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The Yamasee Indians

From Florida to South Carolina

Denise I. Bossy

Publisher: University of Nebraska Press
Imprint: University of Nebraska Press
Published: 11/2018
Pages: 402
Subject: Social Science
eBook ISBN: 9781496212276


2019 William L. Proctor Award from the Historic St. Augustine Research Institute The Yamasee Indians are best known for their involvement in the Indian slave trade and the eighteenth-century war (1715–54) that took their name. Yet, their significance in colonial history is far larger than that. Denise I. Bossy brings together archaeologists of South Carolina and Florida with historians of the Native South, Spanish Florida, and British Carolina for the first time to answer elusive questions about the Yamasees' identity, history, and fate. Until now scholarly works have rarely focused on the Yamasees themselves. In southern history, the Yamasees appear only sporadically outside of slave raiding or the Yamasee War. Their culture and political structures, the complexities of their many migrations, their kinship networks, and their survival remain largely uninvestigated. The Yamasees' relative obscurity in scholarship is partly a result of their geographic mobility. Reconstructing their past has posed a real challenge in light of their many, often overlapping, migrations. In addition, the campaigns waged by the British (and the Americans after them) in order to erase the Yamasees from the South forced Yamasee survivors to camouflage bit by bit their identities.The Yamasee Indians recovers the complex history of these peoples. In this critically important new volume, historians and archaeologists weave together the fractured narratives of the Yamasees through probing questions about their mobility, identity, and networks.  


Denise I. Bossy is an associate professor of history at the University of North Florida, Jacksonville.Alan Gallay is the Lyndon B. Johnson Chair of U.S. History at Texas Christian University. He has authored and edited many books, including Voices of the Old South: Eyewitness Accounts, 1528–1861; The Indian Slave Trade: The Rise of the English Empire in the American South, 1670–1717; and Indian Slavery in Colonial America (Nebraska, 2010).


"This impressive anthology tells the remarkable story of the Yamasee Indians, and in the telling, reveals the opportunities, upheavals, and strategies for survival of Native communities living on the edge of an expanding European empire."—Robbie Ethridge, professor of anthropology at the University of Mississippi and author of From Chicaza to Chickasaw: The European Invasion and the Transformation of the Mississippian World, 1540–1715  

"A much-needed, remarkably thorough, and impressively interdisciplinary investigation of a critically important but all-too-often-misunderstood Native nation. Anyone with an interest in the early American South and its people should read this book."—Joshua Piker, editor of the William and Mary Quarterly, Omohundro Institute of Early American History and Culture, and professor of history at the College of William & Mary

"This anthology makes a fine addition to the extant scholarship on the Yamasee people, offers a balanced juxtaposition of disciplinary and thematic approaches to the subject, and builds on the scholarship that has come before while casting an eye toward what might be some promising areas for future study. The chapters all interconnect in ways that bespeak a kind of collective and collaborative approach to the topic at hand."—James Taylor Carson, professor and head of the School of Humanities, Languages, and Social Science at Griffith University in Brisbane and author of  Thee Columbian Covenant: Race and the Writing of American History