A Short History of American Capitalism
 Copyright © 2002 by Meyer Weinberg. All Rights Reserved.  

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Chapter 2


Native Americans civilized the western hemisphere thousands of years ago. With no predecessors to show the way, these pioneers depended wholly on their own resourcefulness. Unaided, they fashioned societies and cultures, technologies and means of production, roads and dwellings. None of their successors faced comparable obstacles.

A profound communalism marked the societies they constructed. Rights of ownership or use of items of everyday living such as food and fuel lay in the groups rather than in individuals. All able members contributed their labor to common tasks. And all had a valid claim on the group's supply of daily necessities. A principle of sharing rather than individual accumulation of wealth permeated their economic life. Virtually everywhere in Native America prosperity for some and poverty for others was unthinkable. Kinship apportioned life's goods and burdens

Economic power was almost unknown in Native society. Everyday economic life did not produce differential holdings of individual wealth which could then lead to widespread subordination of many to a few. On the other hand, before 1492 some Native societies were quite familiar with social inequality, rank, and in some cases, slavery.

America's initial non-Native economy was based on conquest over the Indians. It was a plunder economy. By severely excluding Native Americans from its enjoyment, Americans made the land into a central means of production for the continent's first bourgeois society. The rule of unequal private property replaced communal purpose and the standard of social inequality entered into American life. It never departed.

Deprived of their historic land holdings, Indians also lost control of their traditional livelihood. Agriculture, hunting, and gathering all required land, the principal means of production. They could continue to fashion various productive implements such as spades for digging but these could not be employed without access to land. The same held true for animal traps and other technology. Thus, if they were to remain in their traditional areas of the country, their only alternative was to work for the new owners of the land. In other words, they would become proletarians.

Charles Tilly explains that "proletarianization is the set of processes that increases the number of people who lack control over the means of production and who survive by selling their labor power." 1 The new owners of the land could earn profit simply from holding onto the land and speculating on future rises in its value. They could, however, gain far more by employing workers on the land. Native Americans helped fill that need along with Africans. For many years, both constituted an enslaved working class, much unlike the case in England itself where slavery was a rare occurrence. Both groups along with poor whites became semi-slaves in the form of indentured servants. During the colonial period, comparatively few worked for wages although a number of Indians came to do so as indicated below.

English settlers enslaved Indians from earliest times. In the Pequot War of 1637, Indian men were massacred while Indian women and children were peddled on the slave markets.2 Later in the century, as part of King Phillip's War of 1675-1676, Indian slavery was widely practiced. Both in Massachusetts and Plymouth colonies, Indians were sold into slavery. 3 In Rhode Island, soldiers who had aided in capturing such prisoners were awarded shares of the proceeds.4 Throughout the 18th century, Rhode Island acknowledged the legality of "perpetual bondage", the first mention of Indian slavery occurring in 1704. The colony's newspapers ran advertisements for runaway Indian enslaved workers just as did their southern neighbors for black slaves.5 Both in the South and in Rhode Island, prices of enslaved black workers ran about twice those of enslaved Indian workers.6 The differential may have measured the relative difficulty of black slaves escaping rather than any difference in productivity. During the American Revolutionary War, Rhode Island offered freedom to enslaved Indian or African workers who volunteered for the revolutionary forces.7

Indians were also enslaved across the continent, to the west, sometimes by other Indians. Apaches, who were on both the receiving and giving ends of slavery, were not unique in this respect. On the slave markets in the Southwest:

Apache children were estimated to be worth 30-40 pesos, or the value of a good mule. An adult Apache slave was worth four oxen.8

In their slaving activities, Apaches might capture Indian children or Spanish offspring either for sale or their own use. The Spanish rulers of the Southwest, meanwhile, constructed a web of exploitative relationships—including slavery—over a number of Pueblos. In 1680, the Pueblos revolted against the Spanish—an event all but unknown in the English colonies to the east—and killed 400 Spaniards; another 1,900 fled. Howard Lamar specifies that "this revolt was not an Indian-white frontier war or a race war in the usual sense of such terms, but a revolt of slave or bonded labor."9 Many of the Southwestern enslaved workers were bound for a decade, after which they were freed. Cut off from all tribal connections, however, they occupied the lowest rung in Southwestern Spanish society.10

By the 17th century, Thomas Hobbes and John Locke had posited an individual whose essence consisted of proprietorship over his own person. Owning himself, he owed nothing to society. He was free insofar as he existed independently of others' wills. Persons who were economically dependent on others were therefore not free. An unceasing struggle for hegemony raged between men, and the market was the battlefield. Social relations were seen as market relations among proprietors of various selves, some their own. The struggle of owners for dominance was said to be the natural condition of man. To safeguard that natural striving, and especially to ensure the security of its outcome, government was instituted. Protection of individually-accumulated capital was the most fundamental function of government, a function said to be required not by common decision but by the very nature of man. Macpherson calls this conception "possessive individualism"3

Wars against Indians were thus a principal means of acquiring land and helping solve the labor shortage confronting southern planters.11 In the South, the spread of black and Indian slavery created special problems as well as opportunities for profit. As Charles Hudson writes:

The whites lived in mortal fear of black insurrections, and they were even more afraid that the blacks and Indians would combine forces. … To heighten enmity between the races they used black troops in military actions against the Indians and likewise used Indians against blacks as slave-catchers and also to suppress slave insurrections.12

Cherokees in South Carolina agreed in 1730 "to seize and return runaway [black] slaves, upon the promise of a gun and match coat for each slave delivered."13 Nevertheless, just nine years later, a large-scale African slave revolt—the Stono Rebellion—broke out in South Carolina.

The numbers of enslaved Indian workers are impossible to calculate. On the Northwest Coast, Harold Driver estimates they constituted from ten to thirty percent of the total Indian population.14In South Carolina during the early 18th century they numbered about fifteen percent of the population.15In Rhode Island, where Indians and Africans intermarried on a large scale, they generally were raised as Indians. (In 19th century Massachusetts they were sometimes counted as blacks.) During colonial times Massachusetts required Christianized Indians to live in separate villages but they were not typically enslaved.

Extremely few Indians seem to have been indentured servants. A number, however, were consigned to such a status when they were unable to pay fines; some of these ended up in overseas English colonies.16 From early on, authorities in the Massachusetts Bay Colony were alarmed at the large number of Indian servants, and in 1631 required prior approval of such arrangements by the Court of Assistants.17 After the end of King Phillip's War in 1676, some Indian servants could still be found but rarely afterwards is there further mention of them.18 In distant California, under Spanish and Mexican rule, thousands of Indians were compelled to work on religious missions. Their status was somewhere between slavery and indentured servitude and their numbers fell from 130,000 to 83,000 between 1769 and 1832.19 They performed highly skilled work as well as simple labor.

Before the Euroamerican conquest, wage labor did not exist among the Indians.20 Economic relations were guided primarily by kinship and group solidarity. The fur trade rested on a vast expenditure of Indian labor power but the European traders did not pay much for it. Indian women performed most of the preliminary processing of the skins which were then transported for sale by Indian men. Traders avoided paying for anything by precise wages. The labor force of the fur industry numbered some 160,000 persons but only 2,000 or 1.25 percent were wage or salary workers.21 Nearly all the rest were Indian people legally regarded as independent contractors. In this way, the company traders could minimize their outlay on labor services. Occasionally, Indians would be hired to serve as porters.

In Alaska, at the end of the 18th century, the Russian - American Company was authorized by its royal charter to compel males to work as wage-earning hunters. Neal Salisbury notes that "in keeping with the Russian practice at home [in Alaska], the Orthodox Church was subordinated to secular authority, effectively stifling missionary criticisms of company employees' exploitation of native workers and sexual abuse of native women."22

Few Indian workers received any cash wages from their employers. When goods were used as payment, workers were charged some 600 percent over cost.23 This led to large debt burdens which often eventuated in debt peonage. The relationship, observes Rhoda Gilman," became far more like employment at piece work than independent barter."24 Food, guns, and ammunition were doled out in minimal amounts—on the one hand to minimize further financial risk and on the other, to reduce an ever-growing indebtedness. Prices assigned to the goods were known to have been marked up by as much as 2,000 percent.

During the colonial period, European thinkers and philosophers chattered on endlessly about the reputed inability of Native Americans to think rationally. Sometimes they meant the refusal of Natives to join in enriching themselves at the expense of their fellows. At other times they referred to the Native tendency to trap only as many fur animals as they needed instead of building up vast reserves for future trading purposes. Still another meaning was the Natives' willingness to exchange valuable furs for goods that were relatively cheap on European markets.

All three conceptions were overcome by European invaders through one simple mechanism whiskey. To be sure, whatever the occasional comforts of drink, heightened rationality was not one of them. British and French traders - as well as Americans later - used whiskey as a disorienting factor in Native society. Thus did Native American trappers become practitioners of "rational" economic behavior after the Western model.

"The Tuscarora," writes one anthropologist, "saw their land taken without proper compensation and their people captured for slaves, cheated by traders, and plied with liquor."25 An historian asserts that "furs, women, and liquor were common ingredients of the French frontier in North America." 26

Hiram Chittenden sums up the matter in several striking assertions: "Liquor was the most powerful weapon which the traders could employ in their struggles with one another . . . . The duplicity and crime for which this unhallowed traffic is responsible in our relations with the Indians have been equaled but seldom in even the most corrupt nations. … It is indeed impossible to exaggerate its importance."27 Rhoda Gilman, describing Indian life on the upper Mississippi, writes: "One widespread characteristic of Indian culture which persisted despite the new variety of goods available was indifference to acquiring wealth beyond the immediate need . … It was a major factor leading … [the trader] to introduce liquor."28 Sachems among the Iroquois of New York state around 1700 fought against the sale of rum by traders. In colonial New York, according to Thomas Norton, "so many people violated the liquor laws that the authorities had little chance of effectively handling the situation."29 By the 1770s, alcoholism was growing among the Indians. Some historians, swept away by the romance of the fur trade, view the operation of the liquor-fed traffic with equanimity: "Sensible fur men traded reasonable amounts of liquor for furs; foolish fur men depended heavily upon alcohol as a trade item."30

When Kenneth W. Porter set out to write his standard biography of John Jacob Astor, a fur trader par excellence, missing from any records were all traces of large-scale purchases of whiskey by Astor's American Fur Company. Silence told all.

Aside from the fur trade, Indians could look forward only to occasional day-labor work. In 18th-century Rhode Island, Indians "provided cheap labor at a degraded status."31 After the third quarter of the 17th century in New England, "the Indians continued their descent to the position of a sub-proletariat. …"32 During the 19th century, Indian labor continued its decline.

Key to that decline was the ongoing transferal of Indian land. By 1791 the Iroquois alone had lost 11 million acres to white interests.33 Just four years earlier, Congress had adopted the Northwest Ordinance. This measure provided that the "lands and property [of Indians] shall never be taken from them without their consent . . . [and that] laws founded in justice and humanity shall from time to time be made, for preventing wrongs being done to them. …" Adopted in a burst of sanctimony, the Ordinance had little relation to the means actually used to wrest the land from the Indian. Thus, one day in 1835, two Senators—King of Georgia and Porter of Louisiana—engaged in debate on land. Porter was asking for a bill to increase the availability of federal land in his state. "There are," he explained pointedly, "but three ways of acquiring public land, viz.: to buy it, to steal it, or to beg it. We of the west need it, but are unable to buy it, so we beg it, because having no Cherokee [Indian] lands in the western states, we cannot steal it."34 Senator Porter was referring to the classic case of despoliation of Indian land in the United States that had occurred in the second and third decades of the century.

The American colonists developed elaborate justifications for separating the Indian from the land. In a now virtually forgotten 1823 Supreme Court case, however—Johnson and Graham's Lessee v. McIntosh—Chief Justice Marshall pragmatically announced that "conquest gives a title which the courts of the conqueror cannot deny, whatever the private and speculative opinions of individuals may be, respecting the original justice of the claim which has been successfully asserted."35

Justice Marshall thus paid hardly any heed to the pseudo-anthropological arguments that the Indian was a savage, knew nothing of property rights, was ignorant of tenure rules, was a "rude hunter," and the like:36

However extravagant the pretension of converting the discovery of an inhabited country into conquest may appear [he concluded], if the principle [of conquest] has been asserted in the first instance and afterward sustained; if a country has been acquired and held under it; if property of the great mass of the community originates in it, it becomes the law of the land, and cannot be questioned.

Nor did any branch of government question it. Between the passage of the Northwest Ordinance and the McIntosh ruling, the federal government moved from "laws founded in justice and humanity" to "conquest . . . as the law of the land." In the year of McIntosh the U.S. Army levied war against the American Indians; this was the first such army campaign west of the Mississippi.37 The conquest continued.

In 1833, while still under Mexican rule, the religious missions in California were dissolved. Both the land and the Indian forced laborers were redistributed. Elite Mexican ranchers—the Californios—quickly laid hold of much of the former mission lands. Salisbury writes that "the land and most of its improvements actually went to [Mexican] colonial officials and their relatives."38 Indians, who were supposed to receive land as well, got none. The laborers became employees who, after a time, were hopelessly indebted to the ranchers and were simple peons. Under American rule beginning in 1848, Indians lost the citizenship they had enjoyed under the Mexicans.

Indians in California were subjected to legal repression and death squads:

Outright extermination became deliberate policy as private military expeditions, funded by the state and federal governments, hunted down Indians in northern and mountainous areas. By 1860, more than 4,000 natives, representing 12 percent of the population, had died in these wars. 39

Richard White adds:

In the 1850s and 1860s white gangs raided villages, kidnapped the occupants, and sold them to farmers and ranchers. … Indian women and children were particular targets. The kidnappers often killed the parents of the children they seized. When children tried to escape, whites often hunted them down and killed them.40

In sum: "The fighting was not warfare; it was Indian hunting—the stalking and killing of human beings as if they were animals."41 Historian William Robbins described the killing program as "extermination and cultural genocide".42

According to a California law passed in 1850, any white person could request that a "loitering" Indian be declared a vagrant and fined. If unable to pay the fine, the Indian could be auctioned off to serve as much as four months' labor. White observes: "If the Indians then attempted to leave, they were unemployed under the law and were once more liable to arrest."43 It was not until 1863 that this system ended.

The Choctaw lived in the South for many years where they developed a cattle economy before the late 1820s. "Sons and daughters received from their families, if possible, a cow and calf, a sow and piglet, and a mare and colt. As the child grew older, his or her herd multiplied and provided the owner with a sound source of income and subsistence in adulthood."44 However, just as this system was consolidated with a Choctaw cattle herd of more than 43,000 head in the late 1820's, disaster struck. The federal government compelled thousands of Southern Indians to move to Indian Territory (primarily present-day Oklahoma).

During 1831-1833 the Choctaw reservation was established. It extended over 6.8-million acres, including nearly two million acres of virgin timberland in Southeast Oklahoma.45 Choctaw watched over this valuable resource with great care, to prevent its commercialization.

Lumbering for the purpose of building homes and fences was legal, but the harvesting and exporting of lumber were prohibited. The tribal governments rigorously prosecuted smugglers when they had the opportunity, but they were unable to slow the timber-smuggling business.46

Over the years virtually all the Choctaw timberlands ended up as the private property of local lumber producers. In 1969, the largest of these sold its holdings of some 1.8-million acres of land to the giant firm, Weyerhaeuser Company, in "the largest private timberland transaction recorded in the history of the United States timber industry."47

By this time, Choctaws constituted an impoverished labor force, only one-sixth of whom had full-time jobs. Union organization was weak in the area. The two counties housing the largest number of Choctaw had poverty rates of 37.1 and 45.4 percent. A saving feature was the possibility of subsistence activities such as hunting and fishing besides a bit of gardening. Meanwhile, "Weyerhaeuser paid a property tax rate of only $6.50 per acre in 1981 while agricultural producers in McCurtain County paid $17 to $25 per acre."48 Alternative employment was not easily available in the area. The Choctaw reservation shrank from nearly seven million to 65,000 acres.

Largely eliminated from east of the Mississippi by the time of the Civil War (1861-1865), Indian laborers found work in some capitalistic industries that arose in the West. Railroad building and maintenance was one such source. In 1880, the Laguna Pueblo signed an agreement with the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railroad which assured the Pueblo continued employment on railroad lines. Apparently, the agreement was in force for some years. When the road's shop personnel the country over went out on strike in 1922, Laguna workers were shipped to company yards in Richmond, California where they served as strikebreakers while living in boxcars.49 The building of transcontinental railroads in 1869 and afterwards opened up new mining areas in the West. In southern Arizona, Papagos Indians worked in newly-opened copper mines. Apaches in the same general area worked on farm and mining infrastructure.50

Indians in San Diego County were a significant part of the hired labor force: "For the urban San Diego workforce, coastal Native people, especially the southern Kumeyaays, were the dominant source of unskilled labor in the 1850-1920 period and also filled a large segment of the skilled labor market."51 Among the jobs they held were construction, wood-cutting, whaling, shipping, longshore and dock-working. In the rural areas of the county, Indians were busy protecting their hold on land. In the summer when some Indian villagers left for rounds of ranches and farms, "local whites entered the village, set fire to the homes, and took possession of the water supply and fields."52 In retaliation, Choctaw employed attorneys and pressed the Bureau of Indian Affairs successfully to grant new land.

The federal government adopted policies and practices that compelled Indians to enter wage employment. At times, federal Indian agents forced such movement by threatening to cut off rations.53 In 1889, U.S. Commissioner of Indian Affairs Thomas D. Morgan ordered that an "Indian who `habitually spends his time in idleness and loafing' should be deemed a vagrant and guilty of a misdemeanor."54 During the 1930s, federal authorities created conditions on the Navajo reservation that greatly expanded Indian movement into wage labor. A sheep-reduction program affected small herders while large herders—both Navajo and non-Navajo lessees—remained basically unchanged.55 Distribution of New Deal relief jobs was in the hands of wealthier Navajos who staffed the decision-making apparatus on the reservation. This, too, added to the pressure on poor Navajos to seek wage jobs. By 1940, the federal government itself was providing over four-fifths of the wage income on the reservation. In general, such federal wage programs were instituted for building infrastructure or to facilitate the investment of off-reservation private capital to exploit nearby natural resources. Educational policies in schools of the federal Bureau of Indian Affairs were designed to create a barely-skilled work force or unskilled labor.

Federal land policies declared to facilitate proprietary Indian farming frequently ended up only creating a low-paid farm-labor force. Such was the case for the Dawes Act of 1887 which was essentially a new way to transfer Indian lands out of Indian hands. This was accomplished by allotting Indian households from 40 to 100 acres of their collectively-owned land and then declaring the residual land as "surplus" available to be leased or purchased by non-Indians. Within the next 50 years Indians lost nearly two-thirds of the land they had held before the Dawes Act. In many instances, they became wage workers, at times on land they had recently owned.56 By 1930, 64.5 percent of Indian men were still employed in agriculture, but nearly half of these were farm laborers rather than farm operators.57 Twenty years earlier, in Michigan, 627 Indians were farm laborers while only 253 owned farms.58 A study of the effects of Dawes on the Santee Sioux during the twenty years preceding 1930 found that, "along with the decline in Indian farming came a decrease in school attendance, in increase in drunkenness, and an overall decline in group cooperation."59 Even though the Act was justified by federal authorities as designed to stimulate farming by Indians, between 1910 and 1930 Indian farm acreage fell from 2,903,276 to 2,423,421; at the same time, the average size of these farms declined from 146 to 90 acres.60

Overhanging the lives of American Indians during the 17th, 18th, and 19th centuries was the "biological havoc"61 of radical population decline. Early in the 17th century, whites in New England constituted a very small minority. Three-quarters way through the century the number of Indians fell from some 70,000 to less than 12,000,62 from a combination of wars waged by the English and other Indian nations, epidemics ignited by the English, and other causes. By the end of the century, Indians of southern New England held less than half the land they had owned earlier.63 In some Indian areas as many as 90 percent of the population died.64

In the colonial South, a similar trend set in with the arrival of the Spanish and English:65

1670  250,000 - 300,000
1700 100,000
1750 50,000

At the time of the American Revolution, Indians made up about four percent of the South's population. While spread throughout the region, they had occupied good cotton-growing lands in Georgia, Alabama, and elsewhere, while also finding themselves atop gold lands in the late 1820s. White political pressure to eject them from these valuable places increased, with fatal results:

Between 1820 and 1840, three-fourths of the 125,000 Indians living east of the Mississippi came under government removal programs; during the same period, between one-fourth and one-third of all Southern Indians lost their lives. By 1844 less than 30,000 Indians remained in the eastern United States, most of them located around Lake Superior.66

West of the Mississippi, matters were no more favorable. A thinning Native population facilitated the theft of Indian land. Throughout the country, Indians lost land at an increasing rate. Here is the record of Indian holdings for the late 19th century:67

1881 155,632,312 acres
1890  104,314,349 acres
1900  77,865,373 acres

While Indians possessed the land, it was not with a firm grasp because in this case the federal government controlled what it did not own.

Indians never owned land in the abstract, i.e., as real estate. They owned land in order to use it—for planting, hunting, gathering, or for residential purposes. Accumulating land in order to convert it later into other forms of wealth had no role in native thought.

Indian possession of land was perhaps the single greatest barrier to the formation of a wage-earning working class among Indians. By the 19th century, as we have seen, most of that land had been alienated by whites. One principal protection for the Indians still remained: the treaty system. Ever since earliest colonial times, such documents had been negotiated between Indians and whites. With few exceptions, colonists regarded such negotiations as, at best, necessary evils. Greatly outnumbered by Indians and properly fearful of the natives' individual fighting prowess, colonists trod with care in this area. As, however, population decline set in and colonists' military power developed, Indian tribal life became less vigorous and more subject to white pressures, economic and military. Under such circumstances, treaties were of little help.

In 1831, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that while Indian tribes were not nations like others, they could be dealt with as "domestic dependent nations," and so the treaty system continued. It lasted, however, for only another forty years. In the meantime, open warfare was waged by the U.S. Army against the "domestic dependent nations". Contrary to the letter and spirit of the Northwest Ordinance of 1787, the federal government expropriated Indian land prodigally. In 1871, Congress resolved "that hereafter no Indian nation or tribe within the territory of the United States shall be acknowledged or recognized as an independent nation, tribe, or power with whom the United States may contract by treaty."68 The measure was not retroactive and so existing treaties remained in force.

But even before 1871, federal laws and court decisions severely weakened the treaties. In 1862, Congress legitimated the unilateral voiding of Indian treaties if hostile acts were engaged in against the United States. Eight years later, a conflict between the 1866 treaty with Cherokees and the federal Internal Revenue Act was litigated in federal courts. The decision was favorable to the federal government which was given the right to collect taxes on the sale of tobacco raised on the Cherokee reservation even though such production was approved by the treaty. In 1902, in the Cherokee Nation v. Hitchcock case, the Supreme Court refused to enjoin the Secretary of the Interior from negotiating leases on minerals or oil located on the Cherokee reservation. The following year, in Lone Wolf v. Hitchcock, the Supreme Court declared flatly that "the power exists to abrogate the provisions of an Indian treaty."69 Of course, a treaty that can be abrogated by one side only is a caricature of a solemn undertaking between nations.

Federal authorities were increasingly hostile to Indians exercising independent economic action that would counter external pressures brought by the federal government. In the absence of tax revenues, federal land acquisition, and bureaucratic control of natural resources, Indians would be all the more pressed to seek livelihoods as wage workers. As the mirage of Indian sovereignty faded, the reality of proletarianization took more definite shape. At the same time, however, Indians fought to retain the remnants of the treaty system and the special consideration of Indian interests contained within it.70 Their sole refuge from proletarianization—i.e., the reservation system—afforded them less protection than ever.


Indian America was a communal society based on sharing and kinship which non-Natives converted into a plunder society. Warfare against the Indians aimed at transferring their land and utilizing their labor in the form of enslavement and semi-dependence. European fur traders used whiskey to deaden the Indians' judgment in trading matters. Legislation forbidding purchase of Indian lands was ignored and the Supreme Court provided justification for the "law" of conquest. Legal repression and death squads were utilized against the Indians who resisted these policies.

After the Civil War, federal troops continued to wage war against Native Americans. In addition, Indians contracted to provide common labor to railroads in the West as well as in mining and farming occupations. Meanwhile, Indian lands continued to be stolen with the blessing of federal authorities. The treaty system afforded Indians some protection but after 1871 no new treaties were signed. The treaty system and reservations constituted dwindling protection against proletarianization.



1. Charles Tilly, (Academic Press, 1981), p. 179. See "Proletarianization: Theory and Research," pp. 179-210 in the same source.

2. Francis Jennings, The Invasion of America. Indians, Colonialism, and the Cant of Conquest (Norton, 1976), p. 257. See also below, note number 42.

3. John A. Sainsbury, "Indian Labor in Early Rhode Island," New England Quarterly, 48 (1975) 382.

4. Ibid., p. 383.

5. Ibid., p. 386.

6. See Charles Hudson, The Southeastern Indians (University of Tennessee Press, 1976), p. 438 and Sainsbury, "Indian Labor in Early Rhode Island," p. 391.

7. Sainsbury, "Indian Labor in Early Rhode Island," p. 390.

8. Howard Lamar, "From Bondage to Contract. Ethnic Labor in the American West, 1600-1890," p. 297 in Steven Hahn and Jonathan Prude, eds., The Countryside in the Age of Capitalist Transformation. Essays in the Social History of Rural America (University of North Carolina Press, 1985).

9. Ibid., p. 298. For a somewhat different interpretation of the revolt, see Juan Goméz-Quiñones, Roots of Chicano Politics, 1600-1940 (University of New Mexico Press, 1994), pp. 25-26 and 31-33. See also the same author's Mexican American Labor, 1790-1990 (University of New Mexico Press, 1994), pp. 23-24 and 45-46. I have not yet seen Andrew L. Knaut, The Pueblo Revolt of 1680: Conquest and Resistance in Seventeenth-Century New Mexico (University of Oklahoma Press, 1997).

10. Richard White, "It's Your Misfortune and None of My Own." A History of the American West (University of Oklahoma Press, 1991), p. 13.

11.Theda Perdue in Frederick E. Hoxie, ed., Indians in American History (Harlan Davidson, 1988), p. 139.

12. Hudson, The Southeastern Indians, p. 448.

13. Eric R. Wolf, Europe and the People Without History (University of California Press, 1997), p. 203. (With a new preface.)

14. Harold E. Driver, Indians of North America (University of Chicago Press, 1961), p. 404.

15. Russell R. Menard, "Economic and Social Development of the South," p. 187 in Stanley L. Engerman and Robert E. Gallman, eds., The Cambridge Economic History of the United States, Volume I: The Colonial Era (Cambridge University Press, 1996).

16. Sainsbury, "Indian Labor in Early Rhode Island," pp. 381-382.

17. Neal Salisbury, Manitou and Providence. Indians, Europeans, and the Making of New England, 1500-1643 (Oxford University Press, 1982), p. 185.

18. Bruce G. Trigger, ed., Northeast, Volume 15 of Handbook of the North American Indians (Smithsonian Institution, 1978), p. 177.

19. Goméz-Quiñones, Mexican-American Labor, 1790-1990, p. 25. Salisbury writes that "the native population in the missionized area of California was reduced from approximately 72,000 Indians in 1770 to about 18,000 in 1830": Salisbury, Manitou and Providence, p. 44.

20. Martha C. Knack and Alice Littlefield, "Native American Labor. Retrieving History, Rethinking Theory," pp. 4-5 in Littlefield and Knack, eds., Native Americans and Wage Labor, Ethnohistorical Perspectives (University of Oklahoma Press, 1996): "The treatment of labor as a commodity within a cash economy, to be bought and sold on the open market, surely existed nowhere in North America before the arrival of Europeans."

21. Russell G. Rothney, Mercantile Capital and the Livelihood of Residents of the Hudson Bay Basin: A Marxist Interpretation (Master's thesis, University of Manitoba, 1975), p. 123.

22. Neal Salisbury, "The History of Native Americans From Before the Arrival of the Europeans and Africans Until the American Civil War," p. 42 in Engerman and Gallman, The Colonial Era.

23. Hiram M. Chittenden, The American Fur Trade of the Far West, 2 vols., revised edition (Barnes and Noble, 1937), I, 7.

24. Rhoda R. Gilman, "The Fur Trade in the Upper Mississippi Valley, 1630-1850," Wisconsin Magazine of History, 58 (Autumn, 1974), p. 18.

25. Bruce G. Trigger (ed.), Northeast, vol. 15 of Handbook of North American Indians (Wash., D.C.: Smithsonian Institution, 1978), p. 287.

26. Ibid., p. 604.

27. Hiram M. Chittenden, The American Fur Trade of the Far West, revised edition, 2 vols (NY: Barnes and Noble, 1935), pp. 23, 25, and 355.

28.Rhoda R. Gilman, "The Fur Trade in the Upper Mississippi Valley 1630-1850," Wisconsin Magazine of History, 58 (Autumn 1974), p. 14.

29. Thomas E. Norton, The Fur Trade in Colonial New York 1686-1776 (Madison: University of Wisconsin Press, 1974), p. 68.

30. John E. Sunder, The Fur Trade on the Upper Missouri, 1840-1865 (Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 1965), p. 9.

31. Sainsbury, "Indian Labor in Early Rhode Island," p. 392.

32. Salisbury, Manitou and Providence, p. 238.

33. Edward Countryman, "Indians, the Colonial Order, and the Social Significance of the American Revolution," William and Mary Quarterly, 53 (April 1996), p. 357.

34.Niles Weekly Register, May 2, 1835, p. 147.

35. Johnson and Graham's Lessee v. McIntosh [reference to be filled in yet]

36. See Anthony F.C. Wallace, "Political Organization and Land Tenure Among the Northeastern Indians, 1600-1830," Southwestern Journal of Anthropology, 13 (Winter 1957) pp. 301-321, especially footnote 7, pp. 311-312 and Harold E. Driver and William C. Massey, Comparative Studies of North American Indians (American Philosophical Society, 1957), especially pp. 383-394.

37. Chittenden, The American Fur Trade of the Far West, II, 584.

38. Salisbury, "The History of Native Americans From Before the Arrival of the Europeans and Africans Until the American Civil War," p. 47 in Engerman and Gallman, eds., The Colonial Era.

39. Ibid.

40. White, "It's Your Misfortune and None of My Own", p. 339.

41. Ibid., p. 337.

42. William G. Robbins, "The Indian Question in Western Oregon: The Making of a Colonial People" p. 64 in Thomas Edwards and Carlos S. Schwantes, eds., Experiences in a Promised Land(University of Washington Press, 1986). Other users of the word "genocide" to describe actions against Indians are Lawrence M. Friedman, A History of American Law, 2nd edition (Simon & Schuster, 1985), p. 508, William T. Hagan in Frederick E. Hoxie, ed., Indians in American History (Davidson, 1988), p. 193, and Ward Churchill, Indians Are Us? Culture and Genocide in Native North America (Common Courage Press, 1994), passim. See also two articles by Steven T. Katz in New England Quarterly, 64 (1991) 206-224 and 68 (1995) 641-649 and one by Michael Freeman, ibid., 68 (1995) 278-293. A recent article refers to Lt. Col. Eli Higgins as having had a "distinguished career fighting Indians," Warwick Anderson, "The Trespass Speaks: White Masculinity and Colonial Breakdown," American Historical Review, 102 (December 1997), p. 1354).

43. White, "It's Your Misfortune and None of My Own", p. 339.

44. James Taylor Carson, "Native Americans, the Market Revolution, and Culture Change: The Choctaw Cattle Economy, 1869-1830," Agricultural History, 71 (Winter 1997), p. 11.

45. Sandra Faiman-Silva, "Multinational Corporate Development in the American Hinterland. The Case of the Oklahoma Choctaws," p. 214 in John H. Moore, ed., The Political Economy of North American Indians (University of Oklahoma Press, 1993), p. 214.

46. John Thompson, Closing the Frontier, Radical Response in Oklahoma, 1889-1923 (University of Oklahoma Press, 1986), p. 33.

47. Faiman-Silva, "Multinational Corporate Development," p. 220.

48. Ibid., p. 231.

49. Kurt M. Peters, "Watering the Flower: Laguna Pueblo and the Santa Fe Railroad, 1880-1943," p. 178 in Alice Littlefield and Martha C. Knack, eds., Native Americans and Wage Labor. Ethnohistorical Perspectives (University of Oklahoma Press, 1996). See also Lawrence D. Weiss, The Development of Capitalism in the Navajo Nation: A Political-Economic History (MEP Publications, 1984), p. 91.

50. Knack and Littlefield, p. 13.

51. Richard L. Carrico and Florence C. Shipek, "Indian Labor in San Diego County, California, 1850-1900," p. 216 in ibid.

52. Ibid., p. 202.

53. Knack and Littlefield, p. 16.

54. Alice Littlefield, "Learning to Labor. Native American Education in the United States, 1880-1930," p. 50 in John H. Moore, ed., The Political Economy of North American Indians (University of Oklahoma Press, 1993).

55. Weiss, The Development of Capitalism in the Navajo Nation, p. 24.

56. Littlefield and Knack, p. 32.

57. Ibid., p. 16.

58. Littlefield, "Learning to Labor," p. 53.

59. Leonard A. Carlson, "Land Allotment and the Decline of American Indian Farming," Explorations in Economic History, 18 (1981), p. 144.

60. Ibid., pp. 148-149.

61. William Cronon, Changes in the Land. Indians, Colonists, and the Ecology of New England (Hill and Wang, 1983), p. 91.

62. Ibid., p. 89.

63. Ibid., p. 103.

64. Salisbury, Manitou and Providence, p. 8.

65. Menard, "Economic and Social Development of the South," pp. 260-261.

66. Wolf, Europe and the People Without History, p. 285.

67. White, "It's Your Misfortune and None of My Own," p. 115.

68. John R. Wunder, "No More Treaties: The Resolution of 1871 and the Alteration of Indian Rights to their Homesteads," p. 39 in Wunder, ed., Working the Range. Essays on the History of Western Land Management and the Environment (Greenwood, 1985).

69. Ibid., p. 43.

70. See Thomas Biolsi, "The Political Economy of Lakota Consciousness," pp. 25-26 and 38 in Moore, ed., The Political Economy of North American Indians.