Pub. Date:
University Press of Kentucky
The Mississippi Territory and the Southwest Frontier, 1795-1817

The Mississippi Territory and the Southwest Frontier, 1795-1817

by Robert V. HaynesRobert V. Haynes
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Territorial Mississippi was the focus of an intense international rivalry when it became a possession of the United States following Pinckney's Treaty of 1795. The newly created American nation vied for land already claimed by Spain, as well as territory inhabited by natives who had lived on the land for centuries. These challenges, coupled with the constant threat of a British invasion from Canada, made the southwestern frontier a volatile landscape and westward expansion a harrowing struggle.

Originally occupied by numerous Native American tribes, the territory that came to be known as Mississippi has a complex history rife with violent contention. In 1540, Hernando de Soto of Spain became the first European to stumble across its borders. The French established a fort in 1699 and were promptly followed by the British; all were eager to lay claim to the region and its valuable resources. In The Mississippi Territory and the Southwest Frontier, 1795—1817, Robert V. Haynes does more than recount the history of a vital region; he explores the political and diplomatic tensions that led to the formation and expansion of the Mississippi Territory.

During this tumultuous period, the size and span of the territory changed many times, at one point encompassing the Alabama Territory. Early settlers to the newly formed region were primarily a mix of dispossessed Scottish and English — farmers, bigamists, debtors, and criminals. Wealthy lawyers and swindlers also flooded the nascent borders, eager to exploit and capitalize upon the uncertainties of this valuable yet legally ambiguous American possession. These conflicts finally ended on December 10, 1817, when Mississippi became the twentieth state admitted to the Union.

Haynes delivers a comprehensive investigation of the critical events in Mississippi's rich and colorful history, such as years of borderland violence, the arrest of Aaron Burr within its boundaries, and the bloody Creek War of 1813—1814. Extensively researched and eloquently written, The Mississippi Territory and the Southwest Frontier promises to be the definitive work on the region's history.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780813125770
Publisher: University Press of Kentucky
Publication date: 05/21/2010
Edition description: New Edition
Pages: 432
Product dimensions: 6.20(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.50(d)

About the Author

Robert V. Haynes, former professor of history at Western Kentucky University, is the author of A Night of Violence: The Houston Riot of 1917. He lives in Bowling Green, Kentucky.

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