The history of the American West told by Indians

Their manners are decent and worthy of praise

Where now the Pequot? Where Narragansett, Mohicans, pokanokety and many other powerful tribes of our people? They absorbed the greed and oppression of the white man, as snow absorbs the rays of the summer sun. We will give in turn to destroy itself without a fight, leaving our home country bequeathed to us by the Great Spirit, the graves of our ancestors and all that we hold dear and sacred? I know you shout with me: "No, never!" Tecumseh of the Shawnee

So it has been with Christopher Columbus, who called these people Indians. Europeans, white people spoke different dialects and different ways to pronounce the word (Indien, Indianer, Indian). Name Indians came later. According to the customs of hospitality adopted this people, the Taino Indians from the island of San Salvador generously bestowed upon Columbus and his men met them with honor.

"These people are so obedient, so peaceful — Columbus wrote to the king and queen of Spain, — I could have sworn your Majesty, there is no better than the people in the world. Each of them loves his neighbor as himself. Their speech is always pleasant and calm, with a friendly smile, and while it is true that they were naked, and their costumes are decent and worthy of praise. "

All this, of course, was seen as a sign of weakness, if not paganism, and Columbus, being a virtuous European, was convinced that this nation should be "put to work to sow bread, do all that is necessary, and adopt our customs." Over the next four centuries (1492-1890) millions of Europeans and their descendants have tried to impose their own customs to the people of the New World.

Columbus kidnapped ten men from among its hospitable hosts Taíno and brought them to Spain, where they could meet with the customs of the white man. One of them died soon after arrival, but before it had time to convert to Christianity. The Spaniards were so pleased by enabling the first Indian to go to heaven, that were quick to spread this good news among all the Indians of the Western Hemisphere.

Taino and Arawak not resisted conversion to the religion of Europeans, but had a strong resistance, when hordes of bearded strangers were ransacking their island in search of gold and precious stones. The Spaniards looted and burned villages, they have kidnapped hundreds of men, women and children, to send them by ship to Europe and sold into slavery. Arawak resistance has led to the fact that the case went to the guns and sabers, and less than a decade from the time Columbus set foot on the coast of San Salvador October 12, 1492, entire tribes were wiped out — hundreds of thousands of people.

The relationship between the tribes of the New World was carried out slowly, and the news of the barbarities of Europeans rarely ahead of the rapid advance of the conquerors and the establishment of new settlements. But long before they speak English white people reached in 1607 Virginia, to pouhatanov heard rumors about the methods by which the Spaniards ascribe to the civilization of the Indians. The British used more subtle methods. In order to ensure a sufficiently long the world to establish a settlement near Jamestown, they are crowned with a golden crown Uhonsonokoka, bestowing upon him the title of King pouhatanov, and convinced him to get his people to feed the white settlers. Uhonsonokok hesitated, not knowing who to stay true — his rebellious subjects or British, but after John Rolfe married his daughter, Pocahontas, apparently, decided that he is increasingly an Englishman than an Indian. After the death of Uhonsonokoka pouhatany rose to avenge the British and drive them back into the sea, whence they came, but the Indians had underestimated the strength of English arms. Within a short time of eight thousand pouhatanov survived less than a thousand.

In Massachusetts, the story began a little differently, but actually ended in the same way. When the English landed at Plymouth in 1620, the majority of them would have died of starvation if they do not help friendly inhabitants of the New World. Native American tribe of pimov named Samoset and three Indians vampanoa named Massasoit, Squanto and Hobomah volunteer missionaries were among the colonists. All four spoke some in English, learning the travelers to the coast in the past few years. Squanto was kidnapped British sailor and sold them into slavery in Spain, but escaped with the help of another Englishman, and eventually was able to return home. He and other Indians belonged to the Plymouth colonists how to helpless children. They shared with them the grain of the stock of the tribe, showed them where and how to fish, so the British had survived the first winter. When spring came, the Indians gave the white people a little bit of grain maize and showed them how to sow and grow.

For several years, the British and their Indian neighbors to live in peace, but more ships with white people coming to the shore. The crackling sound of axes and falling trees echoed here and there along the banks of the land that is now called the white New England. The settlements oppress one another. In 1625 some colonists Samoset asked to give them another 12 thousand acres of land pimov. Samoset knew that the land created by the Great Spirit, that it is infinite as the sky, and does not belong to any man. However, foreigners indulging in their strange customs, he took part in the ceremony of transfer of land, and made his mark on the paper. It was the first act of transferring Indian lands English colonists.

Most other settlers arriving now in the thousands, not obstruct the likes formalities. By the time of the death of Massasoit, the great leader of the tribe vampanoa, in 1662, his people had been forced into the uninhabited land. His son Metacom foresaw that waits for all Indians, if they do not unite to resist the invaders. Although the settlers of New England tried to flatter methacrylate, proclaiming him king Philip Pokanoketom, he devoted most of his life to building an alliance with the Narragansett and other tribes of the region

In 1675, after several bold actions by the colonists, King Philip raised against them, he created the Union of American Indian tribes, to save from extinction the last fifty two Indians attacked the settlement, completely destroying twelve of them, but after several months of fighting, and Narragansett vampanoa were virtually exterminated gunshot power colonists. King Philip was killed, and his head for twenty years has been exhibited for public viewing. Together with the other taken prisoner by Indian women and children, his wife and infant son were sold into slavery in the West Indies.

When the Dutch arrived on the island of Manhattan, Peter Mingyue bought it for 60 guilders — the cost of fishing hooks and glass beads, but persuaded the Indians to stay on the island and continue to deliver valuable furs in exchange for such trifles. In 1641 Willem Kieft overlaid tribute to the Mohicans and sent soldiers to Staten Island, Raritan punished for acts committed not by them but by white settlers Indians resisted, and the soldiers killed four of them. When the Indians in revenge killing four Dutch, Kieft ordered to cut the entire two Native American village, while their inhabitants slept Dutch soldiers pierced with bayonets men, women and children, their body is cut into pieces and then burned villages, razed them to the ground.

These incidents were repeated again and again for more than two centuries, as the colonists moved inland through the gorges of Allegany — downstream aspiring to the west of the rivers — to the Great Waters (Mississippi), and then up the Great Dirt (MO).

Five Iroquois tribes, the most powerful and developed among the eastern tribes vain for the world. After years of bloody fighting for their political independence they eventually failed. Some of them went to Canada, some fled to the West, and part of living out their days in reserve.

In the 60 years of the XVIII century. Pontiac of Ottawa Indians united the tribes living in the country of the Great Lakes region, hoping to throw the British for Allegan, but failed. His biggest mistake was an alliance with the French-speaking whites, who refused to contribute to the redskins the decisive siege of Detroit.

Later, Tecumseh, Shawnee chief of the tribe, has created a great union mid western and southern tribes to protect their land from invasion. This dream came to an end with the death of Tecumseh in one of the battles during the War of 1812

From 1795 to 1840 Miami Indians gave battle to battle, and signed the contract for the contract, giving way to fertile lands of the Ohio Valley for as long as there was nothing to concede.

After the war of 1812 white settlers flocked to the lands of Illinois, Sauk and Fox tribe fled to the other side of the Mississippi. One of the younger leaders, the Black Falcon, refused to back down. He made an alliance with the tribes of the Winnebago, Potawatomi, and Kickapoo, and declared war on the white settlements. Winnebago received from the leader of the white soldiers in bribes twenty horses and one hundred dollars, betrayed the Black Falcon, and in 1832 it managed to capture. He was sent to the east, where imprisoned and showed curious. After his death in 1838, the governor of the newly created territory of Iowa acquired the skeleton of the Black Falcon and kept it in his office.

In 1829, Andrew Jackson, nicknamed the Indians sharp knife, took over as president of the United States. During his service on the border of a sharp knife with his soldiers killed thousands of Cherokee, Chickasaw, choktavov, the Cree and the Seminoles, but these southern Indians were still numerous and stubbornly held on to their tribal lands, forever ascribed to them in the treaties with the white man. In the first address to Congress recommended a sharp knife to move all these Indians to the west, beyond the Mississippi. "I find it appropriate to highlight the vast area west of the Mississippi … guaranteed Indian tribes while they are at it."

Although the adoption of this law would be a new line item in the long list of broken promises made to the Eastern Indians, Sharp Knife was convinced that the Indians and white can not co-exist peacefully and that his plan provides an opportunity for the conclusion of a final agreement, which will never be broken. May 28, 1830 recommendations of a sharp knife became law.

Two years later he was appointed commissioner of Indian Affairs, which was composed at the War Office and ensure that new laws relating to Indians, are duly respected. Then, June 30, 1834 Congress passed a law on the regulation of trade and relations with the Indian tribes and to preserve peace on the borders. All the lands of the United States west of the Mississippi, "is not included in the limits of the states of Missouri, Louisiana, and Arkansas territory", now had to be considered Native American lands. No white could not trade on Indian land without a license None of the white traders with a bad reputation is not allowed to be on Indian land. None of the whites were not allowed to settle in Indian Territory. The force of arms of the United States should have been applied against any white to be seen in violation of the provisions of the Act.

Before these regulations were enforced, a new wave of white settlers rushed to the West, where they formed the territory of Wisconsin and Iowa. The result is that the politicians in Washington had to endure "permanent Indian frontier" with the Mississippi on the 95th meridian. (Line meridian runs from the Lake Forest on the border of present-day Minnesota and Canada, further to the south, cutting through the current states of Minnesota and Iowa, and then along the western border of the states of Missouri, Arkansas and Louisiana to Galveston Bay in Texas.) To keep the Indians for the 95th meridian and to prevent unauthorized crossing of this line of white garrisons of soldiers were deployed in a number of military posts — from Fort Snelling on the Mississippi River and up the forts Atkinson and Leavenworth on the Missouri River, Fort Gibson and Smith on the Arkansas River, Fort Towson on the Red River and Fort Dzhizap in Louisiana.

More than three centuries have passed since Columbus landed on San Salvador, and more than two centuries — since the English colonists came to Virginia and New England. During this time, friendly Taino, hailing After landing of Columbus, were completely cut off. Long before he died last Taino Indian, local culture, primitive agriculture and handicrafts had been destroyed as a result of the spread of cotton plantations, cultivated by slaves. White settlers cut down rain forests to increase their land, cotton depletes the soil, fields that are not protected forests, buried in sand. When I first saw the island, Columbus wrote that he was "very large and very flat, its trees are very green … and the whole island is green, that is any look." Followed him Europeans destroyed the vegetation of the island and its inhabitants — people, animals, birds and fish — and, drawing a desert island, deserted him.

On the mainland vampanoa Massasoit and King Philip with Chesapeake, Potomac chikahomini and of great pouhatanskogo Union disappeared without a trace. (Only about pokahontah still remember.) Were scattered across the country or remained insignificant among the Pequot, Montana, Nanticoke, mahapungi, Catawba, cheravy, Miami, Huron, Erie, Mohawk, Seneca, and the Mohicans. (Preserved memories for just about unkah.) Their euphonious names forever merged with the American land, but their remains are buried under the ashes of thousands of villages burned or lost in the woods, quickly disappearing under the ax of twenty million invaders. Once upon a clear streams, most of whom were Indian names, first serve is silt and waste management; land itself was devastated and exhausted. Indians seemed that Europeans hate the nature — the living forest with their birds and beasts, grass-covered valleys, water, soil, air itself.

The decade that followed the establishment of "permanent Indian border," it was a heavy time for the eastern tribes. The Great Cherokee tribe, after surviving more than a hundred years of incessant wars with white, despite the spread of disease and whiskey, now also had to disappear. Since there were several thousand teal, they move to the West supposed to make gradual, but once in the Appalachians in teal, gold was discovered, were heard loud demands their immediate and indiscriminate expulsion. In autumn 1838, General Winfield Scott's soldiers surrounded them and concentrated in camps. (Several hundred people have fled in the Smoky Mountains, and many years later they were given a small reservation in North Carolina.) From the camps where Cherokee were detained, they were sent to the West, to Indian Territory. During the long winter of the transition out of every four Indian died from cold, hunger or disease. Cherokee called this shift "Trail of Tears." Choktavy, Chickasaw, Cree and Seminoles also left their native lands to the south. The preserved remains of the north of the Shawnee, Miami, Ottawa, Huron, Delaware, and many other once powerful tribes walked or rode in wagons on the west bank of the Mississippi, taking with them their meager belongings, rusty farm tools and bags of seed grain. In the country of the proud and free steppe Indians they become refugees.

As soon as the refugees settled in the security line for "permanent Indian border," as the soldiers began to move west on Indian land. White people of the United States — who have talked so much about the world and so it is rarely carried out in practice — went to war with the white man, who had gained the victory over the Indians of Mexico. When in 1847, the war with Mexico ended, the United States took possession of the vast area from Texas to California. This whole area was located west of the "permanent Indian border."

In 1848, discovered gold in California. For several months, through Indian Territory passed thousands of fortune seekers from the east. The Indians who lived and hunted near the Santa Fe and Oregon in the first of a string of wagons occasionally seen from passing licensed traders, trappers and missionaries. Now suddenly trails were packed vans and vans — white people. Most of them are directed at the California gold, but some turns to the south, in the direction of New Mexico, or in the north-west, to the land of Oregon.

To meet all these violations of the law on "permanent Indian frontier" policy from Washington invented the theory of "predestination of fate" to give elevated arguments about land-grabbing. Europeans and their descendants allegedly destined by fate to rule in America. They — the dominant race, and therefore are responsible not only for Indians, but also for their land, forest and mineral resources. Only residents of New England who massacred or driven out all his Indians were against the theory of "predestination of fate."

In 1850, without the knowledge of Modoc, Mohawk, Paiute, Shasta, Yuma, and many other lesser-known tribes of the Pacific coast of California was declared the 31st state of the Union. In the mountains of Colorado gold was found, and a crowd of miners rushed back across the Great Plains. Were formed by two huge new territories of Kansas and Nebraska, have covered almost all the lands of the steppe tribes. In 1858, Minnesota became a state, its borders stretching for hundreds of miles west of the 95th meridian of the "permanent Indian border."

Thus, only a quarter of a century after the adoption of the law of a sharp knife — Andrew Jackson's trade relations with the Indians and white settlers crossed the 95th meridian in the south and the north, and advanced group of miners and traders penetrated the central regions of Indian Territory.

Then in the early 60-ies of the XIX century., White people of the United States went to war against each other — the "blue coats" against the "gray".

Began the great Civil War in 1860 in the United States and the territories, there were approximately 300 thousand Indians, most of whom lived west of the Mississippi. According to various estimates, from the time of arrival of the first settlers in Virginia and New England, the number of Indians has decreased by half or two-thirds. The surviving Indians were now caught between two groups of fast-growing white population in the east and along the coast of the Pacific Ocean — generally over 30 million former Europeans and their descendants. If the remaining free tribes believed that the civil war between the white couple weaken their onslaught on Indian lands, they were soon to be disappointed.

The most numerous and powerful of the western tribes was the tribe of Sioux or Dakota, which united several smaller clans. Santee Sioux lived in the woods of Minnesota and within a few years, retreated before the impending settlement of whites. Crow, Sioux leader mdevkanton, traveled city eastern states, was convinced that the power of the United States can not be resisted. Reluctantly, he tried to lead his tribe white man's path. Wabasha, another leader of Santee, also resigned to the inevitable, but both — and he and Crow — strongly opposed to any further concessions to Indian land.

To the west, the Great Plains, lived Teton Sioux Indians, these breeders are completely free. They despised his little cousins, forest Santee, surrendered to the settlers. The most numerous and able to defend their territory was the tribe of Oglala Teton. By the beginning of the Civil War between the white tribe is famous thirty-three-headed warrior and a chieftain named Red Cloud. Crazy Horse, intelligent and fearless teenager from oglalov was still too young to be a soldier.

Among hunkpapov, a small clan Teton Sioux, a young man of twenty-plus years has won the praise of the hunter and warrior. At tribal council, he played for the relentless resistance to any invasion of white. It was Tatanka Yotanka, Sitting Bull. He raised an orphaned boy named abrasion. After sixteen years old, in 1876, together with the Horse of Mad oglalov they will go down in history.

Although he was not yet forty years old, Spotted Tail was already an outstanding leader of the Teton clan-Bruhl, who lived at the very western edge of the Plains. Spotted Tail was a beautiful smiling Indian, the hunter to sumptuous feasts and women. He loved his life and his land, but he was inclined to compromise in order to avoid war.

With the Teton Sioux tribe were closely related Cheyenne. In the old Cheyenne lived in Minnesota, on the lands of Santee Sioux, but gradually they began to move westward and brought horses. Now the Northern Cheyenne divided the land along the Powder River and Big Horn with the Sioux tribe, and often held their parking near them. Forty-year blunt knife was a famous leader of the northern branch of the tribe.

(Among his people Blunt Knife was known as the Morning Star, but the Sioux Indians called him a dull knife, and in the latest publications that use this name.)

Southern Cheyennes were moving slowly through the lands south of the Platte River, arranging their villages in the plains of Colorado and Kansas.

Black Cauldron of the southern branch of the tribe in his youth was a great warrior. In his old age, he was recognized as the leader, but the young men and Hotamitaneos (dogs) from the Southern Cheyennes were more inclined to follow such leaders as High Bison and Roman Nose, who were in their prime.

Arapaho Indians have long been allies Cheyenne and lived in the same lands. Some of them stayed with the northern group of Cheyenne, followed the southern part. Forty-year Black Raven was at that time the most famous of their leader.

On the southern buffalo grazing in the valleys of the Kansas and Nebraska Kiowa Indians lived. Some old people still remembered among the Kiowa Black Hills mountain where the tribe was expelled by the combined forces of South Sioux, Cheyenne and Arapaho. By 1860, the Kiowa Indians made peace with the tribes of the northern steppes and became allies of the Comanches, the southern steppes of which they are entered. In the Kiowa Indians had several great leaders: the aged leader Satank, thirty-two energetic warrior Satanta and Lone Wolf, as well as a clever politician Bird, Beating Foot.

At Comanche, constantly moving and broken into many small groups that do not have such leaders as those of their allies. Ten Bears was very old and was a poet rather than a military leader. In 1860, the half-breed Guanaja Parker, who led the Comanches on their last great struggle for the preservation of bison grazing was not yet twenty years old.

On the dry southwest lived Apaches, veterans dvuhsotpyatidesyatiletney guerrilla war against the Spanish. Last taught their sophisticated methods of torture and mutilation, but have not been able to conquer. Although they were few — perhaps no more than six thousand people, divided into several groups — they had the reputation of stubborn defenders of his harsh and ruthless land. Mangas Colorado, who was in his late sixties, with the United States signed a friendly agreement, but gave up because of the influx of miners and soldiers on his land. His son-in Cochise still believed that he could get along with white Americans. Victorio and Delshay did not trust the white invaders and avoid them. Nana, fifty years, but strong as rawhide strap, believed that the English-speaking whites are no different from the Spanish-speaking Mexicans, with whom he had fought all his life. Twenty years of Geronimo still does not show itself.

Navajos were linked by kinship with the Apaches, but most went to Navajo trail of white Spaniards — started breeding sheep and goats, and sow maize and grow fruit. Some of the tribe, were engaged in cattle breeding and weaving rich. The rest continued to roam Navahos, raiding his old enemies — Pueblo, on the white settlers and their wealthy countrymen. Manuelito, a tall, mustachioed herdsman, was elected the Supreme Leader in elections held in 1855 Navajo In 1859, when several violent Navajo attacked the citizens of the United States on the ground of the latter, the U.S. Army, rather than to punish the guilty, destroyed in retaliation Hogan (Hogan — covered land home of the Navajo Indians — Comm Trans.) and shoot down all the cattle belonging to Manuelito and members of his group. By 1860, Manuelito, and several of his supporters, the Navajo began an undeclared war with the United States in northern New Mexico and Arizona.

In the northern Rocky Mountains, at the Apache and Navajo land, lived Utah — warlike mountain tribe, which had used to raid their more peaceful southern neighbors. Urai, their popular leader, was so eager to make peace with the white people that supplied them with mercenaries to fight the Indians of other tribes.

Far to the West, most tribes were too few in number, fragmented or weak to exert any serious resistance. Modoc of northern California and southern Oregon, the number of less than a thousand people defending their land guerrilla methods. Kintpuash, which residents of California called Captain Jack, in 1860, he was still a young man; tests that he had to go, becoming a leader, expecting him twelve years.

Indians neperse (north of Modoc) lived with white in the world ever since, as in the 1805 Lewis and Clark passed through their land. In 1855 the Indians of one of the clans of the tribe ceded their land to the United States under the settlement and agreed to live within a large reserve. Other tribal groups continued to wander between the mountains of the Blue Mountains of Oregon and the Bitterroot Mountains in Idaho. Because the land in the north-west there were many Indians neperse believed that it will always be enough for white people, and for the Indians. Heynmotu Tuyalaketu, later known as Chief Joseph, in 1877, had to make a fateful choice between peace and war. In 1860, he was twenty years old, he was the son of the leader. In Nevada, the Paiute country, the future messiah named Vovoka, subsequently proved short-lived, but a strong influence on the Indians of the West, in 1860 there were only four years.

Over the next thirty years, these and many other leaders were to go down in history, to become a legend. Their names were to be no less well-known than the names of those who tried to destroy them. Most of them — and the old and young — were to die long before that famous day when, in December 1890 at Wounded Knee was the end of freedom of Indians. Now, a hundred years later in the century, does not know the characters, they may surpass his heroism of all Americans.

The head of Dee Brown's book "Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee. The history of the American West, told the Indians' 1970.

See also Knights of the New World

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