Dr. Helen Hornbeck Tanner, a senior research fellow at the Newberry Library, studied American Indian and colonial American history for over six decades. In this interview she discusses little-known themes including African and Indian coexistence and cooperation, beginning in 1619 in the Chesapeake Bay region, and spanning Louisiana, Minnesota, New York, Northern Mexico, Ohio, Spanish Florida, and Texas in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, including an Underground Railroad from Michigan into Canada. Also discussed are a system of inter-Indian diplomacy that stretched across the United States east of the Rocky Mountains and the long history of attempts by the U.S. government to assimilate American Indians.

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