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History Pre-confederation (to 1867)

Prophetic Identities

Indigenous Missionaries on British Colonial Frontiers, 1850-75

by (author) Tolly Bradford

UBC Press
Initial publish date
Apr 2012
Pre-Confederation (to 1867), Missions, Native American Studies
  • Hardback

    Publish Date
    Apr 2012
    List Price
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Jan 2013
    List Price
  • eBook

    Publish Date
    Apr 2012
    List Price

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The presence of Indigenous people among the ranks of British missionaries in the nineteenth century complicates narratives of all-powerful missionaries and hapless Indigenous victims. What compelled these men to embrace Christianity? How did they reconcile being both Christian and Indigenous in an age of empire? Tolly Bradford finds answers to these questions in the lives of Henry Budd, a Cree missionary from western Canada, and Tiyo Soga, a Xhosa missionary from southern Africa. He portrays these men not as victims of colonialism but rather as individuals who drew on faith, family, and their ties to Britain to construct a new sense of indigeneity in a globalizing world.

About the author


  • Short-listed, Aboriginal History Prize, Canadian Historical Association

Contributor Notes

Tolly Bradford is an assistant professor of history at Concordia University College of Alberta in Edmonton.

Editorial Reviews

Tolly Bradford is among very few historians to compare the spread of British colonization and mission Christianity in nineteenth-century North America and Southern Africa. This thoroughly researched and well-written book examines what it meant to be indigenous and Christian at a time of violent and exploitive European colonial conquest and portrays indigenous missionaries Henry Budd of western Canada and Tiyo Soga of the Eastern Cape as active agents with minds of their own.

Timothy J. Stapleton, Professor of History, Trent University

Other titles by Tolly Bradford