On the poverty of settler colonialism: Julius, Wilm, ‘Poor, white, and useful: settlers in their petitions to US Congress, 1817–1841’, Settler Colonial Studies, 2016
Abstract: This article examines the multilateral negotiation of aggressive white settler identity and practice in the USA during the 1820s and 1830s. Drawing upon a large sample of petitions to Congress from the records of the Senate, it shows how white US Americans from the western states and territories addressed frontier relations when calling for a more accommodating land policy. Petitions framed requests for free land and preferential purchasing rights as efforts to remake white frontier inhabitants as market producers and patriots who would direct their energies towards the common wheal. As entitled landowners, petitions claimed, settlers would help to incorporate the frontier-space into the white social and economic order of the USA. White frontier settlements would lower government expenditures on American Indian wars, because entitled whites would by their own actions and motivated by their self-interests help to displace Indigenous groups.
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