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tv   Lectures in History Colonial Myths and Monuments  CSPAN  August 15, 2021 8:00pm-9:01pm EDT

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theory, but a full schedule at c-span.org/history or consult your program guide. >> so welcome. the history of colonial america. now, at the beginning of this course i asked each of you to tell me what you think of when you think of colonial american history. many of you i'm sure do not even remember what you put. many of you focused on what we call the american revolutionary rather than the
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colonial trade like people like george washington, thomas jefferson, alexander hamilton, issues like taxation without. they all popped up. if you viewed mention places like historic jamestown, the plantation of massachusetts in colonial williamsburg. a few people mention the history of slavery. but i thought was very interesting it was notably because the 1519 a project in the black lives matter protest. what's interesting was there a few omissions. no one mentioned individual women or any individual indigenous people by means. no one if i am recalling correctly mention anything west of the appalachian mountains much less western mississippi, the rockies of the west coast. typically speaking this course runs from the contact of the indigenous people in 15th century to 1763 the end of the
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seven years but is now the territory called the united states of america. obviously this hundreds hundreds of years, millions of lives, half of which were women. people from africa, mostly enslaved. and not of their own volition as well as multiple countries and empires in europe england being one among these but not the first to establish a permanent settlement as we discussed as well as indigenous people in durham mingling with africans on what is now the united states of america but racially with indian territory. stretching from the atlantic to the pacific including hawaii and alaska. we don't even called the american revolutionary era. i did that on purpose because it tends to suck all the air out of the room let me recommend i teach a class specifically on that. it does tend to overshadow the rest of the colonial era if included. and most of you, like most americans are asked to think
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on what colonial history means to you, you thought about a few white men with colors of the atlantic coast that signed the american and fought the revolution. most of us i think, unless we take advanced history courses, or do a lot of outside reading have a pretty narrow conception of what colonial america is. we had a very memorable example of one of your classmates showing a halloween costume is pretty laughable. it's typical of how they picture the colonial past for this a lot of silences about the colonial past and contemporary american how we remember. i hope this course is changed for you. spoiler alert wanted things were going to do next week as i'm going to ask you to answer the same questions you can compare and contrast where we began any conception of american history where we are now the end of the course. there's a narrow conception of
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what american colonial history is it's one of the reasons we spent her first few weeks defining with the course means. so in other words we talk about what does colonial mean? what does american mean and what is history? the more he turned to the discussions a lot are pretty controversial. notably the word american. america encompasses north america, south america, people in latin america take issue understandably with u.s. sentence referring to ourselves as american we co-opted that phrase. what does history mean? who is in charge of fashioning it whose interpretation of the past we focus on? in the meantime today's lecture is going to be a chance to connect a lot of the dots but we spent learning together everything from the salem witch trials 21619 to gender, religion and war. to use our reading in particular the trio's book silent past in a production
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history which you are finishing up this week and next, to think about the history of colonial america and how that history is created, and memorialize but not just in site academic circles and books but out in the public. two ways in which the concept of colonial history are popularized in these ways are the subjects of state trent lecture. it would be myths and monuments. i'm going to start sharing my screen. i began the so far so good, we're almost there. i began the course, my introduction introducing you to one of the most critical concepts since the study in college walk away with for that is history is not the same thing of the past. history is not just a recitation of facts. people's interpretation of those dates, of those facts. and sometimes they believe history is not based on facts at all. hence the part of the lecture.
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when it comes to history of colonial america, how we define the terms about how we are speaking is critically important. for example whose path are we discussing? where is it situated? this sounds like basic questions run a history course but they are not. what encompasses colonial american history and how we define it has shifted over time. and how we choose the paths the american present it does include answers to the questions of what and who do we celebrate? who or what do we silence? and what people, places and events count is important in the past. now monuments to the sort of work but they do it in a variety of ways outside college courses. this is one of the reasons why in addition to setting up primary sources i asked you all to look into historical interpretation of the colonial american past. every thing from the names on street signs to disney films
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to halloween costumes to sites for williamsburg what you see here and of course monuments. i think the trio puts it really nicely and silencing the past. history has many hearts and academics are not the sole teachers, history teachers. so in other words, people get their history from a wide variety of places. history is produced outside of universities as well as within them. and the history of understanding colonial history is constructed necessitates in particular i think we consider our history not just within but be on the academies. people do get a bigger dose and many cases in their choices of reading certainly
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k-12 history courses history especially popular history takes the form and one resuming to study objects are facts, places, historic sites as well as art we think of loosely put together what scholars call the culture is it is a really great way to understand production and consumption of history. one of the reasons why i spent a great deal of time in his book talking about history this not just in books. history that's found in places and statues, in haiti example. and of course it debates around monuments of which we seen a lot in the past three years but a lot this summer, debates about monument and public arts. whether they should stand or fall. what should be in the first place? the debate is not about history which itself is a form of monumental lysing and remembering. but i want to talk about today is the stories we don't tell, the stories we silence are
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just as important as the stories we tell. really will be silence stories it's like tearing down the statues in a sense. so when it comes to colonial america, shapes not just how the past is interpreted but the parameters that we put around discussing that past as well. where did it begin, where is it situated? this is complicated but the celebrations of rarely are. i think trio's quote here is a really great one from a book he read the section you read for this week. this process does not operate evenly, celebrations are created part and parcel of the process in its historical history production. so in other words, we make choices with the monuments. the celebrations like columbus day, just as we make choices in terms of what to put in our history books. these commemorations the
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celebrations are usually pretty sanitized in the sense they are pretty simplistic. they tend to offer a simplistic narrative is easily understood when. history is hardly ever manner of black and right and is complicated is the answer to a lot of questions we posed about the colonial past. but think about monuments, how many have been subscribed to the memory both sides of a complicated mess he. they usually represent the victor or the person in control of the narrative about the past. so, how would we choose to interpret matters to the american president. what and who we celebrate or what and who we silence we can see in the places and spaces around us. just to take one of the things we wrestled with, it's a
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seemingly simple question but it so hard to answer. and yet the answer predetermines to a large extent how we view colonial america. we talked for example about whether we should begin our concept of colonial america before contact with european and indigenous people. whether pre-history to have indigenous history before european arrivals actually do a disservice to the richness of the indigenous past. the idea we should look at the historical artifacts and structures left behind just as valid as the written histories that they tend to leave behind athletes start in 1776 with thinking about america that
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defines america is always around this nation with the united states of america. in fact there are hundreds of histories that come before that in which she would by no means a predetermined the united states of america would ever be a thing to being. right? we discussed a lot about dates that are important as starting points traditionally and how we talk about colonial american history. what to do with that. the idea that columbus discovering is often the word is used but we discussed how that word is a disservice it's about contact and not about discovering something or until we begin 1607 the first english settlement in jamestown, virginia buried this ignores the fact the english weren't the first european powers to establish a permanent settlement in what is now the united states of
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america at all. that's the spanish the arrival there all various options. and in part, one of the reasons i spent so much time with us discussing issues like windows colonial america begin or windows america america begin as i think it helps us to determine what we discussed, who we celebrate and who we raised monuments to among other things. and getting to why these choices are important, think they're really important because celebrations straddle the two sides of history. they close the silence of events they ignore and they feel that silence with narrative power about what they celebrate. other words one reason we do
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that in the first place so we can discuss the man were going to begin with today. a man who as you know it never stepped foot on what is now the united states of america. but regularly began our past with that of course is christopher columbus who got a lot of attention this summer. and has for a while because of holiday celebrating him. columbus day has got a great deal of pushback for columbus and his reputation. so this columbus the man, there is columbus the myth. a lot of monuments celebrate columbus the myth. i think one of the reasons he myth is got a lot of pushback is more and more people become aware by you deserves analysis and critique. through the disfiguring of
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people done at his demand and yet he celebrated and we discussed this to as a sort of kick start of the chain of events that led to the establishment of european which without the united states would not be here. one of the things is a common response to critiques of the actions but things like columbus which we now condemn as deplorable in many ways, is that he was a man of his time. we discussed this too. the fact there are always people stood against atrocities such as those that columbus ordered, participated in. notably indigenous people themselves at the time, but also how that europeans of the time. we discussed the dominican fire, a former in slaver in
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the 1513 of cuba came in part as a priest and has treatment of indigenous people was wrong. and then, who journeyed into what is florida and texas in the 1520s and 1530s. with alongside him with an interesting point of contention. which tops the first arrival of enslaved africans as they are in florida and texas the century before. and yet despite the fact the critics, and he also like the process. it beseeched his fellow spanish to treat indigenous people better. to treat them better than
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columbus. and yet despite poached back in his own time and since we have so many reminders of columbus. it is not been defaced because men stood around it and protected at the summer. so would not be defaced, just showing in the emotions people have for as well as against columbus. which is red paint which is often something protesters used to deface a monuments of historical figures they feel have a blood on their hands. they're spending a little more time talking about it but was toppled this summer and put into a pond of this in the lake. so, let's talk a little bit more about this statue this
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monument of columbus in richmond. i think it gets how columbus is a starting point for our discussion of monuments and power is how we view colonial american history effectively scattered throughout a landscaper dimension the statue of columbus that was put is in a park called burda park. so bird park it be white rd. like this man who is shown in its name for a family in virginia who grew quite wealthy, owned a lot of property and william byrd the second is portrait you see here is one of the family helped found richmond and owned a lot of property in which the city of richmond was built. so bird park is named for him as a founder of the town of richmond.
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this is something i think is important to note. when columbus statute was toppled this summer and put in the water in byrd park. no it really talked about william byrd, for him the park's names. it's important to bear in mind how the monumental is the passport how we memorialize colonial america is just as powerfully found the name of parks and streets as it is anything like a statue. and in some ways these are more important. there just is hard to topple. people are very attached to the names of things. if you think about christopher columbus, for going to go about tearing that everything related to the mat would have to rename among other things our capitol city, washington the district of columbia which is something that comes out of columbus' name. so what can we do about william byrd the second? if you think about william byrd the second and he start to learn more about him, you
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really have to question whether his name should grace that park in which people gather to enjoy themselves. as i mentioned a very wealthy he was also very erudite, it had a fabulous library. wrote a number of the books including his secret diaries that he wrote in code, which were cracked by historians. in the secret diaries he records his cereal philandering he was married twice. but he continued to have multiple sexual affairs many were rapes of enslaved women. he details in his diaries. he also had some terrible habits of interaction with enslaved people who he claimed as property, one enslaved man for example had a habit of wetting the bed at night. as punishment went william byrd the second made him drink
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his own urine after he wet the bed. not at all an attractive figure. quite the contrary representing the worst of virginia colonial aristocracy. and yet his name is what this a park in richmond, virginia is named the park is named for him. so when we think about monuments like that of columbia's in burda park that are toppled we need to think about the wider connections, the name of a byrd park itself is also important. so when we do with that? and as i said where do we draw the line at their questioning and the monuments. because of certain point it's difficult to separate them out columbus for example, washington d.c., the district of columbus. columbus is celebrate in the capitol rotunda pretty see the there at the top left. the capitol rotunda has eight epic paintings within it were these enormous paintings people can see above popular
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public tour of the capitol. four of them commemorate things meant revolutionary era. they are by jonathan trumbull and they celebrate the revolution. the other four are from the 19th century. they are described by the u.s. capitol historians as for scenes of early exploration in the united states. now these are interesting word choices because these depict things like this painting which is the landing of columbus by john vanderlinden. completed and installed in 1847, commissioned by congress in 1836. they also include de soto's expedition and mississippi. the mississippi valley. and pocahontas which we will see at a moment. in other words they depict scenes that arguably could be called not early exploration but scenes of dispossession, scenes of contacting conquests
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with indigenous people from their lands. in the case of polk pocahontas we will discuss possessing her from her own culture and interesting ways and been critiqued by scholars of indigenous history. so what is this mean that these images are in the u.s. capitol rotunda? it means what's being celebrated in the u.s. capitalized through the art is not just the founding. but also what happened in the 1h century the gets wrapped up in indian removal and in the concept of manifest destiny of the united states with a god-given right to spread across the atlantic to the pacific. really arguing columbus, de soto and other early explorers and people from european empires who come and conquer the land and its indigenous people are really something to
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be celebrated in american culture. these don't just stay in the capitol, these paintings. they also end up on the backs of 19th century currency. this for example, this painting of the landing of columbus was used not just on a bank that issued in the 1870s, but also on two stamps in the 19th century. similarly, if we look at the other of those four paintings from the 19th century u.s. capitol rotunda, we see here the baptism of pocahontas. this was completed in 1840. and like the landing of columbus, it also appeared on the reverse of money issued in the 1860s and 1870s. it shows a ceremony in which pocahontas, daughter is baptized and given the name
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rebecca in the anglo church in jamestown. which we talk about. this ceremony took place in 1613, 1614 in jamestown. and jamestown of course we discussed is celebrated as the first permanent english settlement on the north american continent. and so this is something the u.s. capitol is celebrating. even though, as we know it's not the first permanent european settlement. and pocahontas is often touted as being the earliest christianity in the permanent english colonies. this is something that is seen a success story. the idea that europeans are going to come over and convert the indigenous people to christianity is something at the heart of many imperial endeavors english, spanish, french those of the notable ones we've discussed in this course. the idea then that pocahontas
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should be celebrated for renouncing her cultural heritage, for becoming english in many important ways becoming christianized. it was being celebrated in this painting. so again a form of cultural dispossession i would argue they were rated. and of as we know the real pocahontas versus the stylist went in the capitol rotunda are even worse the disney princess of which we are familiar on the top left, had much more complicated history. he was probably of what historians call a go-between. a skilled between indigenous and english people responsible for making connections, cultural connections as well as important connections through her marriage english is simpson settler john rolfe that tied in these critical
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early decade of jamestown settlement. and yet the capitol rotunda celebrates her for her's conversion to christianity. the actual pocahontas looks quite different from the romanticized version in either the rotunda or disney the only surviving young portrait of her. shows are of course not looking indigenous at all. looking very much like a european english woman wearing lots of expensive finery. including lace and feathers likely to stand in as an example of her exotic indian origins in european eyes a richly expensive metallic thread embossed, embroidered velvet jackets and superexpensive lace around her neck as well as of course something we discussed a hat
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trade in beavers as a commodity that comes to interactions between indigenous people and settlers in the 16th and 17th century. so one of the things that's interesting to point out about pocahontas in her persistent presence as the myth and a monument in our understanding our collective understanding of the american colonial past is she is one of the very few women who we even know or celebrate her name as individual. as mentioned, don't of you in iy understandable why mention an individual woman in your discussion of what crossed your mind we think of colonial american history. i think it is not accidental there is a connection here between the number of monuments that
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in america and the first woman who had been 10% of the population so there's a big gap between reality and what we are achieving and what has been memorialized in past america. one of the ladies who does have a number of -- in america is a woman who became again like many figures popularly celebrated long after her death and popularized in the 19th century in particular. actually around the same time in they 70s that when her monument started to pop up bad images of pocahontas and the landing of columbus appeared on
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u.s. currency. all these things again pushed the same cultural narrative and the same historical narrative. so hannah duston is pictured into her of. the minds and she had a number of monuments erected after her in nearly 20th century. she is also the woman who is the earliest publicly funded monument of the woman and the united states and that's a new hampshire on the left. this is an interesting choice that tells us a lot about what americans were choosing to commemorate and celebrate about their colonial past in the 19th century. hannah duston is a colonial protestant woman and mother who was taken captive by indians
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from québec in 1697. it was one of the series of the wars. it centered around competing claims that the french and english imperialists had the north american territory and clashing interests among native people as well at the intersection of all of these. people are taken captive and hannah duston was one of these and she was taken captive along with her. her and along the marks in massachusetts while captive the people who captured her killed her daughter was only six days old by smashing her head against a tree as she recalled it. hannah duston returns the favor.
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she -- the woman was helping to nurse her in bed and recovered from the birth and when they arrived in this island in new hampshire with the people who had taken her captive sheet, hannah duston along with the other woman with her and a teenage boy who had been captured separately that three of them decided to unite in free themselves which is understandable but slightly less understandable to contemporary and they decided to kill and scalp 10 native americans including men women and children and returned with the scalp as bounty and in fact not only
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returned with the scalp is proof of what they had done but the authorities and legislatures pay them for scalps which is what they did. this was not only celebrated at the time and it was rewarded with money from the massachusetts government. hannah duston is celebrated and she has the statue erected for her and it was defaced this summer a reminder that women are -- in past as well as men. i wanted to touch upon in the final example how they sometimes turned monuments as a way to look at the colonial past and here's what you see on those rocks which is something that was familiar he thinks to most if not all of these. a number of you mentioned pilgrims and mentioned plymouth
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and puritans in new england in your response about what you think and they think this is something that's worth diving into. so we start to see and emerging theme in terms of monuments of claudio past. some are not tagged as such are seen as important until the mid-18th century. it's not like in 1620 when pilgrims landed in plymouth. the car of the year into the rocks. this is something that was done later. it wasn't until the 18th century that a descendent pointed to the rock as important because of the danger of new construction so this is again one of these moments where much after-the-fact people decided to commemorate and celebrate the past. one of the reasons that plymouth rock is important in our
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national inception of who we were as people is something we like to celebrate about the past and the past is full of dreadful and depressing things that happened but it's also a place where people strive to make their world that are and to make themselves better and leave in some cases beautiful things behind. i think one of the reasons people liked discussing the pilgrims is and all though there's a flipside of indigenous attempts to take land in armed conflict and killing of indigenous people spreading disease etc. but the pilgrims speak to something that many people know about america which is escape from religious persecution something important to the american path not just
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american culture but also there's a reason that freedom to practice religion is first among the rights listed in the bill of rights and i think in some ways plymouth rock is a way to celebrate that, this idea that the people who were beleaguered and persecuted for their protestant religious beliefs and europe are able to come out and carve out a new place for themselves in this new england and of course we also have discussed the mayflower compact this tiny seed of people agreeing to come together to command themselves aldwych of course does leave a lot out of the story as well and there is no simplification. there is an element of plymouth rock that appeals to people that reason but it's interesting to think about why we celebrate
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this particular part of american history and focus so much on it. it's our collective attention we think about the colonial past sunday's 13 colonies in particular i would argue new england and virginia. why are we focus so much on this click the course so much of a colonial american history is unfolding obviously and most precisely with a vast array of indigenous people who are living and occupying this territory but also the adverse array of european settlers who were also there. we discussed how the french are up and down the mississippi river and the spanish are in texas florida and california and you have all of these groups of people that the european american indigenous people as
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well as the freed africans coming together so why is it that we spend so much time on these teeny tiny parts and this teeny tiny part of public territory with plymouth compared to the united states there? why is it we spend so much attention on this tiny element of this colony. i think it's important and one reason why the american colonies -- colonies as her textbook taylors rightly and correctly with a lot of explanatory power to trace to situate american history and rather than just an east coast west coast parameter and it's important as we are talking about the history of people's desire to pursue the freedom to practice religion as they wished
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and much like the history of america is a continental one. we should also remember the history of people in america struggling to practice their religious freedom is not just english and to put this in context i'm going to take us back to the u.s. capital this time in statuary hall and talk a little bit about the man on the right who is one of the few actually colonial figure celebrating in statuary hall in the u.s. capital and he's a pueblo indian and he is shown holding some knotted ropes there and those are integral to the story i'm going to tell you about why he is celebrated to this day. to put this in context in 1630 the man on the left came to massachusetts new england in the
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first wave of what was called the great migration. the 1620 pilgrim was a much slower -- but john winthrop with a large mask migration to nine land and winthrop is famous for in 1630 coming over to massachusetts and talking about america being their settling in america being the city on the hill for the world to marvel at which is that rhetoric of the city on the hill is a bit of american mythology that perpetuated and persisted often referenced by u.s. president ronald reagan well into the present day. and yet we learned about john winthrop in 1630 and we don't learn as much about the man who
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was to his right just like we spend more time on massachusetts then in the american southwest. he, like winthrop wanted to practice his religion and wanted to practice in freedom and was not allowed to practice by the authorities who were in power again just like the pilgrims and the and and the spanish catholics who in 1675 arrest him along with other pueblo indians for practicing their pueblo religion and in fact they were charged with witchcraft by the spanish in the 17th century. the rest are brought to santa fe in what is known in mexico and whipped publicly. what you have here is a man who by all accounts is very charismatic and is transformed
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by this experience of public punishment in this persecution of his spiritual beliefs and conspires to start every full twitch becomes actually the most successful in american history and the knots in his rope are the communications systems he came up with to pass the word and each day it not was untied and by the rope had no not it means it had started. nevertheless despite the false start it was the most successful indian revolt in history and is indian allies managed to keep the spanish out of the bay from 1682 to 1692 so an important reminder that the fight for religious freedom isn't just among european settlers but there's another story here too and to get back to plymouth rock
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i'm going to leave with this idea which is you know why do we studied plymouth rock in our conception of colonial america more than we study -- an example which there are many elements to a collection of rocks in current day arizona and mexico. this is called newspaper rock and have been carved for thousands of years by pueblo indians. the pueblo indians like him as ways to leave traces of their family to offer spiritual interpretations and to keep the calendar. so just like plymouth rock we see all of these things away to leave the symbol the mark of the puritan the puritan migration, spiritual meaning certainly as a
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place where the pilgrims are memorialized for their settlement to pursue freedom from religious persecution in europe and calendar events. 16 twentieths the year so what i'm saying here is these rocks created by indigenous people and european settlers on the other have similar task in terms of the land that human beings are celebrating in america. why is it that we tend to focus almost exclusively on things like gone through and the 13 seaboard colonies than we do on stories like his and such as newspaper rock. why don't we study those more often but what i would like to suggest is that i think that america which has been dubbed a vast early america of early
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american history and culture it's so much more interesting than the 13 original colonies of america but encompasses the 13 colonies certainly but there's a lot more we can learn about the past. it's a history that mimics the history. i'm looking forward to some questions which we have time for. since everyone has their video often i can't really see your faces to call on you just chime in if you have a question and if people step over one another we will just manage that. comments or questions? >> it's a sara. i like your point about why we don't focus on certain things and plymouth rock in
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massachusetts you say look at the rock that we got. we don't focus on other events like i didn't even know about the american who did all of those wonderful acts. i think if people open their eyes they expand on what's true and what's not. do your own research of that case. >> i love what you said about doing your own research and what you do in terms of historical interpretations. your interpretation of history can legitimately the different than mine. you need to look at the other sources as a primary source. in and one other thing that's
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interesting is that they are not primary sources in the sense that they -- we can talk about them as resources like we did today but they are someone's interpretation of the past. which is one reason why they get so contested so often, right? any other questions? >> i but your comment about your discussion about william berg was interesting but i found myself quite horrified a couple of weeks ago visiting colonial williamsburg. they had someone out portraying andrew carter who is of course of the same sort of caliber and the elite group as william berg and who in my opinion did some equally deplorable things to his population and i was quite surprised to see an interpreter
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portraying him as a living history site because it just felt, i mean i don't know i would be interested to hear your opinion on that because i did know what to say. >> that's another excellent point to make and i think that, the thing is if you don't know again to sara's point if you haven't done a deep dive into the history how would you know? there is the simple story which is the virginia gentleman who in the case of william berg collected lots of books and wrote a very informative history although again showing the reasons -- then national history focus of the dividing line between virginia is a valuable
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historical source but if you look at william berg's personal life is sort of messy and complicated but that is as you point out not something that the landing carteret williamsburg is not the landing carter who -- so i think it's a tough decision and i think it's come out most clearly with things you don't talk so much about the scores because it doesn't get important american story until ben and thomas jefferson is a perfect example, the man who talks about equality while holding people in slavery and the controversial than a controversial now relationship with sally hemings.
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you have landon carter and you have thomas jefferson. these men are in some cases the most horrifying thing about them is that they are not unusual. this is in some ways a very american story which is something to be reckoned with. there's a landing carter story that you could tell in williamsburg but i hope they are making an effort to give you the flip side of that. and that is the conundrum with places like that. you just go and if you learn anything about it you can do your own research and check it out on the internet but one of the founders of richmond and the fact that he owned a lot of the property and established the
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city nothing is mentioned about the people and nothing is mentioned about his the fact that property that he owned and was possessed in the first place. there are many complicated layers to him and one of the things that monuments were that they take the form of statues like i said at the beginning mother nature tents to simplify things much more than an the past. it was plymouth rock there is an inspiring story that we love to think about for good reasons and it is critically important in the historical experience in america but why not also tell the other side of the story that monuments don't often allow us
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the ability to dive into it in terms of complexity. i'm just glad i'm not in charge of running a historical interpretation of the colonial site. there would be a lot of tough decisions. does anyone else have any comments or questions to offer? >> i would like to make a comment. we have this myth in school starting at the elementary school, so where do we start to correct history? >> i think one of the problems is if you're an elementary schoolteacher and you are teaching columbus in kindergarten how detailed kindergarten is the real story about columbus without horrifying than? he calls people to do things to
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talk about things that are not appropriate for five a 6-year-old so what do we do with that and again these are complicated questions in terms of how you approach them but i think it starts an elementary school for example and why not make an effort to tell stories of him alongside with stories of puritans. you don't necessarily dive straight into the brutal ugliness of colonial history in the most terrifying iterations so that's one way to do it. i would be interested next week to discuss how you all would do this and how when weather this course would change how you would choose to talk about
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thanksgiving with your family for example. i think that these are important questions and how when why we choose to look at history is vitally important regardless of the level of education you are talking about and a lot of americans emerge from our system of education due to a variety of factors everything from teaching to task to the classes you take that we end up i think so many of us don't think of history as presented through historical interpretations and those places by the way monuments and historical sites are doing some interpretation out there. in addition to landing carter also does a fantastic groundbreaking work on the
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history of slavery in america so personally what i would say is to include as much history as possible. have the newspaper along side plymouth rock and maybe the bocco talking to columbus in a sort of dialogue in the 16th century and are in two policies put in place by columbus. i also hope this puts the book in broader context. i think the moral of the story can be applied to our discussion of the colonial american past. any one else before and this q&a?
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>> i have a question in the rotunda and wondered how you think it should be handled because i think others would preferred knowledge men and celebration. tourism is an important form of education. >> for their skill artistry and beauty so to your point a lot of monument controversy for example a lot are hollow and made out of cheap metal statues turned out
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in the beginning of the 20th century. so it's different to talk about it from an artistic standpoint something like chapel hill being toppled versus the slashing and burning of >> it is a fabulous way to both allow the original work of art to stay, but also speak to -- speak to its limitations and its problems, and what it does to
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the history. that type of artistic pushback, which i think is really helpful because i think sometimes people don't know the histories of these complicated complex historical artifacts, and i think that discussion and education is the first step to correcting that, right? i mean, i think say what you will about the project is it's gotten people discussing jamestown and the history is of slavery in colonial america in ways i think most of us would agree have not been as widely done in years, right, if ever. and so i think that art like that in the rotunda, if the counterinterpretation is presented properly could really be a powerful tool. again, not an easy question to answer; right? >> so i think with that unless anyone has any parting words,
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i'm going to end this session and say i'm really looking forward to hearing next week what you all think about the monuments and also how your conception of what colonial american history has changed throughout the course of this class. and, you know, i think that each of you have shown really fantastic, fantastic ways of wrestling with the complexities of the past, and i think that considering how we choose to memorialize and celebrate colonial american history, which elements of it, whose history and why, are things that i hope you don't stop thinking and te
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story of the governor and his family who fled the city on the eve of the american revolution. >> here at the colonial williamsburg foundation. i work with not only our textile and quilt and needle work collection but with furnishing all the exhibition sites

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