Our Savage Neighbors
Our Savage Neighbors: How Indian War Transformed Early America by Peter Silver
The colonial communities of eighteenth-century America were perhaps the most racially, ethnically, and religiously mixed societies on earth. Lutherans and Presbyterians, Quakers, Catholics, and Covenentors, the Irish, the German, the French, the Welsh—groups that rarely intermingled in Europe—were thrown together when they confronted the American countryside. Rather than embracing the inescapable and ever-increasing diversity, the European settler communities had their very existence threatened by the tensions and fears among their own groups. Only through “Indian-hating”—in both military and rhetorical forms—could the splintered colonists find a common ground.
In potent, graceful prose that sensitively unearths the social complexity and tangled history of colonial relations, Peter Silver gives us an astonishingly vivid picture of eighteenth-century America. He straddles cultural history, political history, social history, and ethnohistory to offer groundbreaking insights into the seminal forces that continue to shape the United States today.