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NOTHING THAT CAN BE MEMORIZED IS HISTORY. CHANGE IN THE AMERICAN WEST: Convergence Conflict Continuity.

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Presentation on theme: "NOTHING THAT CAN BE MEMORIZED IS HISTORY. CHANGE IN THE AMERICAN WEST: Convergence Conflict Continuity."— Presentation transcript:

1 NOTHING THAT CAN BE MEMORIZED IS HISTORY

2 CHANGE IN THE AMERICAN WEST: Convergence Conflict Continuity

3 SIGNIFICANCE OF 1821 Mexico won its independence from Spain Mexico won its independence from Spain Seeking new trading partners, new allies Seeking new trading partners, new allies Hugh Glenn and Jacob Fowler Hugh Glenn and Jacob Fowler Taos Trail: Pueblo to Taos via Sangre de Cristo Pass Taos Trail: Pueblo to Taos via Sangre de Cristo Pass Taos becomes southern trapping center Taos becomes southern trapping center William Becknell William Becknell Opens the Santa Fe Trail to American trade Opens the Santa Fe Trail to American trade Franklin, MO to Santa Fe: 1200 miles Franklin, MO to Santa Fe: 1200 miles

4 SANTA FE TRADE Profitable Profitable Mexicans paid hard cash for American goods Mexicans paid hard cash for American goods 1822: Trade totaled $15,000 ($250,000 in today’s dollars) 1822: Trade totaled $15,000 ($250,000 in today’s dollars) 1860: Trade totaled $3.5 million ($81.4 million in today’s dollars) 1860: Trade totaled $3.5 million ($81.4 million in today’s dollars) Romantic Romantic Exotic location for descendants of Puritans Exotic location for descendants of Puritans Fandangos, Flirting, and Fumar Fandangos, Flirting, and Fumar

5 EARLY FUR TRADE Based on trapping beaver Based on trapping beaver Diversity among the trappers Diversity among the trappers French-Canadians French-Canadians Mexicans Mexicans Americans from the East Americans from the East Set basis for “Middle Ground” Set basis for “Middle Ground” Trappers established long-term relationships Trappers established long-term relationships 40% of Mountain Men married Indian women 40% of Mountain Men married Indian women 20% of Mountain Men married Mexican women 20% of Mountain Men married Mexican women Average length of marriage = 15 years Average length of marriage = 15 years Average number of children = 3 Average number of children = 3

6 IN THE 1830s: BUFFALO ROBES BECAME THE CHIEF ARTICLE OF WESTERN TRADE. CHANGES THAT OCCURRED: Buffalo robes obtained through trade not trapping Permanent trading posts replaced the rendezvous

7 SEVERAL TRADING POSTS ESTABLISHED ON THE EASTERN PLAINS 1832 – Gantt and Blackwell near Pueblo 1833 – Bent’s Fort between Las Animas and La Junta 1835 – Fort Vasquez near Platteville 1836 – Fort Lupton 1836 – Fort St. Vrain (Fort Lookout)

8 1833 – 1848 BENTS’ FORT DOMINATED THE PLAINS From its position on the north side of the Arkansas River, astride the Mountain Branch of the Santa Fe Trail

9 Rectangular, Grey Adobe Structure: 180 feet by 135 feet Round bastions at SE and NW corners Walls: 2’ – 4’ thick and 15’ high Midway along eastern wall – sheet metal and iron doors Center of facility = fur press

10 Council Room Trading Room Kitchen Living Quarters BlacksmithCorrals

11 BENT’S OLD FORT: Stood for nearly 20 years International Center of Commerce It was the DIA of its time BENT’S FORT: AGENT OF CHANGE CONVERGENCE – CONFLICT – CONTINUITY

12 CONVERGENCE: Brought cultures together: BENT & ST. VRAIN CO. Marcellin St. Vraub Married: “Red” Ogalala Sioux Ceran St. Vrain Married: Maria de la Luz Taos William Bent Married: Owl Woman & Yellow Woman Cheyenne

13 CONVERGENCE: Mexican Skilled Labor

14 CONVERGENCE: Native Americans Procured robes and principal trading partners CHEYENNE ARAPAHOE COMANCHE KIOWA

15 CONVERGENCE: Brought different economic systems together American Capitalist + Spanish Closed Mercantilist and Native American Barter American Capitalist + Spanish Closed Mercantilist and Native American Barter

16 CONVERGENCE: CREATED MIDDLE GROUND Santa Fe and Taos Families increased wealth Santa Fe and Taos Families increased wealth  New trading partners had more and better goods Native Americans increased wealth and prestige Native Americans increased wealth and prestige  Cheyenne and Arapahoe gained “favored status”  Increased wealth and position on the Plains Bent and St. Vrain Company profitable Bent and St. Vrain Company profitable  1842: Income of $190,000 ($4.5 million today)

17 SO…… WHAT HAPPENED?

18 CONFLICT: WAR WITH MEXICO VV ictory upset political, economic and social balance TT reaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo AA dded all of SW to United States MM exican citizens became US citizens CC harles Bent became Governor of New Mexico - killed CC eran St. Vrain led militia in revenge/retaliation WW illiam Bent lost Owl Woman to cholera BB rought by Army of the West NN ative Americans victims of cholera epidemic LL ost one-third to one-half of population

19 CONFLICT: BASIS FOR MIDDLE GROUND = GONE BASIS FOR MIDDLE GROUND = GONE Victory in War with Mexico opened door to new lands Victory in War with Mexico opened door to new lands First event = California Gold Rush First event = California Gold Rush Changed image of the West Changed image of the West Changed westward settlement Changed westward settlement Arrivals after 1848 have different goals Arrivals after 1848 have different goals Extraction of natural resources is primary Extraction of natural resources is primary Goals do not involve the assistance of ANY previous group Goals do not involve the assistance of ANY previous group Both groups = OBSTACLES to be removed, not accommodated Both groups = OBSTACLES to be removed, not accommodated

20 CONFLICT: HOW DO WE KNOW THAT THE BASIS IS GONE? HOW DO WE KNOW THAT THE BASIS IS GONE? BENT & ST. VRAIN CO DISSOLVED BENT & ST. VRAIN CO DISSOLVED BENT’S FORT IS GONE BENT’S FORT IS GONE William Bent blew up Bent’s Fort in 1849 William Bent blew up Bent’s Fort in 1849 IMPORTANT TO NOTE SYMBOLISM IMPORTANT TO NOTE SYMBOLISM Charles Bent killed in anti-European revolt in 1848 Charles Bent killed in anti-European revolt in 1848 Cholera - European borne disease destroyed trade Cholera - European borne disease destroyed trade Dynamite - European technology destroyed fort Dynamite - European technology destroyed fort

21 CONTINUITY Once introduced, Anglo-American presence was permanent American-style capitalism entrenched Mexico City lost control of trade to Bent & St. Vrain Co. Political conditions turned in favor of Americans Stephen Kearney’s Army of the West entered Santa Fe without firing a shot.

22 THE NATURE OF CHANGE BEFORE 1850 THE NATURE OF CHANGE BEFORE 1850 Convergence: “Middle Ground” is basis for relationships Convergence: “Middle Ground” is basis for relationships Conflict: Emerged OUTSIDE the area Conflict: Emerged OUTSIDE the area Not generated within as in King Philip’s War, French and Indian War, Blackhawk War, Cherokee Wars Not generated within as in King Philip’s War, French and Indian War, Blackhawk War, Cherokee Wars Continuity: American culture established as PART of the system Continuity: American culture established as PART of the system THE NATURE OF CHANGE AFTER 1850 Conflict originated within the area and dominated relationships Continuity: American culture dominated the system Convergence is not an option: Acculturation not accommodation became the standard


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