Learning To Live: Gender And Labor At Indian Boarding Schools

Author(s): Eve H Dewan

Year: 2016


In 1879, the first federally funded off-reservation boarding school for Native American children was opened at the site of a former army barracks in Pennsylvania. Several additional facilities were soon established throughout the United States. Guided by official policies of assimilation and goals of fundamentally transforming the identities of their pupils, these institutions enrolled thousands of individuals from a multitude of tribal communities, sometimes forcibly. Once at school, students received lessons in and out of the classroom about how to be ideal American citizens. Integral to constructions of citizenship are those of gender; students at these schools were not only trained to become Americans, but to become American women and men. This instruction was facilitated by the enforcement of gender-segregated labor practices.  Drawing on documentary, oral historical, and archaeological evidence, this paper reveals differences and internal structural inequalities in the education of students at the Federal Indian Boarding Schools. 

Cite this Record

Learning To Live: Gender And Labor At Indian Boarding Schools. Eve H Dewan. Presented at Society for Historical Archaeology, Washington, D.C. 2016 ( tDAR id: 434325)

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Temporal Keywords

Spatial Coverage

min long: -129.199; min lat: 24.495 ; max long: -66.973; max lat: 49.359 ;

Individual & Institutional Roles

Contact(s): Society for Historical Archaeology

Record Identifiers

PaperId(s): 564