From the Swampy Land: Indigenous People of the Ithaca Area


ANTHR 2720

TR 9:40-10:55

Instructor:  Kurt Jordan

Who lived in the Ithaca area before American settlers and Cornell arrived? Where do these indigenous peoples reside today? This class explores the history and culture of the Gayogoho:no (Cayuga), which means people from the mucky land. We will read perspectives by indigenous authors, as well as archaeologists and historians, about past and current events, try to understand reasons why that history has been fragmented and distorted by more recent settlers, and delve into primary sources documenting encounters between settlers and the Gayogoho:no. We will also strive to understand the ongoing connections of the Gayogoho:no to this region despite forced dispossession and several centuries of colonialist exclusion from these lands and waters.


Photo by EmeraldRange, May 31, 2021. licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 International license via Wikimedia Commons.

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image of a historical marker sign for Cayuga Castle