Through the 1700s and early 1800s, Creek nationalism had the potential to both assert political autonomy and devolve into catastrophe. Projected externally, Creek nationalism engaged Euro-Americans and afforded room for local negotiation among towns and clans. However, the nationalist dynamic shifted with increased external pressure and the centralization of domestic political authority. Embodied in the suppression of retaliatory killings, the nationalist assertion of control fundamentally changed Creek country and had broad cultural ramifications. The push for exclusive authority over domestic justice forced each Creek to evaluate clan, town, and national loyalties, contributing to the many divisions leading up to the 1813 Creek War.

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