September 23, 2009

Shawnee Indians in Colonial Williamsburg

Colonial Williamsburg Debuts Scene Depicting Native Americans on Eve of American RevolutionThe Native American presence in pre-Revolutionary War Williamsburg is reflected in a new Revolutionary City story that begins a three-week run Oct. 3.

"So Far From Scioto" chronicles the story of three young Shawnee emissaries brought to Williamsburg in 1774 as security to ensure compliance with a peace agreement that ended Lord Dunmore's War in the Ohio Country.

As diplomatic hostages, the Shawnee delegation witnesses the turmoil and public outcry at the beginnings of the American Revolution in Williamsburg; the seizure of the colony's gunpowder at the Magazine by British marines, news of bloodshed at Lexington and Concord, and Lord Dunmore's hurried departure from the Governor's Palace and Williamsburg in the face of growing conflict with Virginian patriots. Torn by homesickness, political uncertainty and their sense of honor to serve as security for the safety of the Shawnee people, they consider their course of action.

"So Far From Scioto" is presented at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. daily except Mondays, Oct. 3-24 in the Governor's Palace garden and is part of The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation's American Indian Initiative, which takes a broad-based approach to include the histories of Native peoples in 18th-century Williamsburg.

"So Far From Scioto" will be the first Revolutionary Story to draw on the talents and resources of the American Indian community. The Shawnee characters will be portrayed by an all-Native cast.
Comment:  It's not clear if this is the first program about Indians, the first program about Indians during the Revolutionary War, or the first program using Indians as cast members.

For a similar subject, see Cherokee "Living History" Tours.

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