Joshua A. McGonagle Althoff—Managing Settlers, Managing Neighbors

In this episode of the Journal of American History Podcast Amy Ransford speaks with Joshua A. McGonagle Altoff about his article, “Managing Settlers, Managing Neighbors: Renarrating Johnson v. McIntosh through the History of Piankashaw Community Building,” which appeared in the March 2024 issue of the Journal of American History. The foundational 1823 Supreme Court case Johnson v. McIntosh drew from a 1775 negotiation between land speculators and Peeyankihšiaki (Piankashaw people) to subjugate Indigenous sovereignty to the plenary powers of Congress. This negotiation is usually framed as a “purchase,” but when read alongside a history of Peeyankihšia community building, it becomes clear that Peeyankihšia people intended to negotiate the right to live within, rather than own, their homelands. By moving away from the idea of a “purchase,” Joshua reveals how Peeyankihšiaki were preparing for prosperity, not declension, in the late eighteenth century. Amy and Joshua discuss sources, research, and behind the scenes creation of this article, and also the importance and implications of collaboration in historical research. 

Read the article here: https://www.oah.org/publications/jah/

Music: King Oliver’s Creole Jazz Band’s Mabel’s Dream, 1923

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