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Transatlantic Encounters examines the diverse origins and experiences of approximately 175 American Indians and Inuits who traveled to the British Isles before the American Revolution. Their homelands ranged from northern Canada to Brazil, their ages from infant to nonagenarian, their statuses from slave (the largest category) to “emperor,” their occupations from warrior to missionary. Some American natives died soon after arrival, but others remained as long as fourteen years and returned home; still others, their arrival and death dates undocumented, may have endured long lives abroad. And always, Indians and Inuits fascinated the British people, whether the Americans were captives or on commercial display, interpreters-in-training, or voluntary voyagers to petition the monarch and tour Britain’s famous sites. British artists painted their portraits and eminent writers invoked them in plays and essays. In the imperial crisis of 1776, Indian diplomats who had been to London would staunchly support the British Empire.Read more
- Brings to light scores of previously overlooked American natives who reached Britain in the colonial era
- Reveals the significance of transatlantic encounters in the increasingly multi-national, inter-cultural world of the 16th through 18th centuries
- Assesses Britain's efforts to impress Indian delegations with the empire's wealth and power and the Indians' subsequent allegiances in the American Revolution
Reviews & endorsements
"...a rich narrative of fascinating characters...small criticisms are heavily outweighed by Vaughan's commendable achievement of collecting and vibrantly retelling these stories in such a way as to continually highlight the diversity of these encounters, in which American Indian visitors acted as agents, captives, showpieces, and ambassadors."
- H-Atlantic, Troy Bickham, Department of History, Texas A&M UniversitySee more reviews
"It is to Vaughan's credit that he is able to bring such disparate and incomplete material together into a coherent whole that will appeal to anyone interested in the transatlantic dimensions of the European-Indian encounter."
Timothy J. Shannon, The Journal of American History
"This is a fascinating, fast-paced, throughly documented, and highly readable book...With a keen eye for colorful detail, the author deserves praise for his efforts to identify and describe the historical dramatis personae, their motives, challenges, and often unhappy endings...Professor Vaughan deserves abundant praise for this deeply researched book...Vaughan's book makes us rethink who were the real savages in the colonial encounter."
Harald E. L. Prins, Canadian Journal of History
"Vaughan has been a productive presence in the scholarship on colonial America for more than four decades, and his work has consistently been of high quality...His research is sound; he is reasonably open to interpretive approaches; and he writes well." -Frederic W. Gleach, The Journal of Interdisciplinary History
"...Vaughan eloquently accomplishes his objective of compiling a comprehensive story of Indian visitors to Britain." -Elizabeth Mancke, New England Quarterly
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- Date Published: November 2008
- format: Paperback
- isbn: 9780521738170
- length: 364 pages
- dimensions: 229 x 152 x 19 mm
- weight: 0.49kg
- availability: Available
Table of Contents
1. New World exotics
2. Raleigh's American interpreters
3. Powhatans abroad
4. Norumbega's reluctant guides
5. Pocahontas and friends
6. Disparate encounters
7. Four American 'kings'
8. Delegations from the lower south
9. Ambivalent receptions
10. Peripatetic preacher
11. Tragedies and partial triumphs
Instructors have used or reviewed this title for the following courses
- Invasion of America
- North America in the Atlantic World
- North America to 1800
- The Ascent of Humankind
- Tudor and Stuart England
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