The Other Slavery

The Other Slavery

The Uncovered Story of Indian Enslavement in America

Book - 2016
Average Rating:
Rate this:
A landmark history -- the sweeping story of the enslavement of tens of thousands of Indians across America, from the time of the conquistadors up to the early 20th century

Since the time of Columbus, Indian slavery was illegal in much of the American continent. Yet, as Andrés Reséndez illuminates in his myth-shattering The Other Slavery , it was practiced for centuries as an open secret. There was no abolitionist movement to protect the tens of thousands of natives who were kidnapped and enslaved by the conquistadors, then forced to descend into the "mouth of hell" of eighteenth-century silver mines or, later, made to serve as domestics for Mormon settlers and rich Anglos.
Reséndez builds the incisive case that it was mass slavery, more than epidemics, that decimated Indian populations across North America. New evidence, including testimonies of courageous priests, rapacious merchants, Indian captives, and Anglo colonists, sheds light too on Indian enslavement of other Indians -- as what started as a European business passed into the hands of indigenous operators and spread like wildfire across vast tracts of the American Southwest.

The Other Slavery reveals nothing less than a key missing piece of American history. For over two centuries we have fought over, abolished, and tried to come to grips with African-American slavery. It is time for the West to confront an entirely separate, equally devastating enslavement we have long failed truly to see.
Publisher: Boston :, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt,, 2016.
ISBN: 9780547640983
Characteristics: xiii, 431 pages : illustrations, maps


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment

PimaLib_NormS Sep 27, 2017

“The Other Slavery: The Uncovered Story of Indian Enslavement in America”, by Andres Resendez, is an informative book of important, but mostly unknown history. We are all aware of the enslavement of Africans in this country, and we are still dealing with the aftereffects. However, not much is known about the enslavement of the indigenous people of the Americas. Slavery was practiced by civilizations all over the world for thousands of years, and while it wasn’t the white Europeans that introduced the concept of slavery to the New World, there is no denying that they, starting with that old slave-trading mariner himself, Christopher Columbus, became heavily invested in the slave trade of Indians. (Note: The author uses the term “Indians” to describe the indigenous people and tribes of the Americas as a group, so that’s what I’ll use, too.) The Europeans quickly became the dominant force in the region, which included the taking and trading of slaves, but even before Columbus landed in the New World, weaker Indian groups were being enslaved by those that were more powerful. Slaves were commodities to be bought, sold, and traded by the strong, to the detriment of the weak. And, the taking of Indians as slaves continued for many years in America, even past the time of the Civil War. The enslavement of Africans is a repugnant, shameful part of American history, and based on the diligent and thorough research of Andres Resendez, we are now aware of the repugnant, shameful enslavement of Indians, as well.

Jun 29, 2017

Well-researched, illuminating, and powerful study of, as the subtitle indicates "the uncovered story of Indian enslavement in America." When I first read about it, I thought it would be more about Native American enslavement and, while that's part of the story, the book begins with Columbus and his fleet landing in the Caribbean and then follows the Spanish conquest of Latin America and its people, many of whom were killed, died of disease, or enslaved, even if slavery was technically illegal in much of the Spanish empire. It can be a little academic (author Andres Resendez is a professor at UC Davis), but this is an important, thoughtful book that calls attention to a history which we all should be more familiar with.

Age Suitability

Add Age Suitability

There are no age suitabilities for this title yet.


Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further

Browse by Call Number


Subject Headings


Find it at MPL

To Top