Date of Award

Spring 2017

Document Type

EdD Project

Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)




Timothy Slater

Second Advisor

Edward Janak

Third Advisor

Clifford Harbour

Fourth Advisor

Peter Moran


For over six hundred years, Native Peoples of North America have survived attack after attack on their way of life and who they are. The United States state and federal governments and churches have made consistent attempts to exterminate them first through massacres, disease, and bounties. Then they used forced civilization, forced conversion to Christianity, and other assimilation policies to try to eliminate their culture and steal the land. Native Peoples resisted and defended themselves against these powerful systems and their shocking policies designed to eradicate a whole population of people. Over this time period, the governments and churches kept impeccable records that described thoughts, plans, policies, actions, and reflection of these genocidal policies. Their journals and records describe Native Peoples as uncivilized, savages, heathens, pagans, and even referred to them as lice and vermin that needed to be destroyed. Papal bulls issued by the Christian monarchies ordered the military to take part in these policies so that the land could be deemed unoccupied and then stolen. In the twentieth century a shift in power occurred as Native Peoples organized and lobbied to pass legislation that would give them protection, rights, and reparations. They took their fight into the courtroom to reverse unjust legislation, regain their land, and maintain their rights. They continue to hold these powerful systems, government and church, responsible for past genocidal policies and land theft, as well as current injustices and abuse that is still perpetrated against Native Peoples.


This project is an attempt to tell the truth, dispel myths, eliminate inaccurate information, and resolve misconceptions and misunderstandings about Native Peoples.