As President Andrew Jackson pushed for the removal of all Indigenous people of the East, Native Americans developed several strategies of resistance. This talk focuses particularly on a group of young Native men who combined Indigenous knowledge with what they learned at school, a powerful alchemy which enabled them to theorize broadly about colonialism, nationalism, and even the nature of history. Though most eastern Indians, ultimately, were forced west, the intellectual culture forged during the Removal era helped Native nations defend their sovereignty and rebuild in Indian Territory.  

Christina Snyder is the McCabe Greer Professor of the American Civil War Era at The Pennsylvania State University. She is an historian of colonialism, race, and slavery, with a focus on North America from the pre-contact era through the late nineteenth century. Snyder’s current book project, Slavery After the Civil War: The Slow Death and Many Afterlives of Bondage, explores how and why bondage persisted even after the passage of the Thirteenth Amendment. Snyder is also the author of Great Crossings: Indians, Settlers, and Slaves in the Age of Jackson (Oxford University Press, 2017) and Slavery in Indian Country: The Changing Face of Captivity in Early America (Harvard University Press, 2010). These books received a wide range of accolades, including the Francis Parkman Prize, the John H. Dunning Prize, the James H. Broussard Prize, and the John C. Ewers Prize.