Founding Father or ‘Town Destroyer’?



BAR HARBOR — Colin Calloway will discuss his book, “The Indian World of George Washington: The First President, the First Americans, and the Birth of the Nation” Friday, July 19, at 7 p.m. at the Jesup Memorial Library. The Abbe Museum is a co-sponsor of this event.

“The Indian World of George Washington” was a finalist for the National Book Award in 2018. In the book, Calloway explores how Washington knew that “the future he envisioned [for the Americas] would be realized at the expense of the people who lived there.”

While Washington presented himself as the “great father” to Indian people, the Iroquois called him “Town Destroyer.”

“The Indian World of George Washington” discusses events over several decades, from Washington’s interactions with Indians as a surveyor of Indian lands, to his time fighting against both the British and the French, to his presidency.

He discusses the central role of Indian leaders in Washington’s, and therefore the nation’s, foundational narrative.

hose leaders include Shingas, Tanaghrisson, Guyasuta, Attakullakulla, Bloody Fellow, Joseph Brant, Cornplanter, Red Jacket and Little Turtle. They represented the Iroquois Confederacy and the Lenape, Miami, Creek and Delaware tribes.

“This book will forever change our understanding of the first president and the very meaning of the new nation he helped to create,” David Preston, author of “Braddock’s Defeat,” wrote in a review.

Calloway has bachelor’s and doctorate degrees from the University of Leeds. He served two years as editor/assistant director of the D’Arcy McNickle Center for the History of the American Indian at the Newberry Library in Chicago.

He joined the faculty of Dartmouth College in 1995 and is currently serving his fifth three-year term as chair of the Native American Studies Program. He was President of the American Society for Ethnohistory and has been given awards by the Missisquoi Nation of Abenakis and the Native American Students at Dartmouth. He won the American Indian History Lifetime Achievement Award in 2011.

Calloway is the author of more than 10 books on Native American history, including “The American Revolution in Indian Country,” which was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize.

Books will be on sale that night courtesy of Sherman’s Books. Contact 288-4245.

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