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American Indians and the Market Economy, 1775-1850

Edited by Lance Greene and Mark R. Plane, foreword by Timothy K. Perttula

Publication Year: 2010

The last quarter of the 18th century was a period of extensive political, economic, and social change in North America, as the continent-wide struggle between European superpowers waned. Native groups found themselves enmeshed in the market economy and new state forms of control, among other new threats to their cultural survival. Native populations throughout North America actively engaged the expanding marketplace in a variety of economic and social forms. These actions, often driven by and expressed through changes in material culture, were supported by a desire to maintain distinctive ethnic identities.

Illustrating the diversity of Native adaptations in an increasingly hostile and marginalized world, this volume is continental in scope—ranging from Connecticut to the Carolinas, and westward through Texas and Colorado. Calling on various theoretical perspectives, the authors provide nuanced perspectives on material culture use as a manipulation of the market economy. A thorough examination of artifacts used by Native Americans, whether of Euro-American or Native origin, this volume provides a clear view of the realities of the economic and social interactions between Native groups and the expanding Euro-American population and the engagement of these Native groups in determining their own fate.


Published by: The University of Alabama Press


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p. v

List of Figures and Tables

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pp. vii-viii

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pp. ix-xi

The chapters in this volume began as presentations at a 2007 Society for American Archaeology (SAA) meeting held in Austin, Texas. The challenge posed to the presenters—now authors—was to begin with a consideration of case-specific studies of Indian groups adapting/responding to the changing world ...

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p. xiii

This volume originated from a symposium at the 2007 meeting of the SAA. That symposium enabled us to meet a wonderful group of researchers who share our interest in American Indian identity during the market era. The success of that session prompted us to take the next step and seek publication of the papers presented. ...

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pp. 1-18

This volume seeks to extend the discussion of Indian people incorporated, willingly or not, into the market economy in America between 1775 and 1850. Indian individuals and groups attempted to adapt to the changing economic and political world while maintaining both cultural identity and group cohesion. ...

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1. “These Indians Appear to be Wealthy”: Economy and Identity during the Late Fur-Trade Period in the Lower Great Lakes

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pp. 19-32

Beginning in the 17th century, a unique melding of American Indian and French culture was created in the context of the Great Lakes fur trade (White 1991). Though Indian cultures were being transformed via contact with Europeans, their manufactured goods, and the fur-trade economy, ...

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2. “Remarkable Elasticity of Character”: Colonial Discourse, the Market Economy, and Catawba Itinerancy, 1770–1820

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pp. 33-52

Understanding colonies and colonialism has become a major focus of archaeological research. Efforts to create a unifying theory of colonialism have justifiably been declared “reductive ventures” that reify a highly variable, transhistorical phenomenon (Dietler 2007:220). ...

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3. Identity in a Post-Removal Cherokee Household, 1838–50

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pp. 53-66

By the spring of 1838 over seven thousand federal and state troops were stationed in the Cherokee Nation to prepare for the forced removal of the Cherokees to west of the Mississippi River. The Cherokee Nation in 1838 encompassed parts of Georgia, Alabama, Tennessee, and North Carolina. ...

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4. Business in the Hinterlands: The Impact of the Market Economy on the West-Central Great Plains at the Turn of the 19th Century

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pp. 67-79

The expansion of European settlers across the North Ameri can continent was preceded by the movement of European goods. Although the implications of direct physical contact between Indian groups and Europeans are better documented, there is little doubt that indirect contact, ...

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5. Negotiating Borders: The Southern Caddo and Their Relationships with Colonial Governments in East Texas

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pp. 80-98

Caddo groups inhabited areas covering parts of modern Texas, Louisiana, Okla-homa, and Arkansas for at least eight hundred years before the first but intermittent European contacts that took place in circa a.d. 1542 (see Hudson 1997:353–379). A variety of written accounts from the time of sustained contact, more than 140 years later, ...


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pp. 99-126


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pp. 127-128


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pp. 129-131

E-ISBN-13: 9780817384791
Print-ISBN-13: 9780817356262

Page Count: 131
Publication Year: 2010

OCLC Number: 772459215
MUSE Marc Record: Download for American Indians and the Market Economy, 1775-1850

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Subject Headings

  • Indians of North America -- Economic conditions -- 19th century.
  • Indians of North America -- Ethnic identity.
  • Economic anthropology -- United States.
  • Indians of North America -- Material culture.
  • Indians of North America -- Economic conditions -- 18th century.
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