By Laura J. Murray
Joseph Johnson used to be an 18th-century Mohegan Indian chief, preacher, and schoolteacher in top big apple nation. Johnson's diaries, written among 1771 and 1773, record everyday life within the Indian Christian groups, and his letters to white benefactors show either an unusual expertise for international relations and a strong imaginative and prescient of Indian unity.
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Extra info for To do good to my Indian brethren: the writings of Joseph Johnson, 1751-1776
Then they parted with their land. 8 Cooper, like many of his contemporaries and many white people since, was fascinated with the idea of Indian purity and nobility. 9 Cooper's characters Chingachgook and Uncas, refusing this kind of cultural vanishing, choose to make a last stand in the wilderness. There they are equally ill fated. "10 The slight ambiguity of this otherwise terminal testimonythe time of the red-men has not yet come againturns out to be one of the few glimmerings of historical accuracy in Cooper's representation of Mohegan people.
Cooper's Uncas hardly ever moves: He is presented to the reader time and time again as a statue, in silhouette, or in profile, like a specimen in a museum or a marble monument. 7 The habit of representing native people as static persists: In Michael Mann's 1992 film, too, Uncas is much less active and vigorous than Hawk-eye, and he is all but speechless, a spectator to his own doom. He acts only once, to save the honor of a virginal white womanand it earns him death. Before Uncas is killed, he is already immobilized by Cooper and Mann, just as groups of Indian people are immobilized in The Last of the Mohicans' version of their history.
Commissioned to lead scouting party at Lake George. September 1758 Joseph Johnson Sr. dies in service. ) arrives at Eleazar Wheelock's Charity-School. 176567 Samson Occom and Nathaniel Whitaker in England raising money for Wheelock's Charity-School. November 1766 Joseph Johnson goes to Kanoaurohare, an Oneida village, as an assistant teacher. Fall 1767 Johnson opens a school at Old Oneida. Fall 1768 Johnson travels with the Reverend Jacob Johnson collecting subscriptions for Wheelock's school; attends treaty at Fort Stanwix.