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UA Press book: Remember Fort Mims!

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  • Amos J Wright
    For immediate release REMEMBER FORT MIMS! New Book Offers Details and New Insights into American Frontier History TUSCALOOSA, AL-From the perspective of the
    Message 1 of 1 , Nov 3, 2006
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      For immediate release

      REMEMBER FORT MIMS!

      New Book Offers Details and New Insights into American Frontier History
      TUSCALOOSA, AL-From the perspective of the early twenty-first century,
      it may seem as though Americans will never forget September 11, 2001. Or
      even Pearl Harbor.
      But how many among the general public remember the Lusitania, torpedoed
      by a German U-boat in 1915? Or the Maine, which exploded in Havana
      Harbor in 1898 and led to the Spanish-American War? Or Fort Mims, a
      frontier outpost in modern-day Alabama at which hundreds were brutally
      killed at the end of a pitched battle on August 30, 1813?
      The answer is probably "not many." But the events at Fort Mims had a
      profound and lasting impact on American history, leading almost directly
      to Andrew Jackson's rise to prominence and power as well as to the
      Indian Removals, one of the most appalling events in our nation's
      history.
      A new book, A Conquering Spirit: Fort Mims and the Redstick War of
      1813-1814, seeks to better inform us about our own past. Written by
      Gregory Waselkov, professor of anthropology at the University of South
      Alabama, and published by The University of Alabama Press, it is based
      on solid archaeological and historical evidence. Written with an
      attention to detail expected by specialists, it tells a story of
      complexity and lost opportunities that will fascinate general readers.
      Conventional wisdom tells us that Fort Mims-located near the confluence
      of the Alabama and Tombigbee Rivers,
      a few miles north of Mobile Bay-was the site of a violent and bloody
      Indian victory. More than 250 soldiers and civilians, including women
      and children, were burned alive in buildings set ablaze by the
      Redsticks. The public
      outcry over the atrocity shifted prevailing attitudes among white
      settlers toward Native Americans. Instead of the government's policy of
      cultural assimilation, a new style of American colonialism came to the
      fore. This ultimately
      led to the various Trails of Tears as southeastern native inhabitants
      were relocated westward.
      Using archival and physical evidence, Waselkov paints a much more
      nuanced picture in the pages of A Conquering Spirit. For example, in the
      years leading up to the conflict, white, Native American, and mixed-race
      settlers lived side-by-side, and were all victims in the attack. African
      American slaves were owned by all three of the other groups; they, too,
      were among the civilians killed by the Redsticks, a segment of the Creek
      Indian nation who sought to defend their lands and their culture from
      U.S. encroachment and domination.
      Edwin Bearrs, Chief Historian Emeritus of the National Park Service,
      calls A Conquering Sprit "a tour de force." Ove Jensen, of Horseshoe
      Bend National Military Park, praises it as "the definitive history of
      Fort Mims and the Tensaw district." Winner of the 2005 Anne B. and James
      B. McMillan Prize for the Best Manuscript in Southern History submitted
      to The University of Alabama Press, the book is a must-read for anyone
      interested in the early history of our nation.
      # # #
      A Conquering Spirit: Fort Mims and the Redstick War of 1813-1814
      by Gregory A. Waselkov * Publication date: November 4, 2006
      424 pages * 61/8" x 91/4" * 30 b/w illustrations and 8 color plates *
      ISBN 0-8173-1491-1 * $39.95 hardcover
      To order, contact the Chicago Distribution Center * 773-702-7000 *
      fax: 773-702-7212
      Distributed in the UK and Europe by Eurospan University Press Group *
      www.eurospan.co.uk * £30.50
      For additional information, contact: Elizabeth Motherwell *
      emother@... * direct li
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