Spectacles of Settler Colonial Memory: Archaeological Findings from an Early Twentieth-Century "First" Settlement Pageant and Other Commemorative Terrain in New England.

Academic Article


  • In 1923, rural New England mill town Dover, New Hampshire, staged a Tercentenary pageant of extraordinary proportions to celebrate its "first" settlement. This public spectacle memorialized a specific, and deeply exclusionary, narrative of English settler colonialism, shaped by social anxieties of the post-First World War United States. Recent archaeological research has found possible remnants from this spectacle on a seventeenth-century site. In disturbing this site, the Tercentenary pageant appears to have disregarded actual significant material traces from the very era it aimed to memorialize--traces that offer distinct, fuller understandings of deeply nuanced Native-settler interactions in the Piscataqua River region. Dover's pageant is situated in a regional analysis of Native and Euro-colonial commemorative place-making of the early twentieth century, exploring how different communities pursued multivocal, monovocal, or other approaches in their performative engagements with the seventeenth century.
  • Authors

  • Howey, Meghan
  • DeLucia, Christine M
  • Status

    Publication Date

  • 2022
  • Has Subject Area


  • Memory
  • New England
  • Replicas
  • Settler colonialism
  • Spectacle
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Start Page

  • 974
  • End Page

  • 1007
  • Volume

  • 26
  • Issue

  • 4