Summary Of The 18th Chapter Of Alan Taylor's American Colonies

917 WordsNov 8, 20174 Pages
The subject of this chapter summary will be the eighteenth chapter of Alan Taylor’s American Colonies. The chapter is called “The Great Plains” and discusses the history of that geographical region from 1680-1800. Taylor begins by explaining how warfare both sustained and weakened New Mexico. It maintained unity, because without an external enemy to focus on, the Pueblo people would rise up in revolt against Mexico. However, the constant warfare discouraged any new settlers from putting down roots there. Spain's holdings in North America were weakened by the foreign policy of the motherland, which focused on the colonial core of the territory, not the exterior regions. For Mexico, New Mexico was just a buffer zone between itself and other…show more content…
Taylor describes how most of their well being was based around horticulture, a couple of annual trips dedicated to hunting buffalo. Subsequently, the author spoke to the religion of the tribes in the Great Plains which, like most Native religions, was based on a dualism between life and death. A few tribes were not villages, instead living a nomadic lifestyle and following the herds of buffalo wherever they roamed. The nomads became collectively known as the Apache. Almost everything they ate, wore, and owned was provided by the buffalo. In the next section of the chapter, Taylor discusses the Genizaros. Essentially, this was the term used for Native American slaves who served in the households of governors and other officials. These slaves were taken from the nomadic Apache, but not without cost. In retaliation, the Apache would attack colonial settlements and kidnap or kill anyone living there. Oftentimes, the Pueblo people and the lower-class colonists were the ones who suffered most, not the officials who actually held the Genizaros. Another important section of this chapter was simply called “Texas”. The author provides the context of the Great Plains in 1720 including the French-Spanish rivalry and the corresponding rivalry between the Pawnee and Wichita Indians and the Apache and Pueblo Indians. The Spanish colonies were populated mostly with unarmed missionaries, while the French-controlled regions
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