A Collaborative Archaeology and History of a Virginia Indian People
Jeffrey L. Hantman
While Jamestown and colonial settlements dominate narratives of Virginia’s earliest days, the land’s oldest history belongs to its native people. Monacan Millennium tells the story of the Monacan Indian people of Virginia, stretching from 1000 A.D. through the moment of colonial contact in 1607 and into the present.
Written from an anthropological perspective and informed by ethnohistory, archaeology, and indigenous tribal perspectives, this comprehensive study reframes the Chesapeake’s early colonial period—and its deep precolonial history—by viewing it through a Monacan lens. Shifting focus to the Monacans, Hantman reveals a group whose ritual practices bespeak centuries of politically and culturally dynamic history. This insightful volume draws on archeology, English colonial archives, Spanish sources, and early cartography to put the Monacans back on the map. By examining representations of the tribe in colonial, postcolonial, and contemporary texts, the author fosters a dynamic, unfolding understanding of who the Monacan people were and are.