Volume 2 in Race and Culture in the American West
University of Oklahoma Press
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Good. 480 pages. Softcover. Brand new book. NATIVE AMERICANS. Captures the distinct identity and history of the Seminole maroons Popularly known as "Black Seminoles, " descendants of the Seminole freedmen of Indian Territory are a unique American cultural group. Now Kevin Mulroy examines the long history of these people to show that this label denies them their rightful distinctiveness. To correct misconceptions of the historical relationship between Africans and Seminole Indians, he traces the emergence of Seminole-black identity and community from their eighteenth-century Florida origins to the present day. Arguing that the Seminole freedmen are neither Seminoles, Africans, nor "black Indians, " Mulroy proposes that they are maroon descendants who inhabit their own racial and cultural category, which he calls "Seminole maroon." Mulroy plumbs the historical record to show clearly that, although allied with the Seminoles, these maroons formed independent and autonomous communities that dealt with European American society differently than either Indians or African Americans did. Mulroy describes the freedmen's experiences as runaways from southern plantations, slaves of American Indians, participants in the Seminole Wars, and emigrants to the West. He then recounts their history during the Civil War, Reconstruction, enrollment and allotment under the Dawes Act, and early Oklahoma statehood. He also considers freedmen relations with Seminoles in Oklahoma during the twentieth and early twenty-first centuries. Although freedmen and Seminoles enjoy a partially shared past, this book shows that the freedmen's history and culture are unique and entirely their own. Kevin Mulroy, Ph.D., is Associate University Librarian for Academic Services, UCLA Library, and author of Freedom on the Border: The Seminole Maroons in Florida, the Indian Territory, Coahuila, and Texas. "An excellent work. Highly recommended."-Choice "Mulroy's history of the Seminole freedmen is insightful, thoughtful, and needed. It fills a gap in the scholarship on Indian-black relations. [T]his book provides a thorough and much needed history of the Seminole freedmen, while offering new insights into Indian-black relations."-New Mexico Historical Review "An outstanding [very] stimulating and well-documented work."-American Historical Review "Kevin Mulroy's carefully researched and colorful history of black Seminoles is one of the most significant books written on this subject to date."-Journal of the West "Exhaustively researched, the volume effectively recasts the history of Africans and the Seminole nation in ways that will challenge both scholars and the contemporary debate."-Journal of American History "This meticulously researched book makes a vital contribution to our understanding of the history and legacies of African American/Native American intersections."-Journal of American Ethnic History "Mulroy's book is sure to become the definitive account of the Seminole Freedman experience, and his interpretation challenges long-held myths concerning black-Indian relations in the American West. [We] should all be thrilled with the arrival of this long-awaited study of the Seminole Freedmen. Kevin Mulroy has written a marvelously challenging, engaging, and entertaining account of this important saga in the history of the American West. This is history the way it should be written."-Great Plains Quarterly "[This] well-written and thoroughly researched study does much to delineate the often misunderstood relationship between these two communities. Moreover, it is a handsomely produced volume with excellent documentation, photographs, and maps."-Western Historical Quarterly "Mulroy's monograph adds immeasurably to the historical picture of African and Native American people."-Ethnohistory "There is much to commend in Mulroy's assessment. It is exhaustively researched and carefully conceptualized. [Those] interested in Florida or Seminole history...
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