More than a footnote: Native American and African American relations on the southern colonial frontier, 1513-1763
Fritz, Timothy David
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During the colonial period of United States history, the area that became the American Southeast was the scene of vast human migrations, epidemic diseases, international conflicts, and multicultural interaction. The relationship formed by Native Americans and Africans played an important role in the social and national development of this region. Current historiography focuses on this relationship in later historical periods, but its origins have received less attention than its significance merits. The purpose of this research is to provide a general history of Native American and African contact on the southern colonial frontier and place the relationship formed within the greater international border struggle between the British colonies and Spanish Florida. This research makes use of various primary sources including personal correspondence, state economic records, and military reports from repositories such as the South Carolina Historical Society, the Georgia Historical Society, the British Records Office, and the Spanish Archives of the Indies. These documents combined with secondary literature allows for a thorough analysis of the cultural exchanges facilitated by the institution of slavery in the colonial south and the problems these relationships caused for British colonial security. The result of this study will illuminate how multiethnic relationships formed through British colonial slavery systems were exploited by the Spanish, caused legal paranoia and retaliation from the South Carolina and Georgia colonies, and changed the racial views of southern Native American tribes.