Unformatted text preview: IB35ac Class 22: Race in America before 1900 How has race been defined historically? How has it been used politically in the United States before 1900? We'll talk a bit about the start of archaeology in this country and see how intertwined it was with questions about race and priority. You'll also be introduced to the early science of race in the United States, and especially Samuel G. Morton who collected a lot of skulls. IB35 Human Biological Variation Class #22 Topics for Today Early concepts of race Why would race matter in early America? The scientific study of race in early America A i Race in America before 1900 Topic for today: Biblical Scholars and race Three races European Oriental African In the Book of Genesis in the Old Testament, Noah had three sons Japheth ->European Shem ->Asian Ham - > A f r i c a n Herodotus, 5th century BC ->Known as the "Father of History" ->Defined barbarism as being non-Greek ->Temporal and geographic relation to level of civilization i.e. primitive or advanced Christopher Columbus 1492 1502, four voyages to the New World Asia? If not Asia who were th people who tA i h the l h lived there? Noah only had three sons... big problem. Pope Paul III 1537 "the Indians are truly men and... they are not only capable of understanding the catholic faith but, according to our information, information desire exceedingly to receive it" So... the natives of the New World must have arrived before the Flood and must somehow trace back to one of Noah's sons. But which one? 1 Why did race matter? Immigration Slavery Land ownership Naturalization Acts 1790 (1795, 1798) The Science of Anthropology/Archaeology begins... The "Speculative Period" (1492-1840) The myth of the moundbuilders The Mounds...
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/5653719/ ->Describes the archaeological methods and approaches employed in North America at the time ->All the data based mainly on the notes from accounts from explorers and missionaries ->Very primitive compared with modern archaeological methods ->A major problem was how they labeled Native Americans as one group because of lack of visual physical differences Serpent Mound in Ohio
Cahokia, Ohio (today) Cahokia, Ohio (reconstruction) 2 The Science of Anthropology/Archaeology begins... The "Speculative Period" (1492-1840) The myth of the moundbuilders Humans? O of th l t t ib of I One f the lost tribes f Israel? l? Atlantis? Asia... Fray Jos de Acosta (1590) Who made the mounds? The moundbuilders are ancestors of the Indians today The moundbuilders were an ancient people who died off or were replaced by the Indians 5 arguments as to why the Indians couldn't have made them... 1648, Thomas Gage 12 tribes of Israel, 10 are lost 1)Too culturally primitive 2)Mounds much older than Indian cultures present at that time 3)Found tablets with writing in the mounds, with alphabets similar to that found in Europe 4)Indians didn't know anything about the mounds 5)Metal artifacts found in the mounds, and Indians did not have that kind of technology Caleb Atwater Thomas Jefferson's contributions to archaeology He actually excavated He excavated carefully enough to observe the strata in the trench The excavation wasn't made to find objects but to resolve an archaeological problem 1820 "Description of the Antiquities Discovered in the State of Ohio and Other Western States" ->Categorized artifacts ->Concluded it was Hindus from India The Smithsonian Institution, the "Castle" James Smithson 1826 Left $500,000 to the young republic of the United States to found an institution "for the increase and diffusion of knowledge" ->Investigated the mound-builder question 3 Conclusion: People from the civilizations in the southern Americas, not the Native Americans, built the mounds ->Small pox wiped out approx 90% of the Native American population leading to scattered populations and lack of knowledge about the mounds Ephraim Squier and Edwin Davis 1848 Ancient "Ancient Monuments of the Mississippi Valley" Cyrus Thomas, Head of the Division of Mound Exploration 1882 & 1894 First publication of The Smithsonian Institution 1)Indians too primitive to build mounds ->Historical records showed they had the technology 2)Mounds older than Indians ->Dating of mounds inconclusive 3)Stone tablets with European alphabets ->All frauds Monogenism 4)Modern Native Americans weren't building mounds now ->Historical records showed Native Americans living in such areas of high density with such mounds 5)Metal artifacts ->Made of pure ore, did not require smelting, could have been traded The Scientific Study of Race <1900
Softer approach Origin from a single source Upheld the spiritual unity of all peoples in Eden's perfection Races have declined to various degrees Cli t as a cause f racial di ti ti Climate for i l distinction Held that races were separate biological species Descendants of different "Adams" Implications for "equality of man" Probably the most popular argument b/c scripture wasn't to be discarded lightly Polygeny One of the first theories of largely American origin that won the attention and respect of European scientists Became known as the "American School" American School of anthropology The two most famous advocates: Louis Agassiz G.C. Morton Polygenism Hard-liner approach Degenerationism Stephen J. Gould The Mismeasure of Man (1981) People to Remember Louis Agassiz (1807-1873) ->Research done mostly on fish ->Popularized natural history ->Creationist ->Believed in innate differences in intelligence between races ->Advocated race-specific education curriculum ->History and critique of the methods and motivations underlying biological determinism : the belief that "the social and economic differences between human groups--primarily races, classes, and sexes--arise from inherited, inborn distinctions and that society, in this sense, is an accurate reflection of biology 4 People to Remember Samuel G. Morton (died in 1851) The empiricist of polygeny Crania Americana 1839 Summary of Morton's Data
Internal Capacity (in3) Race
Caucasian Mongolian American Ethiopian N
52 10 144 29 Mean
87 83 82 78 Largest Smallest
109 93 100 94 75 69 60 65 ->Examined cranial capacities of different races From: Gould SJ. 1981. Mismeasure of Man, page 54 Summary of Morton's Data
Internal Capacity (in3) Race
Caucasian Mongolian American Ethiopian Critical Mistakes Morton Made Problem with calculated averages Inconsistent in how he applied caution Did not account for body size variation Did not account for sex composition of the samples Brain size is not so tightly correlated with intelligence N
52 10 144 29 Mean
83 Largest Smallest
109 93 100 94 75 69 60 65 87 X 84.45 X 82 83.79 78 From: Gould SJ. 1981. Mismeasure of Man, page 54 Conclusions Scientific anthropology and archaeology get started American version = polygeny R Reasons t explore th question to l the ti The start of data analysis, but "objective" isn't always objective 5 ...
View Full Document
This note was uploaded on 01/19/2011 for the course IB 35AC taught by Professor Hlusko during the Spring '08 term at Berkeley.
- Spring '08