tv Lectures in History CSPAN November 5, 2016 8:00pm-9:18pm EDT
and i i would like to lead the crusade with your help. it would be to take government off the backs of the great people in this country and turn you loose to do the >> watch the entire debate at 10:00 a.m. on "road to the white house rewind." only on crmp span 3. colin calloway talking about native american history. he talks about how tribes operated as separate nations with european countries. this class is hosted and about an hour and 15 minutes.
look at that and identify in that narrative a missing strand. the missing strapped would be the native americans. what i'm going to talk about is a large swath of american history and i pull out native-american strands, without their presence or power, things would not have happened as they did. it will take you five minutes to say wait a minute, it is complex. it's not about one thing and factors going on. but i would suggest, identifying native-american strapped and say this explains american history nd this explains what happens.
it's all about freedom. it's a bunch of things but the one we have admitted in large part is nature-americans. if we look at this picture and look at this map, this map is many ways a picture. and i just pulled this -- and pull this. it will be called the globe of the united states, the territorial expansion of the united states. it is very useful in mapping that. and it shows that east, west, geographic growth. and it shows the different nations involved. the unchese acquires the united states and quee and then it acquires the louisiana purchase
from france and florida from pain and it aquires an agreement through great britain and acquires the southwest. there are a lot of nations mentioned in that. and not once, native american nation. map. single nation on our when our students look at it, is the growth of the nation happens .n the absence of many people it makes sense we look at this map and says everything falls
into step lock step. we knew this was going to happen. and whether we are teaching our students and we are not blinded by hindsight. we know how the story ended. and so, given the massive jug naut, yeah, indians don't think about much of it because they are part of the expansion. 17950, john adams said in his diary, george washington, president washington, has dinner one week on four different occasions with different delegations of indian chiefs. this is 1795 when the united states has already won the war for ohio.
washington is not having dinner every other evening or afternoon with indian delegates because he kes having dinner with indians, i can assure you. he does it because it matters. the nation is still young and fradge i will and still frightend by foreign powers and till threatened by still formidable indian power. the washington understands his foreign policy, the foreign policy must involve not only france, britain and spain but lsoian nations and we have forgotten what george washington has done. and this story did not have to unfold this way.
if we go back to the middle of the 18th century. a non-indian view of north america looks like this. indian nations. look at all that plus. in the middle of the 18th century, if you were looking at north america from london there was a strong likelihood that the continent that it was going to be french because from the british perspective they hammed in and west of the appalachians, it's all french. and you would get the impression that it's a dominant premp power. it's not the house of cards because the french empire in north america is built on the fur trade and requires indian
hunters and french descendants, french power revolves around a network of alineses. somebody pointed out yesterday, this is why the french paid such attention with diplomatic relations and getting it right. and that involves not only endless negotiations, learning e language, but also endless because diplomacy, giving gifts and receiving gifts is that diplomacy, gifts which might involve medals, guns rpgs alcohol, whatever. they are not only symbols of commitment. allies giving gifts. it helps that you are backing up
what you say with words and say we are allies and friend and demonstrate that in a tangible way. the french brought that down to a fine art. and the british in the middle of the 18th sent friday that that french relationship was not only going to be insight angelo-american expansion but a french empire in north america. and it didn't. and it didn't because in the the and indian war, british defeat the french. they do that famously in our textbooks when general wolf captured quebec. but they also do that less
famously because the british recognized the achilles heel and recognize the indian alliance against the jews. hence the term of independentian, over to the british side. they undermine french power. the french forces is in the west. and sent chills down the spipes there sh ministers and were a garrison of a few guys and defend that power and purpose not on french fire power but on the indian people who are living around them. good will, the french have the power and presence without the
tolerance and allegiance of the indian people. so an important part of the british victory particularly in the west involves winning indians over. one way to do that is to cut off the supply of goods to the french. because without the giving of gifts. the en the british had leet in 1769, huge repercussions. no more supplies, no more troops and going to make it across the atlantic and it cuts off flemp supplies when the british captured quebec with the front. that severed the french supply
line so the french goods, that makefts for indians cannot it into the west. this erosion is taking place after 1768. so that drying up of french goods coinciding with a reversal of the tide in the war convincing people ta we want to increase our options. and this has been on the side of the french and siding with the british. the british and the french talk about it, they explain it from their perspective, that is you cannot trust indians, they are ickle, unreliable and they are mers andary and only turn out
their war. to limit english settlement. there are two-men object jicts and maintain their own land. you don't want european garrisons or european settlers. you do want european traders because they will bring the guns and other things you require. ap so the situation shifts and so donate i have americans' foreign policy. this would not be unusual. this is how nations operate. and diplomacy is at the heart of all of this. astute, effective, sophisticated, native-american plow mats shoveling between countries, figuring out
>> we're an empire, we dictate and don't negotiate. that's not how the french operated. that amount for indian people is these red coats, who presented themselves as allies for the future are clearly our enemies and occupying our lands with troops and at the same time by cutting off and withholding gifts and refusing gifts, limiting trade, that is a declaration of hostile intent. and out of that comes a multi what resistance movement
do the indian people want? they want their land protected and preserved and before the war happened, the british said we have to do something about it and do something to check the flood of settlement going on indian land. because as long as that is unchecked we will have a conflict. the way r sends it all
back to london. several key decisions. one is we need to keep an army, a military presence in north america. we need to keep an army of 10,000 troops. that's expensive. how are we going to pay for that at a time when british taxpayers have been taxed to the hilt. here's an idea. since this war was fought and this gars ison is being maintained to protect our north american citizens, let's ask them to help them foot the bill and have taxation even though we may not have representation. we know where that went. one of the smarter ideas. the other thing they do is they
on't pay much attention. he british government issued a proclamation. and what it says we have to keep kinds of and all problems. so you can only trade in independentian country with a license. more importantly. we are going to check expansion. we aren't going to halt expansion. this line, imagine area line that we run down will be moved. but what will happen is it will happen in an orderly process to determine by the central government in london and will sound very familiar in an hour
when i'm talking about united states indian policy. deja vu. because the thinking is the problems on the frontier stems from the people on the frontier. people stealing independentian land, causing conflict, that is bloodshed and te whether you are in philadelphia or london determining when the expansion will happen, it will be done in a system attic way. 1763, people can't just go west, they can go north and south. because one of the things they to nova scotia
and in the south. indian lands west of this line can only be ceded to the government and can only be done the n treaty between representatives of the indian tribes and the official agents of the crown. you can't have tom, dick and harry pulling off a land deal. this is a huge effect. it doesn't have much effect on squatters.
and the most important man in e nation is involved in this with this talk. but at is all complicated, what it seems like, what we assumed that we had a mutual interest and subject of the british empire, that is no longer the case. in a lot of ways when you think f the wars, taxation and the proclamation, it has been a straight shot to the revolution. and and colonies, but transfers the colonies, everything south
of the great lakes, north of the state of florida. which means that the new united states having turned its back on one empire can now turn west and build another empire. but again, this is land inhabited by other people. so what we have been talking , france, britain exchanging territory. this is a board game. but european, colonial powers play. and the people on the ground matter because they still have real power. and so after the break, we will be talking about how the united
and as you will see, follows the appalachian trail and we talked about the mounts. the tendency of this migration is south and west. these are the people who keep gong into indian country and west. calhoun, jackson, crockett. these are people on the frontier and make their way in some cases o texas.
our natural enemy and think about the expansion. f you are -- if you are in kentucky or points west, you are not thinking to what you are thinking about across the mountains. you are thinking about the mississippi. looking to buy new orleans have we got a deal for you because in a poleion has decided to unload. the war with britain is careebyeen. the
>> fortunately it doesn't and lewis and clark can be seen as spanning which we are going to look up. but what they are moving in to contrary to that is not an empty space. it is a space inhabited by indian people and independentian nations and contrary to what those maps might suggest, there is an awful lot of stuff going on in the previous years. primarily because of the influx
because the equation of buffalo and grass. is one of tremendous power to creating unprecedented prosperity. this is a new way of life. the people onto the plains. so that the plains become not om a pledge where people have lived for thousands of years and pledge with other people move into to take advantage of the new opportunity being presented.
go west, young man, 18th century style. what american pioneers do, and they give up farming to move on to farms and become buffalos because that's where the power and prosperity lies but you have to fight for it because other indian people are doing the same thing. they are hunting more teps i havely and they have horses and having guns. and this becomes a a conflict. but this increase of communication of contact and up the also opens ociety to devastation. so what does our book talk about it?
conservatively, maybe half the population of the west. what are the implications of at for american expansion in that area? when we look at the conflict between the united states and the indian people and north american victory, we have to take into account that these are societies that have been thrown into upheaval and building that power, this is a massive, massive event in the west and we need to incorporate that in our history. not just so we conclude indians, but so we can get a full picture of what's going on and what happened. . now pack to texas among the people moving onto the
plains, the people like the ca p arch nch emp s who build hemselves into on the southern plains. they beat other people and incorporating other people like an america cap melting pot and trading networks and guns. shoveling in between which independentians in the west. they build an economy based on buffalo hunting and herding and so on raiding the south, raiding spanish settlements. one of the things is get some
people in here to act as a buffer to protect ourselves in the c arch mmp arch ymp crmphmpemp s and the powerful indian nations who are beating up on us and attract people from the american south, people like crockett. avey we know the stories that the americans aren't going to put up with mexican dominance and they will declare the -- they'll clare their independence and we are proud of our independence as you know. doesn't try to
bounce. but those people i don't think would not have been there had it not been for the fact that the mexican is looking to protect its frontier against indian power. and then you look to the mexican session, the pale pink air after, huge chunk of territory and we explain that with the mexican war or the war with mexico, war of 18478, which is is characterized as an easy victory for the united states. and as a result of this massive transfer, including california at ell, again, if we look this map, it seems like it has
to be a pretty straightforward story and this was bound to happen because the mexican government was weak and mexican troops were ineffective, all those kinds of things. but if we look at that map fferently and do so in a way mmp includes the guy, ca arch nch emp, you have a fferent story, because and mexico has to confront this power. instead of a map that looks like this, consider a map that looks like this. indiana plug in an nation but the dominant power,
ndiana or not, on the southern plains. this camanche power and has been called the power which involves them dominating the southern ains, but also, including as part of their economy, going south into mexico. scholars, not me, followed to work in the spanish and mexican archives, built a picture from the other side, if you like, where these i hadian reds have builtal road over generations. defendacity of mexico to the northern front ear. when we include this, then our understanding of the mexican
war, has to shift. d i think this isn't just of academic interest. there was the mexican war in terms about mexicans. obviously, we won the war can e of negative next trade. mexicans lost the war with the united states, perhaps not because they were mexicans, but because they hat been gotten beaten up by major powers so by the time american troops arrived -- snue i don't want to revise everything but these are the things we need to think about. if we injector superimposed
independentian nations, it prompts us to rethink it and say it can't be that simple, especially if we don't do what we normally do and that is to recognize that indian power matters and it matters in north america and no matter what they did was make decisions, develop foreign policies, clect muscles in ways that made sense. zride out to bit part for them in
so i'll finish again with this map. cycles of history. we've got to incorporate into our thinking native american histories, how they viewed their history, how they lived their own histories, how they shaped their own histories, but also, as i am suggesting in this talk, they shift the history of the united states. and i think we ignore that at our peril if we're going to -- if our goal here is to not only give our students an understanding of american history, but to get them to think and hopefully to think for themselves. so, that's my spiel on this. thank you very much. [applause] i'm not sure if we have time to take questions , but i'll take questions. yes. >> as a teacher, it would be so easy to take like the map you showed us yesterday with all the indian lands west of the
mississippi and super impose them over the territories and everything kids have ingrained in their heads. i'm flabbergasted, thinking right now how can i do that, take this and take that and have the kids actually create map. why do you think that hasn't been done? it seems to be such an easy fix for -- small easy fix. why do you think it hasn't been done? prof. calloway: it has been done to some extent. and you can get lots of maps showing indian positions of indian nation, indian tribes in the united states. the problem with it is -- it is difficult. and i think part of the resistance, or part of the reason why these things haven't been done, is because once you
get in to indian history -- speaking personally -- you're done. i mean you're sucked in. [laughter] prof. calloway: it's like peeling an onion. say, ok, i'm going to look at this. but now i have to go over here and understand that because we are not talking about indian history -- even though i've been talking about indian history. we're not talking about indian history, we're talking about the histories of multiple indian nations, and maybe each one has a history that's as complicated in its own right as that of the united states. so what are you going to do with that in a class? right? how you going to do is that? the other thing is that, in a world set in motion in the way that i have described, a lot of the maps that we do have are somewhat misleading. you can still find maps showing location of indian tribes in the united states or in north
america at the time of columbus, and you've got seminoles in florida. seminoles don't exist in 1492. or you get crows in south central montana because that's where they are today. crows don't exist in 1492. they emerge on to the plains, they are an off-shoot of something else. seminoles migrate into florida. people adapt, that is everybody. create maps in motion. i think your original point is right. don't mean to side step it or dismiss it. you're right. we've got to recognize indians as nations. that's a huge first step.
and that's not just people like me today being politically correct. because in the 18th century, the brits and the french, and even in the early united states, referred to indians as nations. they recognized them as nations. that's how they understood that you had to deal with them. that's why you have treaties. so these are recognized as nations. and once we attribute to indian , peoplehood,nhood sovereignty and those kinds of things, that opens the way for a whole different set of understandings or questions about what's going on that means that doing something else than simply having a knee-jerk generic indian response to white people. because one of the things that i
may not get time to talk about this week, but would otherwise, is the indian people on the plains like the crow indians who fight alongside the united states. custer has crow scouts. what's going on there? why do crows and sheshones and es, and evenwne later on the arapahos serve as scouts as allies for the united states on other indians? students are often puzzled by that, because didn't all indians realize that white people were -- why didn't indian people from the moment white people arrive d on the east coast that what people would gang up on them and
kick them out. right. because in a sense there is no such thing as indian people. they're multiple different nations. ofng back to that sort spokey kind of diagram that i have, who more often are concerned with the neighboring indian nations than they are with which king thousands of miles away thinks that their land is his land. if you're osage in the 18th century, if you are comanche in the late 18th century, you don't give it much thought because you are powerful. you control your own destinies. and your power limits the fairly -- still fairly precarious power of these european empires whose ambitions in north america will be realized only if they take account of that indian power. everybody realizes that in the
18th century. but i think we have to work to get back to that understanding in the 21st century. the exercise is not to turn it on its head and say, ok, white guys bad, indians good, that the way we've understood american history is all wrong. --hink the purpose here is ok, if this is how american history unfolded, we get a better understanding of that if we identify and follow that indian strand, or those multiple indian strands through that story. i don't know whose question that was. [laughter] >> what role did the comanche play in that mexican/american war? did they just defend the border? did they take a side? prof. calloway: no.
they're doing their own thing. doing their own thing. it is not unlike previous wars where indian people have been pulled in to that. they see no reason to do that. they are not involved in that way. >> do americans just stay out of their border lands all together until -- prof. calloway: no. there's a lot of overlap. this whole area. one of the interesting things that happens when looking at that border -- i'm not going to go back to that map because that might confuse things. but think of that border that's run at the end of the mexican war with the treaty of guadalupe. there is an incident where the american surveyors are running the new international border. and they're going across apache country and a bunch of apaches turn up. sitting on their horses watching them. they've got all this surveying equipment. they say, oh, what are you doing? the surveyors say, well, we're mapping the new border. it is an imaginary line but it is a new international border.
on this side of the line is the united states territory, on this side of the line is mexico. and the apaches say, huh. where is apache country? right? which, by the way, we're all sitting on. and the american surveyors don't have an answer. two weeks later they don't have any horses because the apaches realize what's going on. these are not friends. so the whole what's going on here of course is this intrusion of american power, american claims to territory and other things into an indian world. and that of course is going to be, i suppose, the story of the second half of the 19th century, how to assert that dominance and what happens to that indian power. so comanches are a huge power.
but, there is an incident in 1786, right? this is just after the smallpox epidemic, where spaniards are trying to make peace with the comanches. and one of the reasons that the comanches give for making peace is they say we've recently lost two-thirds of our people. that would have been to the smallpox epidemic. now that be doesn't mean that two-thirds of all comanches died. it may have just been that particular band. but this is a tumultuous world. elliott west who is a historian that i admire greatly, he's written a number of great books on the west, he says somewhere, talking about this whole pioneer experience in the west and settlers moving west, he said
the 19th century west was not a particularly dangerous place to live. unless you are an indian. because if you're indian, the worlds that you built, these new worlds that you built with horses and guns and everything else, are falling apart even as you're developing these things. so it is a hugely tumultuous story. maybe make this the last question so we can have a break, for once? yeah. >> i'm really interested in the british decision to no longer the relationship with the indians. [indiscernible] i'm fascinated by this choice and your take on that. you mentioned that at the time, they saw us as an empire that
only needed to command other nations. can it all be put up to the hubris of this british empire? do you think it was a miscalculation in other respects or was there something like more dismissive toward these indian nations which they've just had negotiations with? prof. calloway: three weeks ago i wouldn't have given the same answer but now being british, i can give you this answer. it is because british people are dumb. [laughter] brexit.lloway: it makes sense. i'll always argue that if we look at what indian peoples do, first step towards understanding is say, ok, let's recognize these people as thinking human beings. and so they're going to make decisions that seem to be in their best interest, given what they can see at the time. and of course, this is part of the tragedy of the human
experience. whether it's the first world war, the american civil war, or brexit. you look at something -- i think we look at something and say, ok, if we do this, or don't -- or stick with what we've got here, certain things are going to happen that we don't like. we know that that's not going to be good. so let's do this. right? and sometimes we don't get what we wish for. and i think from the british perspective, this retrenchment was a necessity. and that was an obvious place to go because they understood their relationships with indians in relation to that conflict with the french. the french are now out of the picture. how big a deal can this be? so i think to many people it's maybe perhaps a no-brainer.
i think for jeffrey armhurst, who has very negative, vicious attitudes towards indians, it's something else. this is a jeffrey amherst, of amherst, massachusetts. the person that -- some people accused him of using germ warfare against the indians. thinking plays into it. johnson, the british superintendent of indian affairs in the north who knows indians, he lives with indians, he understands that this is -- he's warning, don't do this, you don't know what you're doing. you don't know where this is going to lead. so it is not, again, a generic british response.
it's people making decisions at key moments that seem to make sense to them. and as we know, often the repercussions of our actions have unforeseen consequences. brexit, war in iraq, we can name a million of them. right? and i think the danger for us as historians, especially if you're a professional historian, is to contrary to what i say, they did that because they were dumb. they did that because we would have probably done the same thing in their situation. because what they could see and how they could understand the world would be what we could see and understand the world if we were in that situation. and i think that's an important thing to think up and remind ourselves of all the time. i think being historians, you need to -- i say it almost as a constant reminder, as a constant
injection of humility. right? in order to understand these people we have to not sort of look down on them, if that's the right word. even jeffrey amherst. we owe him that. ok, thank you very much. let's take a 15 minute break. [applause] >> joint is every saturday evening at 8:00 p.m. and midnight as we join the students in college classrooms to hear lectures on topics ranging from the american revolution to 9/11. "lectures in history" are also available as podcasts. visit our website, or download them from itunes.
tv," a film about dwight d. eisenhower. according to the library of congress, this newsreel style film was shown in movie theaters and distributed to civic organizations. ♪ >> through 20 years of wavering and wandering, through hot and cold wars, through corruption and cynicism, the american people have hungered for leadership founded on integrity and wisdom and courage. >> we have sought a leader of the people. >> a man raised to leadership by the people.