"Midtrød has written a valuable account of the Native Americans of the Hudson Valley and environs. . . . While most historians emphasize that Native decline occurred in four wars with the Dutch from the 1640s to the early 1660s, Midtrød claims that these Native peoples had a 'remarkably tenacious' political and diplomatic life until the American Revolution. His focus is on how they networked to resolve disputes with other Native peoples in the valley as well as in southern New England and western Long Island."―Choice (1 December 2012)
"Retelling the native past of the Hudson Valley is like making a quilt out of scraps. Thankfully, Tom Arne Midtreod has the patience to do patchwork. Meticulously, he stitches together many fragments of published and archival evidence in this new book about the valley's Indians in the colonial period. Along with the growing shelf of new titles on the region's natives, this study deepens our understanding of the people who lived in one of the busiest corridors of British North America yet too often are misunderstood or forgotten. . . . The book's finest moments come when Midtroed traces the 'change in posture' in river Indians' political position in the 1660s and 1670s. Making excellent use of a number of unpublished sources, he shows how the Hudson natives navigated a series of confluent events. . . . With its hard-earned insights drawn from wide and deep research, The Memory of All Ancient Customs is a valuable resource to historians of the region. Midtroed's admirable attention to Indian perspectives helps him put together his many swatches of evidence and re-create the fabric of the colonial-era Hudson."―Hudson River Valley Review
"The Memory of All Ancient Customs makes an important contribution to our understanding of European–Native American relations in New York, offering an important supplement to works that focus on tribes rather than regions. The book helps make comprehensible the complex history of relations between culturally diverse peoples in early America."―Journal of American History
"His study of Indigenous Christianity makes a significant contribution to our understanding of both colonial approaches to Indigenous peoples and their own repurposing of them."―Thomas Peace, Journal of Colonialism and Colonial History (Spring 2013)
"Deeply researched, wide-ranging, judicious, with unfailingly careful attention to context, historiography, and argumentation, The Memory of All Ancient Customs is a model combination of scholarly rigor and thoughtful open-mindedness. Tom Arne Midtrød tracks a complex and shifting population of Indians along the length of the Hudson Valley and across two eventful centuries."―Eric Hinderaker, University of Utah, author of The Two Hendricks: Unraveling a Mohawk Mystery
"The Memory of All Ancient Customs is excellent―it is certainly the most complete and thoroughly researched book on the subject that I have seen. It will be a valuable source of reference for scholars working in this area for years to come. Tom Arne Midtrød has conducted an impressive range of research in both manuscript and printed primary sources."―Colin Calloway, John Kimball, Jr. 1943 Professor of History and Professor of Native American Studies, Dartmouth College, author of New Worlds for All: Indians, Europeans, and the Remaking of Early America
About the Author
Tom Arne Midtrød is Assistant Professor of History at the University of Iowa.