Tuesday, September 14, 2004

VII. Native Americans and the American Revolution

VII. Native Americans and the American Revolution

A. The American Revolution was disastrous for Native Americans.

1. Iroquois Confederacy of Five Nations (Mohawk, Seneca, Onondaga, Cayuga, Oneida. Tuscaroras adopted in 1722). A political and social system, uniting the nations’ territories (present-day NY state) in a symbolic longhouse. British had allied with the Five (or Six) Nations in the French and Indian Wars, using them as a buffer against a French advance from Canada
Confederacy declares neutrality in Revolutionary war.
  • Led by Mohawks Joseph & Mary Brant, 3 tribes join British side. A British/Native American force defeated at Oriskany, NY. After raids on upstate NY settlements.
  • General John Sullivan destroys Iroquois villages; many killed or flee to Canada.

2. Cherokees & others tribes wage war against Americans in western Virginia, Pennsylvania, & New York, & suffer heavy retaliation from the American armies. Southern and Northern tribes warring against Americans saw similar retaliation measures.

  • "I hope that the Cherokees will now be driven beyond the Mississippi and that this in future will be declared to the Indians the invariable consequence of their beginning a war. Our contest with Britain is too serious and too great to permit any possibility of avocation from the Indians." - Thomas Jefferson

3. The war greatly weakened the Iroquois Confederacy & the positions of other tribes.