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December 03 , 2007

Creek Paths and Federal Roads

Indians, Settlers, and Slaves and the Making of the American South


In Creek Paths and Federal Roads, Angela Pulley Hudson offers a new understanding of the development of the American South by examining travel within and between southeastern Indian nations and the southern states, from the founding of the United States until the forced removal of southeastern Indians in the 1830s.
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During the early national period, Hudson explains, settlers and slaves made their way along Indian trading paths and federal post roads, deep into the heart of the Creek Indians' world. Hudson focuses particularly on the creation and mapping of boundaries between Creek Indian lands and the states that grew up around them; the development of roads, canals, and other internal improvements within these territories; and the ways that Indians, settlers, and slaves understood, contested, and collaborated on these boundaries and transit networks.

While she chronicles the experiences of these travelers – Native, newcomer, free, and enslaved – who encountered one another on the roads of Creek country, Hudson also places indigenous perspectives squarely at the center of southern history, shedding new light on the contingent emergence of the American South.

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