Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Partly ColoredAsian Americans and Racial Anomaly in the Segregated South$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Leslie Bow

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780814791325

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9780814791325.001.0001

Show Summary Details

The Interstitial Indian

The Interstitial Indian

The Lumbee and Segregation’s Middle Caste

(p.57) 2 The Interstitial Indian
Partly Colored

Leslie Bow

NYU Press

This chapter explores one arena in which segregation forced the question of color and status: when faced with the pressures of white or black association, the Lumbee of North Carolina became, ironically, Indian. Robert Thomas noted that some whites “think Lumbees are really a mixture between black and white. They use the word Indian, but they use it to mean a middle ground status position.” The chapter traces the ways in which that position was fought for and won. Following the rise of Jim Crow, school segregation compelled the assertion of their Indian identity in ways that prefigured ongoing arguments for tribal federal recognition. Crucial to this process was the discourse of blood: differentiating from blacks had to be visually inscribed while claims to whiteness—the oral lore of being descended from Raleigh's Lost Colony—ironically contributed to Lumbee claims of Indian specificity.

Keywords:   segregation, color, status, white, black, Lumbee, North Carolina, Indian, Jim Crow, tribal federal recognition

NYU Press Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.