The Other Side

History records that the Jamestown colonists overpowered the Indians. But it didn't have to work that way

The view of the people who met the ships was very different from that of the newcomers aboard them--and that of most historical writings since. The native people (collectively called the Powhatan) did not write it because their society was nonliterate, but it can be reconstructed from their actions, recorded by the English. The task is not an easy one, for the new arrivals had blinkers on. The "Strangers," as the Powhatan called them, assumed that their lies about being mere visitors driven into Chesapeake Bay by the Spanish were taken seriously by credulous native people lacking experience with Europeans. That...

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