Roger L. Nichols is a professor emeritus of history and American Indian studies at the University of Arizona, and a former president of the Pacific Coast Branch of the American Historical Association. He has received four Fulbright appointments and three National Endowment for the Humanities awards. Prior to coming to Arizona, he taught at the University of Wisconsin–Oshkosh, the University of Maryland, and the University of Georgia as well as at four universities in Germany. His teaching and research interests focus on nineteenth-century American frontier settlement, Indians in American history, and comparative Indian affairs in the United States and Canada. The most recent of his eleven books are American Indians in U.S. History (2nd edition, 2014) and Natives and Strangers: A History of Ethnic Americans (6th edition, 2015), coauthored with David M. Reimers and Leonard Dinnerstein.
In 1890 the Bureau of the Census estimated that the US had fought forty wars with the Indians. These occurred from Ohio and Florida in the east to the Pacific coast between 1790 and 1890. Usually they involved pioneers, and Indians and the government fighting over land, resources, and tribal freedom. This lecture will analyze several examples to understand what issues and actions led to the conflicts.