Unit Overview

This unit is meant to guide students in interrogating the differences in Native American and European understandings of land, which contextualizes the broad conflicts over territory that took place during the eras of Contact/Conquest and Expansion/Removal, and that continue today. Maps and art produced by Native and white cartographers and artists make up a rich body of primary sources that offers insight into differing ways of depicting, using, and living on the surface of what would become the United States. Each of the three mini units in this module engages with maps and artwork by Native Americans and white settlers from a particular era. The first concerns the colonial period, the second focuses on Westward expansion and Indian removal, and the final collection of lessons looks at modern expressions of these cultures and ideas. The mini units and can be taught separately as parts of a larger chronological study, or in order as a unit about using visual sources.