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Name: Arwin Smallwood, Ph.D.

Department: History

Telephone/email: 901-678-3869, asmallwd@memphis.edu

Project description:

My proposed project, “The Tuscarora: A History of the Sixth Iroquois Nation,” seeks to present a complete history of the Tuscarora nation including evidence of the merging of Native American, African, and European technologies, traditions and cultures. It also seeks for the first time to examine and map using GIS the numerous bi-racial and tri-racial people who claim to be descendants of the Tuscarora. It has come to my attention from studying a small tri-racial community in northeastern North Carolina known as Indian Woods that there are a number of these people in rural areas of eastern North Carolina, southeastern Virginia and at least twelve other states which are linked to the Tuscarora. This research examines the northern areas the Tuscarora lived in, passed through and migrated to including; Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York, western Vermont, Connecticut, and Massachusetts. It hopes to uncover whether or not a number of the region’s tri-racial people may have originated in eastern North Carolina and understand how these people survived in the colonial and antebellum north and efforts by courts and society to define their racial identity. These people and recognized Tuscarora in North Carolina, New York, Canada, and Oklahoma will be visited and interviewed. Their ancestral lands in North Carolina and New York and current communities will be mapped to show where they migrated to and the routes they used to get there. Thus I am interested in 17th, 18th, and 19th century manuscripts, journals, dairies, historic maps, drawings, pictures, newspapers and other materials that document and illustrate the lives of the Tuscarora and these mixed-blooded people in the South, New England and the Middle colonies and later states that relate to the Tuscarora Indians, the Iroquois Confederacy, blacks and whites. I am also interested in conducting oral interviews with people who have spent their entire lives in these small rural Tuscarora communities in states and counties the Tuscarora were known to have settled in.

Requirements: Student must following instructions and have an interest or willingness to work with Native American and African-American History.

Start date: January 1, 2011

Method of Compensation: Volunteer and Academic Credit

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