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This article illuminates the process of researching and creating digital maps for Our Beloved Kin: A New History of King Philip’s War, including reframing of Indigenous places and colonial stories, such as Mary Rowlandson’s captivity narrative. A first-person, reflective narrative highlights and reveals Indigenous studies methodologies, including recovering and interpreting place-names and concepts drawn from Indigenous languages; tracking the routes and rivers traveled by captors, converts, and leaders; and working in multiple archives to locate documents that reveal contexts obscured by the conventional histories of King Philip’s War. Drawing on multiple languages and disciplines, the article both raises questions about how we (that is, literary and historical scholars) frame “history” and “literature” and enhances our understanding of writing/mapping (awikhigawôgan) and history-making (ôjmowôgan) as activities in which we engage. As it highlights engagement with contemporary places and communities as well as with historical documents and narrative texts, the article, in both framework and methods, connects to and emerges from scholarship at the intersection of the discipline of history and the interdisciplinary network of Native American and Indigenous studies that seeks “new” modes of making history and literature.

Figure I. C'est une carte.<br/> (This is a map.)<br/> La carte n'est pas la territoire.<br/> (The map is not the territory.)
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Figure I.

C'est une carte.
(This is a map.)
La carte n'est pas la territoire.
(The map is not the territory.)

[End Page 259]

Figure II. C'est un livre.<br/> (This is a book.)
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Figure II.

C'est un livre.
(This is a book.)

Figure III. C'est une histoire. <br/>(This is a story.)<br/> Ceci n'est pas L'Histoire.<br/> (This is not History.)
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Figure III.

C'est une histoire.
(This is a story.)
Ceci n'est pas L'Histoire.
(This is not History.)

[End Page 260]

Figure IV. Io ni nd'awikhigan
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Figure IV.

Io ni nd'awikhigan
Nia io nd'awikhigan.
(C'est ma carte/mon livre.)
(This is my map/book.)
Niona ôjmowôgan?
Kiona ôjmowôgan? (Est-ce notre histoire, que nous racontons?
Est-ce notre histoire collective, que nous racontons?)
(Our [exclusive] history, the story we are actively engaged in telling?
Our [inclusive] history, the story we are actively engaged in telling?)1

[End Page 261]

THIS new digital map of Mary Rowlandson's "removes," based on her foundational captivity narrative, is an awikhigan, as is her book—published in Cambridge, Massachusetts, in 1682—and the later edition and accompanying map published in Lancaster, Massachusetts, in 1903.2 In the Abenaki language, awikhigan (plural: awikhiganal) first described birch-bark maps and scrolls, but it has come to include petitions, letters, maps, drawings, and especially books.3 One of the first awikhiganal (books/livres) [End Page 262] to record Abenaki language in European script was the French Jesuit Sébastien Rasle's "dictionary," a bilingual language journal he kept while he lived with the Abenaki community at Norridgewock for more than three decades. Abenaki orthography comes to us through the French language, and even today, French glosses of Abenaki words are often more capacious and nuanced than some English translations, although French also has its limitations. Moreover, Abenaki and other northern Algonquian people adopted and adapted French-style writing from the Jesuits, combining it with Indigenous graphic forms of representation and expanding the concept of awikhigan to encompass books, rather than books replacing awikhiganal.4

In digital space, we are participating in a further adaptation of awikhigawôgan (the activity of writing/drawing), but awikhigan's new form does not mean it loses its purpose as an instrument of representation and communication, of memory and navigation. Whether in print or digital form, nd'awikhigan, "my map," is a tool that enables a different view of both the book, which is Rowlandson's Narrative, and the histoire that it relays. My map offers a significant contrast with the 1903 map, published by local historians Henry Stedman Nourse and John Eliot Thayer. Nd'awikhigan conveys an alternative, if not entirely new, conceptualization of the space through which Rowlandson and her captors traveled. [End Page 263]

This article is itself an awikhigan, which invites engagement in print and digital space.5 But it is not only an instrument, manifested as a permanent record of analysis, but also a process of awikhigawôgan (mapping/writing) and the activity of ôjmowôgan (history, or collective telling/narration, raconter) in which we all (might) participate. My intent is not to make a singular argument or to prescribe a methodology but instead to unfold and document my own process and methods of awikhigawôgan and ôjmowôgan, at the invitation of the organizers of this joint Forum. This article is an inquiry into pildowi ôjmowôgan, the cyclical, spiraling process through which we (inclusive or exclusive) collectively participate in recovering and narrating "a new history."6 That phrase, akin to pili kisos, "the new moon," resonates with scholarship that has emerged over the last decade and more at the intersection of the discipline of history and the interdisciplinary network of Native American and Indigenous studies.7 Though this history [End Page 264] may appear to be new, for some it is not unfamiliar. Pildowi ôjmowôgan marks the beginning of a new cycle, a paradigm shift perhaps, although not one that occurs along a line of ever-increasing progress but rather one that emerges, spiraling, from the layers of the past into the present moment, carrying memories with it so the next generation can become manifest and better navigate this complex space. It is similar to the struggle of alnôbawôgan, "becoming human," an activity in which we are constantly engaged.8

As the opening montage implies, even the way we describe and conceptualize categories, such as "writing" and "history," and objects, such as "maps" and "books," changes as we move between languages. In French or English, we might privilege an objective view of maps and books, in which they are discrete objects with claims to truth: this is a book; that is a map. Although theorists have problematized such truth claims, arguing that "maps are not the actual territory" and books are only representations of the real, the notion that maps and books are authoritative signs and symbols of reality and truth persists. The Abenaki language, in contrast, emphasizes the relationality between people and their instruments and activities, and between maps and books. Even by stating a simple sentence, "Nia io nd'awikhigan," I am inviting interpretive engagement with me and my map/book/essay/website. (Both nia and nd here denote a relationship, akin to mutual belonging and kinship, not merely authorial status or possession.) This sentence embeds subjectivity; I am not asserting a claim of objective or universal truth for this object. Likewise, the French word histoire has a more slippery meaning than the discrete history and story in English, and the Abenaki word ôjmowôgan suggests a conceptualization of history that may be more easily translatable to French, an activity of (story)telling about the past in which multiple people (we, inclusive or exclusive) are engaged. Thus, Indigenous studies methodologies—including looking to Indigenous languages, ways of mapping, and modes of telling—may help all of us to consider and conceptualize "new" modes of doing/making history and literature. However, as my last sentence in the montage that begins this article implies, there is fluidity, agency, and power in the processes of determining who may be included in this activity of making history.9 [End Page 265]

As historians continue to pursue forms of notre histoire that transcend nationalist boundaries, including Atlantic world, Pacific world, borderlands, global history, and transnational approaches, who will be doing the research and narration? Whose histoires will be included or excluded? In French, with "notre histoire," or English, with "our history," inclusion and exclusion are slippery. Any use of the word we could include or exclude, without specificity, and authors are compelled to demonstrate specificity through context, as this article shows. (As a reader, hopefully, at times you wondered whether or not you were included in or excluded from that "we," which may have been unsettling or uncomfortable, particularly when my statements did not mesh with your own experience.) In the Abenaki language, as with many Indigenous languages on this continent, the pronoun we (and its possessive form) is always inclusive ("kiona") or exclusive ("niona"), and thus specificity is built into the very structure of the language. In the twenty-first century, as Indigenous methodologies are moving into spaces from which they were previously excluded, these concepts may help "us" to be more aware of the ways in which "we" build a more inclusive or exclusive process of ôjmowôgan, the collective activity of (telling) history. That activity may be nearly universal, but the different forms it takes, based on who is doing the telling and where the telling is taking place, may be as myriad and diverse as the networks and places from which our literatures emerge. That suggests that there are many opportunities for listening, as well as telling, if we, as scholars, pursue the diplomatic, relational work necessary for inclusion in those conversations. A question I am asking in the opening montage, posed to the reader, is, Does "my map" reflect "our" (exclusive) collective telling of history? Or does it reflect a wider, more encompassing collective telling, in which you, as a reader, thinker, and writer, are participating or may want to participate? It suggests that you and "we" have agency, both in determining who is included and in whether we participate. Or perhaps it suggests that we may all be embedded in this process, whether we are fully cognizant of it or not.

In this article I focus on the process of creating maps for my book Our Beloved Kin: A New History of King Philip's War, which highlights Indigenous places and networks in King Philip's War and places Rowlandson's narrative within those networks of relations. The article is neither a comprehensive historical argument based on the voluminous evidence harnessed for that book nor a detailed road map for others to follow. [End Page 266] Rather, it is an opportunity to reveal and reconsider the origins, materials, and methods of my own work, which takes place at the crossroads of ôjmowôgan (history) and awikhigawôgan (literature/geography) in Native space. I hope that my "lifting the veil" on aspects of this process may be useful to others doing the work of history. I also acknowledge, however, that the process of reading and navigating Native spaces is challenging, whether we are researching documents, creating digital maps, collaborating with other people, or interacting with the land and waterways. I recognize that others may not have the opportunities, resources, capacity, or skills that have allowed me to learn and discuss Indigenous languages with knowledgeable teachers, to walk and paddle through significant historical places, and to access support for digital projects. Yet this article does offer possible routes out of the quandary (or quagmire) I have heard raised repeatedly at scholarly gatherings in early American studies, where scholars who rely mainly on archival research have found themselves at an impasse, facing what "we" cannot know about Indigenous peoples, culture, and histories. I have often observed introspectively that, at those conferences, the inclusive "we" is implied and the universal "we" is assumed. But there is more than one "we" (exclusive), there are different knowledge bases, and there are other ways of knowing. This article offers an invitation to consider some alternative epistemologies and methodologies for pursuing research toward the recovery of our (inclusive or exclusive) histoire.


This process of awikhigawôgan (in this case, mapmaking) began more than fifteen years ago with a simple problem: to continue the research and interpretation in which I was enmeshed, I needed a map of the waterways of the Native Northeast, without colonial roads, towns, or state boundaries. The old New England road map taped to my wall—with its highlighter-enhanced water routes, marked paths, stickers, and Post-it note place-names drawn from my research and language study—would no longer suffice. The map I wanted would highlight Indigenous roads, the rivers to which Native people belong, the canoe routes that connect communities; it would be a map of a network, onto which I could overlay the place-names that connect and highlight routes of kinship and exchange, the Native homelands that preceded and continue beyond European colonization.10

As I discovered when I visited the Cornell University map library as a graduate student, no such map then existed. But the map librarian offered a new technology, ArcGIS, which enabled me to create a simple image—blank white space, with waterways (Figure V). At the time the biggest challenge was that there were separate programs for Canada and the United States, the border that my family had always crossed, even after doing so was declared illegal, still persistently posing a problem. The rivers that [End Page 267]

Figure V. Lisa Brooks, Network of Waterways, using ArcGIS 8.0, courtesy Cornell University.
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Figure V.

Lisa Brooks, Network of Waterways, using ArcGIS 8.0, courtesy Cornell University.

crossed the border initially would not connect on the map, our Missisquoi River broken by what the Blackfeet Confederacy came to call the "medicine line" because of its mysterious ability to make U.S. soldiers halt at a boundary that no one could discern in the land.11 Years later, as I created more sophisticated maps for my book The Common Pot with the assistance of the Harvard University Center for Geographic Analysis and a knowledgeable research assistant, Jenny Davis, my initial vision came to fruition. Although ArcGIS is not often hailed as a decolonizing technology, we were able to use it as a tool to create maps that could begin to decolonize the familiar spaces of New England, New York, Quebec, and the Great Lakes. We connected the rivers across nation-state borders, highlighted the network of waterways, and emphasized both the deep green wôlhanak—those fertile bowls that fed the families—and the mountains between. We inscribed place-names for Indigenous homelands and waterways, some of which were drawn from the Indigenous-authored texts that I studied, that proved essential to interpreting the history of the Common Pot (Figure VI).12 [End Page 268]

Figure VI. Kwinitekw Environs, in Lisa Brooks, maps accompanying The Common Pot: The Recovery of Native Space in the Northeast, 2008, . Created by Jenny Davis and Lisa Brooks, using ArcGIS 9.2, courtesy of Harvard University.
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Figure VI.

Kwinitekw Environs, in Lisa Brooks, maps accompanying The Common Pot: The Recovery of Native Space in the Northeast, 2008, Created by Jenny Davis and Lisa Brooks, using ArcGIS 9.2, courtesy of Harvard University.

The motivation throughout the process was simple—in order to fully understand our history, I had to map it. And in order for readers to fully access that history, they have to use those maps and, through that process, learn to navigate an alternative geography. In part because of the success of the colonial project of "replacement," new maps would have to convey a deeper knowledge of this place—known for centuries as New England—as Native space.13

In creating maps for The Common Pot, Our Beloved Kin, and a recent article on Mary Rowlandson's narrative, I have relied on a variety of historical methods, rooted to some extent in my academic training but also in [End Page 269] Indigenous methodologies.14 Those methods have arisen in part from the legal cases in which Native communities have been enmeshed for hundreds of years. During the last several decades, in particular, they have built on experience with the Indian Claims Commission, the federal acknowledgement process, and a host of environmental laws that provide one route for communities to oppose development that poses an immediate threat to places of cultural and ecological significance.15 My own education in these methods includes engagement with the archives of the land and the archives of Indigenous languages, as well as more traditional historical archives. In-depth place-based research necessitates going out on the land and waterways, often in small groups, and requires researchers to both experience and document deeply embedded ecological, historical, and cultural knowledge. Language work includes not only language learning and revitalization but also analysis of place-names and historical, cultural, and geographic concepts embedded in language, as exemplified by my previous discussion of key concepts in the Abenaki language. Community-based researchers often spend decades reconstructing the fine, detailed history and complex webs of kinship in their single community, through whatever means, methods, and materials are at hand. This process fosters the recovery of old methods, the acquisition of unfamiliar methods, and the development of new methods of inquiry, which may also be applicable beyond the immediate research goals and needs of a community. [End Page 270]

It is vital to recognize that community-based research in the late twentieth and early twenty-first centuries has produced significant historical knowledge and innovative methodologies. The necessary (for some communities) pursuit of federal acknowledgment, the urgent research required by aboriginal rights and land protection cases, and the ongoing research arising from NAGPRA (Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act) consultation have led community-based tribal scholars and academic historians (who sometimes occupy both positions) to develop a range of research methodologies that are not bound by discipline. These cases and processes often demand that community members utilize and learn multiple skills simultaneously while also considering the ethical responsibilities and risks of documenting community history. Their work requires documenting oral traditions; researching in archives; learning and studying local Indigenous languages; and interpreting material culture and archaeological evidence. It involves ongoing community consultation with regard to protocols about sharing traditional knowledge and family stories as well as resolving interpretive conflicts within the group. Although both the interdisciplinary nature of this research and the conversations around ethical research and documentation have arisen from ongoing research needs within tribal communities, they can also inform the work of early American scholars grappling with some of these same questions. Indeed, as I have learned through many conversations with scholars in the Connecticut River valley (and beyond)—including Colin Calloway, Christine DeLucia, Jean M. O'Brien, Barry O'Connell, Neal Salisbury, and Ron Welburn—they already have informed some of the strongest historical and literary scholarship on Native New England.16

This same process, however, has also produced significant political analysis of power and the divisive impact of colonial structures of recognition. The federal acknowledgment process has fostered divisions and disparities across tribal communities, while the U.S. legal system provides rewards for some and devastating losses for others. For some communities, the achievement of federal recognition has led to increased access to funding and resources to support historical research, language classes, cultural programming, and environmental restoration, as well as the right to require consultation regarding development on traditional tribal homelands. For [End Page 271] others, denied recognition or compensation, the process has highlighted the differences in resource allocation but has also fueled further grassroots community organizing independent of state and federal governments. For many communities, the process of petitioning for federal acknowledgment, regardless of the outcome, has also led to intense factionalization and division arising from colonial structures and policies, which have posed real challenges for historical and cultural recovery. Moreover, historians are often called on to provide expert testimony or research in legal cases and recognition petitions, and even scholars who are not directly involved in such cases have to recognize that, if we are writing about Indigenous history, our work might well find its way into a court of law. Once there, scholarly opinions and interpretations are almost always given more weight than community-based history, whether those interpretations confirm or conflict with tribal narratives. Historical writing and interpretation thus can have consequences and impacts that scholars may not even envision, although some of the best mentors I know make a point of conveying these power dynamics and disparities to their colleagues and graduate students. Put another way, even the processes of pursuing and publishing historical research, regardless of the location from which we pursue it, are inextricably bound to the ongoing process of colonialism, requiring analysis of not just past but also present dynamics of power and representation.17 [End Page 272]


It was while I was personally enmeshed in legal cases to protect aboriginal rights and historically and ecologically significant places that I received my most important education in Indigenous methodologies. I was an undergraduate student and was also working at the tribal office of the Abenaki Nation of Missisquoi, seeking to understand how my own family's history was connected to all those other families in the Missisquoi River watershed and beyond. As I learned then, Missisquoi (Mazipzoik) was, both before and during the colonial period, part of a vital Indigenous network that, in the late twentieth century, was in the midst of revitalization.18 Located on [End Page 273] the northeast shore of Betobakw, Missisquoi's waterways and kinship trails connect it to Muhhekunnutuk, the Kanienkehaka (Mohawk) communities of Akwesasne and Kahnawake, the "long river" Kwinitekw, the "great river" Ktsitekw, and Odanak, one of two Abenaki reserves in Quebec, located on a tributary of Ktsitekw (see Figure VI).19 At Missisquoi, I had the opportunity to take language classes with the elder Cecile Wawanolett, a fluent speaker of the Abenaki language, as part of a renewed exchange between Odanak and the Missisquoi Abenaki community in Vermont. (I am still but a student of the language.) While working in the tribal office, I learned I had a knack for archival research, for tracking and weaving the disparate strands of our history, much of which had been repressed in the popular imagination by Vermont frontier myth and what Jean M. O'Brien calls settler narratives of "firsting." Yet, as I came to understand, we could only discern the threads between written fragments, recovered from state archives and town records, by joining them to collective knowledge, built up over many generations, and oral history, often relayed out on the land or at kitchen tables.20 [End Page 274]

Such an interdisciplinary approach was demanded by the legal cases we had to pursue in order to protect land that was vital to cultural and ecological survival. One of these sites was an extensive wetland ecosystem known as "Grandma Lampman's" because it was the nineteenth- and early twentieth-century homesite of Martha Morits Lampman, an Abenaki community leader with many descendants in the contemporary Missisquoi community, as well as a central gathering place where tribal members fished, hunted, gathered, planted, harvested, and educated the next generation in culture, oral history, and traditional ecological knowledge. In the early 1990s, Grandma Lampman's, which was located within the larger area of Maquam, was under immediate threat of division and development. To contest a planned housing subdivision, we had to prove the historical and continuing relationship of Abenaki families, and the Missisquoi Abenaki nation as a whole, to this wetland environment. Once that "party status" was achieved, we could then begin to make a legal argument about the environmental and cultural impacts of the proposed development to the state of Vermont. First, we had to document the intertwined cultural, historical, and ecological knowledge that community members held. Part of my job, in collaboration with other community members, was to research the historical and archaeological evidence, document the oral history and land-based cultural knowledge, and then compose a narrative that would bring all of this research and documentation together for presentation to the state.21

Out on the land on a cold winter day, with Larry Lapan, Lester Lampman, and Louise Lampman Larivee, I trudged through the woods threatened by a foreign developer's dream of a large-scale housing complex, sinking in snow up to my hips. I could feel the swamp (which did not appear on the developer's wetland delineation plan) soaking through my jeans, bleeding through the bread bags tied to my boots, freezing to my skin. Larry's cane sank in deep, the snowpack giving way to slush. Yet I could also see the trails where deer navigated through the wet snow, the deer scat, the depressions or beds where they took shelter, the scrapes on hemlock, all evidence of the winter deer yard that these longtime hunters knew well. These deer were sustained by the hemlock in winter, apple trees—planted long ago by Grandma Lampman—through the fall. And the deer sustained the families who had depended on them for sustenance through the winter every generation since time immemorial, the deer, the families, and the trees all intertwined. In describing this relationship, my companions were not evoking a romanticized notion of Indians' connection to nature; rather, there was a pragmatic sense of urgency in their words. Grandma Lampman's was necessary to physical and cultural survival. As one of my most influential teachers, Lenny Lampman, [End Page 275] had said when development threatened, "This is my habitat; this is my church."22 He did not distinguish between the two. This was also my school.

Back at the kitchen table, as I peeled the bread bags from my aching calves, watching steam rise from my bowl, I had time to reflect. Macaroni stew never tasted so good. As we ate, stories spilled out, the memories of hunting and gathering plants and fruits in season, of the trails that ran along the old railroad bed, the responsibilities children had for feeding their families, and the lessons learned. Maquam was an expansive homeland that endured, even after the Missisquoi National Wildlife Refuge was established in 1943, creating a geopolitical border between "Grandma Lampman's" and "the refuge" that Abenaki families continued to traverse, despite and sometimes in opposition to the imposition of federal control and management. The context of the refuge made the protection of Maquam from a new wave of colonization all the more urgent. Even as I listened, I could see the map of Maquam as it moved from their stories to my mind, where it is imprinted even now, decades later. Yes, even now, when I take my daughter back there, I remember how to walk those trails, and I still listen to the stories, knowing that my memory is nothing compared with the memory of those who were raised there, whose families have inhabited that place for countless generations. It was their maps, intertwining land-based knowledge with oral history, that provided the legal evidence we needed to protect Grandma Lampman's for countless generations more.23

These Abenaki families held an oral history archive, but the Indigenous methodologies and pedagogy already practiced within the community entailed not social science methods of one-on-one interviews in static locations, preferably recorded and transcribed, but rather conversations that happened in dynamic places of memory. The land was our archive, holding not only mnemonic devices that enabled the recall of shared, intergenerational memories and collective oral traditions but also substantiation of subsistence usage, ecological relationships, historical sites, and cultural practices. I learned how to read this evidence in the land as well as how to listen for historical and cultural evidence in the words exchanged while we were interacting with the land, including all of its inhabitants. I learned how to remember, to recall, and to write following those conversations, transforming the exchange into print. The larger map of dynamic adaptation and [End Page 276] continuance could only be discerned through interactive engagement, walking in place and talking with each other.24

So mapping, you can see, is more than an academic enterprise. Making maps is about memory and survival. But it is also about helping people to comprehend that there are different ways of seeing the land and its history, and different ways to center places. The Maquam wetland exists at the far edges of most New England maps. It is barely on the maps of the United States or Canada. Yet it is a crucial filter for the entire watershed of Betobakw, and for families, both human and other-than-human, who are indigenous to this place, it is the center of the world. Of course, to understand Indigenous history, one has to comprehend that there are many such centers.


when doing research, I often think about what happens when we center a place, such as Missisquoi, that has usually been situated on the margins. Different maps emerge when we center Native spaces in colonial American history. In researching the history of Harvard College, for instance, I was immediately drawn into the story of James Printer, one of the early residents of the Harvard Indian College, a young Nipmuc man from Hassanamesit who became a printer's apprentice at New England's first press and a teacher to his relations in the Nipmuc country. Tracking Printer and his kin led me to archives all over New England, but this research was illuminated and motivated by ongoing conversations and relationship building with his lateral descendants in today's Nipmuc community, including those tied to the contemporary reservation of Hassanamisco, which remains a central [End Page 277] gathering place. Printer's histoire became a major focus of Our Beloved Kin, and a key motivation for the production of a central map of the book and accompanying website was to highlight his network (Figure VII). My mapping team and I asked what would happen if we put Printer's home of Hassanamesit at the center of our map. What sort of map emerges out of the process of highlighting a Nipmuc network of relations, towns, and the many intersecting trails that connected them?25

In reading this map, you might first notice Hassanamesit's location on a major trail and waterway, the Nipmuc-Narragansett River, now known as the Blackstone. As my maps often highlight, the Native Northeast is first and foremost a network of waterways, which Indigenous people navigated by canoe, paddling well-known river and coastal routes (as many of us still do). Trails, traveled by foot and snowshoe, followed and connected the waterways. During the colonial period, the canoe was undoubtedly the most efficient technology for traveling the inland territories, except in winter, when snowshoes came to the fore.26 Hassanamesit's strategic location enabled diplomats to travel upriver to the central Nipmuc town of Pakachoag (now Worcester), through Nashaway, and beyond, into Penacook country, and to travel downriver to Narragansett, east to Wampanoag territory, or west to Mohegan.

By turning our attention to the trails and towns surrounding Hassanamesit, we can see that Printer's town was at the center of an extensive network. Since the Nipmuc people did not have a centralized system of government, each town was largely autonomous in its governance, with individual communities connected to each other by the bonds of kinship and with each community shaping its own distinct network of relations. It has been difficult for many historians to understand the Nipmucs because of the tendency to impose either European political categories or anthropological classifications upon them. Yet even their name, Nipmuc, meaning "people of the freshwater," emphasizes their inland (freshwater) geographic position and connections (via multiple waterways) to Indigenous networks of trade and exchange. The name highlights not a closely bounded and rigidly defined political identity but rather the Nipmucs' relationships to their home places and neighboring communities. The people of the freshwater inland were both distinct from and had dynamic relationships with their coastal neighbors, such as the Wampanoags, Narragansetts, Pequots, and Mohegans, as well as with other inland people on Kwinitekw, or the Connecticut River, such as the Sokokis. Not surprisingly, Nipmucs pursued multiple strategies for survival during [End Page 278]

Figure VII. Printer's Revolt Map: Nipmuc and Neighboring Territories, 1675, in Lisa Brooks, Our Beloved Kin: Remapping a New History of King Philip's War, digital companion to Brooks, Our Beloved Kin: A New History of King Philip's War (New Haven, Conn., 2018), . Created by Lauren Tuiskula, Lisa Brooks, Andy Anderson, Aida Orozco, and Cassandra Hradil, using ArcGIS 10.3, courtesy of Amherst College.
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Figure VII.

Printer's Revolt Map: Nipmuc and Neighboring Territories, 1675, in Lisa Brooks, Our Beloved Kin: Remapping a New History of King Philip's War, digital companion to Brooks, Our Beloved Kin: A New History of King Philip's War (New Haven, Conn., 2018), Created by Lauren Tuiskula, Lisa Brooks, Andy Anderson, Aida Orozco, and Cassandra Hradil, using ArcGIS 10.3, courtesy of Amherst College.

King Philip's War and emerged as mediators and negotiators. Nipmuc people acted independently, making coalitions through their particular places, bonds of kinship, and political alliances. These coalitions included the relationships of alliance Nipmuc people built and negotiated with newcomers, including the English of Massachusetts colony.27 [End Page 279]

On the "Printer's Revolt" map, we can see the paths to Boston and Cambridge, which appear as colonial outposts to which Native people traveled. Of course, this coastal wetland had been home to an Indigenous Massachusett community long before English settlers arrived, and it remains a place of memory for Massachusett, Wampanoag, Nipmuc, and other regional communities today. In the Western Abenaki language, Pastonkiak became the word for Americans, referencing Boston, a small colonial village that spread beyond control.28 Still, as this map shows, Boston was not the center of Printer's world.

Contrast this map highlighting Nipmuc space with the well-known "Map of New-England" by John Foster, published in Massachusetts minister William Hubbard's 1677 narrative of King Philip's War (Figure VIII). Here, the English coastal and maritime orientation is obvious. Colonial ports, crucial to both extractive colonialism and settler colonial economies, proliferate, and the coastal towns of the Massachusetts Bay Colony are at the center of this map's world. "Nipmuk" territory appears, but it is decentered, with none of its towns represented. Moreover, the space between "Lancaster"—Massachusetts's westernmost settlement—and "Squakeag"—the northern-most colonial town on the Connecticut River (also under the Bay Colony's jurisdiction)—is condensed, a shrinking of the Nipmuc interior that gives the impression that it had already been contained by the Bay Colony. The Nipmuc mountain, Wachusett, appears on the map as "Wainset Hill," a geographic marker but not the stronghold it became during King Philip's War. In contrast to the map of Printer's world, Penacook, Sokwakik, and other Wabanaki territories north of the settlements appear here only as blank space, populated with trees, a couple of animals, and unknown waterways. This collection of figures evokes, of course, an uninhabited wilderness just waiting to be properly improved. Lake Winnipesaukee appears to the north, with the space between the lake and colonial towns condensed because the lake was—on paper—the northern boundary of the Massachusetts colony, although only a handful of European settlers had reached it and it remained a Wabanaki center during and long after the war. Foster's map, then, was not merely a representation of "the territory" but an awikhigan, an "instrument," to claim, contain, and colonize it. Even as the map's makers and readers imagined an already colonized space encompassing territory beyond their direct knowledge, the map also elided or erased the continuance of [End Page 280] Native places and people both within and beyond the bounds asserted by Massachusetts colony.29

Figure VIII. John Foster, A Map of New-England, Being the first that ever was here cut, and done by the best Pattern that could be had, which being in some places defective, it made the other less exact: yet doth it sufficiently shew the Scituation of the Countrey, and conveniently well the distance of Places. The figures that are joyned with the Names of Places are to distinguish such as have been assaulted by the Indians from others, facsimile by J. Harris Jr., [1900?]. This version of Foster's map accompanied W[illiam] Hubbard, The Present State of New-England. Being a Narrative Of the Troubles with the Indians in New-England. … (London, 1677), a retitled edition of Hubbard, A Narrative of the Troubles with the Indians In New-England…. (Boston, 1677). Reproduction courtesy Norman B. Leventhal Map &amp; Education Center, Boston Public Library.
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Figure VIII.

John Foster, A Map of New-England, Being the first that ever was here cut, and done by the best Pattern that could be had, which being in some places defective, it made the other less exact: yet doth it sufficiently shew the Scituation of the Countrey, and conveniently well the distance of Places. The figures that are joyned with the Names of Places are to distinguish such as have been assaulted by the Indians from others, facsimile by J. Harris Jr., [1900?]. This version of Foster's map accompanied W[illiam] Hubbard, The Present State of New-England. Being a Narrative Of the Troubles with the Indians in New-England. … (London, 1677), a retitled edition of Hubbard, A Narrative of the Troubles with the Indians In New-England…. (Boston, 1677). Reproduction courtesy Norman B. Leventhal Map & Education Center, Boston Public Library.

Our map is also an instrument, one that restores some of that geographic context that has been elided or erased by colonial maps such as Foster's. The [End Page 281] "Printer's Revolt" map highlights the interior, connecting Nipmuc towns to multiple indigenous regions, including the fertile valley of Kwinitekw, the long river, an indigenous superhighway that reaches far north into the mountainous Wabanaki interior and empties into Sobakw, the wide bowl of the Atlantic Ocean, to the south. Unlike the Foster map, this one highlights the populated space between the eastern coast and the Connecticut River. Nipmuc country is represented as an intricate web of relations and routes, through which particular people such as Printer traveled and in which they were embedded. On this map, not all colonial towns are represented; those that appear are the ones mentioned in chapters of Our Beloved Kin, which recover and narrate Printer's story. The book and map locate these colonial towns in Native space—on extant Native trails, contiguous to populous Native towns, and within deeply meaningful Native homelands—showing both that English settlements were not merely adjacent to or bordering Native territories but constructed within them and that Native people understood those places as Nashaway, not Lancaster, and as Okkanamesit, not Marlborough. Thus this map, designed to represent Printer's network of places and relations during King Philip's War, is a conceptual historical map. It does not claim to present a complete (or objective) view of Native and colonial space in this period. It has positionality and orientation. A twenty-first-century road map, of course, also has positionality and orientation, although we tend not to emphasize those aspects of, say, a Google map. But every map, regardless of its orientation, is drawn from within a particular cultural, geographic, temporal, and political position. As the Laguna Pueblo author Leslie Marmon Silko has observed, we are all situated in the "landscapes" that we seek to represent, even when we aim, or claim, to create a view that suggests distance. No map is truly drawn from outside or from above. Distance does not ensure accuracy.30

Just as our map is itself conceptual, some of the symbology used to represent particular places on the map is also designed to be conceptual. Concentric circles, for example, convey a sense of towns/homelands spreading outward from a center, rather than indicating a single point on a map. The point or dot is often used to represent Native villages, but this seems to lead people to want a precise, singular point for a place such as Hassanamesit, which was much more extensive than any single point could convey. Like other Nipmuc towns, Hassanamesit was a multifaceted homeland where people planted, gathered, hunted, and fished in multiple locations. It was a place where the entire community gathered for councils and where they received diplomats and kin from other Nipmuc towns and other Indigenous territories. It was also a stopping place for those traveling on the trails and riverways that crossed through this hub. Hassanamesit is centered, as a concentric circle, on this map because it was Printer's primary home. Yet the map also [End Page 282] highlights Printer's networks and his mobility through the trails and waterways that connected Hassanamesit to multiple hubs, including other Nipmuc towns and neighboring Native territories, as well as colonial towns. It shows the path Printer traveled first to Cambridge as a young scholar and then to Waeuntuk, where he served as a teacher to his Nipmuc relations. The map reveals, moreover, the proximity of Wachusett, where he served as a scribe for the confederated Indigenous leaders, as well as the road to Boston, where so many of his kin were imprisoned or enslaved during and after the war.31

In contrast to the Foster map, the "Printer's Revolt" map demonstrates that Wachusett is not merely a mountain in the midst of the wilderness or a point of reference but a town in and of itself, a community within the larger Nipmuc homeland of Nashaway, a "place between" rivers and also between territories, connecting Nipmuc towns and families to Patucket and Penacook places on the Molôdemak River to the north. Wachusett provided a protected gathering place and sanctuary during the war. It was not an isolated wilderness, as it may have appeared to Mary Rowlandson. Its location within this network of towns and trails shows that it was a known, central place for Nipmuc people. The lack of settler colonial knowledge of the interior and the ruggedness of its terrain made Wachusett inaccessible to colonial troops, which, in turn, made it a vital defense for Nipmuc people, as well as for the many neighboring people who sought sanctuary there, including Philip and his relations. Today, it remains a place within the Nipmuc homeland, a space sacred to Nipmuc people, including Printer's descendants.32


In creating maps of both James Printer's world and Mary Rowlandson's removes, it was necessary that the students with whom I was working visit vital places such as Hassanamesit and Wachusett. But it would take months of training before I would feel comfortable bringing them there. Many scholars hire cartographers to make maps for their books, but for me, working closely with students has been a critical part of the process of map-making, an activity of awikhigawôgan during which we learn and design collaboratively. At the same time, this approach gives me a greater sense of control over both the map design and the details, which is important when [End Page 283] reconstructing spaces that have been erased by colonial mapping. I have been fortunate to work with GIS specialist Andy Anderson in designing maps for Our Beloved Kin and the associated website, which began with the two of us working in a GIS lab with two undergraduate research assistants, Aida Orozco and Cassandra Hradil. A year into the project, Anderson and I were able to offer a research seminar, part of a Mellon Foundation– funded pilot program at Amherst College to involve second- and third-year undergraduate students directly in faculty research. The course enabled six students to get intensive training in ArcGIS, historical methods, and Indigenous methodologies. Working in teams of two, the students collaborated with us throughout the semester and during the following summer to produce maps and website pages based on the results of our research.33 Thus these maps reflect the efforts of many hands, from the students who first georeferenced trails in multiple states, to those who did specialized research in colonial documents and other sources to discern precise locations and names, to those who carefully transcribed rare documents, to those who consulted with me on language, and to those who worked tirelessly to enhance the maps' waterways and topography in order to fully convey the historical and ecological geography. At every stage, these young scholars demonstrated an impressive commitment to research and representation because, to their minds, this was history that mattered.

Still, perhaps the most vital aspect of the process was enabling students to move out of the classroom, into the archives, and onto the land—and, in particular, to begin engaging with the Nipmuc community. A crucial example was our visit to the American Antiquarian Society (AAS), where several students were tasked with researching and gathering the documents that demonstrate both the continuance of Printer's town of Hassanamesit and the challenges his descendants faced in trying to maintain their land base. For this particular trip, I asked students to explore three vital collections related to Hassanamesit—the records from Grafton, Massachusetts; the Curwen Family Papers; and the John Milton Earle Papers. Students were able to read, handle, and photograph the deeds that enabled the people of Hassanamesit to protect their homeland and the documents that signaled their dispossession. They could see the names of Printer's lateral descendants, the kinship relationships among them, and their ties to neighboring Native communities. They could begin to discern the relationship between dispossession and the placement of Native children into servitude.34 As [End Page 284] always, the research raised as many questions as answers. But rather than jump in to explain, I invited the students to return to our vehicles.

We drove the ten miles from Worcester to Hassanamisco, the four-acre reservation of the Nipmuc Nation, which represents a small fraction of the original Native town and reserved lands that were evident in the AAS documents. There we met with Nipmuc leaders, who had long been immersed in the process of historical research and education, doing the work of community-based history that combines insights drawn from oral history, archaeology, archival research, and other sources.35 As students spoke with Nipmuc leaders, they were able to connect pieces of the puzzle that had not been immediately apparent from their research. For example, without even being asked about those particular documents, Nipmuc leaders, as they explained the history of Hassanamisco, relayed how particular Nipmuc men were drawn into debt, including charges for medical services, which then forced the sale of land against their will. Often the debts were for services that were not even requested by Nipmuc people. This insight was but one of many that highlighted for students the ways in which traditional archival research and Indigenous methodologies, including oral history and community engagement, can and should be intertwined. The conversation also led the students to realize that Nipmuc historians knew these documents well and had crucial interpretive expertise that illuminated the records. They had long combined multigenerational oral traditions with research in multiple archives, and their interpretations of the documents were informed by decades of collaborative research, deliberation, and conversation. I recall with humor offering to share the digital images we had taken at the AAS only to be told, "We already have them."36 Engaging with this level of community-based expertise [End Page 285] gave students a sense of humility about the research we were doing, one that both undermined the belief that they were "discovering" documents and underlined the multifaceted responsibilities inherent in the project of bringing a fuller understanding of the documents and their context to public view.

Moreover, as I came to learn, the experience was transformative for some of the seminar participants. Lauren Tuiskula, who graduated with a degree in English, commented:

After spending a semester focusing much of my research on a single community, Hassanamesit, we had the opportunity to bring that research to life and visit the present-day community. Working in the archives was a wonderful experience, but pulling in oral narratives and talking with people who grew up and now live closely connected to the community I had focused on was both eye-opening and humbling. Our visit emphasized the importance of non-traditional knowledge as well as the comprehensive nature of Indigenous knowledge. My concept of Hassanamesit had been transformed through archival research and mapping, however, in my mind, it was still placed in the past. Our visit helped to break this notion, allowing Hassanamesit to come to life as a community that cannot be relegated to a simple point on a map, earning constantly evolving space, something I think our maps represent well.37

The conversation at Hassanamisco also enabled more places to emerge on our maps. Tuiskula grew up in a neighboring town and recalled its traditional Nipmuc name as she discussed the local geography with Nipmuc leaders, who knew this name well. Although Towtaid does not appear on most maps of "praying towns" or Nipmuc towns during King Philip's War, this conversation led Tuiskula to put Towtaid on our map. The students, of course, were coming to understand that not all experts on this history are in academic institutions—and in Tuiskula's case, their expertise helped her remember and reposition knowledge that she herself had acquired in a nonacademic setting. Like her, I have benefited from engaging with tribal leaders and historians who have cultivated the multigenerational knowledge that enables fuller analysis of documents, whether well-known or obscure. I have often been struck by the insights of language teachers, tribal historians, and other knowledge keepers when I have brought forth a document or a historical problem or walked with them through a historical place and simply asked, "What do you see?" In fact, sometimes I have been struck by my own apparent blindness in not immediately seeing what other Native scholars discerned. [End Page 286]

At the same time, I have witnessed the way in which the appearance of a previously unknown document or story can spark conversation, and controversy, among tribal scholars, sometimes shifting the grounds of what we think we know. This kind of ground-shifting conversation can happen with a document recovered from a little-known archive, but it can also happen with a single dynamic word uttered by a knowledgeable language teacher. This is why, at the end of the day, I cannot do this work in isolation; the activity of historical recovery demands the cultivation of community engagement and long-term, reciprocal relationship building. For those of us who choose to pursue these relationships, we construct the grounds of that engagement, whether shaky or firm, via the connections we forge and the responsibilities we accept. Although it is tempting to do so, many of us working in and with tribal communities have concluded that we cannot rely on historical documents alone. We simply learn more when we enable dynamic relationships and dialogue between the documentary record and oral history, community knowledge, and Indigenous languages. We arrive at different insights when we are in conversation, rather than in isolation. We allow ourselves to be challenged, and if we constructively build relationships of trust, we find respectful ways of challenging each other. I thrive on the intense, focused research enabled by a longue durée in the archive, but I know it is not the only center where history dwells.


The importance of centering places such as Hassanamesit and participating in processes of community engagement becomes clear in returning to the map of Mary Rowlandson's removes (Figure IX). Here, Rowlandson's town of Lancaster is located not just in the Massachusetts Bay Colony but in Nipmuc space, in the center of the Nashaway homeland. Indeed, Nipmuc people did not abandon Nashaway, the "place between" rivers, when colonists renamed it Lancaster but rather remained at the neighboring town of Weshawkim. Rowlandson's house was built on a field at the confluence of those rivers, a prime location for planting corn, and her cattle pastured in an equally fertile lot, where edible and medicinal plants thrive even today. When Nashaway leader Monoco led the February 1676 raid on Lancaster, he and his relations reclaimed this vital center as Nipmuc space. By the time the war began, Lancaster settlers had encroached far beyond the original bounds of Lancaster to Weshawkim, threatening the subsistence and survival of their Indigenous neighbors. That threat is rarely acknowledged as a cause of the raid, never mind of the war.38 [End Page 287]

Figure IX. The Captive's Lament, with legend, in Lisa Brooks, Our Beloved Kin: Remapping a New History of King Philip's War, digital companion to Brooks, Our Beloved Kin: A New History of King Philip's War (New Haven, Conn., 2018), . Created by Aida Orozco, Cassandra Hradil, Lisa Brooks, Andy Anderson, and Lauren Tuiskula, using ArcGIS 10.3, courtesy of Amherst College.
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Figure IX.

The Captive's Lament, with legend, in Lisa Brooks, Our Beloved Kin: Remapping a New History of King Philip's War, digital companion to Brooks, Our Beloved Kin: A New History of King Philip's War (New Haven, Conn., 2018), Created by Aida Orozco, Cassandra Hradil, Lisa Brooks, Andy Anderson, and Lauren Tuiskula, using ArcGIS 10.3, courtesy of Amherst College.

Yet this map expands our view well beyond Lancaster and Nashaway to a wider network of Native homelands, towns, trails, and people, including the Wampanoag leader Weetamoo, with whom Rowlandson "lived and served" through the many removes from her home. The map flips the script on Rowlandson's narrative, highlighting not only the captive's removes but Indigenous leaders' strategic movements through known gathering places and defensive bulwarks to reach a center that provided refuge. Rather than traversing unmapped or uninhabited terrain, as New England's maps would suggest, Weetamoo's company moved toward wetland territories in Nipmuc country that provided sanctuary, such as Menimesit (remove 3) and Nichewaug [End Page 288] (remove 4), and then trekked north, through denser wetlands in Sokwakik (remove 6), on a trail known to very few English people, which would carry them to the Connecticut River while avoiding the better-known main east-west thoroughfare. As Rowlandson's narrative documented, Weetamoo and her company, consisting mainly of Native women, evaded colonial troops at the Paquaug River crossing, utilizing their ecological knowledge and skills to make rafts that carried them over a river rushing with icy spring melt, an obstacle that, to Rowlandson's astonishment, halted the Englishmen who pursued them. Moreover, such knowledge enabled the women to locate safe spaces in forested environments, to build shelters that kept them warm during an exceptionally cold winter, and to harvest food from Native gathering places and colonial settlements, even while on the run, carrying babies, small children, injured elders, and "all they had, bag and baggage." The map helps us not only to comprehend Native women's knowledge and mobility in navigating these spaces but also to see both the well-known trails that directed their course and the towns such as Paquaug, just over the river, that were not random camps in the wilderness but known destinations.39

It is worthwhile to compare this map to the one produced by John Foster (see Figure VIII). On that latter map, of course, "Squakeag" was the northernmost colonial settlement on the Connecticut River, the last site labeled before the blank space, mountains, and trees. The title and scale covers the upper Connecticut River valley, as if this place is "off the map." Yet that very place was a center of Native space to which Weetamoo and the families traveled. There, in the larger homeland of Sokwakik (for which the English settlement of "Squakeag," later Northfield, was named), were fertile agricultural fields along the riverbanks and upon the terraces, crucial fishing at the confluences and falls, and vital hunting grounds in the uplands. Known well to the Sokoki people who lived there, this region provided shelter to thousands of people that winter of 1675–76, including Nipmucs, Wampanoags, and Narragansetts; Pocumtuck and Nonotuck relations from the Connecticut River; and English captives. Indeed, it was only through captive accounts that settlers came to know this place. Connected to a wide northern network, Sokwakik was part of a vast space unknown to English settlers.40 [End Page 289]

Reconstructing the map of Rowlandson's removes required a deeper engagement with land and memory than could be found in contemporary settler accounts. Sokwakik is a place that is also storied in Wabanaki, in places such as Missisquoi, where Connecticut River valley people took refuge after the war.41 The reconstructed map of Wabanaki homelands, subsistence sites, and places of memory emerged from decades of engagement and research. This included language study focused especially on place-names, including locatives, root words, suffixes, and prefixes, particularly those that denote geographic, navigational, cultural, and subsistence-related characteristics. I consulted published sources such as Joseph Laurent's Abenakis and English Dialogues and Joseph Aubéry's French-Abenaki dictionary (published by Stephen Laurent) and had conversations with language and culture keepers in both northern and southern New England, all of which helped me to understand the precise, but dynamic, identities of places as well as cultural and ecological concepts. That knowledge proved crucial for mapping the northern part of Rowlandson's journey as well as the Wabanaki networks that extended beyond the captive's travels. The mapping project also required many trips out on the land and waters, in which I was often joined by other Wabanaki community members who understood fishing, hunting, and finding shelter; by plant specialists who could read the farming terraces and gathering sites for food, medicine, and artistic material; by paddlers who could navigate the bends in the river; and by students who could help track the precise locations of all of these activities using GPS. It required us to return to the lab, where Andy Anderson, our GIS specialist, enabled us to utilize and adapt this technology to translate the maps in our minds and on the land into a digital representation. It required walking the land with local non-Native historians, who relayed oral histories, passed down through colonial families and local antiquarians, about the locations of Rowlandson's encampment and other crucial sites. It required getting out my old DeLorme map, like the one my dad used for fishing, to read with my colleagues, relations, and students the bends in the topography and the changes in the land.42 [End Page 290]

The research and mapping methodology I pursued contributed to mutual learning. This was the case for the community members who traveled with me to the sites of Rowlandson's removes, but also for my students. Although I needed the expertise they were developing in ArcGIS technology, the thing that became most instrumental to our collective mapping process was the in-depth, immersive education they received in Indigenous methodologies. Cassandra Hradil, an American Studies graduate and scholar of Indigenous studies, noted that during the trips "we took to collect GPS data for the Rowlandson map," her perception of maps changed. She had always "moved from the digital to the physical," using programs such as "Google Maps before going anywhere," but she was prompted by our trips to move "in the other direction," starting with Indigenous knowledge of the land, in relationship to Rowlandson's narrative, and then creating "a digital representation of place." Alongside Hradil and our collaborators, I realized that the maps had become tools not just for representation but for analysis. When we loaded our GPS points onto the map of trails and place-names that we had already created based on my historical and geographic research, we found that Rowlandson's removes often corresponded to the crossroads of trails and to precisely named sites of subsistence and gathering places. Every location where Weetamoo and her company stopped had a Native place-name attached to it (see Figure IX). Ironically, the "deep Dungeon[s]" that Rowlandson described were often resource-rich wetlands, wôlhanak or "bowls" that would feed entire families, while "exceeding high and steep hill[s]" provided blinds that sheltered those families from winter winds and colonial troops. For both my students and myself, this process confirmed, in Hradil's words, "the embodied importance of Indigenous studies." As she noted, the dynamic dialectic between place-based research and digital mapping gradually led her to see "that maps themselves are socially, culturally, and ideologically constructed—that the colonial maps I grew up using had no more claim to objectivity than the weight of their own privilege, and moreover, that maps of Indigenous space have as much intellectual claim to exist." Perhaps most important, those maps enabled us to more fully see networks of Indigenous space in overlay with deceptively static colonial maps, highlighting the places that other maps and narratives have obscured.43 [End Page 291]

These experiences led Hradil and Lauren Tuiskula to create a "story map" of the captivity narrative that showed Rowlandson's travels through a dynamic network of Native homelands and subsistence places, connected by a web of trails.44 The story map is not designed to enable the reader to imagine an unadulterated (romanticized) experience of the places through which an English captive and her Native captors traveled. Rather, it draws the viewer into a contemporary digital engagement with Native geographies, with an awareness of our presence in a colonized space, bringing both the insights and ironies of Rowlandson's narrative to the present in dynamic interaction. The story map is one of the most useful teaching tools that has emerged from this project, a student-led endeavor that relied on their evolving digital skills and that I would never have conceived of on my own. It is exemplary of the ways in which awikhiganal are adapting in digital space.

To return to the awikhiganal with which this article began, the contrast between our maps of Rowlandson's removes and the map made by Henry Stedman Nourse and John Eliot Thayer in 1903 is stark, but it is nonetheless worth lingering over the distinctions—and their implications (Figure X). Nourse was a knowledgeable historian, preserving in print some of the most crucial records of King Philip's War and producing a valuable resource for interpreting Rowlandson's removes. His publications, including his and Thayer's edition of Rowlandson's narrative, were among the many sources that informed my map. Yet contrasting our maps with their earlier one highlights the difference in conceptual frameworks that informed our methods of mapping. Nourse and Thayer began with blank space, evoking a colonial tabula rasa or terra incognita, and then imposed on Rowlandson's removes the boundaries of states and towns that did not exist in her time. They located their readers in the space of New England towns, portraying them as the inevitable future of the colonial past. Their readers may have been most interested in their local history, the route that Rowlandson traveled through their towns. Yet Nourse and Thayer also had a keen interest in mapping the Native names of those places, and they included sites such as "Nichewaug" on the map. Their edition of Rowlandson's narrative relayed their estimates (drawn from local lore and historical research) of the precise locations for her removes, estimates that historians still rely on today.45

Nourse and Thayer's map, like many that show locations conventionally thought to be important in King Philip's War, demonstrates a lack of geographic or historical specificity in the area above the superimposed boundary of the state of Massachusetts, corresponding with the land of trees and mountains on Foster's map. The restoration of Wabanaki space and [End Page 292]

Figure X. Mrs Rowlandson's Removes, in [Henry Stedman Nourse and John Eliot Thayer, eds.], The Narrative of the Captivity and Restoration of Mrs. Mary Rowlandson… .(Lancaster [Cambridge], Mass., 1903). Courtesy Robert Frost Library Archives and Special Collections, Amherst College.
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Figure X.

Mrs Rowlandson's Removes, in [Henry Stedman Nourse and John Eliot Thayer, eds.], The Narrative of the Captivity and Restoration of Mrs. Mary Rowlandson… .(Lancaster [Cambridge], Mass., 1903). Courtesy Robert Frost Library Archives and Special Collections, Amherst College.

place-names in our map not only filled in the blanks above that boundary but also fostered a more nuanced interpretation (in Our Beloved Kin) of the movement of the Native leaders, including Weetamoo and Quinnapin, with whom Rowlandson traveled. I doubt that I could have seen the significance of their movements without a map of this sort, one that enabled me to visualize the networks of place-names, waterways, and trails. Combining Indigenous research methodologies and digital technology enabled us to create both an awikhigan (a text-image) to be interpreted and an awikhigan (a writing-drawing tool) that can be used for interpretation.46

The Foster and Nourse-Thayer maps, of course, are part of a deeply ingrained cartographic and narrative tradition representing New England in a way that elides local and transnational Indigenous geographies.47 The map of the region that results from these habits of mind and method is one [End Page 293] that most historians of New England unwittingly carry with them. It may continue to be experienced and perceived as an ontological reality unless they actively seek to understand and engage alternative cartographies and epistemologies. After all, such maps are at the root of how Americans are taught, through our educational system and popular culture, to understand the origin of the United States and our identity as citizens. Just as poststructuralist theorists have long grappled with the relationship between language, perception, and experience, historians and literary scholars can consider how colonial representations of spaces such as New England can become ossified so that they appear to embody a "real" historical space. However, it is not enough to speculate about the incompleteness of that representation or to mourn the loss of imagined Indigenous trails and homelands. If nothing else, I hope that the awikhigawôgan that I have explored in this article will enable us to see the possibility of reconstructing and engaging the maps of Native spaces and networks made accessible via Indigenous methodologies.

Once such maps are created, how will they be incorporated into ôjmowôgan, the histories that we narrate? Will awikhiganal—maps and books—continue to foreground colonial names and territories? Or will many historians of early America begin (again) to use new (old) words for the places we/they write about? How will we learn to create maps in our minds, on the page, and in digital space that do not privilege the town and state boundaries, the colonial roads and highways, that we know as New England? Why is it that historians are often better able to visualize and represent the boundaries of a place such as Vermont (which was not a state until 1791) on a colonial-era map than the Wabanaki homelands of Sokwakik, Koasek, Winoskik (Winooski, Winozki), and Missisquoi, which preceded the existence of the United States by thousands of years? What would it mean to recenter such Native places and place-names, themselves rich in epistemological and historical significance, in our mappings and representations of the "Atlantic world" or "colonial America"? How might we expand our maps to include the many diverse Native homelands (and tribal histories) that did not appear on colonial maps, the vast geography between "New England" and "New France," between "New England" and "New Spain," and between the eastern and western coasts? How would such a "new" process of mapping open up possibilities for what we can know about the history and literature of this land? This process of awikhigawôgan ta ôjmowôgan (the activity of writing/mapping and narrating history) is ongoing. Nd'awikhigan will inevitably transform, as it should, as an instrument that furthers the long-standing and continuing dynamic of exchange and narration in this land. Though our maps may not be able to answer all of these questions, they offer possibilities for engaging new ways of imaging and imagining literature and history in a more dynamic, multitemporal space. [End Page 294]

Lisa Brooks

Lisa Brooks is an associate professor of English and American Studies at Amherst College.

She would like to thank the participants in the 22nd annual Omohundro Institute conference, Worcester, Mass., June 23–26, 2016, for generative conversation and gives special thanks to joint Forum co-organizer Alyssa Mt. Pleasant, a vital leader in the discussion, for the invitation to contribute and for her incisive feedback on this article. The author wishes to thank co-organizers Kelly Wisecup and Caroline Wigginton for their leadership as well. She also thanks Joseph Hall, Jenny Pulsipher, and the anonymous readers for the William and Mary Quarterly, who provided distinct audiences and critical suggestions in their reviews of this article, and Chief Cheryll Toney Holley for her review and for sharing her knowledge. The author acknowledges that this article is informed by many conversations but wishes to highlight the NAISA roundtables on early American studies as an important site of exchange, and she also wishes to acknowledge the scholars who participated in those discussions, all of whom are listed in the organizers' introduction to this joint Forum. She extends great thanks and acknowledgement to her mapping and website collaborators at Amherst College, including Andy Anderson and Marisa Parham; students funded by the Gregory S. Call Academic Interns Program from 2013 to 2017, including Cassandra Hradil, Lehua Matsumoto, Aida Orozco, Micayla Tatum, and Lauren Tuiskula; and students funded by a special Mellon Seminar at Amherst College, including Heru Craig, Griffin Harris, Hradil, Maggie King, Allyson LaForge, and Tuiskula. She also wishes to thank community members who joined her in trekking and paddling parts of Mary Rowlandson's route, including Lillie Rose Brooks, Judy Dow, Pam Ellis, Marcus Hendricks, Nia Holley, Chip Loring, Larry Spotted Crow Mann, Rick Pouliot, Mark Ranco, Terry Wescott, and Kristen Wyman, among others. She gives thanks to Barbara Mosely for a tour of local historic sites in Vernon, Vt., and to Cheryll Toney Holley and David Tall Pine White for hosting a vital conversation at Hassanamisco. Finally, she is grateful for funding from the Whiting Foundation, which supported website review and development, and from the Ford Foundation, the New England Regional Consortium Fellowship, and the Society for Colonial Wars, which supported research for the book Our Beloved Kin: A New History of King Philip's War (New Haven, Conn., 2018), on which this article is based.


1. Figure I: Mrs Rowlandson's Removes, in [Henry Stedman Nourse and John Eliot Thayer, eds.], The Narrative of the Captivity and Restoration of Mrs. Mary Rowlandson. … (Lancaster [Cambridge], Mass., 1903). Courtesy, Robert Frost Library Archives and Special Collections, Amherst College. Figure II: Title page, in [Nourse and Thayer], Narrative of the Captivity and Restoration of Mrs. Mary Rowlandson. Courtesy, Robert Frost Library Archives and Special Collections, Amherst College. Figure III: Title page, in Mary [White] Rowlandson, The Soveraignty & Goodness of God, Together, With the Faithfulness of His Promises Displayed; Being a Narrative Of the Captivity and Restauration of Mrs. Mary Rowlandson. … (Cambridge, Mass., 1682). Courtesy, Boston Public Library. A digital copy of the book is available at Figure IV: The Captive's Lament, in Lisa Brooks, Our Beloved Kin: Remapping a New History of King Philip's War, digital companion to Brooks, Our Beloved Kin: A New History of King Philip's War (New Haven, Conn., 2018),; for contributors, see "Contributors," ibid., I use the phrases below the figures in the opening montage with acknowledgment to Belgian artist René Magritte, French theorist Michel Foucault, Anishinaabe author and literary theorist Gerald Vizenor, and Polish-American semantics theorist Alfred Korzybski. See Korzybski, Science and Sanity: An Introduction to Non-Aristotelian Systems and General Semantics (1933), 5th ed. (New York, 1994), 58; Foucault, Ceci n'est pas une pipe (Montpellier, Fr., 1973); Foucault, This Is Not a Pipe: With Illustrations and Letters by René Magritte, trans. and ed. James Harkness (Berkeley, Calif., 1983); Vizenor, Manifest Manners: Narratives on Postindian Survivance (Lincoln, Neb., 1999), 18. Theorizing Andy Warhol's portrait of American Indian Movement activist Russell Means entitled The American Indian, Vizenor famously proclaimed, "This is not an Indian," problematizing the representation of "the postindian warrior" Means as the simulacrum of the American type, the image of the "American Indian" (Vizenor, Manifest Manners, 18). Vizenor plays on Magritte's inscription of "Ceci n'est pas une pipe" across his painting of a pipe (La trahison des images, oil on canvas, 1929), as well as Foucault's theorization, in Ceci n'est pas une pipe, of the relationship between discourse and what we believe to be actual "things," which we know only through language. As Vizenor and Foucault, along with other post-structuralist theorists and linguists, convincingly argue, language constructs our perception of the "real." This is not merely to say that the representation is not the "thing," the "Indian," or the "pipe" but to call attention to the ways in which the two are intertwined. What we think of or perceive when we say "book," "map," or "land"—including whether they are animate or inanimate, whether they "are" objects, tools, or living beings—is enmeshed with the ways that our languages construct those "things," as well as with representations in various media. Considering multiple languages simultaneously can allow us to see not only different readings of "texts" or "objects" but also divergent perceptions of reality and relationality. For Warhol's portrait, see Andy Warhol, The American Indian (Russell Means), 1976, acrylic and silkscreen ink on canvas,

2. Rowlandson, Soveraignty & Goodness of God (Cambridge, 1682); [Nourse and Thayer], Narrative of the Captivity (Lancaster, 1903). The 1682 Cambridge printing is the oldest extant edition of the book. The first printing was in Boston, also in 1682, but no full copies of that book survive. See Kathryn Zabelle Derounian, "The Publication, Promotion, and Distribution of Mary Rowlandson's Indian Captivity Narrative in the Seventeenth Century," Early American Literature 23, no. 3 (1988): 239–61; Neal Salisbury, ed., The Sovereignty and Goodness of God, Together with the Faithfulness of His Promises Displayed: Being a Narrative of the Captivity and Restoration of Mrs. Mary Rowlandson and Related Documents (Boston, 1997), viii.

3. Lisa Brooks, The Common Pot: The Recovery of Native Space in the Northeast (Minneapolis, 2008), xxi–xxvi. Abenaki is an anglicized version of Wabanaki, which encompasses a wide network of related communities in the Northeast. Linguists classify this language as Western Abenaki, distinguishing it from Eastern Abenaki. The word awikhigan is common to both, but I am using Western Abenaki orthography. Of course, in Wabanaki languages, the terms Western Abenaki and Eastern Abenaki would make little sense, as they would translate to "western people of the east" and "eastern people of the east." The term Wabanaki refers to the "land of the dawn (first light)" and generally to the original peoples of northern New England, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, and parts of southern Quebec. Today, Wabanaki people of Maine and the Maritimes generally refer to themselves as Wabanaki and by their respective national names—Penobscot, Passamaquoddy, Maliseet, and Mi'kmaq—whereas the Indigenous people of Vermont, New Hampshire, southern Quebec, and parts of western Maine are known by the general term Abenaki, which came into increased use during the colonial period. However, Wabanaki is also a general term in Eastern Algonquian languages, one that refers to the land or people of the east, including variations such as Wampanoag and Wappinger in southern New England as well as Wapahnahk, which was used by Native people to describe Mohican and Delaware delegates to councils in the Ohio Valley. In oral tradition and continuing cultural practice, Wabanaki people are those who greet the birth of the sun each morning and the first people born into the dawnland. I often prefer to use the term Wabanaki, particularly when referring to the wider homeland, but will use Abenaki to refer specifically to the contemporary community in Vermont.

4. Sébastien Rasle, "Dictionary of the Abenaki Indian language," manuscript, 1691–1724, MS Fr 13, Houghton Library, Harvard University, Cambridge, Mass.; Brooks, Common Pot, xx–xxii, 8–13, 219–26, 246–54. On Rasle, see Kenneth M. Morrison, The Embattled Northeast: The Elusive Ideal of Alliance in Abenaki-Euramerican Relations (Berkeley, Calif., 1984); Christopher John Bilodeau, "The Economy of War: Violence, Religion, and the Wabanaki Indians in the Maine Borderlands" (Ph.D. diss., Cornell University, 2006); Ashley Elizabeth Smith, "'We Have Never Not Been Here': Place, History, and Indigenous Survivance in Northern New England" (Ph.D. diss., Cornell University, 2017). Primary Western Abenaki language texts include P. P. Wzôkhilain, Wôbanaki Kimzowi Awighigan (Boston, 1830); Jos[eph] Laurent, New Familiar Abenakis and English Dialogues…. (Quebec, 1884); Henry Lorne Masta, Abenaki Indian Legends, Grammar and Place Names (Victoriaville, Quebec, 1932); Gordon M. Day, Western Abenaki Dictionary, vols. 1–2 (Hull, Quebec, 1994–95); Joseph Aubéry, Father Aubery's French Abenaki Dictionary, trans. Stephen Laurent, coordinated by Charles R. Huntoon (Portland, Maine, 1995). The latter is Stephen Laurent's edited publication of the Jesuit Joseph Aubéry's manuscript dictionary, produced while Aubéry lived among the Abenaki people of Odanak from 1708 to 1755.

5. Brooks, Our Beloved Kin, digital companion to Our Beloved Kin,

6. Laurent, Abenakis and English Dialogues, 61–66 (quotation, 66), 93; Day, Western Abenaki Dictionary, 1: 50–51; Brooks, Common Pot, xxii, 245. The suffix -igan denotes an instrument or tool, whereas the suffix -wôgan denotes activity or a process in motion. Western Abenaki, like many Native languages, is a language of activity, verbs, and motion. On a related concept, transmotion, discussed by Anishinaabe scholars (who speak a related language and have a shared history with Wabanaki people), see Gerald Vizenor, Fugitive Poses: Native American Indian Scenes of Absence and Presence (Lincoln, Neb., 1998); Niigonwedom James Sinclair, "A Sovereignty of Transmotion: Imagination and the 'Real,' Gerald Vizenor, and Native Literary Nationalism," in Stories through Theories/Theories through Stories: North American Indian Writing, Storytelling, and Critique, ed. Gordon D. Henry Jr., Nieves Pascual Soler, and Silvia Martínez-Falquina (East Lansing, Mich., 2009), 123–58.

7. Laurent, Abenakis and English Dialogues, 66 (quotation). Scholarship arising over the last decade is of course indebted to vital contributions and conversations from the previous wave of the "new Indian history." The contributions to this joint Forum are emblematic of this ongoing conversation. For some other examples of the multifaceted scholarship at this intersection, see Colin G. Calloway, One Vast Winter Count: The Native American West before Lewis and Clark (Lincoln, Neb., 2003); Robert Warrior, The People and the Word: Reading Native Nonfiction (Minneapolis, 2005); Waziyatawin Angela Wilson, Remember This! Dakota Decolonization and the Eli Taylor Narratives (Lincoln, Neb., 2005); Jennifer Nez Denetdale, Reclaiming Diné History: The Legacies of Navajo Chief Manuelito and Juanita (Tucson, Ariz., 2007); Malinda Maynor Lowery, Lumbee Indians in the Jim Crow South: Race, Identity, and the Making of a Nation (Chapel Hill, N.C., 2010); Jean M. O'Brien, Firsting and Lasting: Writing Indians Out of Existence in New England (Minneapolis, 2010); Jodi A. Byrd, The Transit of Empire: Indigenous Critiques of Colonialism (Minneapolis, 2011); Frederick E. Hoxie, This Indian Country: American Indian Political Activists and the Place They Made (New York, 2012); Drew Lopenzina, Red Ink: Native Americans Picking Up the Pen in the Colonial Period (Albany, N.Y., 2012); Michael Witgen, An Infinity of Nations: How the Native New World Shaped Early North America (Philadelphia, 2012); Kelly Wisecup, Medical Encounters: Knowledge and Identity in Early American Literatures (Amherst, Mass., 2013); Brenda J. Child and Brian Klopotek, Indian Subjects: Hemispheric Perspectives on the History of Indigenous Education (Santa Fe, N.Mex., 2014); Boyd Cothran, Remembering the Modoc War: Redemptive Violence and the Making of American Innocence (Chapel Hill, N.C., 2014); Jace Weaver, The Red Atlantic: American Indigenes and the Making of the Modern World, 1000–1927 (Chapel Hill, N.C., 2014); Joshua L. Reid, The Sea Is My Country: The Maritime World of the Makahs, an Indigenous Borderlands People (New Haven, Conn., 2015); Coll Thrush, Indigenous London: Native Travelers at the Heart of Empire (New Haven, Conn., 2016); Christine M. DeLucia, Memory Lands: King Philip's War and the Place of Violence in the Northeast (New Haven, Conn., 2018).

8. Alnôbawôgan refers to both "birth" and "human nature," but a literal translation is "being or becoming human." See Wzôkhilain, Wôbanaki Kimzowi Awighigan; Brooks, Common Pot, 1–3; Lisa Brooks, "Digging at the Roots: Locating an Ethical, Native Criticism," in Reasoning Together: The Native Critics Collective, ed. Craig S. Womack, Daniel Heath Justice, and Christopher B. Teuton (Norman, Okla., 2008), 234–64.

9. Korzybski, Science and Sanity, 58–61 ("maps are not," 61); Laurent, Abenakis and English Dialogues, 53–54, 58–59; Brooks, Common Pot, 202–17, 251. See also Henri LeFebvre, The Production of Space, trans. Donald Nicholson-Smith (Oxford, 1991); Jean Baudrillard, Simulacra and Simulation, trans. Sheila Faria Glaser (Ann Arbor, Mich., 1994); Jonathan Boyarin, ed., Remapping Memory: The Politics of TimeSpace (Minneapolis, 1994); Derek Gregory, Geographical Imaginations (Cambridge, Mass., 1994); Keith H. Basso, Wisdom Sits in Places: Landscape and Language among the Western Apache (Albuquerque, N.Mex., 1996); David Harvey, Justice, Nature and the Geography of Difference (Cambridge, Mass., 1996); Linda Tuhiwai Smith, Decolonizing Methodologies: Research and Indigenous Peoples, 2d ed. (London, 2012), 22, 39, 119.

10. Lisa Brooks, maps accompanying The Common Pot: The Recovery of Native Space in the Northeast, 2008,

11. Sharon O'Brien, "The Medicine Line: A Border Dividing Tribal Sovereignty, Economies and Families," Fordham Law Review 53, no. 2 (November 1984): 315–50.

12. See Brooks, Common Pot; Brooks, maps accompanying The Common Pot, 2008,

13. On replacement narratives, see O'Brien, Firsting and Lasting, 55–56 (quotation, 55).

14. See Brooks, Our Beloved Kin, digital companion to Our Beloved Kin,; Brooks, Our Beloved Kin: A New History of King Philip's War (New Haven, Conn., 2018); Brooks, maps accompanying The Common Pot, 2008, See also Lisa Brooks, "Turning the Looking Glass on King Philip's War: Locating American Literature in Native Space," American Literary History 25, no. 4 (Winter 2013): 718–50.

15. The Indian Claims Commission was established in 1946 to enable Native nations to bring their legal claims of past injustices against the United States, particularly concerning lands illegally taken. No lands were returned, but nations could be compensated for land lost. From 1946 to 1978, Native communities brought 370 claims before the commission. The Indian Claims Commission came to an end just as federal acknowledgement was established, creating a process and criteria for federal recognition of Indian tribes through the Bureau of Indian Affairs. This has been a highly contentious and remarkably bureaucratic process that has benefited some Native nations and further divided and dispossessed others. Although federally recognized Native nations have an acknowledged government-to-government relationship with the United States, as well as the right of self-governance, recognition also entails the acknowledgment of the sovereignty of the United States over Native nations, including putting tribal lands in "trust" with the United States. Thus, even nations that have received federal recognition are only quasi-sovereign bodies, according to federal Indian law and policy. For legal and historical analysis of the Indian Claims Commission, see David E. Wilkins, Hollow Justice: A History of Indigenous Claims in the United States (New Haven, Conn., 2013). For analysis of federal acknowledgment and the relationship between recognition and colonialism, see for example Joanne Barker, Native Acts: Law, Recognition, and Cultural Authenticity (Durham, N.C., 2011); Amy E. Den Ouden and Jean M. O'Brien, eds., Recognition, Sovereignty Struggles, and Indigenous Rights in the United States: A Sourcebook (Chapel Hill, N.C., 2013); Glen Sean Coulthard, Red Skin, White Masks: Rejecting the Colonial Politics of Recognition (Minneapolis, 2014).

16. Paul Brodeur, Restitution: The Land Claims of the Mashpee, Passamaquoddy, and Penobscot Indians of New England (Boston, 1985); Colin Calloway, ed., After King Philip's War: Presence and Persistence in Indian New England (Hanover, N.H., 1997); Colin G. Calloway and Neal Salisbury, eds., Reinterpreting New England Indians and the Colonial Experience (Boston, 2003); Sangita Chari and Jaime M. N. Lavallee, eds., Accomplishing NAGPRA: Perspectives on the Intent, Impact, and Future of the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (Corvallis, Ore., 2013); Den Ouden and O'Brien, Recognition; D. Rae Gould, "Indigenous Archaeology and Being Indian in New England," in Being and Becoming Indigenous Archaeologists, ed. George P. Nicholas (New York, 2016), 107–15; DeLucia, Memory Lands.

17. Brodeur, Restitution; Smith, Decolonizing Methodologies; Den Ouden and O'Brien, Recognition, esp. Amy E. Den Ouden, "Altered State? Indian Policy Narratives, Federal Recognition, and the 'New' War on Native Rights in Connecticut," ibid., 169–93; Ruth Garby Torres, "How You See Us, Why You Don't: Connecticut's Public Policy to Terminate the Schaghticoke Indians," ibid., 195–212; Rae Gould, "The Nipmuc Nation, Federal Acknowledgement, and a Case of Mistaken Identity," ibid., 213–33; Kathleen A. Brown-Perez, "A Right Delayed: The Brothertown Indian Nation's Story of Surviving the Federal Acknowledgement Process," ibid., 237–61; Kim McRae, "Effects of PCB Contamination on the Environment and the Cultural Integrity of the St. Regis Mohawk Tribe in the Mohawk Nation of Akwesasne" (Ph.D. diss., University of Vermont, 2015); Stephen A. Mrozowski, D. Rae Gould, and Heather Law Pezzarossi, "Rethinking Colonialism: Indigenous Innovation and Colonial Inevitability," in Rethinking Colonialism: Comparative Archaeological Approaches, ed. Craig N. Cipolla and Katherine Howlett Hayes (Gainesville, Fla., 2015), 121–42; Amberdawn LaFrance, presentation on Akwesasne Cultural Restoration Program (given at "Living Waters, Animate Lands: Traditional Ecological Knowledge," Third Annual Five College Native American and Indigenous Studies Symposium, Amherst, Mass., Apr. 6–8, 2017). See also Mark Edwin Miller, Forgotten Tribes: Unrecognized Indians and the Federal Acknowledgment Process (Lincoln, Neb., 2004); Mrozowski et al., "Magunkaquog Materiality, Federal Recognition, and the Search for a Deeper History," International Journal of Historical Archaeology 13, no. 4 (December 2009): 430–63; Lorinda Riley, "When a Tribal Entity Becomes a Nation: The Role of Politics in the Shifting Federal Recognition Regulations," American Indian Law Review 39, no. 2 (2014–15): 451–505; Rebecca M. Mitchell, "People of the Outside: The Environmental Impact of Federal Recognition of American Indian Nations," Boston College Environmental Affairs Law Review 42, no. 2 (2015): 507–40,; Valerie Lambert, "The Big Black Box of Indian Country: The Bureau of Indian Affairs and the Federal-Indian Relationship," American Indian Quarterly 40, no. 4 (Fall 2016): 333–63; David E. Wilkins and Shelly Hulse Wilkins, Dismembered: Native Disenrollment and the Battle for Human Rights (Seattle, 2017). For just one example of the role of historians in a legal case regarding recognition, see the opposing historical accounts of Mashpee in Francis G. Hutchins, Mashpee: The Story of Cape Cod's Indian Town (West Franklin, N.H., 1979); Jack Campisi, The Mashpee Indians: Tribe on Trial (Syracuse, N.Y., 1991). See also James Clifford's analysis of the complex politics of representation, recognition, and interpretation in the 1976 Mashpee case: Clifford, The Predicament of Culture: Twentieth-Century Ethnography, Literature, and Art (Cambridge, Mass., 1988), 277–346.

18. Missisquoi was both an "ancient village," as it is referred to locally, and a vital refuge for Native people who traveled north from Kwinitekw, the Connecticut River valley, and other places during the succession of Anglo-Abenaki wars (1675–1760). This place-bound history is common knowledge among many Abenaki people and among those who work in and manage the Missisquoi National Wildlife Refuge. It is also well known to archaeologists who have worked on sites at Missisquoi and historians who have traced Missisquoi's history, including Greylock's War (1723–27), the Indigenous resistance movement that emerged from within these vital wetlands and was led in part by a Connecticut River valley refugee from King Philip's War who had moved to Missisquoi; "Grey Lock's Return," in Brooks, Our Beloved Kin, digital companion to Our Beloved Kin, See for example Colin G. Calloway, The Western Abenakis of Vermont, 1600–1800: War, Migration, and the Survival of an Indian People (Norman, Okla., 1990), 63–84; William A. Haviland and Marjory W. Power, The Original Vermonters: Native Inhabitants, Past and Present, rev. ed. (Hanover, N.H., 1994); Gordon M. Day, "Missisquoi: A New Look at an Old Village," in In Search of New England's Native Past: Selected Essays by Gordon M. Day, ed. Michael K. Foster and William Cowan (Amherst, Mass., 1998), 141–47; U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, "Comprehensive Conservation Plan," September 2007, Missisquoi National Wildlife Refuge, chap. 3, p. 7, chap. 4, pp. 49–52,; Lisa Brooks and Louise Lampman Larivee, "Maquam Wildlife Management Area, VT: The Grandma Lampman Site," in American Indian Places: A Historical Guidebook, ed. Frances H. Kennedy (Boston, 2008), 29–30. On Anglo-Abenaki wars, see Evan Haefeli and Kevin Sweeney, Captors and Captives: The 1704 French and Indian Raid on Deerfield (Amherst, Mass., 2003). For a recent archaeological survey, see Hayden Kohn, Robert N. Bartone, and Ellen R. Cowrie, "Archaeological Phase I Survey of the Proposed Swanton Wind Project, Swanton, Franklin County, Vermont," prepared for Vermont Environmental Research Associates, Inc. (Farmington, Maine), Jan. 29, 2016, copy held by the author; Northeast Archaeology Research Center, Inc., "Archaeological Discoveries on the Missisquoi Delta: Linking the Past to the Present,", accessed Oct. 10, 2016. My own knowledge of Missisquoi as "ancient village" and refuge comes from my many conversations with Abenaki community members and leaders, as well as two decades of historical research, involving both public and tribal archives, which remains largely unpublished. I have also spoken with managers of the Missisquoi National Wildlife Refuge during recent collaborations between the federal Fish and Wildlife Service and the Missisquoi Abenaki community. The Wildlife Refuge has both displaced Abenaki families and relied on Abenaki guides, including Chief Leonard Lampman, since its establishment in 1943. It was a site of fish-ins during the 1980s and 1990s, during which Abenaki people practiced and asserted aboriginal rights. Homer St. Francis was among the leaders of the fish-ins and was chief while I worked at the tribal office, a key part of my own education in Native sovereignty. See State v. Saint Francis, No. 1171-10-86Fcr (Vt. Dist. Ct. Aug. 11, 1989).

19. For more on Figure VI, see "Kwinitekw Environs," in Brooks, maps accompanying The Common Pot, 2008, These waterways correspond to Lake Champlain, the Hudson (Mohican) River, the Connecticut River, and the St. Lawrence River. Odanak, also known as St. Francis, is located on the St. Francis River. Akwesasne, also known as St. Regis, is located on the St. Lawrence River, the reserve straddling the U.S.-Canada border. Kahnawake is also located on the St. Lawrence River, across from Montreal.

20. O'Brien, Firsting and Lasting. On the importance of "kitchen table" oral history and conversation, see Lisa Brooks, "Afterword: At the Gathering Place," in American Indian Literary Nationalism, by Jace Weaver, Craig S. Womack, and Robert Warrior (Albuquerque, N.Mex., 2006), 225–52. In 1992, while I was working at the tribal office, the Vermont Supreme Court, fearing the possibility of land claims, used a legal loophole to overturn Abenaki hunting and fishing rights, claiming aboriginal title and rights had been extinguished by "the increasing weight of history," an unprecedented legal argument under federal U.S. Indian law. See State of Vermont v. Raleigh Elliott, et al., 616 A.2d 210, 218 (Vt. 1992). Thus, for contemporary Native people, history is indeed a matter of grave weight that can directly impact survival. Though Abenaki people continue to exercise those aboriginal subsistence rights, they remain unprotected under state and federal law, despite substantial criticism of the decision in the scholarly community. See for example Robert O. Lucido II, "Aboriginal Title: Abenaki Indian Land Claim in Vermont," Vermont Law Review 16, no. 2 (Winter 1992): 611–38; Charles P. Lord and William A. Shutkin, "Environmental Justice and the Use of History," Boston College Environmental Affairs Law Review 22, no. 1 (Fall 1994): 1–26; Joseph William Singer, "Well Settled? The Increasing Weight of History in American Indian Land Claims," Georgia Law Review 28, no. 2 (Winter 1994): 481–532.

21. Vermont Environmental Board, Findings of Fact, Conclusions of Law and Order, Docket No. CUD-92-09 (Appeal of Larivee), Montpelier, Vt., Mar. 25, 1994, ("party status"); Brooks and Larivee, "Grandma Lampman Site," 29–30.

22. Lenny Lampman, conversation with the author, Missisquoi (Swanton, Vt.), 1992.

23. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, "About the Refuge," Missisquoi National Wildlife Refuge, Vt.,; U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, "Comprehensive Conservation Plan," September 2007, Missisquoi National Wildlife Refuge, chap. 1, p. 2; Vermont Environmental Board, Ko/Wong Subdivision Declaratory Ruling #287, Montpelier, Vt., May 23, 1995,; Brooks and Larivee, "Grandma Lampman Site," 29–30.

24. On oral storytelling, place, and cultural and traditional ecological knowledge, see for example N. Scott Momaday, "The Man Made of Words," in The Remembered Earth: An Anthology of Contemporary Native American Literature, ed. Geary Hobson (Albuquerque, N.Mex., 1981), 162–73; Greg Sarris, Keeping Slug Woman Alive: A Holistic Approach to American Indian Texts (Berkeley, Calif., 1993); Basso, Wisdom Sits in Places; Leslie Marmon Silko, "Interior and Exterior Landscapes: The Pueblo Migration Stories," in Yellow Woman and a Beauty of the Spirit: Essays on Native American Life Today (New York, 1996), 25–47; Melissa Jayne Fawcett [Melissa Tantaquidgeon Zobel], Medicine Trail: The Life and Lessons of Gladys Tantaquidgeon (Tucson, Ariz., 2000); Margaret M. Bruchac, "Earthshapers and Placemakers: Algonkian Indian Stories and the Landscape," in Indigenous Archaeologies: Decolonizing Theory and Practice, ed. Claire Smith and H. Martin Wobst (London, 2005), 56–80; Wilson, Remember This!; Denetdale, Reclaiming Diné History; Brooks, Common Pot, esp. introd., chaps. 6–7; Fikret Berkes, Sacred Ecology, 3d ed. (New York, 2012); Robin Wall Kimmerer, Braiding Sweetgrass (Minneapolis, 2013). As I wrote in The Common Pot, I view written texts and oral traditions not in a relationship of binary opposition but rather as complementary. I also do not subscribe to the view that oral histories need to be confirmed by written documents, although it is sometimes the case that documents do confirm oral histories. As Waziyatawin (Angela Wilson) and Jennifer Nez Denetdale demonstrate, oral histories can highlight the stark gaps in the archive of paper and print, even as archival research can sometimes answer questions highlighted by oral history or help to fill gaps in community memory. We can pursue research in documents and oral histories simultaneously, allowing our understanding to emerge from the dialectic between them.

25. "Printer's Revolt Map: Nipmuc and Neighboring Territories, 1675," in Brooks, Our Beloved Kin, digital companion to Our Beloved Kin,

26. On snowshoe technology in the Wabanaki "winter lands," see Thomas Wick-man, "'Winters Embittered with Hardships': Severe Cold, Wabanaki Power, and English Adjustments, 1690–1710," William and Mary Quarterly, 3d ser., 72, no. 1 (January 2015): 57–98 (quotation, 61).

27. For more on the history of James Printer, the Harvard Indian College, and Nipmuc people before, during, and after King Philip's War, see Brooks, Our Beloved Kin. See also Daniel R. Mandell, Behind the Frontier: Indians in Eighteenth-Century Eastern Massachusetts (Lincoln, Neb., 1996); Jean M. O'Brien, Dispossession by Degrees: Indian Land and Identity in Natick, Massachusetts, 1650–1790 (Cambridge, 1997); Jill Lepore, The Name of War: King Philip's War and the Origins of American Identity (New York, 1998); David Jaffee, People of the Wachusett: Greater New England in History and Memory, 1630–1860 (Ithaca, N.Y., 1999); Neal Salisbury, "Embracing Ambiguity: Native Peoples and Christianity in Seventeenth-Century North America," Ethnohistory 50, no. 2 (Spring 2003): 247–59; Dennis A. Connole, The Indians of the Nipmuck Country in Southern New England, 1630–1750: An Historical Geography, repr. ed. (Jefferson, N.C., 2007); Donna Rae Gould, "Contested Places: The History and Meaning of Hassanamisco" (Ph.D. diss., University of Connecticut, 2010); Gould, "Nipmuc Nation," 213–33. For more on Sokwakik, the territory of Sokoki people, see 289–90 n. 40 below.

28. The word Pastonki or Pastonkik (locative), also Bastonki or Bastonkik (locative), translated literally to "Boston land," applied first to New England, then to the United States. Laurent, Abenakis and English Dialogues, 53; Day, Western Abenaki Dictionary, 1: 81, 2: 10; Brooks, Common Pot, 251.

29. W[illiam] Hubbard, A Narrative of the Troubles with the Indians In New-England…. (Boston, 1677); Calloway, Western Abenaki; David Stewart-Smith, "The Pennacook Indians and the New England Frontier, circa 1604–1733" (Ph.D. diss., Union Institute, 1998), 142–47; Jaffee, People of the Wachusett, 34–50; Brooks, Our Beloved Kin, chap. 6.

30. Silko, "Interior and Exterior Landscapes," 25–47.

31. Samuel G[ardner] Drake, The Book of the Indians of North America…. (Boston, 1833), 3: 37; Salisbury, Sovereignty and Goodness of God; Lepore, Name of War, 89–94, 283; Connole, Indians of the Nipmuck Country. On the enslavement and imprisonment of Native people during and after King Philip's War, see Margaret Ellen Newell, Brethren by Nature: New England Indians, Colonists, and the Origins of American Slavery (Ithaca, N.Y., 2015).

32. Henry S. Nourse, ed., The Early Records of Lancaster, Massachusetts, 1643–1725 (Lancaster, Mass., 1884), 9–10, 33; Nourse, Lancastriana. I. A Supplement to the Early Records and Military Annals of Lancaster, Massachusetts (Lancaster, Mass., 1900); Salisbury, Sovereignty and Goodness of God, 33, 96–104, 132–36; Jaffee, People of the Wachusett, 23–50, 67–68.

33. For the research seminar, see "The Place of Memory: Engaging History in the Digital World," spring 2015, For the Mellon program, see "The Mellon Tutorial Pilot Project," Amherst College, last updated spring 2018,

34. On the complex history of dispossession of Native people in Massachusetts, see Mandell, Behind the Frontier; Calloway, After King Philip's War; O'Brien, Dispossession by Degrees; Daniel R. Mandell, Tribe, Race, History: Native Americans in Southern New England, 1780–1880 (Baltimore, 2008). On James Printer and the continuing history of Hassanamesit, see Mandell, Behind the Frontier, 25–36, 43–47; O'Brien, Dispossession by Degrees, 74–78; Connole, Indians of the Nipmuck Country, 124–37, 232–50; Lopenzina, Red Ink, 191–93; Gould, "Nipmuc Nation." See also Grafton (Mass.) Records, 1743–1948, folders 1–2, American Antiquarian Society (AAS), Worcester, Mass.; Curwen Family Papers, AAS; John Milton Earle Papers, box 1, AAS. On the involuntary servitude of Native people in New England, including children, see Margaret Ellen Newell, "The Changing Nature of Indian Slavery in New England, 1670–1720," in Calloway and Salisbury, Reinterpreting New England Indians, 106–36; Ruth Wallis Herndon and Ella Wilcox Sekatau, "Colonizing the Children: Indian Youngsters in Servitude in Early Rhode Island," ibid., 137–73.

35. The original name of Hassanamesit refers to the place, while Hassanamisco was adapted as a name for the community. Cheryll Toney Holley, Hassanamisco Reservation, personal communication to author, July 27, 2015. Some published examples of this community-based history include Gould, "Contested Places"; D. Rae Gould, "Cultural Practice and Authenticity: The Search for Real Indians in New England in the 'Historical' Period," in The Death of Prehistory, ed. Peter R. Schmidt and Stephen A. Mrozowski (New York, 2013), 241–66; Holley, "A Brief Look at Nipmuc History," in Dawnland Voices: An Anthology of Indigenous Writing from New England, ed. Siobhan Senier et al. (Lincoln, Neb., 2014), 404–10.

36. Cheryll Toney Holley, Hassanamisco Reservation, personal communication to author, Aug. 7, 2017. The Nipmuc Nation is currently engaged in the first stages of a digital project that will give community members access to the tribal archive, which includes documents from the AAS relevant to Hassanamisco's history.

37. Lauren Tuiskula, personal statement for this article, October 2016. Used with permission.

38. For more on Nashaway, Lancaster, and the location of the Rowlandson lot, see Nourse, Early Records of Lancaster, 10, 17, 41–44, 60–61, 66, 68–69, 91, 261–64; Salisbury, Sovereignty and Goodness of God, 11–20; Jaffee, People of the Wachusett, 44–58; Neal Salisbury, "Contextualizing Mary Rowlandson: Native Americans, Lancaster and the Politics of Captivity," in Early America Re-explored: New Readings in Colonial, Early National, and Antebellum Culture, ed. Klaus H. Schmidt and Fritz Fleishmann (New York, 2002), 107–50; Brooks, American Literary History 25: 718–50; Brooks, Our Beloved Kin, 107–11. For more about the map of Rowlandson's removes, see "The Captive's Lament: Nipmuc and Sokoki Territory," in Brooks, Our Beloved Kin, digital companion to Our Beloved Kin, For the location of Rowlandson's house, see "The Town of Lancaster, the Territory of Nashaway," ibid.,

39. Salisbury, Sovereignty and Goodness of God, 96 ("lived"), 73–80 ("all," 79); [Nourse and Thayer], Narrative of the Captivity, 92; Mabel Cook Coolidge, The History of Petersham, Massachusetts…. (Hudson, Mass., 1948), 18; Douglas Edward Leach, "The 'Whens' of Mary Rowlandson's Captivity," New England Quarterly 34, no. 3 (September 1961): 352–63, esp. 356. For more on the history of Weetamoo and a fuller interpretation of Rowlandson's removes, see Brooks, Our Beloved Kin. The east-west road is now known as Route 2 in Massachusetts, or the "Mohawk Trail."

40. Salisbury, Sovereignty and Goodness of God, 32; "Remove 8: Coasset," in Brooks, Our Beloved Kin, digital companion to Our Beloved Kin, On Sokwakik, see J. H. Temple and George Sheldon, A History of the Town of Northfield, Massachusetts…. (Albany, N.Y., 1875), 32–52, 73, 79; Gordon M. Day, The Identity of the Saint Francis Indians (Ottawa, 1981), 12–15; Calloway, Western Abenakis, 63–84; Haviland and Power, Original Vermonters, 149, 152, 227–28; Margaret M. Bruchac, "Historical Erasure and Cultural Recovery: Indigenous People in the Connecticut River Valley" (Ph.D. diss., University of Massachusetts, 2007), chaps. 2–3; Brooks, Common Pot, chap. 1.

41. Calloway, Western Abenakis, pp. 85–87, chaps. 5–6; Brooks, Common Pot, chap. 1. Although these scholarly sources provide documentation from the historical record for the migration of Native people from the Connecticut River valley to Missisquoi, Winooski, and other northern places, this migration also surfaces in the oral histories tied to places in contemporary Abenaki communities, including Missisquoi and Odanak, the reserve on the St. Francis River in Quebec to which Connecticut River families first began traveling in response to the violence of King Philip's War.

42. Laurent, Abenakis and English Dialogues; Aubéry, Father Aubery's French Abenaki Dictionary. Creating the maps was a multiyear process, as Andy Anderson taught students to georeference trails and locations using multiple sources, including historical and contemporary maps, and to build layers for overlapping geographic features. The research and mapping for the project included georeferencing an old map given to me by my father, drawing on my experiences hiking trails that had been traveled by our ancestors, consulting and georeferencing maps and descriptions that other historians had published over the last century, and comparing the results to earlier sources, including manuscripts, local histories, and U.S. Geological Survey maps, as well as to historical and contemporary topography. In fitting the technology to Indigenous methodologies, students began to create alternative ways of representing place and space, sometimes "breaking" ArcGIS to adapt it to Native space.

43. Cassandra Hradil, personal statement for this article, October 2016, used with permission ("collect GPS data," "embodied"); Salisbury, Sovereignty and Goodness of God, 80 ("deep," "exceeding").

44. Cassandra Hradil and Lauren Tuiskula, "Mary White Rowlandson's Removes," story map,, accessed Mar. 14, 2018.

45. [Nourse and Thayer], Narrative of the Captivity, 86–102. See also Nourse, Early Records of Lancaster, 9–10, 33; Nourse, Lancastriana.

46. See Brooks, Our Beloved Kin, chap. 7.

47. See Jean M. O'Brien's concept of "replacement" in O'Brien, Firsting and Lasting, 55–56 (quotation, 55).

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