Digital Paxton: Digital Collection, Critical Edition, and Teaching Platform

Neolin and Pontiac's Rebellion

This lesson will focus on the Neolin Prophetic Vision. Students should be familiar with the roles and effects of Native Peoples with the Seven Years' War. This lesson can be used to introduce events that preceded the Paxton Boy's massacres and help students understand the context of the massacres. This lesson can be followed by a more extensive lesson on Pontiac's Rebellion and the use of Ghost River and Digital Paxton.

Lesson Objectives:
Grade Level: 9-12 AP US History

Standards: AP US History Key Concept Outline:
Historical Background: Bryan Rindfleisch, "Pontiac's Rebellion."

  1. Henry Davenport Northrop, "Visit of Pontiac and the Indians to Major Gladwin" (1901)
  2. Robert Navarre, "An Account of Neolin's Prophetic Vision" (1763)
  3. Document Analysis Handout

  1. Hand out or project the image of "Visit of Pontiac and the Indians to Major Gladwin." Have students take a minute to look at the image write down what they see in it. Suggest they break it down into quadrants and look at all parts of the image. Push the students to write down more than 10 things.
  2. Have students share what they see in the image with a partner and then get some responses from the class.
  3. Then divide the class into groups of 3-4 assign each group one aspect of extended analysis of; Purpose, Audience, Context and Point of View. Give the group a couple minutes to discuss and formulate a response to their assigned extended analysis. Including why. Students should be given the date of the image ca.1760.
  4. Hand out the Neolin document. Based on time can use the long or shorten version. Have them read it and complete the graphic organizer important phrases portion.
  5. Have students compare their important phrases portion with their group.
  6. Then get a class response of a few.
  7. Have students then complete the second part critical thinking questions together.
  8. Have different groups share responses to different questions.
  9. Once students have completed get a quick sharing on questions with different groups sharing responses from different questions.
  10. Based on students responses discuss Pontiac's Rebellion or have a teacher lead lecture.

Assessment: Have students write a thesis statement responding to the FRQ question: To what extent was Neolin successful in achieving his vision? This can be turned in as an exit slip.

Extensions:This lesson was created during the 2019 Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History Teacher Seminar, "Native Peoples, Settlers, and European Empires in North America, 1600-1840" (July 28-August 3, 2019). You may also download a printable version of this lesson.

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