Unconquered: The Iroquois League at War in Colonial America
Unconquered explores the complex world of Iroquois warfare, providing a narrative overview of nearly two hundred years of Iroquois conflict during the colonial era of North America. Detailing Iroquois wars against the French, English, Americans, and a host of Indian enemies, Unconquered builds upon decades of modern scholarship to reveal the vital importance of warfare in Iroquois society and culture, at the same time exploring the diverse motivations that guided Iroquois warfare. Economic competition and rivalry for trade were important factors in Iroquois warfare, but they often provided less motivation for waging war than Iroquoian spiritual and cultural beliefs, including the important tradition of the "mourning war." Nor were European agendas particularly important to Iroquois warfare, except in that they occasionally coincided with Iroquois designs. Europeans influenced and incited, both directly and indirectly, conflict within the Iroquois League and with other Indian nations, but the peoples of the Iroquois League waged war according to their own cultural beliefs and by their own rules. In reality, the Iroquoi League rarely waged war against anyone. Rather its individual member nations drove the warfare often attributed to the whole, creating a shifting, amorphous political and military position that allowed member nations to pursue separate policies of war and peace against common foes and multiple enemies. Unconquered also seeks to dispel longstanding beliefs about the invincible Iroquois "empire," myths that have been dispelled by focused academic studies, but still retain a powerful resonance among popular conceptions of the Iroquois League. While the Iroquois created far-reaching networks of trade and destroyed or dispersed Indian peoples along their borders, they created no expansive territorial empires. Nor were Iroquois warriors unequaled in battle. Europeans, Americans, and Indians defeated Iroquois warriors and burned Iroquois villages as often as they tasted defeat, and on more than one occasion they brought the Iroquois League to the brink of utter ruin. Yet the Iroquois were never completely destroyed. Because they waged war as individual members of a loosely united, voluntary league, rather than as a unified political state, they remained unconquered, retaining influence and power longer than any other native nation in North America, and providing for their exulted status in the history of American Indian peoples during the age of European colonization.
What people are saying - Write a review
We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.
Other editions - View all
accepted Albany Algonquins alliance allies allowed ambush American army attack battle became began Brant British called campaign Canada captives Cayugas central Champlain colonial continued council Covenant Chain death Delawares destroyed Dutch early economic Empire enemies England English European fight fire Five Nations force Fort France French furs houses hunting Hurons important Indian nations Iroquois League Iroquois nations Iroquois warriors Jesuit Relations Johnson joined killed Lake lands Lawrence leaders leaving living Longhouse major military Mohawks Montreal mourning moved native needed neutrality Niagara North America NYCD Ohio Country Oneidas Onondagas Ordeal party peace Pennsylvania perhaps political population Press prisoners quickly raids reached region remained Richter River secure Seeds Senecas settlements side Six Nations soldiers southern Steele Susquehanna Susquehannocks territory took town trade Tuscaroras University Valley village warfare Warpaths wars western York