Distinguished professor’s new book traces modern Iroquois history since 1800
Laurence M. Hauptman, a SUNY Distinguished Professor of History at the State University of New York at New Paltz, recently released a book, titled “Seven Generations of Iroquois Leadership: The Six Nations since 1800” (Syracuse University Press 2008).
In his new book, Hauptman traces the past 200 years of the Six Nations’ history through the lens of the leaders who shaped it. Focusing on the distinct qualities of Iroquois leadership, Hauptman reveals how the Six Nations have survived in the face of overwhelming pressure. Employing a biographical approach and extensive research, the author explores how leaders use the past to enable cultural, economic and political survival.
Figures such as Governor Blacksnake, Cornelius Cusick, and Deskaheh are juxtaposed with less well-known, but nonetheless influential, champions of Haudenosaunee culture and sovereignty, such as Dinah John. Hauptman’s survey includes many female leaders, including 35 contemporary women, highlighting the important role women have played in Iroquois survival throughout history to the present day.
Including leaders from all six Iroquois nations and all regions of modern-day Iroquoia, the book offers both historical and contemporary portraits.
In the book’s review, Distinguished Foundation Professor of History at Arizona State University Donald Fixico states, "Laurence Hauptman is one of the leading historians writing Native American history and this work is quite indicative of his previous excellent scholarship…. Much could be learned from Hauptman’s book on Iroquois leadership that would benefit youth in schools and college students."
Hauptman has taught at New Paltz for the past 37 years. The focus of his teaching has been Native Americans, New York state and the Civil War. He is the recipient of three teaching awards: the NYS/United University Professions Excellence Award, the SUNY New Paltz Educational Opportunity Program Award, and the SUNY New Paltz Student Association Mentor Award.
Hauptman is the author, co-author or co-editor of 15 books on the Iroquois and other Native Americans. He has testified as an expert witness before committees of both houses of Congress and in the federal courts and has served as a historical consultant for the Wisconsin Oneidas, the Cayugas, the Mashantucket Pequots, the Senecas and the Seneca-Cayugas.
Professor Hauptman has been honored for his research by the Iroquois nations, as well as the New York State Board of Regents. He is a member of the New York state-wide Archives Advisory Committee, is currently a trustee of the Iroquois Indian Museum and was recently elected to the New York Academy of History.
In April, 2005, he was the Wilma Mankiller Lecturer at the University of Oklahoma. In November, 2006, his book, “Between Two Fires,” was the basis of the History Channel documentary “Indian Warriors of the Civil War.”
Located in the heart of a dynamic college town, 90 minutes from metropolitan New York City, the State University of New York at New Paltz is a highly selective college of about 8,000 undergraduate and graduate students.
One of the most well-regarded public colleges in the nation, New Paltz delivers an extraordinary number of majors in Business, Liberal Arts, Sciences, Engineering, Fine and Performing Arts and Education.
New Paltz embraces its culture as a community where talented and independent minded people from around the world create close personal links with real scholars and artists who love to teach.