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Bouquet's Expedition Against the Ohio Indians in 1764 by William Smith

In the fall of 1764, Col. Henry Bouquet led a British-American army into what is today eastern Ohio with the intention of ending the border conflict called “Pontiac’s War.” Brokering a truce without violence and through negotiations, he ordered the Delawares and Shawnees to release all of their European and Colonial American captives. For the indigenous Ohio peoples, nothing was more wrenching and sorrowful than returning children from mixed parentage and adopted members of their families, many of whom had no memory of their former status or were unwilling to relinquish Native American culture.

Provost William Smith of the College of Philadelphia wrote a history of these events in 1765 titled Bouquet’s Expedition Against the Ohio Indians in 1764. Subsequent editions and printings appeared in London, Amsterdam, Dublin, and Paris until 1778, making this book the most widely circulated and read work on warfare and diplomacy in the Ohio country to emerge following the Seven Years’ War. The literary reputation and impact of Bouquet’s Expedition surpassed all similar contemporary works published on either side of the Atlantic and is probably the most prominent description of an Indian captivity narrative available from the eighteenth century. The dramatic return of the captives described by Smith inspired Conrad Richter’s 1953 novel The Light in the Forest and the Walt Disney movie of the same name in 1958.

This fully annotated edition of Smith’s remarkable book, drawn from all the 1765–1778 versions, includes a new introduction with essays on Smith and his contributors and sources, such as Bouquet, Benjamin Franklin, and Edmund Burke, in addition to a new history of the publication. Numerous eighteenth-century images, sketches, drawings, engravings, and paintings are reproduced, and for the first time Benjamin West’s two original drawings of Ohio leaders negotiating with Bouquet and the return of the captives are featured. Also included are impressive maps drawn for the book by Thomas Hutchins, Bouquet’s engineer, of the Ohio country and the battle of Bushy Run in 1763.

Bouquet’s Expedition Against the Ohio Indians in 1764 is a lasting contribution to our understanding of early Ohio and of warfare and diplomacy in the eighteenth century.

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Brabbling Women

Disorderly Speech and the Law in Early Virginia

by Terri L. Snyder

Brabbling Women takes its title from a 1662 law enacted by Virginia's burgesses, which was intended to offer relief to the "poore husbands" forced into defamation suits because their "brabling" wives had slandered or scandalized their neighbors. To quell such episodes of female misrule, lawmakers decreed that husbands could choose either to pay damages or to have their wives publicly ducked.

But there was more at stake here. By examining women's use of language, Terri L. Snyder demonstrates how women resisted and challenged oppressive political, legal, and cultural practices in colonial Virginia. Contending that women's voices are heard most clearly during episodes of crisis, Snyder focuses on disorderly speech to illustrate women's complex relationships to law and authority in the seventeenth century.

Ordinary women, Snyder finds, employed a variety of strategies to prevail in domestic crises over sexual coercion and adultery, conflicts over women's status as servants or slaves, and threats to women's authority as independent household governors. Some women entered the political forum, openly participating as rebels or loyalists; others sought legal redress for their complaints. Wives protested the confines of marriage; unfree women spoke against masters and servitude. By the force of their words, all strove to thwart political leaders and local officials, as well as the power of husbands, masters, and neighbors. The tactics colonial women used, and the successes they met, reflect the struggles for empowerment taking place in defiance of the inequalities of the colonial period.

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Breaking the Bonds

Marital Discord in Pennsylvania, 1730-1830

Merril D. Smith

"In Breaking The Bonds, Merril Smith establishes the ambitious goal of determining 'what kind of problems arose in troubled marriages' and of analyzing 'how men and women coped with marital discord.' . . . To accomplish this, Smith studied hundreds of divorce petitions, other legal documents, newspapers, almshouse dockets, and prescriptive literature. She concludes that, as in the present day, married couples fought and parted over sex, money, and abuse."
Pennsylvania History

"A richly textured study. . . With an eye to cross-class and cross-race representation, Smith utilizes diverse sources, including memoirs and diaries, correspondence, probate records, newspaper advertisements, depositions and petitions for divorce, and various moral reform and social regulatory organization records. . . . A brave attempt to write a description of 'the development of the Puritan concept of spirtiual growth.' . . . Gracefully written. . . provides specific new insights into a too-neglected area of early republican domestic politics."
William and Mary Quarterly

The late eighteenth century marked a period of changing expectations about marriage: companionship came to coexist as a norm alongside older patriarchal standards, men and women began to see their roles in more disparate ways, expectations about the satisfaction of marriage grew, and gender distinctions between husbands and wives became more complicated. Marital strife was an inevitable outcome of these changing expectations. The difficulties that rose, including abuse, a lack of sexual communication, and domestic violence (frequently brought on by alcholism) differ little from those with which couples struggle today.

Breaking The Bonds is an imaginative and original account that brings to light a strongly communicative world in which neighbors knew of, dinscussed, and even came to the aid of those locked in unhappy marriages.

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Brothers and Friends

Kinship in Early America

Natalie R. Inman

By following key families in Cherokee, Chickasaw, and Anglo-American societies from the Seven Years’ War through 1845, this study illustrates how kinship networks—forged out of natal, marital, or fictive kinship relationships—enabled and directed the actions of their members as they decided the futures of their nations. Natalie R. Inman focuses in particular on the Chickasaw Colbert family, the Anglo-American Donelson family, and the Cherokee families of Attakullakulla (Little Carpenter) and Major Ridge. Her research shows how kinship facilitated actions and goals for people in early America across cultures, even if the definitions and constructions of family were different in each society. To open new perspectives on intercultural relations in the colonial and early republic eras, Inman describes the formation and extension of these networks, their intersection with other types of personal and professional networks, their effect on crucial events, and their mutability over time.

The Anglo-American patrilineal kinship system shaped patterns of descent, inheritance, and migration. The matrilineal native system was an avenue to political voice, connections between towns, and protection from enemies. In the volatile trans-Appalachian South, Inman shows, kinship networks helped to further political and economic agendas at both personal and national levels even through wars, revolutions, fiscal change, and removals.

Comparative analysis of family case studies advances the historiography of early America by revealing connections between the social institution of family and national politics and economies. Beyond the British Atlantic world, these case studies can be compared to other colonial scenarios in which the cultures and families of Europeans collided with native peoples in the Americas, Africa, Australia, and other contexts.

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Brothers Born of One Mother

British–Native American Relations in the Colonial Southeast

Michelle LeMaster

The arrival of English settlers in the American Southeast in 1670 brought the British and the Native Americans into contact both with foreign peoples and with unfamiliar gender systems. In a region in which the balance of power between multiple players remained uncertain for many decades, British and Native leaders turned to concepts of gender and family to create new diplomatic norms to govern interactions as they sought to construct and maintain working relationships. In Brothers Born of One Mother, Michelle LeMaster addresses the question of how differing cultural attitudes toward gender influenced Anglo-Indian relations in the colonial Southeast.

As one of the most fundamental aspects of culture, gender had significant implications for military and diplomatic relations. Understood differently by each side, notions of kinship and proper masculine and feminine behavior wielded during negotiations had the power to either strengthen or disrupt alliances. The collision of different cultural expectations of masculine behavior and men's relationships to and responsibilities for women and children became significant areas of discussion and contention. Native American and British leaders frequently discussed issues of manhood (especially in the context of warfare), the treatment of women and children, and intermarriage. Women themselves could either enhance or upset relations through their active participation in diplomacy, war, and trade.

Leaders invoked gendered metaphors and fictive kinship relations in their discussions, and by evaluating their rhetoric, Brothers Born of One Mother investigates the intercultural conversations about gender that shaped Anglo-Indian diplomacy. LeMaster's study contributes importantly to historians’ understanding of the role of cultural differences in intergroup contact and investigates how gender became part of the ideology of European conquest in North America, providing a unique window into the process of colonization in America.

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Building Charleston

Town and Society in the Eighteenth-Century British Atlantic World

Emma Hart

In the colonial era, Charleston, South Carolina, was the largest city in the American South. From 1700 to 1775 its growth rate was exceeded in the New World only by that of Philadelphia. The first comprehensive study of this crucial colonial center, Building Charleston charts the rise of one of early America's great cities, revealing its importance to the evolution of both South Carolina and the British Atlantic world during the eighteenth century.

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By Birth or Consent

Children, Law, and the Anglo-American Revolution in Authority

Holly Brewer

In mid-sixteenth-century England, people were born into authority and responsibility based on their social status. Thus elite children could designate property or serve in Parliament, while children of the poorer sort might be forced to sign labor contracts or be hanged for arson or picking pockets. By the late eighteenth century, however, English and American law began to emphasize contractual relations based on informed consent rather than on birth status. In By Birth or Consent, Holly Brewer explores how the changing legal status of children illuminates the struggle over consent and status in England and America. As it emerged through religious, political, and legal debates, the concept of meaningful consent challenged the older order of birthright and became central to the development of democratic political theory.

The struggle over meaningful consent had tremendous political and social consequences, affecting the whole order of society. It granted new powers to fathers and guardians at the same time that it challenged those of masters and kings. Brewer's analysis reshapes the debate about the origins of modern political ideology and makes connections between Reformation religious debates, Enlightenment philosophy, and democratic political theory.



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Captain John Smith

A Select Edition of His Writings

Karen Ordahl Kupperman

Captain John Smith was one of the most insightful and colorful writers to visit America in the colonial period. While his first venture was in Virginia, some of his most important work concerned New England and the colonial enterprise as a whole.

The publication in 1986 of Philip Barbour's three-volume edition of Smith's works made available the complete Smith opus. In Karen Ordahl Kupperman's new edition her intelligent and imaginative selection and thematic arrangement of Smith's most important writings will make Smith accessible to scholars, students, and general readers alike. Kupperman's introductory material and notes clarify Smith's meaning and the context in which he wrote, while the selections are large enough to allow Captain Smith to speak for himself. As a reasonably priced distillation of the best of John Smith, Kupperman's edition will allow a wide audience to discover what a remarkable thinker and writer he was.

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Captives and Cousins

Slavery, Kinship, and Community in the Southwest Borderlands

James F. Brooks

This sweeping, richly evocative study examines the origins and legacies of a flourishing captive exchange economy within and among native American and Euramerican communities throughout the Southwest Borderlands from the Spanish colonial era to the end of the nineteenth century.

Indigenous and colonial traditions of capture, servitude, and kinship met and meshed in the borderlands, forming a "slave system" in which victims symbolized social wealth, performed services for their masters, and produced material goods under the threat of violence. Slave and livestock raiding and trading among Apaches, Comanches, Kiowas, Navajos, Utes, and Spaniards provided labor resources, redistributed wealth, and fostered kin connections that integrated disparate and antagonistic groups even as these practices renewed cycles of violence and warfare.

Always attentive to the corrosive effects of the "slave trade" on Indian and colonial societies, the book also explores slavery's centrality in intercultural trade, alliances, and "communities of interest" among groups often antagonistic to Spanish, Mexican, and American modernizing strategies. The extension of the moral and military campaigns of the American Civil War to the Southwest in a regional "war against slavery" brought differing forms of social stability but cost local communities much of their economic vitality and cultural flexibility.

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Carolina in Crisis

Cherokees, Colonists, and Slaves in the American Southeast, 1756-1763

Daniel J. Tortora

In this engaging history, Daniel J. Tortora explores how the Anglo-Cherokee War reshaped the political and cultural landscape of the colonial South. Tortora chronicles the series of clashes that erupted from 1758 to 1761 between Cherokees, settlers, and British troops. The conflict, no insignificant sideshow to the French and Indian War, eventually led to the regeneration of a British-Cherokee alliance. Tortora reveals how the war destabilized the South Carolina colony and threatened the white coastal elite, arguing that the political and military success of the Cherokees led colonists to a greater fear of slave resistance and revolt and ultimately nurtured South Carolinians' rising interest in the movement for independence.

Drawing on newspaper accounts, military and diplomatic correspondence, and the speeches of Cherokee people, among other sources, this work reexamines the experiences of Cherokees, whites, and African Americans in the mid-eighteenth century. Centering his analysis on Native American history, Tortora reconsiders the rise of revolutionary sentiments in the South while also detailing the Anglo-Cherokee War from the Cherokee perspective.

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