publication . Article . 1920

Plymouth's Debt to the Indians

Lincoln N. Kinnicutt;
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  • Published: 01 Oct 1920 Journal: Harvard Theological Review, volume 13, pages 345-361 (issn: 0017-8160, eissn: 1475-4517, Copyright policy)
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press (CUP)
Abstract
In considering the relations of the early settlers of Massachusetts and the Indians it is greatly to be regretted that the Red Men possessed no civilized method by which they could leave a record of their own ideas, their own thoughts, and their own reasons for their actions, and that consequently nothing has survived except through tradition or through the medium of records compiled and written by the invaders of their country. All that we really know is the White Man's version; he has always been the judge, the jury, and the advocate for the plaintiff, all in one. The defense has had no means of being heard except through the plaintiff's lawyers, whose knowledge, even of the Indian language, was very slight. Certainly a unique trial. When we stop for a few minutes in our present energetic, busy, hurrying everyday life, and consider the luxury in which we now live, our comfortable homes, our variety of food, our steam cars, our motor cars, our telegraph and telephone, all of which we now demand as necessities and as our lawful rights, it is almost impossible to realize that three hundred years ago in this same land, in our own Massachusetts, for one winter and more or less for two years, our ancestors were absolutely dependent on the Indians for food sufficient to sustain life.
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free text keywords: Religious studies, Law, History, Debt, media_common.quotation_subject, media_common, White (horse), Variety (linguistics), Hurrying, Economy, Plaintiff, Nothing, Everyday life, Jury
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