SCL Pick: “The house on Diamond Hill : a Cherokee plantation story”

Happy Friday, everyone! In honor of Native American Heritage Month, today’s SCL Pick is a recent addition to our collection: The house on Diamond Hill: a Cherokee plantation story, by public historian Tiya Miles. Miles is a 2011 MacArthur Fellow and her research “explores the complex interrelationships between African and Cherokee people living and working in colonial America.” She is currently a professor at the University of Michigan and you can read a fuller biography of her accomplishments here.

The house on Diamond Hill: a Cherokee plantation story is available here at the Library and we encourage you to check it out. Here’s a brief summary from the catalog description:

  • “At the turn of the nineteenth century, James Vann, a Cherokee chief and entrepreneur, established Diamond Hill, the most famous plantation in the southeastern Cherokee Nation. In this first full-length study to reconstruct the history of the plantation, Tiya Miles tells the story of Diamond Hill’s founding, its flourishing, its takeover by white land-lottery winners on the eve of the Cherokee Removal, its decay, and ultimately its renovation in the 1950s. This moving multiracial history sheds light on the various cultural communities that interacted within the plantation boundaries–from elite Cherokee slaveholders to Cherokee subsistence farmers, from black slaves of various ethnic backgrounds to free blacks from the North and South, from German-speaking Moravian missionaries to white southern skilled laborers. Moreover, the book includes rich portraits of the women of these various communities. Vividly written and extensively researched, this history illuminates gender, class, and cross-racial relationships on the southern frontier.”

A brief preview is also available on Google books. If you’re interested in learning more about research on Native Americans and African Americans, check out our previous post with a list of related books.

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