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8 Big Lies History Books Tell About Natives

Vincent Schilling
6/29/14

Do history books written by white folks tell the truth about Natives? We think not. Here are just some of the lies they tell.

Columbus NEVER landed in the Upper 48—Ever

Every year across the country countless elementary school students recite: “In 1492, Columbus sailed the ocean blue” and many perform a play about him discovering Indians in America. The thing is Columbus never landed in what would become the United States, he actually landed in the Caribbean.

RELATED: 8 Myths and Atrocities About Christopher Columbus and Columbus Day

This painting shows Columbus on the deck of the Santa Maria. (Painting by Emanuel Gottlieb Leutze)

Basically Everything About Pocahontas

Pocahontas was about 8 years old when John Smith arrived, and was later married to another young Indian warrior. She also had a child that was given away before she married John Rolfe.

RELATED: Native History: Pocahontas Marries John Rolfe in Jamestown

Sorry Disney, and many incorrectly written textbooks, Pocahontas never fell in love with John Smith. According to tribal oral histories as well as The True Story of Pocahontas by members of the Mattaponi Tribe, Pocahontas’ original young Native husband was killed and Pocahontas’ newborn was given to relatives before she was forced into captivity at about 15 or 16 years of age.

Disney's version of Pocahontas.

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HontasF's picture
HontasF
Submitted by HontasF on
Thankyou so much ICTMN for publishing this. I run into so many people who have some of these wrong ideas. People of all colors who have taken Walter Pleckers views to heart. All kinds of wrong ideas about pocahontas...from the Disney story (mostly white people)...to thinking she never actually existed (some NDN's). This the the very important kind of article many of us know and love from ICTMN.

HontasF's picture
HontasF
Submitted by HontasF on
Thankyou so much ICTMN for publishing this. I run into so many people who have some of these wrong ideas. People of all colors who have taken Walter Pleckers views to heart. All kinds of wrong ideas about pocahontas...from the Disney story (mostly white people)...to thinking she never actually existed (some NDN's). This the the very important kind of article many of us know and love from ICTMN.

Michael Madrid's picture
Michael Madrid
Submitted by Michael Madrid on
Thank you Mr. Schilling for a most informative article. The links are indispensable too. I was aware of Dr. Coleman, but had never heard of her research regarding Walter Plecker. When the White man quit killing NDNs outright with guns and cannons they began to attack us with pens. Both methods have proven devastating.

Derek Stephen McPhail
Derek Stephen M...
Submitted by Derek Stephen M... on
important article. one other subject that American historians have been reluctant to discuss, is the thousands of Scots, Welsh & Irish who were taken prisoner by the English in their repression of those cultures and sent to the American and Australian colonies, to spend, usually, 20 years in what was called, "indentured servitude". those who survived were allowed to homestead; and, as there were few European women in the American colonies before the rebellion, most married native women. as the patriot leaders aggressively promoted their policies of genocide and/or assimilation of the native peoples, most of these mixed-blood and pro-native colonists became mistakenly called "United Empire Loyalists". after the British chose to withdraw from the colonies and focus on their war with France, many of these mixed-blood people, who had fought against the patriot militia moved north into Canada.

m8lsem's picture
m8lsem
Submitted by m8lsem on
The Thanksgiving story as your author, Mr Schilling tells it, is also suspect, as the Pequot did not live in what is now Massachusetts in those days at that location. I know well that the colonists in Massachusetts were rather obnoxious to us further north, but our relations in Massachusetts were not Pequot, rather they were Wampanoag. The Pequot were relations in Connecticut.

David L Nelson
David L Nelson
Submitted by David L Nelson on
When I was researching my grandfather in New Mexico, I noticed that they did the same as Virginia, they would list people as white who were often Indian or half Indian. An Indian woman in one case who had become the wife of a Spanish settler because he repeatedly raped her was listed as a White. Thanks white ancestors. However, I think something that the history books seem to gloss over as well is that my Indian ancestors were also just as human as the white ones. The mere fact that they arrived about 25,000 years earlier didn't make them more peaceful, loving or kind. They were just as racist as the whites, no more, and no less. The whites had superior disease protection because they were more used to living in their own filth and in spite of that had developed more advanced weapons. I love all of my ancestors, even if they hated each other. I forgive them all too.

Sarah Butts
Sarah Butts
Submitted by Sarah Butts on
I was adopted by my father, who was native American. It was a inter-racial marriage. I also have heritage with the Cherokee Nation on my mother's side. I grew up knowing some of these truths. But I did not know all of them. Disney's portrayal of John Smith and Pocahantas was untrue, Thanksgiving, our government condoning the murder of native peoples, and the truth of Colombus. I actually had history teachers who taught the REAL truth. Thankfully. I did not know about Lincoln and Nazi camps. I'm sorry for my spelling by the way. My point is the people we worship in this country and are taught were so amazing are BS. Thanks for the truth. I have a daughter and even though we are only tied to our culture by DNA I was taught to respect my heritage even though my sisters and I are white. I'm not celebrating Thanksgiving ever again. I already hate Colombus day. I won't celebrate a day of murder like that.

Katerina St Claire
Katerina St Claire
Submitted by Katerina St Claire on
I'm not surprised of any of the information you have here. Know of Plecker. Racist. I'm Melugeon (tri-racial) and we knew him well!
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