History Standard 3 Resource
Conflict Between Native Americans and Colonists

Benchmark Addressed: History 3 (Interpretation)
Suggested Task 1:Read each paragraph and summarize (paraphrase) each thesis.

Thesis 1

Initially, white colonists viewed Native Americans as helpful and friendly. They welcomed the Natives into their settlements, and the colonists willingly engaged in trade with them. They hoped to transform the tribes people  into civilized Christians through their daily contacts. The Native Americans resented and resisted the colonists' attempts to change them. Their refusal to conform to European culture angered the colonists and hostilities soon broke out between the two groups. The violence of their confrontations with the Native Americans resulted in a shift of English attitudes towards other races. Colonists blames their failure to assimilate the Native Americans into their culture on racial differences and began to associate all people of color with negative characteristics.

From "White Man to Redskin" (1982)
By Alden T. Vaughan

Thesis 2

Some Native American tribes embraced the English and their culture because doing so brought them prestige , wealth, and a strong military ally. They participated in English society by adopting their traditional skills to meet the military needs of the colonists. At the same time, many tribes became dependent on their white allies to maintain power over their tribal enemies. The two groups maintained peaceful relations as long as the Native Americans conformed to English social and religious practices. King Philip's War marked a turning point in the colonists' acceptance of Native Americans; they appreciated the success of their Native allies, but they also feared it. Their distrust of the "friendly" tribes resulted in policies of segregation and discriminatory laws.

From "The Search for a Usable Indian" (1977)
By Richard R. Johnson

    Suggested Task 2: List and explain possible reasons for the differences in the interpretations that appear above.

Grades 4-5: relate answers to "the evidence presented or the point of view of the author."

Grade 6-8: relate answers to the historians "choice of questions and use of sources."

Grades 9-12: relate answers to the historians' "choice of questions, use and choice of sources, perspectives, beliefs, and points of view."

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