In 1907, an international exposition was held to celebrate the three hundredth anniversary of the English settlement at Jamestown,Virginia—and incidentally to celebrate the nation's new status as global power following the Spanish-American War. The Powhatan Indians, the original inhabitants who greeted the Jamestown colonists, were at that time seeking ways to demonstrate that they still existed and to improve their conditions,having been marginalized over three centuries. This article explores the ways in which these performances of identity-construction were intertwined at the exposition.
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American Society for Ethnohistory