Before Tennessee: The Southwest Territory, 1790-1796 : a Narrative History of the Territory of the United States South of the River Ohio
The Territory of the United States South of the River Ohio, known since its creation in 1790 as the Southwest Territory, was the second great federal territory. Its predecessor was the Northwest Territory established in 1787. Governed principally under the terms of the Northwest Ordinance, the younger territory was the first to follow the three-step progression to statehood set forth in that instrument. Its ultimate acceptance as a single state in 1796 signaled westward-looking Americans that there was a proven path to equal statehood for newly settled areas. Settlers would not be trapped in a colonial citizenship that denied voting rights & a voice in government. Yet the path to statehood for the Southwest was made especially hazardous by settlers encroaching on Indian lands & by Indians' aggressive retaliation. It was the task of William Blount, governor of the territory, to reconcile the attitudes of the natives & the settlers but the Indians had no chance. Blount's own personal fortune depended on the acquisition & sale of new lands, & although he gave up lip service to the federal policy of peaceful coexistence, he secretly encouraged & openly approved attacks on Indians who opposed further settlement.
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Independent Spiritand Space for It
Act Creating Territory
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