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Publisher's Summary

In this sweeping new biography, Colin Calloway uses the prism of George Washington's life to bring focus to the great Native leaders of his time - Shingas, Tanaghrisson, Bloody Fellow, Joseph Brant, Red Jacket, Little Turtle - and the tribes they represented: the Iroquois Confederacy, Lenape, Miami, Creek, Delaware; in the process, he returns them to their rightful place in the story of America's founding. The Indian World of George Washington spans decades of Native American leaders' interactions with Washington, from his early days as surveyor of Indian lands to his military career against both the French and the British to his presidency, when he dealt with Native Americans as a head of state would with a foreign power, using every means of diplomacy and persuasion to fulfill the new republic's destiny by appropriating their land. By the end of his life, Washington knew more than anyone else in America about the frontier and its significance to the future of his country.

The Indian World of George Washington offers a fresh portrait of the most-revered American and the Native Americans whose story has been only partially told. Calloway's biography invites us to look again at the history of America's beginnings and see the country in a whole new light.

©2018 Colin G. Calloway (P)2019 HighBridge, a division of Recorded Books

What listeners say about The Indian World of George Washington

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  • Overall
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Seeking the truth

I appreciate not biased accounts of history.
I saw how george went from a greedy individual
And incompetent commander to a heavy hearted old man trying to find a way to help the original inhabitants that he helped to displace.
Although he wanted to help them he never strayed for his desire for white people to occupy their land. It was ironic that the lands he fought so hard to obtain through deception and white& political entitlement never produced the fortunes he was so desperate for
And he died with resentment at squatters and land speculators without seeing the mirror.

4 people found this helpful

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Detailed and 3-Dimensional

I find this history detailed and 3-dimensional in it's portrayal of the various figures and their relationships as allies, enemies, and adversaries. The political machinations between various tribes and European settlers in a fluidly changing landscape of power is at full display. It's an interesting time in history/geography and the book details the interpersonal and inter tribal rivalries and motivations with a readable academic backbone.

I don't think the "Washington Hate Book" review person actually read this. His review reads like a presupposed opinion informed from a dust jacket and has nothing to do with the actual content of the book.

3 people found this helpful

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A wonderful historical masterpiece

This book enlightened my understanding of why and how our country became the great nation it has become!

6 people found this helpful

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Great

I learned an awful lot from this book. I suggest it to anyone interested in GW, Native Americans, early history of our country. The narrator has an interesting way of speaking but you’ll get use to it.

2 people found this helpful

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Fantastic book. Choppy narration.

Great book. Very detailed. An essential read if you want to know the full story of our nation's early history. Narration could have more smooth. Sometimes made random pauses which were distracting.

4 people found this helpful

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"Yes, but do you have a flag?"

A comprehensive, if sometimes dense, history of George Washington's interactions with indigenous peoples of America across his life as surveyor, British subject, Soldier, Revolutionary general, and President.

Calloway's 2018 survey of Washington and the Amer. Indians is less about Washington himself than it is about the Revolutionary generation's interactions with the dozens of tribes and hundreds of tribal leaders they encountered from the 1750s through the end of the century. Washington's experience serves as a representative sample of how the landed gentry viewed the various tribes and their relationships with them.

Let's just say it was complicated. It's simplistic and juvenile to lump all colonists together with a uniform view of the indigenous tribes just as it's simplistic and juvenile to assume all tribes acted the same. Some colonists/revolutionaries were very sympathetic and honorable towards the various tribes, many were not. Some recognized the tension between honoring treaty obligations and property boundaries with a populace that saw little problem with squatting on fertile open land (in part because nobody was within miles of it). Some tribes were peacable and wanted to attempt to coexist with the Europeans, others wanted to wage war, others wanted to leverage the European presence to their own advantage in their own internecine battles with other tribes.

Calloway does a decent job laying out these internal and external conflicts with Washington and the myriad tribal leaders (though he is far too credulous with stories of "the settlers kidnapped by war parties loved tribal life so much they didn't want to leave!" when there's ample evidence on the other side of the ledger).

Washington himself comes across as REALLY REALLY REALLY interested in land speculation and the profits to be gained by it. This does not diminish Washington as a man or leader (his early "skills" as a General are something else entirely -- let's face it -- he wasn't that good and Calloway recounts his troubles very well), but places him firmly within his class and time. In a land with billions of open acreage, it's natural for a population that revered real property and title to think they hit the motherlode. And they kind of did....but for the people that were there.

And that's where the inevitable and irreconcilable conflict between the Europeans and indigenous tribes comes in. A culture that valued real property and land title and agriculture vs largely nomadic tribes that subsisted on farming. To be pithy, the foreignness of the tribal view towards ownership is like the guy in the gym that is working on one machine but claims he's using 10 other machines as part of his "circuit." The two approaches are so opposed, one had to adapt to the other, and one side did (though not without cost).

1 person found this helpful

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Don't Bother

Calloway is no friend to George Washington. Often his use of negative words and tone describing Washington's actions and behavior make that obvious. The same can be said of the narrator, Heitsch. He seemed to take particular pleasure when using negative words to describe the Father of our Nation. Don't waste your time with this book. The author is clearly biased.

1 person found this helpful

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Good if you hate Washington.

While Washington had his human faults, this book makes him into a horrible person. Author doesn't miss an opportunity to remind you he had slaves. An anti-American book. I won't finish it.

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An insightful look into Washington and his World

Calloway’s work cuts through generations of myth making to reveal a candid look at Washington’s fundamental motivations in relation to the Native Population. The Washington that emerges is a figure that is human in both his strengths and many fallibilities.
The narration at times can be awkward in pace, pauses and pronunciation but this does little to distract from a strong narrative.

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A Washington hate book

Typical liberal slant to portray the Indians as benevolent with a perfect society that never hurt or took advantage of each other before the white man showed up. I can sum up this book and just a few words, Colonials and the white man are evil. Unfortunately there is nothing new or of great historical value in this book. Sadly.

23 people found this helpful