Keely Smith

Graduate Student, Department of History
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Keely Smith is a graduate student in the Department of History. She studies Indigenous communication networks in the North American southeast during the 18th and early 19th centuries. She received her Bachelor of Arts from Samford University in 2018 in history, Spanish, and global studies. Keely’s interest in languages informs the way she considers the multicultural history of the southeast. Her dissertation will explore how Muscogee (Creek) and Seminole communication (verbal, performative, written, material culture, etc.) fostered diverse bicultural relationships that shaped diplomacy in the region and remained influential after removal in the 19th century. Keely hopes to privilege Native conceptions of their own histories and collaborate with individuals of descendant communities throughout the dissertation process. She is currently learning Mvskoke, a language of Muscogee (Creek) and Seminole peoples, through the University of Oklahoma. In the summer of 2019, Keely participated in the Newberry Consortium in American Indian Studies Summer Institute which focused on Indigenous language revitalization. At Princeton, Keely is involved with the Princeton American Indian and Indigenous Studies Working Group (PAIISWG) and is a coordinator of the Colonial Americas Workshop.