Rapid Approximation: African Americans and the Transformation of Muskogee Society, 1700-1819
Keywords:African-Americans, Africans, Creek Native Americans, Muskogees, slavery, Native American slavery, African-American slavery
AbstractFor historians of the Southeast few questions inspire more debate than that of what role Africans and African Americans played in Creek Indian society. Long ignored by scholars, the interplay between persons of native and African descent recently came back to the attention of academics. However, these studies have thus far failed to recognize certain cultural cues of both Creeks (also known as Muskogees) and blacks in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. In fact, contact between these groups led to a transformative process within both ethnic spheres. This paper explores the ways in which Indians and ethnic Africans interacted in the Muskogee world and demonstrates that contact with blacks resulted in the end of one Muskogean confederacy and the rise of another.