Selected by Choice magazine as an Outstanding Academic Title
Land ownership was not the sole reason for conflict between Indians and English, Jenny Pulsipher writes in Subjects unto the Same King, a book that cogently redefines the relationship between Indians and colonists in seventeenth-century New England. Rather, the story is much more complicated—and much more interesting. It is a tale of two divided cultures, but also of a host of individuals, groups, colonies, and nations, all of whom used the struggle between and within Indian and English communities to promote their own authority.
As power within New England shifted, Indians appealed outside the region—to other Indian nations, competing European colonies, and the English crown itself—for aid in resisting the overbearing authority of such rapidly expanding societies as the Massachusetts Bay Colony. Thus Indians were at the center—and not always on the losing end—of a contest for authority that spanned the Atlantic world. Beginning soon after the English settled in Plymouth, the power struggle would eventually spawn a devastating conflict—King Philip's War—and draw the intervention of the crown, resulting in a dramatic loss of authority for both Indians and colonists by century's end.
Through exhaustive research, Jenny Hale Pulsipher has rewritten the accepted history of the Indian-English relationship in colonial New England, revealing it to be much more complex and nuanced than previously supposed.
Note on the Text
Models of Authority
Massachusetts Under Fire
Years of Uncertainty
Allies Fall Away
The "Narragansett War"
A Perilous Middle Ground
Massachusetts's Authority Undermined
A Crisis of Spirit
Massachusetts Fights Alone
League of Peace Between Massasoit and Plymouth
List of Abbreviations
"Essential. . . . This will become the book about King Philip's War in New England and its larger political significance in early American history."—Choice
"A new and important analysis of a crucial moment in American history. But rather than repeat an old story, Pulsipher here has told a new one, emphasizing that disputes hinged on questions of authority—who possessed it, who wanted it, who got it, and what they did with it. There are keen insights in almost every chapter, and the research is excellent. Pulsipher knows the existing documentary literature perhaps better than anyone who has worked on this subject."—Peter C. Mancall, University of Southern California
"Successfully integrating British Atlantic and ethnohistoric perspectives, Pulsipher demonstrates Indians' intimate involvement in seventeenth-century colonial power struggles that spanned the Atlantic. Arguing that neither natives nor settlers can be treated as monoliths whether internally or in their dealings with one another, the author breaks significant new ground on the road to integrating native and settler experiences into a larger early America."—William and Mary Quarterly
"The book about King Philip's War in New England and its larger political significance in early American history. . . . Essential."—Choice