North Carolina, USA

Analysis – The Only Land They Knew

The Only Land They Knew: The Tragic Story of the American Indians in the Old South (J. Leitch Wright, Jr., The Free Press, 1981) – excerpt: The Original Southerners.

True knowledge of the intricate workings of the pre-contact southern Indian civilization is elusive to grasp.  Despite this limitation, author and historian J. Leitch Wright, Jr. looks beyond historiography to put together a convincing and alternative picture that contradicts the oft-accepted stories of primitive, promiscuous and violent natives.  Instead, Wright paints a picture of a thriving and organized Indian civilization well on its way to achieving potential on par with Aztec and Inca civilizations. (p. 66)  He suggests that the Indians may have had a much larger influence on earlier colonial society than was once thought.

To achieve this perspective…

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