The Newberry Library Seminar in Early American History and Culture
Co-Sponsored by the University of Chicago, DePaul University, University of Illinois at Chicago, Northern Illinois University, and Northwestern University
Thursday, December 16, 2004
3:30pm-5:30pm, The Newberry Library
A "Reciprocally Beneficial" Trade: Economic Exchange on the Lower Missouri River Valley Frontier
Rebekah Mergenthal, University of Chicago
In the 1820s and 1830s, white settlers in the lower Missouri Valley clamored for the removal of Indians from their vicinity. At the same time, however, this vision of separation coexisted with trade that led to frequent interactions between Natives and whites, since in a cash-poor frontier economy, white settlers found that selling goods and alcohol to the nearby Native Americans provided an important source of hard currency, as well as a fairly stable market. Natives' own actions played a crucial role in shaping the world of the river valley as well, as they appropriated the language of rights and decided the form of their annuity payments. This paper explores this economic accommodation in order to understand the kind of removal sought and the range of local responses to it, both from whites and Natives. By juxtaposing these conflicting views, this paper will illuminate the tensions and tolerance between disparate groups in the area and explore the kinds of cultural frontiers facilitated by the movement of goods and people in the lower Missouri valley in the early nineteenth century.
Scholl Center seminars present scholars' works-in-progress. All papers are pre-circulated. If you plan to attend, you may receive a paper by sending an e-mail message or by calling (e-mail address and telephone number provided below).
We encourage faculty members to call seminars to the attention of graduate students.
The full schedule for all Scholl Center seminars is available at the following web address.
To have your name removed from the Scholl Center list, or to change your address, please send an e-mail to:
Send comments and questions to H-Net
Webstaff. H-Net reproduces announcements that have been submitted to us as a
free service to the academic community. If you are interested in an announcement
listed here, please contact the organizers or patrons directly. Though we strive
to provide accurate information, H-Net cannot accept responsibility for the text of
announcements appearing in this service. (Administration)