Ahead of the 400th anniversary of the first Thanksgiving, a George Washington University professor offers a new look at the Plymouth colony's founding events with the Wampanoag people at the heart of the story.
David J. Silverman delivers [the story] in astonishing detail in This Land Is Their Land: The Wampanoag Indians, Plymouth Colony, and the Troubled History of Thanksgiving, recovering the nuances of Wampanoag personalities and power-plays to a greater degree than most lay readers of American history would believe possible ... His pointed, lucid prose makes his book as deeply engaging as it is sobering. He also provides helpful maps and an indispensable glossary to help keep track of the many Native American figures in the story, especially those known by multiple names.
This publication is well researched and includes many contemporary illustrations and maps as well as a glossary of key native people and places referenced in the text. It should be required reading for how not to treat indigenous peoples. Although this has somewhat of a limited happy ending for the Wampanoags, it cannot make up for what was done to them. It certainly set the tone for what happened to other Native groups who suffered for our Manifest Destiny
Focusing on the Wampanoag and their Native American neighbors in New England, historian Silverman...repositions the Wampanoag-pilgrim relationship within the region’s history and brings its complexity to life ... Linking this history to a present in which New England Indians observe a Day of Mourning on the third Thursday in November, Silverman’s highly recommended work enlightens as it calls into question persistent myths about the origins of Thanksgiving.