The Munsee Indians

The Munsee Indians

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The Indian sale of Manhattan is one of the worlda€™s most cherished legends. Few people know that the Indians who made the fabled sale were Munsees whose ancestral homeland lay between the lower Hudson and upper Delaware river valleys. The story of the Munsee people has long lain unnoticed in broader histories of the Delaware Nation. Now, The Munsee Indians deftly interweaves a mass of archaeological, anthropologi-cal, and archival source material to resurrect the lost history of this forgotten people, from their earliest contacts with Europeans to their final expulsion just before the American Revolution. Anthropologist Robert S. Grumet rescues from obscurity Mattano, Tackapousha, Mamanuchqua, and other Munsee sachems whose influence on Dutch and British settlers helped shape the course of early American history in the mid-Atlantic heartland. He looks past the legendary sale of Manhattan to show for the first time how Munsee leaders forestalled land-hungry colonists by selling small tracts whose vaguely worded and bounded titles kept courts busya€”and settlers outa€”for more than 150 years. Ravaged by disease, war, and alcohol, the Munsees finally emigrated to reservations in Wisconsin, Oklahoma, and Ontario, where most of their descendants still live today. Coinciding with the four hundredth anniversary of Hudsona€™s voyage to the river that bears his name, this book shows how Indians and settlers struggled, in land deals and other transactions, to reconcile cultural ideals with political realities. The result is the most authoritative treatment of the Munsee experiencea€”one that restores this people to their place in history. This book is published with the generous assistance of Furthermore: a program of the J. M. Kaplan Fund.Like many Indian nations mentioned in the first Dutch records, Tappan remained little more than a name on a map for more than two decades. De Vries (in NNN: 205a€“206) penned the earliest known document recording more than the name. In 1639, he purchased a ... Settlers living on that tideland strip would repeatedly flee their homes as rumors of attack and hostile war parties swept across the loweranbsp;...

Title:The Munsee Indians
Author:Robert S. Grumet
Publisher:University of Oklahoma Press - 2014-10-22


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