enjoy. we want to start with the french or new mexico? the french it is. all right then. so we've got this account. in the fall and early winter of 1738 he's going out to visit some villages on the upper missouri. same villages that would be visited more than half a century later by the lewis and clark
expedition. if la verendrye is trying to -- what is he hoping for from the mandan indians? what kind of relationship would he like to establish? what kind of relationship do the french always want to establish? >> trade and alliance. >> some kind of trading alliance. go ahead and raise your hand before answering a question. that will give time for the microphone to move toward you. it's difficult because we're fast paced. a physical microphone has difficulty keeping up with the rapidity of our thought. so some kind of -- you know, some kind of trading relationship and alliance. so if you are going to establish a french trading relationship, if you want them to trade with
the french, who do you not want groups like the mandan to trade with? it's the great white north, up where canada is right now? so remember that map i showed you way back at the beginning of class and i showed you -- let me just go over to this map. so you have this big inland sea called hudson bay. and on the edges of hudson bay the british establish these little trading posts. and the british, what they try to do is encourage indians from england to come to these posts along the edge and give them what? what logically in the age before -- what's the great
virtue of northern canada, in terms of a particular commodity? absolutely. the hudson bay company establishes these little posts and they want these interior indians to do all the work of getting the furs, making this long trip and just giving the furs to those on hudson bay. how does this make you feel? >> outmaneuvered, okay. so for example, page 295, in the right-hand column, he talks about, i got the two chiefs to come to my tent. i know they went every year to the post. so what's the problem? these indians trading with british and you don't want that.
if you are la verendrye, what do you do to draw these western indians, what can you do to draw them away from the english? >> give them better gifts? >> it's true. >> and it's better gifts and gifts. so that's one interesting aspect of this. the french are trying to establish a trading relationship by giving stuff away. there's a high initial investment of giving gifts. so what else can -- if the british rely on just sitting in these little forts on hudson bay, what can the french do? yeah. >> they actually go out to the indian forts and communicate directly. >> that's exactly what they do. the french begin moving west.
they go into northern canada. the french are moving out into the western interior of north america and trying to get to western indians before the indians get to hudson bay. they are going to the trading partners rather than waiting for them to go to hudson bay. they are working a lot harder. when are the -- let's see. are the western indians without a negotiating position, without leverage? what do they say? we'd love to have a trading relationship with you, if -- for example, recent years the french abandon us, i did send to hudson bay. as long as the frenchman remains in our lands, we promise not to go elsewhere. what's the up shot of that?
yeah. >> -- just move from point a to point b. >> they can have demands on the french. they want a consistent relationship. you can't just come and go. you have to come and stay. they are asking for an ongoing relationship that will be equal in value or predictability. you can see they are moving the french. we'd love to be your friends. here's what we expect from you. a kind of negotiation going on. let's see. there's on 296 as we're going down, they say we'll keep quite as he desires and let the sioux do the same. our heart is still sore on account of your son. so part of this french effort and french expansion, this movement of these trading relationships, some french people don't come back.
it's a dangerous operation. all right. what -- let's see here. what makes it great to be a mandan or to visit the mandan? >> you have this impressive fortification and they're also expert traders. >> absolutely. you go to the mandan, you don't find a bunch of tents or a poultry settlement. you find a town with permanent buildings, fortifications, with a moat. a big moat. i can't remember the exact dimensi dimensions. it sounds like something formidable to deal with. so it's sort of impressive physically. what is the basis for this town? what establishes its position on the northern plains? what does it have to offer? yeah. and you can figure.
so if some people live by hunting buffalo, for example, and other people spent a lot of time growing corn, what might be a basis of exchange? yes. >> buffalo for corn. >> that's one thing. you can imagine the exchange of agricultural products which we saw back in new mexico. if you have a nice town with nice houses and spend a lot of time in those houses in north dakota and south dakota, what can you do with your spare time in your rich agricultural village on the upper missouri with your buffalo hides you traded and hunted yourself. >> you can work with it. you can create clothing and other goods. >> absolutely.
the mandan are also the manufacturing center. they make baskets, clothing, all kinds of goods out of animal products and agricultural products which they can then trade with other northern plains people who are less sedentary and move around. the mandans seem to be quite good at that. that's one thing la verendrye observes. you can trade. it's well fortified. are you happy to have people visit? i think so. it's nice to have people trade with you. may be establish a relationship with the french. when people do visit, when people show up at your village, what do they want to do with your corn? what are your obligations as a host? >> they need to feed them but
they don't want them to eat it all. >> the roaming people from the plains, when they show up as guests, they get to eat a lot of the corn. does this remind you of anything from way back in the course? >> his large group of texas indians and they were going to towns and eating the pueblo corn. >> the idea of folks moving around on the plains. europeans that serve as the center of attraction. that provides you an entry to an agricultural village where you can eat and that seems to be an agricultural factor. if the mandan are concerned the group is eating too much of their corn, what did they say? this will give you a sense of their play? >> the sioux are coming to attack. >> on one hand the acidouan are the butt of all the jokes.
they are clearly worried about the sioux. the villages are a trading center for the plains. all you have to do is say the sioux are over there, and your visitor will run away. what does this is a about the tenor of life on the plains? >> it's quite complex and there's different understandings between the cultural groups saying i want you to do this in return for this. a high level of organization that one might not expect. >> there's violent relationships, relationships that change regularly. there's a lot going on. you can see how for someone like la verendrye trying to figure out how this works. it's not so easy.
and that's part of the difficulties the french have when they get out into the northern plains is to understand these relationships, which are changing rapidly. so if the french are interested in finding europeans or what they'd call civilized people out in the west, do they find them when they get to the mandans? does he feel like, yeah, this is what i was looking for? he doesn't sound that excited. he's happy to meet the mandan but he'd heard rumors there was a european-like people on the northern plains and feels disappointed. what reports does he get? do the mandan talk about any other groups on the plains who may be european style? page 301 in the left-hand column, talks about the panana and pananis.
built their lodges in the same way they did. you could not see the land on the other side. the water was not drinkable. among all the tribes, the word iron seems to be applied to all metals. those people i was told never went on foot, but always on horseback, both when they hunted and went to war. you could not kill any of these men as they had iron armor. by killing a horse you could capture the man easily because he could not run. iron bucklers, very bright, and fought with lances and sabers which they handled with great skill. who are we talking about? probably. yeah, most likely. it's most likely an account of the spanish in new mexico which has made its way to the north or some mixing of categories. there are indians associated with new mexico who have spanish weaponry. pueblo indians and other groups adopting horses. but probably the root of this is the account of the spanish.
what does that tell you about information networks on the northern plains. everybody hides in the village and never talks. is movement restricted? new mexico is a long way from south dakota and north dakota. so if information, if the mandan can talk about the spanish, that could suggest that information seems to be moving on the plains. what would facilitate the spread of information on the plains, possibly, in the 1700s? >> [ inaudible ]. >> yeah, conceivably horses are moving information more quickly. it's also possible people are terrified by horse peoples. it certainly raises the question that most people are moving things like information and trading goods longer distances. let's shift a little bit to new
mexico governor. he's writing a report to his successor saying if you want to be governor of new mexico, this is what you need to do. this flows from what we talked about earlier. what's the big problem if you are the governor of new mexico? what keeps you up at night? practically answers itself. yes. >> native revolts and -- >> there's a danger of pueblo revolts but also attacks from indians outside the colony. what might make a revolt less likely in the 18th century than the 17th century? >> because they've already very brutally put one down so dissuade people from doing it again. >> and the fact that outside of new mexico there's all these indian groups as potentially dangerous to the pueblo indians as the spanish. so new mexico is surrounded by
people who are potentially trading partners, but also potentially dangers to the settled inhabit apt ants of new mexico. so let's get a sense of this. so what -- how do i put this. so who are some of the names, some of the groups of indians talked about? so for example on page 303 you have the barbarous tribes of apaches, comanches, utes, one after another. so what -- let's just go into the utes. so when he talks about the settlements of new mexico on the north, which because of war with the utes had been destroyed. so is new mexico a stable colony? no. there's certain areas.
sort of northern parts of new mexico which are in danger of being essentially kind of wiped out. it's not just the comanches have horses. they moved out of new mexico and have also adopted horses and had an alliance with the comanches. they can raid spanish and mexico. the conservation of the friendship of this and the rest of its allied tribes is one of the greatest consideration because of the favorable results which their trade and good relations bring to this provenance. what has he done? if you can't beat them -- >> [ inaudible ]. >> yeah, or ally with them. a group like the utes who are capable of ravaging northern parts of new mexico. the thing to do is establish an alliance with the utes so take the people who are raiding your settlements and make them your friends so you can protect
yourself. so that's one strategy he has. find allies among the people most dangerous to you. is the relationship between new mexico and the surrounding indians on the plains, is it always one of hostility? kind of know the answer to this. it is not. sometimes there are trade fairs where groups like the comanches will come in from the plains and the utes from the mountains. if you're the governor of new mexico and you have hundreds of groups of indians coming together in these big trade fairs, what might you as a governor want to do to make sure this works out nicely? what's the danger when you bring together hundreds of people from different ethnic groups, many of whom are armed and they have horses and they're involved in
economic relationships where there's sometimes a danger that there will be a little trickery and fraud and deceit. remember what happened with some of the gifts? had that big bag and what happened to it? somebody stole the bag of goodies. he's like santa claus losing the toy bag. what can happen when people bring lots of stuff to exchange? what's one danger? actually, what are multiple dangers? >> theft, violence, and fraud. >> exactly. business. it's all the things that happen today. there's a danger when you get all these people together you're going to have people stealing each other's stuff, people trying to cheat each other and getting very angry about it afterwards. you're going to have theft, fraud, what was the other one? violence. you're going to have people who didn't like each other last year who are suddenly staring at each other across a field outside of
santa fe. there's a danger of violence between all these groups. what do you do as the governor of new mexico to keep a lid on all this? you've got troops in santa fe. they're not huge but you have a orderly presence. what else do you do? if you want to do a business deal today, what precedes the business deal, i think. yeah. >> wine and dine them, give them some gifts. >> exactly. you wine and dine, share a smoke together, which you don't do now. at the time you would smoke pipes together and establish that this is kind of a friendly relationship. you reassure one another. as governor of new mexico can you walk out and say, inferior barbarian savages, bow down before me. good strategy? very bad strategy. what do you do instead?
what would you do today? i'm glad to see you. how you been? how's the horses? how's the wife? probably stop doing that. you got to be polite and not condescending and not let on what they actually feel. you need to have good manners with people who are numerous and heavily armed. what's the danger if you see that the spanish are aligned with the utes, you have an occasional relationship with the comanches, what would be the end of new mexico? just think about it. you're surrounded by different indian nations. what would cause the end of new mexico? >> if they all allied together. >> exactly. you want to be on good terms with lots of these folks, you definitely don't want to be on bad terms with all of them.
there's not that many spanish in new mexico. the nightmare would be if all the surrounding indians simultaneously were hostile to new mexico. you can't defend yourself against that many people. you want to have trading fairs where it's profitable to act peacefully, but sometimes people are just -- they just won't listen to reason. what do you have to do then? the comanches, for example. he talks about you've got to chase the -- page 304. the tribe is equally pacific and maintains an attitude of good faith. since i punished them with the rigor of the armed forces. i have observed with them the greatest equity and kindness and made them understand the authority of our arms and they were excessively arrogant from dominating the rest of the tribes. what do you got to do?
>> attack them to show -- >> yeah. you got to be polite. you don't want to look for trouble. you have to show from time to time that you are formidable. occasionally the spanish will be sort of called upon to go out and humble one of these indian nations. they think of the comanches as the most elevated in their sense of themselves in part because the comanches are dominating the area between new mexico and texas and they feel like the lords of the southern plains because they're kind of the lords of the southern plains. if you want to have peace with the utes, ideally you would like to keep things stable with the comanches. you got many other groups which he talks about. who would you like to concentrate your attention on? if you want to make peace with everybody except one group, who's the one group you want to get rid of your other enemies or stabilize the relationship your
enemies so there's one group of people you can go after. if you only knew five indian nations from your extensive watching of western movies when you were growing up which i know doesn't happen with your generation. yeah? yes, the apaches. they were on the southern plains and they've moved into areas south of new mexico into northern mexico. they are conducting extensive raid on spanish settlements. let's make peace with everybody else and go after these guys. let's attack the apaches and end these raid not just on new mexico but other spanish settlements in what is now northern mexico. what makes it so difficult to defend new mexico and the other spanish settlements? what's the strategic difficulty?
sam? yeah, it's a big place. it's a large colony. it's thinly settled so it's not especially densely populated. you've got a large area with a lot of outlying ranches and small villages and so forth. what's the great danger for a spanish ranch for example in the 1750s? >> the apaches could show up to your house, burn it down, do a little dance and leave long before anybody even realized what was happening. >> exactly. the great problem is there's no way -- the spanish can't keep a military force in every ranch in new mexico. they've got these disbursed settlements and they're highly vulnerable. the apaches can attack an outlying settlement and the spanish can't do that much about
it. on 308 talking about the people of new mexico, because of their extreme poverty they are worthy of compassion. their small houses which consist of a few horses, cattle and sheep are exposed to the attacks of the barbarians. it can be guarded by scouts continually and impede the enemy from getting access. the enemy never comes in large numbers but small parties to hide their trail and prevent their discovery. it talks about albuquerque later. the settlers wish to have a soldier for every cow and horse they pasture so they have nothing to worry about. i've tried to accustom the idea that each one should take care of the defense of his own hacienda. so what's the solution?
>> you're on your own. >> so the solution is you got flying parties who try to guard the access routes to the settlements, mountain passes and so forth. that doesn't always work. then the other thing is, well, good luck. just imagine hypothetically for some reason you're in mexico city and it comes into your mind, i need to immigrate, go someplace else, how about new mexico. doesn't seem like it would be that appealing if the basic message is, you can work this out on your own. so you see the dangers of new mexico. now i'm going to hand back the papers. american history tv airs on c-span3 every weekend, telling the american story through events, interviews and visits to historic locations. this month american history tv is in primetime to introduce you to programs you could see every weekend on c-span3.
our features include lectures in history, visits to college class rooms across the country to hear lectures by top history professors, american artifacts takes a look at the treasures at u.s. historic sites, museums and archives, reel america revealing the 20th century through archival films and news reels, the civil war, where you hear about the people who shaped the civil war and reconstruction, and the presidency focuses on u.s. presidents and first ladies to learn about their politics, policies and legacies. all this month in primetime and every weekend on american history tv on c-span3. this week during american history tv in primetime, we feature our lectures in history series taking you into college classrooms across the country. each night we debut a new lecture and tonight it is native americans. at 8:00 eastern, we'll take you to dartmouth college for an overview of american indian history. and then at 9:20, the colonial west from a the class of the college of william and mary and then florida state lecture on the creek indians and the first seminole war.
that's tonight on american history tv, primetime. with the house and senate returning from their summer break next week, on thursday, at 8:00 p.m. eastern, we'll preview four key issues facing congress this fall. federal funding to combat the zika virus. >> women in america today want to make sure that they have the ability to not get pregnant, why? because mosquitos ravage pregnant women. >> today, they turn down the very money that they argued for last may and decided to gamble with the lives of children like this. >> the annual defense policy and programs bill. >> all of these votes are very vital to the future of this nation. and a time of turmoil and a time of the greatest number of refugees since the end of world war ii.
>> gun violence legislation and criminal justice reform. >> every member of this body, every republican and every democrat wants to see less gun violence. >> we must continue to work the work of nonviolence and demand an end to senseless killing everywhere. >> and the resolution for congress to impeach irs commissioner john koskinen. >> house resolution 828 impeaching john andrew koskinen, commissioner of the internal revenue service, for high crimes and misdemeanors. >> we'll review the expected congressional debate with susan ferrechio, correspondent for the washington examiner. join us thursday night at 8:00 eastern on c-span for congress this fall. up next on lectures in history, florida state university professor andrew frank discusses the creek indians and the first seminole war, which took place in the
early 19th century in the southeastern part of the u.s. and spanish controlled florida. the war was fought in part to prevent slaves from fleeing into florida. florida state university is in tallahassee. the class is about 50 minutes. >> if we think back where we were last week, and the week before, the seminoles are forming in georgia. we have all this large context. we've talked about coal essence, civilization, migration, all of these different themes. we've even talked about this idea whether we thought the seminoles existed as a people and we talked about the red stick war. this is kind of these culminating trends that we're trying to work up to and today we'll look at what is often seen as the start of an american awareness that the seminoles exist and it gets a name called