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Smithsonian Institution, 
Bureau of American Ethnology, 

Washington, I). C, Juli/ 1, 1898. 
Sir: I have the lionor to submit ni}- Nineteenth Annual 
Rejjort as Director of the Bui-ean of American Ethnolog-v. 

Tlie Report opens with an account of the operations of the 
Bureau during- the past fiscal year ami with some exposition 
of the principles pursued in the work; the remainder com- 
prises nine memoirs prepared by collaborators, which illustrate 
the methods and results of the work of the Bureau. 

It is a pleasure to express my appreciation of your constant 
aid and support in the work under my charge. 

I am, with respect, your obedient ser^•ant, 


Honorable S. 1*. Langlky, 

Secretanj of the Smithsonian Ji/stitufioit. 




Intnulnctioii X' 

Fiekl research and exploration xin 

Office research six 

Work in esthetology xix 

Work in technology xx 

Work in sociology xxn 

Work in philology x x v 

Work in sophiology - x x v 1 1 

Descriptive ethnology xxviii 

Collections - xxix 

Publication xxix 

Bibliography xxx 

lyibrary xxx 

Illustrations xxx 

Property - xxxi 

Financial statement xxxiv 

Characterization of acconijiaiiying i)ai>ers xxxv 

Subjects treated xxxv 

Myths of the Cherokee xxx vii 

Tusayan migration traditions xxxix 

Localization of Tusayan clans xi.i 

Mounds in northern Honduras xn 

Primitive numbers - xi.iii 

Numeral systems of Mexico and Central America xuv 

Mayan calendar systems xlii 

The wild rice gatherers of the ujjper lakes Lli 

Tusayan flute and snake ceremonies xlv 

Esthetology, or the science of activities designed to give pleasure lv 

(ieneral considerations 'v 

Ambrosial pleasures I'X 

Decorative ))leasures 'X 

Athlcl ic pleasures i-xiii 

( iames i.xviii 


Esthetoloijy, or the science of activities (le.signed to give pleat^iire — Cont'd Page 

Fine artn i.xx 

Music Lxx 

Rhythm lxxi 

jMelody LXXI 

Harmony lxxii 

Symphony Lxxiii 

Graphic art Lxxiv 

Sculptur(> Lxx I V 

Relief lxxv 

Perspective - - - l.xxvi 

Chiaroscnro _ lxxvi 

Drama i.xxvii 

Dance i.xxvii 

Sacrifice - - - i.xxviii 

Ceremony ... Lxxviii 

Histrionic art lxxi.x 

Romance i.xxxi 

Beast fal)Ie i.xxxii 

Power myth lxxxiii 

^Necromancy v 

Novels LXX XVI 

Poetry Lxxxvn 

Personification i.xxxvii 

Similitude lxxxviii 

Allegory Lxxxix 

Trope - . - xc 


Myths of the Chei-okee, )jy James Jlooney 3-548 

Index to Part 1 549-576* 

Tusayan Migration Traditions, by Jesse Walter Fewkes 573-634 

Localization of Tusayan Clans, by Cosmos Mindeleff 635-653 

Mounds in Northern Honduras, by Thomas Ciann 655-692 

Mayan Calendar Systems, Ijy Cyrus Thomas 693-819 

Primitive Numbers, by W J McGiee 821-851 

Numeral Systems of Mexico and Central America, by Cyrus Thomas 853-955 

Tusayan FUite and Snake Ceremonies, by Jesse Walter Fewkes 957-1011 

The Wild Rice Gatherers of the Upper Lakes, by Albert Ernest Jenks . . . 1013-1137 

Index to Part 2 1139-1160 


Witliin the kiva Frontispiece 

Myths of the Cherokee Plates i-xxviii; I'igures 1-3 

Mounds in northern Honduras Plates .\xix-x.\xi.\ ; Figures 4-7 

Mayan calendar systems Plates xi-xliv; Figures 8-22 

Numeral systems of Mexico and Central America Figures 23-41 

Tiisayan flute and snake ceremony Plates xlv-i.xv; Figures 42^6 

The wild rice gatherers of the upper lakes Plates lxvi-lxxix; Figures 47-48 

. VII 





By J. W. Powell, Director 


Ethnologic researches have been conducted di;ring the fiscal 
year ending June 30, 1898, in accordance with the act of 
Congress making jn'ovision "for continuing researches rehiting 
to the American Indians, under the direction of the Smitlisoniau 
Institution," approved June 4, 1897. 

The work has been cai'ried forward in accordance with a 
plan of operations submitted on June 14, 1897. The field 
operations of the Director and the coUaliorators have extended 
into Arizona, Chihuahua, Coahuila, Indian Territory', Maine, 
New Brunswick, New Mexico, New York, Oklahoma, Ontario, 
and Texas, while special agents have conducted operations iu 
Alaska, Argentina, British Columbia, California, Cliile, Green- 
land, Oregon, Wisconsin, and Washington state. The otfice 
work has included the collection of material from Indian tribes 
in Arizona, Idaho, Indian Territor}-, Kentucky, ]\Iimiesota, 
Montana, Nebraska, Nortli Dakota, New York, Oklahoma, 
Pennsvlvania, Soutli Dakota, and Texas. The researches in 
the office have dealt with material from nearly all of the states 
and from other portions of the American continent. 

The organization of the work has gfrown out of a classifica- 
tion of ethnic science based on the researclies of the Bureau. 


It is worthy of note that, while tlie science of nian has 
advanced rapidly durino- the last twenty years throug'h the 
efforts of alile investigators in different countries, the advance 
has been particularlj^ rapid in the United States. No small 
part of this advance must be ascribed to the farsighted gov- 
ernmental policy of maintaining researches among the abo- 
riginal tribes of the American continents, yet a part of the 
progress would seem to be due to the wide range in ethnic 
phenomena with which American students are favored. The 
investigator in this country may easily come in contact with 
representatives of every race and of every important strain 
of lilood; at the same time he may study every important 
grade in culture, from the savagery of some of the Indian 
tribes, through the barbarism of others, up to the civilization 
and enlightenment represented by the greater part of our pop- 
ulation. Among the consequences of this favorable condi- 
tion for study have been the stinuilation of observation and 
the encouragement of strictly scientific methods of research. 
Another result is found in the amassing of trustworthy data, in 
unequaled amount, for comparative study. The general result 
is expressed in extension and refinement of ethnic science, and 
to some degree in the application of ethnology to practical 

The systemization of the science resulting from considera- 
tion of its subject-matter as exhibited in the operations of the 
Bureau was set forth somewhat fully in the last report, and the 
same system is followed in the present report. The science for 
which the Bureau was organized under the act of Congress 
treats but slightly of the somatic characteristics of the native 
tribes of America; the researches extend rather over those char- 
acteristics exhibited by men in the tribal state as they are por- 
trayed in cultural elements. These elements of character arise 
in the methods pursued by the tribesmen for the purpose of 
securing pleasure, welfare, justice, expression, and opinion; 
these pursuits involve activities which are esthetic, industrial, 
governmentid, linguistic, and educational, and the activities 
give rise to the sciences of esthetology, technology, sociology, 
philology, and sophiology. 



At the be<iimiiiii;- of the fiscal veiir the Direetor was eii<>-ao-ed 
in an examination of certain shell mounds on the coast of 
JMaine reconnoitei'ed ditring' the ])recedin<i- season. Limited 
collections were made, and the associations were noted with care 
and compared with those characteristic of the Indians still liv- 
ing in the vicinity. The work resulted in the complete iden- 
tification of the mound-builders with the tribes found on the 
same coast by white men early in the settlement of this country. 

During- July Mr F. W. Hodge re[)aired to Arizona, joining 
Dr Fewkes during the excavation of the ruins near SnowHake, 
south of Holbrook, and later accompanying him to Tusayan 
for the pui'pose of gaining further insight into the summer 
ceremonies of the Hopi Indians and additional knowledge of 
the ruins of their former villages. Leaving Dr Fewkes and 
his party late in August, he visited the remarkable, but little 
known, ruins on the mesas surrounding Cebollita valley, about 
35 miles south of Grant, New Mexico, making photographs of 
noteworthy features and grovmd plans of some of the more 
interesting structures. After spending several days in this 
work, Mr Hodge A'isited the i)neblos of Lagnna and Acoma, 
witnessing at the latter village the interesting Fiesta de San 
Estevan, and on September 3 lie proceeded witli his p;irty to 
the widely known Mesa Encantada, some three miles from 
Acoma, the traditional home of the Indians of the pueblo tluring 
prehistoric times. The precipitous height was climbed, the 
night was spent on the summit, and after carefully examining 
its entire surface Mr Hodge succeeded in finding traces of Indian 
occupancy at a remote period. He also found traces of an 
ancient pathway leading toward the summit and (piantities of 
prehistoric ware in the talus, to which it had evidently been 
washed from the summit of the mesa; accordingly, he was able 
to substantiate the essential features of an Acoma tradition. 

The beginning of the year found Dr .). Walter Fewkes 
occupied in collecting aboriginal material from a prehistoric 
ruin known as Kintiel, or Pui-l)lo Grande, locatcil on an upper 
wash of the Colorado Clii(|uito, lietween Navaho station and 
Ganado, in eastern central Arizona. Situatcil midway 


between the Tusayan and Zuiii groups of puel^los, this ruin 
has for a number of years been a problem to investigators 
in this iiehl; but the researches of Dr Fewkes show quite 
conclusively that the art remains unearthed resemble more 
closely those of Halona, Heshotautlila, and other ancient Zuni 
villages than those of the jjrehistoric pueblos of Tusayan. 
Excavations were conducted in the cemetries, as well as in the 
ruin of the village, and in each an interesting collection of 
jjottery and of bone and stone implements was unearthed. 

Fully satisfied with the results at this point, Dr Fewkes 
returned to the railroad, and from Holbrook proceeded to the 
vicinity of Pinedale, near the northern border of the White 
Mountain Apache reservation, where another interesting col- 
lection of objects was made. Although the ruins from which 
they were recovered are more remote from the present Tusa- 
yan villages than are those of Kintiel, they are more closely 
similar in form and in symbolic decoration to ancient Tusayan 
art jiroducts tlian are the specimens obtained from the latter 

Excavations were next conducted in some interesting- ruins 
about four miles west of Snowflake, which, like those of Pine- 
dale, were hitherto unknown to archaeologists. Researches at 
this point extended over a period of a fortnight, being con- 
ducted both in the house ruins and in the cemeteries north 
and southwest thereof An unusually large collection of fictile 
ware, as well as a very interesting but smaller collection ot 
bone, stone, and shell objects, was here obtained. By the 
middle of August Dr Fewkes returned with his party to Hol- 
brook and proceeded thence to the Tusayan villages, where 
he made observations supplementary to those conducted in pre- 
vious years in connection with the Snake dance and related 

During September Dr Fewkes visited that part of the upper 
Gila valley called Pueblo Viejo, and examined certain ruins 
in that region which were discovered and described by Emory 
and Johnston in 1846. He conducted archaeological work in 
mounds near Solomonville and San Jose de Pueblo ^"iejo, and 
collected several hundred objects from these localities. These 
ruins were found to bear close architectural resemblance to 


those near Phcenix and Tempe, and to indicate adobe houses 
with walls supported by logs and stones, clustered about a 
central building which served for protection or for ceremonial 
purposes. Pottery and other objects from these ruins were 
found to be identical with those from near Casa Grande. It 
was discovered that tlie ancient people of this valley some- 
times buried their dead in their houses, but that the larger 
number were cremated. The calcined houses and ashes of the 
latter were placed in decorated jars and buried in pyral mounds. 
Remains of extensive prehistoric irrigating ditches, reservoirs, 
and terraced gardens show that the ^'alley was extensively 
farmed in ancient times, and the large number of ruined houses 
indicate an extensive population. An instructive collection of 
pottery, beads, shells, and sacrificial objects was obtained from 
a cave in the mountains north of Pueblo Viejo. 

During a part of his field season Dr Fewkes had the coopera- 
tion of Mr F. W. Hodge, and during the entire summer the 
assistance of Dr Walter Houg-li, of the United States National 
Museum. The researches of Dr Fewkes conducted during- 
this summer were remarkably successful, both in the extent 
and value of the collections acquired and in the archseologic 
and ethnologic data recorded. 

Toward the end of September Mr James Mooney took the 
field in New Mexico, Texas, and contiguous Mexican .states, for 
the purpose of collecting, among various tribes, information 
additional to that obtained among the Kiowa and Kiowa- 
Apache of Oklahoma concerning the primitive rites in which 
peyote (moi*e popularly known as "mescal") is used as a nar- 
cotic and stimulant. Incidentally to this work, Mr Mooney 
made a brief visit to a series of interesting pueblo ruins, 
attributed to the neighboring Tevva Indians, on a mesa 12 
miles west of Espanola, above Santa Fe, on the Rio Grande, in 
New Mexico. These remains are of considerable local i-epute, 
but thus far they have not been seriously excavated. 

The Jicarilla Apache, numbering 850, on a reservation in 
northern New Mexico, were the next object of Mr Mooney's 
attention. This tribe formerly roamed over the section east of 
the mountains of New ^lexico, on the headwaters of Arkansas 
and Canadian rivci-s, luit alHliatcd with tlic Ute rather tluin 


witli the Plains ti'ibes. It was found that they knew of peyote 
only throuo-h temporary association with the Mescalero a few 
years ago, when the two tribes were for a time on one reserva- 
tion. The Mescalero Apache, numbering 450, on a reservation 
in southeastern New Mexico, were next visited. These 
Indians, whose popular name is derived from their use of the 
"mescal" or peyote, are regarded by the Plains tribes as mas- 
ters in all that concerns the plant; but from information 
received through their best informants, as well as from actually 
witnessing the ceremony, Mr Mooney found the rite to be 
declining among them, largely through the difficulty of pro- 
curing the plant in their isolated condition, as it requires five 
days' journey on horseback to obtain a supply. Mr Mooney 
discovered a number of Lipan and a few Kiowa- Apache Indians 
living with the Mescalero. The Lipan were a predatory tribe 
of eastern Texas, and were almost exterminated some thirty 
years ago on account of their raiding propensities against 
both Texas and Mexico. Of the remnant a few are incorjjo- 
rated with the Tonkawa, a few joined the Mescalero and 
Kiowa-Apache, while others, probably the larger number, fled 
to Santa Rosa mountains, in northern Mexico, where they still 
live. Mr Mooney obtained through the Lipan further infor- 
mation in regard to several Texan tribes, including the Karan- 
kawa and Tonkawa, of whom little has been known; and from 
them also definite information was obtained in regard to the 
use of jjeyote among the Tarahumari of ]\Iexico. 

Having completed his investigations among the tribes of 
New Mexico in the early part of December, Mr Mooney 
devoted attention to the remnants of the Piro, Tiwa, Sunia, 
and Manso tribes on the Rio Grande below El Paso, in both 
Texas and Chihuahua. These Indians, now practically Mexi- 
canized, are the descendants of a large number of natives who 
were taken by Governor Otermin on his retreat from Santa Fe 
to El Paso, and settled at their present location during the 
Pueblo rebellion in 1680. He obtained valuable information 
in regard to the former status of these people and conducted 
also some linguistic researches, to which reference will later 
be made. 



]\Ir Mooney next })roec'eded to the mountain fountry of 
Texas, southeast of El Paso, for the purpos(; of locating- the 
pevote, from information given by the 31esfalero. Two or 
moi'e varieties of the ])lant were found in this section, on both 
sides of the Rio Grrande. In January ^Ir Mooney continued 
southward to the Taraliumari country in quest of additional 
information concerning the rites and customs of that tribe of 
which peyote forms the feature. The Tarahumari form one 
f the most populous tribes in Noi'th America, their number 
being variousl)' estimated at from 50,000 to 80,000. They 
occupy nearly the whole mountain region of the state of 
Chihuahua. They perform a number of interesting ceremonies 
in which peyote plays an important role. Indeed, the plant 
is a prominent part of the medicine man's stock in ti'ade, rather 
than something used by the tribe at large, as among the Kiowa 
and associated tribes to the northward. Several varieties of 
peyote are recognized b}^ the Tarahumari, who procure tlie 
plant chiefly about Santa Rosalia, in southeastern Chihuahua. 
Information concerning the ceremonial use of peyote by the 
neighl^oring Tepehuan tribes was likewise gained, and the 
southernmost limit of its use in Mexico was also detei'miued. 

Aside from his researches in this interesting subject, Mr 
MooneA^ made an examination of some large burial caves near 
Aguas Calientes, about 200 miles southwest of Chihuahua city. 
Although the princi])al one of these caves had been excavated 
by residents, in the hope of findhig buried treasure, and their 
contents thereby disturbed, Mr Mooney succeeded in recov- 
ering a well-preserved munnny with its original wrappings of 
matting and native cloth and the accompanying food and water 
vessels, which have been deposited in the National I\Iuseuni. 
These and kindred observations throw iruich light on the little- 
known mortuary customs of the region. 

During August and September Dr Albert S. Gatschet was 
occupied in linguistic researches begun during the preceding 
year among the Algonquian tribes in Maine and contig'uous 
parts of New Brunswick. His work resulteil in the enrich- 
ment of his vocabularies, and in the preparation of numerous 

19 ETH — 01 II 


texts wliicli are especially valuable not only as indices of lin- 
guistic structure but as records of tribal history, customs, social 
organization, and beliefs. 

Mr J. N. B. Hewitt spent the autumn in the field in nortliern 
New York and neighboring parts of Ontario, collecting lin- 
guistic and sociologic data required for tlie full comparative 
study of tlie Iroquoian tribes. He was also able to obtain new 
and valuable additions to the series of creation myths for which 
these Indians are notable, and through which their names have 
become extensively incorporated in tlie literature of the world. 

On November 4, 1897, Mr J. B. Hatcher, of Princeton Uni- 
versit^ , who was about to sail for Argentina, was specially com- 
missioned to make collections among the Indian tribes of South 
America; and toward the end of the fiscal 3'ear he sent his first 
shipment of material, representing the natives of Patagonia, 
whose characteristics have attracted attention for centuries. 

On Jiuuiary 11, 1898, Mr Gerard Fowke was employed tem- 
porarily to make archseologic surveys and excavations in an 
interesting locality in Kentucky. These excavations were par- 
ticularl}' successful, yielding a considerable quantity of valua- 
ble material, which has been forwarded to Washington. 

Shortly liefore the opening of the fiscal year Dr Robert 
Stein, attached to Lieutenant R. E. Peary's Arctic expedition 
for the purpose of exploring a little-known stretch of the coast 
of western Greenland, Avas commissioned to make archseologic 
researches and collections. He was landed on August 10, 1897, 
and remained until September 1, when he was taken up by 
Lieutenant Peary on his return trip. During Dr Stein's stay 
on a part of the coast not now inhabited, he discovered abun- 
dant traces of ancient habitation by the Eskimo, and collected 
a quantity of somatologic and other material. 

The objective material collected during these explorations 
has been placed in the National Museum; portions of the new 
data have been added to the archives, but the greater part are 
incorporated in memoirs now in preparation or completed for 
piiblication, as is indicated in other paragrajihs. The scientific 
results of the work are summarized in the following pages. 


Work in Esthetologv 

Mr Frank Hamilton Cusliing has continued the study iiiid 
arrangement of his collections of aboriginal handiwork from 
western Florida, and has made progress in the prjparatioii of 
a report on the prehistoric key-dwellers of the eastern shore 
of Gulf of Mexico. During the greater part of the year the 
collections were kept in the Museum of Archaeology of the 
University of Pennsylvania, where they were shipped on 
account of the inadequate space then afforded by the National 
Museum for unpacking and assembling; toward the end of 
the fiscal year, as the capacity of the Museum was increased 
by the introduction of galleries, the greater part of the col- 
lection was brought to Washington and arranged in cases and 
on tables for purposes of comparison and study. In the course 
of his work Mr Cashing has made extensive comparisons 
between his specimens and those obtained by other archaeolo- 
gists from different portions of the United States, and the 
comparative studies are highly significant. The Florida col- 
lections are rendered excejjtionally valuable by reason of the 
large number of specimens made from and decorated with 
animal and vegetal substances, which are ordinarily perish- 
able, though preserved in high perfection in the muck beds 
associated with the Florida Keys. According!}-, the material 
serves better than any other collection thus far made to con- 
nect the records of the early explorers with the observations 
of later times; at the same time it serves to round out knowl- 
edge concerning the pre-Coluiiihian handiwork of the Indians 
in all of the softer, more flexible, and nioi'e easily destructible 
substances, and, accordingly, permits comparison of designs 
wroug'ht in a wide rano'e of materials. 

Dr J. Walter Fewkes has continued the preparation of 
reports on his archseologic researches in Arizona and New 
Mexico. These researches were undertaken primarily for the 
jiurpose of enriching the collections of aboriginal art products 
in the National ^luseum. The large collections embrace a re- 
markably complete series of primitive designs and motives in 


■fictile ware, iuolnding the adnptation of mvtliolog-ie, animal, bird 
and feather, insect, and reptilian figures. Many of these are so 
highly conveutionized that they would have been practically 
uninterpre table without the knowledge of Tusayan ih\ tliologic 
and sociologic concepts which Dr Fewkes fortunately pos- 
sesses, and by means of which he has been enabled to make 
substantial contributions to knowledge of the development of 
artistic concepts. The results of his work are incorporated in 
two memoirs for publication, respectively, in the seventeenth 
and twentieth annual reports. 

In connection with other researches, and with administrative 
duties in the office as Ethnologist in Charge, Mr W J McGee 
has made inquiries from delegations of Indians visiting Wash- 
ington concerning the sjanbolic use of feathers, especially in 
connection with headdresses. It is well known to students that 
the use of feathers, which at first sight woiild seem to be deco- 
rative merely, is essentially symbolic; but the meanings of the 
symbols have not iDeen ascertained hitherto, save casually and 
among a few tribes. During the year the feather symbolism of 
the Pouka and Ojibwa tribes has been discovered and recorded 
with tolerable completeness. 

Work in Technology 

Arts and industries are correlative factors in human progress, 
and the lines of conceptual development traced tlu'ough the 
study of art motives elucidate the growth of industrial devices. 
Accordingly, the work of the collaborators in connection with 
art motives has contributed both directly and indirectly to 
aboriginal technology. During the year special attention was 
given to lines of technical development, as indicated in previ- 
ous reports, and to the acquisition of material for study and 
preservation in the Museum. Especially valuable is the 
Steiner collection, from the mounds of Etowah valley, Geor- 
gia. It comprises 3,215 specimens of stone implements, earth- 
enware, and symbolic and decorative objects of copper, shell, 
and stone. The Indians of this district, builders of the great 
Etowah mound and other nioiiiunents, were peculiarly fertile 
in artistic and industrial devices. In this region the progres- 
sive tribes of the Siouan stock, the vigorous Cherokee, one or 


more of the wicle-riui;>ing' AlgoiKiuiiiu tribes, the little-knowu 
Yuchi, and some of the JMuskhoo-fan tribes came in fre([uent 
contact, while the intinence of the arts and industries of the 
kev-dwellers of Fhti-ida was constantly felt. Here, as else- 
where, ideas and ideals Avere stimulated by contact, whether 
peaceful or not; and the devices representing the rapidly 
growing concepts are especially significant and useful in trac- 
ing the course of industrial development among the aboriginal 
tribes. Another noteworthy acquisition is the Moms collec- 
tion from Arkansas, comprising 181 pieces of pottery, together 
with a number of stone implements and other objects. The 
collection is especialh' valuable as an illustration of types of 
pottery hitherto rare or unknown. The most important acqui- 
sition of archseologic objects procured during the year is com- 
prised in the collections made by Dr J. ^V alter Fewkes from 
the ruins of Kintiel, Pinedale, Fourmile, Solomonville, and 
other ancient sites in eastern and southern Arizona and south- 
western New Mexico, an elaborate report on which is now 
being prepared. Like the collections obtained at Sikyatki, 
Awatobi, and other Tusayan ruins, these include fictile and 
textile products, stone, bone, and wooden im])lcnients, and 
objects of shell and stone used for personal adornment. In 
symbolic decorative features the mortuary food and water ves- 
sels, as well as many of the utensils recovered from the houses, 
are exceedingly rich. The collections have been deposited in 
the National ]\luseum. 

The process of culture in all the five departments is by 
invention and acculturation. The invention is at first individ- 
laal, but when an invention is accepted and used by others it 
is accultural, and the invention of the individual may be added 
to the invention of others, so that it may be the invention of 
many men. ( objects nuiy be used without designed motlifica- 
tion, or they may be de.signedly modified for a purpose; the 
ixse of ol)jects without designed modification, like the Seri 
stone implements, has been studied by Mr ]\Ic(Tee, and he 
calls such nmnodified implements protolithic, while the mod- 
ified stone implements he calls ti'chnolitliic. The two phases 
are widely distinct, not onh in type of object, but even more 
in the mental o])erations exemplified ])v the objects; for the 


protolitliic objects represent undesigned adaptation and modi- 
fication, as of cobbles picked up at random, while the others 
represent designed shaping in accordance with preconceived 
ideals, as of chipped ' arrowpoints. The coexistence of these 
incongruous types among the Seri seemed puzzling at the 
outset, but was provisionally ascribed to the difference in 
occupation between the sexes, the women using the protolithic 
implements, and the waiTiors making and using the technolithic 
weapons. Further study showed that the objects of chipped 
stone imitate in every essential respect the alwriginal weapons 
of the hereditary enemies of the Seri, including the Papago 
and Yaki, and this fact, coupled with the mysticism tin-own 
around the stone arrowpoints by the Seri shamans (most of 
whom are aged matrons), indicated that the idea of the tech- 
nolithic wea]>on was acquired through warfare. Examination 
of other characteristics of the Seri in the light of this interpre- 
tation served to explain various puzzling features and at the 
same time established the validity of the interpretation. The 
Seri liave been at war with alien tribes almost constantly'- since 
the time of Columbus, and indeed long before, as is indicated 
by archjeologic evidence. ]\Iost of their arts and industries are 
exceedingly primitive; yet here and there features imitating 
those characteristic of neigliboring tribes, or even of white 
men, are found. Thus they substitute cast-off rags and fabrics 
obtained by plunder for tlieir own fabrics, wi-ought with great 
labor from inferior fibers; since the adjacent waters have been 
navigated, they have learned to collect flotsam and use tattered 
sailcloth in lieu of pelican-skin blankets, cask staves in lieu of 
shells as paddles for their balsas, hoop iron in lieu of charred 
hardwood as arrowpoints for hunting, and iron spikes in lieu of 
bone harpoons for taking turtles ; and almost without exception 
these modifications in custom have arisen without amicable 
relation, and despite — indeed, largely by reason of — deep-seated 
enmity against the alien peoples. 

Work in Sociology 

In sociology Mr McGee has observed some interesting facts 
which shed light on that form of development of institutions 
among tlie tribes of America which he calls piratical accultu- 


ration — spn'aclin*^- tVom one untVicndK' tribe to aiiotlicr.' 'I'lie 
Apache and Fapago tribes have been bitterly ininiieal from 
time immemorial, the oldest creation le<i'ends of the I'apago 
describing the separation of the ])eoples in the beginning; yet 
there is liardl\- a custom among the hitter which has not 
been shaped partially or completely by the inimical tribe. 
The habitat of the Papago in the hard desert is that to which 
they have been forced by the predatory A])ache; the indus- 
tries of the Papago are shaped bv the conditions of the habitat 
and bv the i)erpetual anticipation of attack. The trailitions 
recounted bv the old men are chieHy of battle against the 
Apache; even the ceremonies and beliefs are connected with 
that eternal vigilance which they have found the price of 
safety, and with the wiles and devices of the ever-present 
enemy. Perhaps the most important element in the accultu- 
ration is that connected with belief; for to the primitive mind 
the efficiency of a weapon is not mechanical but mystical (an 
expression of superphysical potency), and each enemy strives 
constantly to coax or suborn the beast-gods and potencies of 
the other; so the Papago warrior went confidently to battle 
against the A[)ache when protected by a charm or fetish 
including an Apache arrowpoint taken in coiiflict, and felt 
assured of victory if his war club was made in imitation of 
that of the enemy and potentialized by a plume or inscri])tion 
appealing to the Apache deity. Even later in the scale of 
development, after the piratical acculturation has become meas- 
urablv amicable, this factor remains strong, as among the clans 
of tlie Kwakiutl and some other tribes in Avhich the aim of 
marriage settlement is the acquisition, not of propertv or kin- 
dred perse, but of deities and traditions concerning them. 

The general law of piratical acculturation finds iimumeralde 
examples among the more primitive peoples of the world, and 
phases of it have been recognized in the proposition that con- 
quering tribes take the language of the conquered. Other 
phases have been perceived, e. g., in the hypothesis of primi- 
tive "marriage bv capture." Various earlier stuilents have 
noted that actual or ceremonial captiu'e of the bride is a part 

' A preliminary announcement of this work appear? in tlie Ameriean Anthropolo- 
gist, vol. xi, 1898, pp. 244-249. 


of inarriao-e among' certain tribes, and have assumed that this 
was the initial form of mating among primitive peoples: later 
researches have shown that, in the lowest of the four great cul- 
ture stages, mating is regulated by the females and their male 
consanguineal kindred, so tliat marriage by capture of brides 
can not occur; yet there is a step early in the stage of pater- 
nal organization in which a certain form of marriage by cap- 
ture has arisen in America, and may easily have become 
prominent on other continents. When tribes are in that unsta- 
ble condition of amity resulting in ])eaceful interludes between 
periods of strife — a stage characteristic of savagery and much 
of barbarism — the intertriljal association frequently results in 
irregular matches between members of the alien tribes; com- 
monly such mating is punished by one or both triljes, though 
among many peoples there are special regulations under which 
the offense may be condoned — e. g., the groom may be sub- 
jected to fine, to running the gauntlet, to ostracism until chil- 
dren are born, etc. Yet while Ijoth Ijride and groom incur 
displeasure and even risk of life through such matches, there 
is a chance of attendant advantage which niay counterbalance 
the risk; for it frequently happens that the groom, especially 
if of the weaker tribe, eventually gains the amity and support 
of his wife's kinsmen, while in some cases the eldermen and 
elderwomen of one or both tribes recognize the desirability of 
a coalition which can tend only to unite the deities of both, 
and so benefit each in greater or lesser measure. Researches 
among the American aborigines have already shown that, so 
far as this continent is concerned, exogamy and endogamy are 
correlative, the former referring to the clan and the latter to 
the tribe or other group; they have also shown that the limi- 
tations of exogamy and the extension of endogamy are inge- 
nious devices for promoting peace; and it is now becoming 
clear that intertribal marriage, whether by mutually arranged 
elopement or by capture of the bride, may be a means of 
extending endogamy and uniting aliens, and thereby of rais- 
ing acculturation from the piratical plane to that of amicable 
interchange. The apjjlications of the law of piratical accultura- 
tion are imuimerable. In the light of the law it becomes easy 
to understand how inimical tribes are gradually brought to use 


similar weapons and implements, to adopt similar modes of 
tliinkino- and wiirkinu', to worshii) similai- deities, and thus to 
be V)rpuo-lit from complete dissonance to potential harmony 
whensoever the exig-ency of primitive life may serve; and thus 
the course of that convergent development, which is the most 
important lesson the American aborigines have given to the 
world, is made clear. Some idea may be formed, also, of the 
history of ]iiratical acculturation. 

Work in Philology • 

Dr Albert S. Gatsche*^ has continued the preparation of a 
comparative vocaliulary of Algonquian dialects, making satis- 
factory progress. The Algonquian linguistic stock was the 
most extensive of North America, both in the number of dia- 
lects and in the area occupied b}- the tribes using them. For 
this and other reasons the stock has been a source of much 
labor among philologists, and there has been considerable 
di^'ersitv of opinion as to its classification. One of the tasks 
undertaken by the Bureau early in its history was the review 
of Algonquian linguistic material for. the jmi'pose of formu- 
lating a deiinite and satisfactor}^ classification. Many vocabu- 
laries have been collected and compared; to aid in the deter- 
mination of aflBnities, grammatic material has also been 
obtained in considerable volume; and still further to elucidate 
relations, a body of records of myths and ceremonies has been 
accumulated. The lexic, grammatic, an<l mythologic records 
of the Algonquian stock collected by collaborators of the 
Bureau and obtained from correspondents form several Hun- 
dred manuscripts; and it is from this voluminous material that 
the comparative vocabulary is compiled. In addition to this 
routine work on the vocaUularv, Dr Gatschet has from time 
to time prepared linguistic material for use in answering 
inquiries of numerous correspondents. 

Mr J. N. B. Hewitt has continued the study of tluvlnKiuoian 
languages during the }'ear. As has been noted in former 
reports, he has also carried forward a g'eneral stud\' ot' the ])ro- 
noun 51s used in primitive tongues, with a view to the prejjara- 
tiou of a memoir on linguistic develoi)ment. Partly as a means 


to this end, partly because of the inlierent interest of the 
subject, he has umlertaken a comparative study of the creation 
myths of the Iroquoian and some other tribes. During the 
later portion of the year the greater part of his time has l)eeii 
devoted to this study, with highly satisfactory results. 

During his operations among the Mescalero and Jicarilla 
Ajiache tribes of New Mexico, mainly for the jiurpose of gain- 
ing knowledge concerning the ceremonial use of the peyote 
among those people, as recorded in previous paragraphs, Mr 
James Mooney seized the opportimity of obtaining vocabula- 
ries for comparison with cognate dialects, together with the 
genesis myths. The Mescalero and Jicarilla dialects are prac- 
tically the same, and the cosmogony of the two tribes is also 
nearly identical, although they Avere generall}- at war with 
each other, the Mescalero cooperating with the Plains tribes 
while the Jicarilla were allies of the Ute. Owing to the fact 
that the Lipan were nearly exterminated a generation ago, and 
by reason of the isolation of the surviving remnants, doubt has 
been expressed as to their true affinity; but from a vocabulary 
obtained by Mr Mooney from members of this tribe associated 
with the Mescalero on their reservation, it is now known that 
they speak a well-defined Athapascan dialect. Such linguistic 
researches as the present meager knowledge of their language 
would permit were also conducted by Mr Mooney among the 
modified Tiwa and Piro Indians on the Rio Grande below El 
Paso. Returning from the field for the purpose of revising 
proofs of a memoir on the Calendar History of the Kiowa 
Indians, in course of composition as a part of the seventeenth 
annual report, Mr. Mooney remained in the office during the 
last quarter of. the year, occupied, in the intervals of proof- 
reading, by the translation and arrangement of a large collec- 
tion of Cherokee myths recorded in the original syllabary as 
well as in the English. Satisfactory progress was made in pre- 
paring the material for publication. 

During the later part of the year the researches in Indian 
sign language, which were brought to a close by the death of 
Colonel Mallery in 1894, were resumed through the collabora- 
tion of Captain, now Colonel, Hugh L. Scott, U. S. A. Colonel 
Scott was stationed for some years on the frontier, where he 


was in constant contact witli various Indian tribes, including 
the plains Indians, aiiionj^- wlumi the sig'n language was highly 
developed. EarK- in his stay he became interested in the signs 
and began acciuiring this interesting art of expression, and his 
studies continued until he became proticient and able to use 
the sign language iial)ituall\ in communicating with vai'ious 
tribes. His knowledge of the system is undoubtedly superior 
to that of anv other white man, and his acquaintance with 
individual signs exceeds that of any Indian with whom he has 
come in contact. During the winter Captain Scott was trans- 
ferred to Washington, and through the covirtesy of tlie Secre- 
tary of War and the Commanding General of the Army he 
was authorized to take up the record and discussion of sign 
lano-uas"e under the direction of the Burean. Considerable 
progress had been made in the work when it was interrupted 
by conditions connected with the war with Spain. 

Work in Sophiology 

The Director continued the development of a system of clas- 
sification designed to indicate tlie })lace of the American abo- 
rigines among the peoples of the earth Dnring the latei- part 
of the year he took up the voluminous material in the Bureau 
archives relating to aboriginal mythology; While in charge 
of the United States Geographical and Geological Survey of 
the Rocky Mountain region, before the Bureau was instituted, 
the Director began the collection of mj^ths among the Indians 
of the territories, and when the Bureau was created this mate- 
rial, in connection with a body of linguistic manuscripts obtained 
by the Smithsonian Institution, formed the original archives. 
Additional material was collected from time to time by the 
Director and 'by several of the collaborators, and there are now 
some hundreds of manuscript rcu-ords read^' for stud}-. Satis- 
factory progress has been made in the preliminarv arrangement 
of the manuscripts and in the extraction and classification of 
salient features in the primitive mythology prevailing among 
all of the native tribes before the advent of the white man. 

Mrs Matilda Coxe Stevenson has continued the final revision 
of her maiuiscript for a memoir on Zinii ceremonies, de.signed 
for incorporation in an early report. Most of the cliapters are 


now complete, and nearly all of the illustrations are ready for 
reproduction. The Pueblo Indians well illustrate certain results 
of environment in the development of Ijelief and ceremony. A 
harsh environment begets jjrofound faith. This is illustrated 
by the history of many cults. The Pueblo region was a gather- 
ing ground of pi'imitive faiths, each fertilizing the others in 
accordance with the law already set forth, and each intensified 
by hard local conditions. The northern tribes, who furnished 
much of the blood of the Pueblo peoples, were pressed down 
from more humid regions and Itrought into conflict with alien 
warriors and with an arid habitat in which the 'specters of 
thirst and famine were ever present. The southern tribes, who 
fui-nished most of the culture of the Pueblos, were in part at 
least forced up toward the plateaus from the still more arid 
districts about the present national Ijoundary into which they 
had fled as the excess of population from the more fertile dis- 
tricts of pre-Columbian Mexico. All of the peoples were 
shadowed by the dangers of drought and by the hard labor 
require<l for the maintenance of existence; all were accustomed 
to invocations for rain; all were accustomed to ceremonies 
connected with the growth of corn; all were accustomed to 
reverence of beast-gods, and all ascribed their preservation 
from ever-present danger to their success in propitiating the 
maleficent mysteries In' whicli they were surrounded — for 
that which is simph' a hard natural condition to the advanced 
thinker is always a maleficent potency to the primitive thinker. 
All of the circumstances were such as to develop a profoundly 
devotional cast of mind among the l*ueblo peoples; and their 
myths and ceremonies became so striking as to attract the 
attention of students throughout the world, as wdiite men came 
in contact with them. Mrs Stevenson's research'es concerning 
the myths and ceremonies have been exceptionally tliorough, 
and the i-esults now nearly ready for publication will form 
a substantial contribution to the knowledge of aboriginal 

Descriptive Ethnology 

During the year the important work of compiling a Cyclo- 
pedia of Indian Tribes of North America was continued by 


Mr F. W. Hodge, with the assistance of" ])r Cyrus Tlioinas, 
the former carr\Mug forward the work in connection witli other 
duties. Dr Thomas completed the prehminary arrangement 
of tlie material i-elating to the tribes of the Algouquian stock, 
submitting the material for editorial revision. He afterward 
took lip the manuscript and literature relating" to the tribes of 
the Siouau stock, and has made satisfactory progress in the 
ai'raugement of the material. 


A number of collections have been acquired during the year 
under the more iumiediate direction of the Secretary. Some 
of these are noted above ; in addition there have been acquired 
(1) a collection of Jamaican antiquities by MacCormack, 
including 160 specimens of ancient stone inqjlements, earthen- 
ware, etc., and 20 petaloid implements; (2) the Palmer collec- 
tion of 98 ethnologic s])ecimens from Mexico; and (3) the 
Gane collection of cliff-house relics, comprising fictile ware, 
bone implements, etc., from San Juan valley, Utah. In addi- 
tion, the ]\Iuniz collection of trephined skulls, illusti-ated and 
described in tlie sixteenth annual report, was finalh* transferred 
to- the Museum. A considerable number of separate objects 
and minor collections olitained by exchange for reports and 
bv gift has also been turned over to the Museum duriuL;- tlie 
year; among- these was a Muskwaki hand-loom obtained by 
Mr McGee for the express purpose of tilling a hiatus in the 
national collection: 


Satisfactory progress has been made by Mr Hodge in the 
i-evision of the proofs of the seventeenth and eighteenth annual 
reports and in theeditori;d work on the manuscript of the nine- 
teenth annual rej)ort. '^Phe seventeenth report was transmitted 
to the Public Printer through the Secretary of the Smithsonian 
Institution on July 6, 18!I7. In addition to the usual account 
of the operations of the Bureau tlie seventeentli annual report 
contains four memoirs, bearing the titles, The Seri Indians, 
by W J McGee; Calendar IIistor\' of the Kiowa Indians, Ijy 
James Moouey; Navaho Houses, by Cosmos Mindeleff, and 


Arcliseological Expedition to Arizona in 1895, by J. Walter 

The eighteenth annual re])ort was transmitted to the Public 
Printer on March 11, 18!)S. It comprises, in addition to the 
report of operations for the fiscal year 1896-97, two pa})ers 
entitled, respectively. The Eskimo about Bering Strait, by 
E W. Nelson, and Indian Land Cessions in the United States, 
by C. C. Royce. Like the seventeenth report, this will appear 
in two volumes. The first galley proofs were received from 
the Public Printer in the latter part of June. 


As has been set forth in a previous report, the bibliography 
of the aboriginal languages of Mexico, which was left uncom- 
pleted at the time of Mr Pilling's death, has been continued 
through the genei'ous services of Mr George Parker Winship, 
librarian of the John Carter Brown library at Providence, with 
the courteous permission of Mr John Nicholas Brown. The 
unusual facilities afforded by the excellent library under Mr 
Winship's care has enabled him to make marked progress with 
this work during the fiscal year; much, however, remains to 
be done ere the work will be ready for pubhcation. 


The maintenance of the library has continued under the 
supervision of Mr Hodge, and the distribution of the publica- 
tions of the Bureau has also been conducted under his direction. 
At the close of the last fiscal year, as is mentioned in the report 
covering that period, the volumes in the library luunbered 
7,138; to these 756 volumes have been added, making a 
total of 7,894 volumes at the close of the year. In. addition 
several thousand pamphlets and scientific periodicals have 
been received. 


The preparation of the illustrations, including the photo- 
graphic work, was continued under the direction of Mr Wells 
M. Sawyer until March 17, 1898, when he resigned to accept 
another Federal appointment. From that time until the close 


of the year the preparation of" ilhistratious was conducted under 
tlie able supervision of i\Ir DeLancey W. Gill, of the United 
States Geological Survey, through the coui-tesy of Honorable 
Charles D. Walcott, Dii'cctor of that bureau. During- the year 
about To negatives and 61 d photographic prints were made 
for purposes of illustration and exchange. The preservation 
and cataloffuing- ()f the Bureau's negatives have continued with 
the aid of Jlr Henrj' Walther. 


The propert}' of the Bureau of American Ethnology is, with 
the exception of two or three items, small in amount and value. 
By far the most important and valuable property in the custody 
of the Bureau is the collection of manuscript records, represent- 
ing a considerable pai-t of the work of the collaborators and the 
contributions of correspondents during the last twenty years, 
as well as the collection originally acquired from tlie Smith- 
sonian Institution. The greater ])art of the manuscripts are lin- 
guistic, and these are not in condition for publication, thougli 
invaluable for purposes of study and comparison. The entire 
collection, embracing more than 2,()0() titles, is catalogued and 
aiTanged in fireproof vaults in the offices of the Bureau. A 
strict custody is maintained, luider the immediate supervision 
of the director. 

A related class of property comprises photographs of Indian 
subjects. So far as is practicable, these are represented by 
original negatives with a systematic series of prints. The 
collection comprises about 5,000 negatives, with about 3,000 
prints, including 800 prints from negatives which are not in the 
possession of the Bureau. The collection is in constant use in 
connection with the preparation of illustrations for the reports; 
its custody is vested in the illustrator of the Bureau. 

Among the minor items the most important is the library, of 
7,894 volumes and over 5,000 ])amphlets, with plain wooden 
cases sufficient to accommodate them. The greater part of the 
library represents the product of exchange, and in addition 
there is a fair collection of books of reference and standard 
works on ethnologic subjects obtained by purchase. The 
libraiy is in innnediate charge of Mr F. W. Hodge 


A class of ])ropertv of some iiuportaiice is the accuuiiilated 
residue of publications. The greater part of the edition of tlie 
reports available for distribution by the Bureau is sent to ex- 
changes and correspondents inuuediately on issue, but a lim- 
ited number of copies of each edition remains for distriljution 
in accordance with subsequent demands. The residue of the 
several editions not completely exhausted is kept under the 
supervision of Mr F. W. Hodge. The editions of most of the 
reports are exhausted ; the undistriljuted residue consists of 
about 4,300 volumes. 

A somewhat important class of property, though of limited 
value, is office furniture, with the requisite stationery for cur- 
rent use, as well as photographic apjjaratus and material. The 
aggregate value of the furniture and apparatus is less than 
S2,500. The custody and use of furniture, apparatus, station- 
ery, and other materials are regulated by a custodial system 
de^'ised for the purpose, which has been found to work satis- 

A considerable number of original engravings used for the 
illustration of reports are catalogued and arranged in cases in 
the office of the Bureau, while the original copy for illustra- 
tions is also preserved, so far as is practicable, in charge of the 
illustrator. The stereotype plates from which the reports are 
printed are, from time to time, turned over to the Bureau by 
the Publii; Printer. These are stored partly in tlie Smithsonian 
building, partly in the basement of the building in which the 
office is located. 

Experience has shown that, under existing conditions, it is 
inexpedient to acquire field property in any considerable 
amount, since the cost of purchase and maintenance of ani- 
mals, vehicles, and camp equipage exceeds the charges "for 
hire ; accordingly, there is practically no field property in the 
possession of the Bureau. 

The collaborators engaged in field operations collect ethno- 
logical material, in greater or less quantities, for purposes of 
study. All sucli material is transferred to the National 
Museum, and commonly its study is carried on within that 


Duriuy' tlic last fiscal year satisfactory prog'rcss was made 
ill enricliiu<>' the manuscript collections, tlu^ series of plioto- 
grajilis, and the collections of material ol)jects for the Museum, 
as is indicated in otlier ])aragnn)hs. 'I^he aggregate expendi- 
tures for stationery and laboratory supplies were ^1,1MI(); for 
furniture, S750, and for the purchase of necessary books of 
reference and standard works, >5S5(). 

The Bureau is domiciled in rented (juarters, i. e., the; sixth 
floor of the Adams Buildiug, 1333-1335 F street, Washington. 
These quarters are limited, hardly meeting the requirements 
of the work. During the Avinter, when othce work is in active 
progress, it is sometimes necessary for two or three collabo- 
rators to work in private quarters, while some of the perma- 
nent property (stereotyi)e plates, etc.) of the Bureau is stored 
in the Smithsonian and National Museum buildings, and the 
publications are stored in and distributed from the basement 
of the building occupied by the United States Geological 
Survey, through tlu^ courtesy of the director, Honorable 
Charles D. Walcott. 

19 ETH — Ul ITI 


Appropriation liy Congress for the fiscal year ending June 30, 1S98, "for 
continuing ethnological researches among the American Indians, under 
tlie direction of the Smithsonian Institution, including salaries or com- 
pensation of all necessary employees, $45,000, of which sumnot exceed- 
ing §1,000 may be used for rent of building" (sundry civil act, June 4, 
1897) ." '. t $45,000.00 

Salaries or compensation for services. $32, 330. 57 

Traveling and field expenses $2, 750. 71 

Drawings and illustrations <S05. 30 

Office rental 999. 96 

Ethnic material (specimens, etc.) 482. 22 

Office furniture 400. 90 

Publications for lilirary 1 , 972. 64 

Stationery 163. 44 

Freight .'. 123. 16 

Temporary services 1 , 526. 09 

Supplies 1 , 126. 23 

Reports 175. 20 

Miscellaneous 312. 30 

10, 838. 15 

Total disbursements 43, 168. 72 

Balance, July 1, 1898, to meet outstanding liabilities 1,831.28 



Subjects Treated 

Nine memoirs are ajjpended to this report. The first of 
these is a comparative study of aboriginal mythology, illus- 
trated by the myths of the Cherokee. The author, Mr Mooney, 
has spent several years in researches among the Cherokee and 
other tribes, and has amassed a large body of information con- 
cerning their activities; and the accompanying- memoir is one 
of a number in which the results are incorporated, two or three 
of these being nearly ready for publication. The second 
paper is a compilation of Tusayan migration traditions col- 
lected and interpreted by Dr Fewkes; this, too, being one 
of a number of productions by its author, others of which are 
well advanced in preparation. To it the third paper, by Mr 
]\Iindeleflf, is complementary. This author spent several years 
in researches in the Pueblo country, and his sketch of Tusayan 
migrations, with special reference to the localization of clans 
in the pueblos, represents one of the final products of his work. 
The fourth paper, treating of mounds in northern Honduras, is 
the conti-ibution of a valued correspondent. It deals with a 
little-known region in wliicli tlie archteologic record is of 
exceptional interest and such as t<) throw much light on the 
attributes of the ancient aborigines of various North American 
districts. Tlie fifth and seventh papers together represent the 
results of long-continued researches in the Bureau, conducted 
by Dr Thomas; the foi-mer relating to the llig]d^• interesting 
calendar systems of ancient Yucatan, and the latter to the 
numeral sy.stem of the ilexican and Central American tribes. 
Both are based largely on codices and other inscriptions, as 
well as on molded and scul})tured glyphs, wliicli iluring recent 
years have been made accessible to students through numerous 

.XX. vv 


reproductions Tlie..sixtli paper is a general discussion of ])nni- 
itive numbers and of the origin of numeral systems, by Mr 
McGee, prejjared partly as an introduction to the more special 
paper by Dr Thomas. The eightli paper is another product 
of the researches in the pueblo reg'itin by Dr Fewkes. It 
rejjresents a critical study of certain important ceremonies of 
Tusayan. The last pajjer is a detailed account of wild rice 
and the wild rice gatherers of the lake region, ])y Dr Alljert 
Ernest Jenks, a sjjecial contributor to the Bureau. It sum- 
marizes the results of extended researches in literature as well 
as in the field. 

The distribution of the tribes treated iri these papers is 
sufficiently broad to afford geographic perspective and give 
opportunity for tracing the causes and conditions of tribal 
diversity. Three of the papers find their subjects in the pueblo 
region and three others in that central portion of the continent 
whose aboriginal culture was long the marvel of the Old World, 
while one treats of a northern tribe, and Mr. Mooney's memoir 
deals with one of the most important tribes of the eastern 
woods. So one of the regions is typically tropical, another 
represents one of the most arid poi'tions of the temperate zone, 
while the third typifies the humid lauds of the same zone. 

As a whole the papers deal chiefly, although not dispropor- 
tionately, with the so})hic activities of the aborigines, i. e., 
with their myths and beliefs and the ceremonies and other cus- 
toms dependent thereon — for it is one of the lessons of ethnol- 
ogy that among primitive folk the arts and industries, laws 
and languages are in great measure shaped by crude faith. 
The traditions of the Cherokee and the Tusayan well illustrate 
the dominance of mythology over the lowly mind of the abo- 
rigine, the numeral and calendar systems tell a similar story, 
and the relics from Honduran mounds find significant paral- 
lels among the votive ol)jects employed in the ceremonies of 
Tusayan; while the signs and symbols of the several districts 
are shown in the general pap(n- to betoken significant stages in 
the development of thought among the peoples of the world. 

The time range covered by the subjects is considerable. 
The Mayan calendars and the Honduran mounds represent 


pre-Columl)i;iii times: tlic tniditidiis nt' tlu- puclilu region run 
back into the prcliistoi-ic, Uut come clown to the present, ;ni(l 
thus bridge the ancient and tlie modern, wliile tlie Cherokee 
myths and Tusavan ceremonies ilhistrate the exceeding per- 
sistence of mythologies still surviving centuries of contact with 
Caucasian culture. The range in culture grade represented 
])\ tlie papers is also wide, stretching from the higher savag- 
er\, marked by the retention of maternal organization, up to 
that higher barl)arism, or incipient feudahsm, reached 1)}' the 
city-building makers of the Mexican calendars. 

Myths of thk Cherokee 

Since the times of earliest discovery and settlement along 
the southern Atlantic section the Cherokee Indians have Ijeen 
known as one of the largest and most noteworthy of our abo- 
riginal tribes. They formed an important factor in lioth Eng- 
lish and Spanish pioneering; they alone of the more northerly 
aborigines developed a definite system of writing in the form 
of Sequoya's syllabary; during colonial times the soutliern 
settlers were compelled to reckon witli tliem; tlieir presence 
exercised a potent influence on the policies of Revolution- 
ary times; they were prominent in shaping our laws relating 
to Indian attairs; they played a role of no small moment dur- 
ing the Civil war; and the portion of the tribe remaining in 
tlu'ii- original territor}' still retain aborig'inal characteristics in 
remarkable degree. Yet, despite the liistorical importance of 
the tribe, they liave, through a condiination of circumstances, 
received comparatively slight consideration of literary and his- 
torical character. 

It was largely by reason of their retention of aboriginal ideas 
and customs that the eastern Cherokee were selected for spe- 
cial investigation; and it is largely by reason of the historical 
neglect of the tribe that it seemed well to introduce the publi- 
cation of Mr Mooney's rich collections of ethnologic material 
with an extended historical sket( li. The jtrimary purpose of 
this sketch was to bring together in a form convenient for ref- 
erence the chief events and e))isodes in the long-continued 
contact between Cherokee and Caucasian, and to indicate the 


chief" sources of infovniatiim concerning the tribal develop- 
ment; l)ut as the work proceeded it was found ilesii'able to 
verify doubtful and incomplete records by comparison with 
the tribal traditions, so that it became necessary to incorpo- 
rate the traditional history of the tribe; and at tlie same time 
it was found desirable to rectify certain imi)ortant misappre- 
hensions, and even actual errors, connected with the people 
and the i>'rowtli of knowdedjjfe concerniii"; them. One of the 
more imjiortant rectifications relates to the route taken Ijy De 
Soto in his memorable joiu-uey, and this alone cost much 
reseai'ch among- rare original publications in Spanish, in addi- 
tion to involving extended personal acquaintance with the 
ground. Tlie several verifications and corrections will doubt- 
less serve to render this sketcli tlie most trustworthy as well 
as the most convenient outline of Cherokee history extant. 

Although the myths recited in the memoir are those of a 
single tribe, the method of study is comparative; the Chero- 
kee tribe is treated as a sophic type, and numerous parallels 
drawn from the author's personal knowledge as well as from 
the literature of the aborigines ai-e introduced. One of the 
ends of research among the natives of the Western Hemisphere 
is the systemization of knowledge concerning aboriginal 
beliefs and their attendant ceremonies; and Mr Mooney's 
memoir forms a step in the progress toward that end. 

Mr Mooney's collection comjirises an extensive series of the 
myths and traditions of the type tribe, cosmogonic, historical, 
interpretative, and trivial; for among the Cherokee, as among 
other primitive peoples, the traditions vary widely in character 
and purpose. The collections are peculiarly valuable in that 
they are so complete as to indicate the genesis and develop- 
ment of the tribal traditions. It would appear that the parent 
myth usually begins as a trivial story or fable, perhaps carry- 
ing a moral and thus introducing and fixing some precept for 
the guidance of conduct. The great majority of these fables 
drop out of the current lore within the generation in which they 
are born, but those chancing to touch the local life strongly or 
happening to glow with local genius survive and are handed 
down to later generations. The transmitted fables form a part 


of the lore repeated by the clderineu and elderwoinen night 
after uiyht to while awav the long evenings by the eanip lire, 
and in this way they become impressed on the niemor\' and 
imagination of the younger associates; for under the condi- 
tions of prescriptorial life thev come to take the phu'c of leaini- 
iug and literature in the growing mind of the youth. In the 
successive repetitions the weaker fables are eliminated, while 
the more vigorous are gradualK combined and eventually 
strung together in an order made definite by custom: at the 
same time the}- acquire sacredness with age, and some of them 
become so far esoteric that they may not be repeated by 
youths, or perhaps even by laymen, but they are the exclu- 
sive property of sages or shamans. Now the fable, per se, is 
seldom vigorous enough to j)ass unaided into the esoteric lore 
of the tribe; but when it serves to interpret some interesting 
natural phenomenon, either in its original form or in its subse- 
quent association, it is therebv fertilized, and with the com- 
bined vitalit)' of fable and interpretation enjoys greatly 
iucreased chance of survival. Sometimes the historical ele- 
ment is also added, when the composite intellectual structure 
is still further strengthened, and nia-\' persist until history 
blends with fancy-painted prehistory, and the story becomes a 
full-fledged cosmogonic myth. Accordingly, the character and 
the age of myths are correlated in significant fashion. 


The most pressing and at the same time the most obscure 
problems presented to the archa-ologic student relate to the 
interpretation of relics. Dift'erent methods of solving these 
problems have been pursued by the students of various coun- 
tries; but it is held that the method employed in the Hinvau 
of American Ethnology, and now pretty generalh- adoptcil 
throughout the United States, is l)y far the most trustwortln' 
of all — it is the method of interpretation in terms of tjie 
observed activities of cognate tribesmen still living. It is in 
pursuance of this method that Dr Fewkes has passed from a 
study of the abundant relics exhumed from ruins in the puel)lo 
region to a study of the jdxtriginal inhabitants of neighboring 


villages; and his paper affonls an excellent illustration of the 
combination of prehistoric tradition and observational data 
in the inteqjretation of relics, and thence in the tracing of 
unwritten history. 

In every stage of culture there is an unexpressed basis for 
knowledge of the kind usually conveyed by tradition or liter- 
ature — a basis unstated merely because a commonplace of cur- 
rent thought. In civilization the unexpressed basis comprises 
the existence of nations and cities, the recognition of church 
and state, etc; and no student would deem it worth while to 
demonstrate the existence of these connnonly accepted things — 
thev are mere matters of fact from the view-point of civiliza- 
tion. Similarly, there are accepted commonplaces in barbarism 
and in savagery; and no barbarian or savage thinks of explain- 
ing these in any descriptive account — they are too evident from 
his point of view to require statement, or even to receive 
ajjpreciative thought. Yet when the representative of any 
culture grade seeks to understand the habits or history per- 
taining to any other culture grade he finds it necessary to 
acquire the point of view pertaining to that culture grade; and 
when he seeks to convey his knowledge to others of his own 
grade he finds it necessary to begin with the commonplaces of 
the other. So, in describing the migrations of a pueblo people, 
Dr Fewkes naturally and necessarily devotes lai-ge space to the 
distinctive social organization of their culture grade: for the 
migrations were made and are kept in mind wholly in terms of 
this organization, and would not be comprehensible either to 
the ])eople themselves or to others unless described in these 
terms. The social organization of the Tusayan people is typ- 
ical and well worthy of statement in itself; but the application 
of clanship in tracing tribal movements, and in elucidating and 
intei-preting relics, gives a special significance to the clans and 
their relations. 

It has for some time been known that the pueblo peoples are 
highly composite; and Dr Fewke.s's contribution marks a note- 
worth}' step toward knowledge of the antecedents of both peo- 
jdes and culture. 

administrative report xli 

Localization of 'I'xtsaya\ Clans 

Just as Dr Frwkt-s tViuiid it iic(H'ssar\' to ilcliuc tlie 'l'usa> an 
clans with considerable fulness in order to explain the mio^ra- 
tions, so Mr Mindeleff tound it needful to set forth tlie luigra- 
tions of the trilje as a l)asis for tlic description of cei'tain 
customs connected with the consan<iuineal orji'anizatioii charac- 
teristic of primitive culture. The descri])tion is based on the 
observations of tlic late A. M. Stephen, in 1.S83, supplemented 
by those of Mr Mindeleff, in 1888: and the account is com- 
plemented in a useful wav }>\ the Fewkes records of 18<J9. 
Accordingly the ol)servations of tlu^ three students at inter\als 
covering- nearly two decades combine in nuitual corroboration, 
and at the same time serve to indicate the trend and rate of 
social chang-e in Tnsa\an under the influences of modern 

I'he chief value of Mr Mindeleff''s paper lies in its demonstra- 
tion of the persistence of clans from new data. It has long' been 
recognized that in tribal society, comprising savagery and bar- 
barism, the clan, or gens, is the dominant social institution, the 
very foundation of society; it is accordingly quite in keeping 
with current knowledge to find that in the nuitations of mig-ra- 
tory life the clan outlasts the tribe, just as it outhves tlie indi- 
vidual and tliefamih-; \-et it is of no small interest to find tliat 
even in the settled life of the ])uel)los the clan bonds vie in 
strength witli those of stone and adobe, and shape, more fre- 
quently than tliey are shaped by, the building of cities. 
Accordingl}" the clan (piai-ters of Tusayaii fall into line with 
the featm-es of "The Ancient City," as brought out by Fustel 
de Coulanges, and afford parallels with certain featui-es of 
European and Asian towns developed in coimection with 
guilds; yet special interest attaches to the Tusa\an clan (piar- 
ters ])y reason of the pi'imitiveness and simplicity of the rela- 
tion l)etween social law and iiudioate municipal regulation. 

Mounds in Northern Honduras 

Accidents of settlement early in the centurv gave rise to the 
idea of a distinctive "mound region" in the Mississi})pi valh-y. 


and to tlie coiTolative idea tliat alioriginal monnds and earth- 
works wei\! eontined to tliat region; and althougli the 
researclics of a quarter-century liave shown tliat ancient 
mounds are scattered over tlie entire liabitaljle portions of 
North America, the original idea is kept alive to an injurious 
extent b)" the early literature. The still-existing need for 
counteracting this erroneous impression led to the acceptance 
of Dr (lann's paper and the ;ipj)roval of his title. Actually 
the nuinnds of Honduras as described by Dr Gann are more 
nearly analogous to those of the pueblo region and of Mexico 
than to those of the Mississippi valley, for most of them are 
d(ibris heaps entombing ruined structures of stone and other 
durable material, like the former, rather than sites of perish- 
able houses or simple tumuli, like the latter — though some of 
the Honduran mounds partake of the character of the more 
northerly tumuli. 

The contents of the mounds as described and illustrated in 
the accompanying pages and plates are noteworthy in that 
they demonstrate the extension of a culture corresponding 
fairly with that of Mexico into a little-known region. The 
relics are especially signiticant as connecting links between 
different archseologic districts; the molded and painted stucco- 
work resembles that of Yucatan, the fictile figurines resemble 
those of the pueblo country, while both symbolic and indus- 
trial de\'ices are evidently akin to those of numerous iiatiA'e 
tribes throughout the southwestern third, at least, of North 

Mayan Calendar Systems 

No production of aboriginal American culture has attracted 
more attention among the scholars of the world than the cal- 
endar systems of Mexico, Yucatan, Peru, and certain other 
districts; and numei'ous, and often voluminous, publications 
have been based on these interesting productions. Several 
contributions to the subject have been issued in the reports 
and otlier publications of the Bureau; and, in view of the 
recent ajipearance of extended treatises on the subject, a review 
of some of the more salient points seems timely. Such a 


review has been prepared l)y Dr Thomas, a student of al)orig- 
inal calendars dnrin<i' nian\' "v^ears. The discussion extends 
not only to the inscri))ti(Uis of the codices, Init to other Ma^an 
records, and also to the time systems of both the Mayan and 
Nahnatlan peoples: and full use is made throughout of the 
numeral systems tabulated and analyzed in a later paper. 

As is elsewhere noted, recent researches have shown that in 
primitive life the symbolism of a given stage frequently passes 
into the conventionism of the next stage; sometimes the pas- 
sage is so complete that the original symbolism mav be lost, 
yet in other cases the transitional steps mav l>e traced through 
researches among cognate, albeit remote, jjeoples. Now, it is 
signiticant that various germs, or germinal t3"])es, of calendric 
systems are found in different portions of North America; a 
well-known type is the "winter count" or annual record of a 
])erson. or familv among the plains tribes; another germ is 
found in the solstitial ceremonies of the pueblo peoples, which 
denote clear recognition of a seasonal turning point; and it is 
of no small interest to find that the germinal types are com- 
bined in such comprehensive calendars as those incorporated 
in the Mavan inscri]itions, so that the symbolism of the north 
explains the conventionism of the south. iSuch solstitial cere- 
monies as those of the Pueblos are especially instructive, for 
they at once attest the fundamental im])ortance of the symbolic 
factors and explain the high degree of accuracy attained in the 
determination of the year — the Hopi winter ceremony, for 
example, being fixed by a sinijvle oliservation on the setting- 
sun behind a distant sierra, which would in itself permit a 
count of year-days, if not the recognition of the bissextile. 

Primitive Numbers 

Recognition of the hununi activities as the basis of ethnic 
classification has o])ened the way to a fuUei' com[)rehension of 
tile characteristics and capabilities of l)otli primitive and 
advance(l peoples; and through this fuller comja-ehension it 
has been made clear that the es.sential and ilistinctive attri- 
butes of mankind are fundamentally intellectual. Accord- 
ingly the activities are properly viewed as the reflection and 


measure of mind, foiiditioiied b\' circuiiistMiices of surroimd- 
ings or enviromneut to which man adjust.^ himself not so much 
by biotic survival as by intelligent effort; and, concordantly, 
the sources of tlie activities are to be traced through the 
habitual mental operations of primitive men. It was with this 
view that Mr McGee undertook to trace tlie origin of countina- 
devices, and through tliem the beginnings of immerical con- 
cepts. The data derived from various primitive peoples seem 
to indicate clearly that numerical concepts originally crystal- 
lize with exceeding slowness, at first about practical customs 
and later about symbols of ceremonial or ritualistic character; 
and that throughout the subsequent development symbol and 
function (i. e., notation and numeration) grow up together. It 
also seems clear from the data that the earliest symbols, with 
the concomitant methods of counting, antedated the custom of 
counting on the lingers; but that after the finger-count was 
adopted it aided greatly in the develojjinent of numeral systems 
on quinary, decimal, and \'igesimal bases. It is of no small 
significance that various vestiges of primitive counting and 
uundjer systems still survive among modern peoples, even in 
the most advanced culture. 

Mr McGee's writing was designed to complement that of 
Dr Thdiiias on the numeral systems of Mexico and Central 
America; and the two ])a])ers combine to illumine in a useful 
way certain puzzling problems by which the ethnologic stu- 
dent is constantly confronted. 

Numeral Systems of Mexico and Central America 

The researches of the last two decades have shown clearly 
that primitive arts arise in symbolism, develop through con- 
ventionism, and mature in a combined realism and idealism 
far bevond the grasp of primitive })eo})les. The researches of 
the last lustrum have shown similarly that primitive industries 
are sha])ed by symbolism and developed through convention- 
ism. Several of the accompan^'ing papers indicate likewise 
tliat piimitive society is shaped and established largely by 
svmbolic motives, and is developed through conventional sys- 
tems of remarkable strength and persistence; and Dr Thomas's 


]ia])c'i- oil numeral systems, in conjunction witli Mr McGee's 
jjaper on primitive numbers, renders it clear that primitiv-e 
numbers were symbolic at least in considerable measure before 
tliey acquired the conventional character by which they are 
distinguished throughout more advanced culture. 

The earlier steps in the development of numeral systems 
among the American aborigines are naturally obscure, since 
most, or all, of the tribes had risen to the conventional use of 
numbers before their discovery by white men; accordingly 
I)r Thomas's discussions relate mainly to the methods of com- 
pounding numbers into systems indicated by etymologic and 
other associations. His tables and discussions well illustrate 
the closeness of the connection between the quinary and decimal 
bases and the vigesimal basis which attained so great promi- 
uence among some of the more southerly tribes of North 
America; thev also bring out, in connection with the researches 
of McGee and Cusliing, the close relation between these regu- 
lar systems and those irregular systems in which 2 + 1,4 + 1, 
and 6 + 1 form the bases, and in which the m^^stical numbers 
7, 9, 13, 49, etc., jday prominent roles. The tabulations are 
especially noteworth}' in demonstrating the essential similarity 
of the number systems of various tribes ranging from the 
sedentary groups of the Pacific coast to the nomadic groups of 
the interior, through the settled peoples of the pueblos, and up 
to the codex-makers of Mexico and Yucatan. 

The possible a})plications of this study of aboriginal num- 
bers are many; one of the most important of these is found in 
connection with the calendric systems of the Mexican and 
Mayan tribes, some of which are described in another paper 
appended to tliis rejjort. 

TusAYAN Flute and Snake Ceremonies 

Much attention has been devoted by the Bureau to research 
among the puelilo peoples; and no line of tlu^ research has 
been more assiduoush' pursued than that relating to the sophic 
activities so highlv developed among the tribesof the arid pueblo 
region. The accom))an\ing memoir by Dr Fewkes illustrates 
the natui-e and objects of the work; it presents a clear picture 


of tlu' (iliservances of one of the most devotional peoples 
known to .students. 

While L)r Fewkes' record is b(i.sed wholly on his own recent 
observations, it is sig'niticant as an extension and corroboration 
of notes made by me many years ago, and warrants the presen- 
tation of a sunmiarv of these notes. 

In the winter of 1868-69 I was encamped on ^yhite river, 
in what was then the territory of Colorado, not far from the 
Utah line. During the time a tribe of Utes lived near our 
camp ground, and I utilized the opportunity to study their 
language, together with their haljits, customs, ceremonies, and 
opinions. It was during this winter that I obtained the first 
concept of the Amei-ind fraternity, or, as I called it at that 
time, the cult society, which is an incorporated body whose 
function it is to prevent and cure diseases, or to secure any 
good or prevent any evil which may come to man through 
any agency of nature. Thus it is the function of the frater- 
nity to control tlie weather and the seasons, to secure abundant 
fruits, to secure the rainfall upon which they depend, to secure 
abundant game, and all the other things of nature upon which 
the welfare of men are contingent. The cult society, or frater- 
nity, or phratry, or curia (for l)y all of these names it has been 
known), has an ecclesiastic or religious motive which distin- 
o-uishes it from the clan and "'ens wliich have a sociologic 

Subsequently I investigated the nature of these fraternities 
as they are developed among tlu- trilies in southern Utah and 
northern Arizona, and in 1870 I went from Kanab, in southern 
Utah, eastward across the Colorado river to the province of 
Tusayan — the seven villages on the rocks — Zuiii, and other 
pueblos in Arizona and New Mexico. But I especially lin- 
gered in Tusayan to investigate the fraternities of the Ho])i 
people, who constitute six of the seven tribes of that region. 
The language of these people belongs to the Shoshonian 
stock and is somewhat closely allied to that of the Ute and 
Paiute of Colorado and Utah, whose languages I had pre- 
viously studied. I had with me a Mormon missionary, who 
had spent much time in Hopi villages; and a slight knowledge 


of tlir lang-viaov of the peojjle of these vilhiges was the more 
speedily <>aine(h liecause I had prcNioiisIy studied otlier hin- 
gTiages of the same stock, so that although my stay here 
was (>nl\- about two months, by hard lal)or and by the aid of 
the Moniidu missionary 1 ol)taiiied (juite an insight into the 
nature of the Hopi fraternities. Particularly was I impressed 
by one of the ceremonies at Shumopavi, though 1 witnessed 
others at ditlerent Hopi towns. 1 never returned to this study 
of these fraternities, though I subsequently visited these pueb- 
los; but I never forgot their existence nor neglecteil to ])rovide 
for their inyestigation to the extent of such agencies as 1 could 

I first sent Mr Gushing to Zuni to make a study of its inter- 
esting people, and he lirought back a wealth of material. 

I was also the means of securing the detail of Dr Matthews 
as medical otHcer at Fort Defiance. Dr Matthews had studied 
at Hidatsa, and now he not only studied the language of the 
Navaho, but he also made a study of their fraternities or reli- 
gious cults, an investigation which again revealed his genius as 
an ethnologist. 

Sulisequently, as Director of the Bureau of Ethnology, I 
sent Mrs Matilda Coxe Stevenson to Zuni, and then to Sia, on 
Jemez river. In both of these places she made a careful and 
elaborate stud}' of the fraternities of the people. A part of the 
material collected by her has already been pulilished, and a 
larger part is now practically ready for the press, and in it 
all she makes a great contribution to our knowledge of tribal 

At the same time Mr J. N. B. HeAvitt, who had been an 
assistant of IMrs Krminnie Smith, a collabctrator of the Bureau 
among the Iroquois Indians, continued her work as an inde- 
pendent investigator after her death. He studied the lan- 
guage of the ))eople under great advantages, being himself an 
Iro(piois who had obtained a good knowledge of linguistics as 
an scholar. He also has studied the fraternities of the 
lro»[Uois and has gained a wealth of knowledge about them. 

Mr James Mooney has given much attention t(» the same sub- 
ject while studying the Cherokee, and especially while collect- 
iuii' the material for liis volume on the Cihost-dance reliiiion. 


About tliis time Mr J. ( )\vl'U Dorsey, first u iiii.ssiouary and 
then an assistant in the Bureau of Ethnology, studied the reli- 
gious cults of the Ponka Indians and other tribes related to 
them, and collected a great body of valuable material about 

I nnist not in this place forget to mention the brilliant work 
of Miss Alice Fletcher in this same field — the tribal fraternities 
of the Amerinds. She has already published much material on 
the subject, and is ])reparing a great monograpli on one of the 
fraternities of Pawnee. ■ 

Dr J. Walter Fewkes some }^ears ago was appointed ethnol- 
ogist in the P)ureau and sent among the Tusayan people espe- 
cially for the purpose of studying their religious cults. From 
these expeditions he has retin-ned Avith a very large l)ody of 
material relating to the Hojji fraternities, with a deep insight 
into their characteristics, and with a wealth of illustration 
which enables him to set forth the subject in a manner which 
is sim|)le, clear, and forceful. 

Early in the last decade Mr Gushing, Mrs Stevenson, and 
Dr Fewkes each prepared a model of an altar, with its ])ara- 
pliernalia of worship, one of which (that by Mr Gushing) was 
put on exhibition ;it the Ghicago Quadrennial Exjiosition. 
These models are still in the United States National Museum. 
Subsequently other altars were prepared under Dr Dorsey's 
direction for the Field Columbian Museum in Ghicago. Thus 
we ali-eady have made a feir beginning in the study and repre- 
sentation as museum models of the altars of the Pueblo tribes 
and their symbolism. 

Some of the important contributions to tliis subject l>y Dr 
Fewkes are published with this report, and in connection with 
these I take occasion to publish the illustration which I pre- 
pared in 1870 of an altar which I saw used in a ceremony at 
Shumopovi, as the first one prepared for the Bureau of Ethnol- 
ogy I can not now give a complete account of this cere- 
mony, nor can I give a complete account of the synd)olism 
represented upon the altar; I can only set forth tliat wliich I 
learned at the time. Nor can I affirm that tlie illustration is 
perfect. I secured much of tlie ]iara])hernalia of the altar and 
brought them with me to Washington, and 1 also got such 


explanati<nis of tlieiu as 1 could obtain tlirouo-h my inipertect 
knowledije of the lanirnaye and tlirouyli nu' iiitt'ri)rcter, tlie 
Jlormon<iouary. The artist wlio made tlie ori<^inal th-a\viug 
in colors had to deper.d upon the paraphernalia of the altar 
which I brought with ine, together with my notes on their 
arrangement. The original drawing-, made in oil on canvas, 
has been reproduced in color. An exact dujilicate of this altar 
has not been seen by Dr P^ewkes, but onlv something like it. 
He identifies it as an altar of the Owakiilti fraternity. When 
I prepared the notes for the illustration I did not then under- 
stand that the fraternities, like the (dans, gentes, tribes, and 
confederacies, have totems; for totemism is a system of insti- 
tutional naming. 

A clan is an organized group of persons who i-eckon kinship 
through females from an ancestral mother, real or ejjonvmous; 
it has well-defined rights and duties. 

A gens is an organized group of peo}jle haAing a unit of 
government and who reckon kinship through males from an 
ancestral father, real or eponymous; it has well-defined rights 
and duties. 

A tribe is a group of clans in what we call savagcrv, and a 
group of gentes in what we call barbarism, and the bou<l of 
organization is the marriage tie. 

A confederacy is a group of tribes organized foi- purposes 
of off'ense and defense ; the bond by which they are held 
together is tliat of artificial or conventional kinship, the tril)es 
sometimes lieing considered as elder and younger brothers, or 
fathers and sons, or uncles and nephews. 

The clan and the gens represent two inetliods of organizing 
families into a liigher or larger grou|), l)ut gentile oi-ganization 
replaces clan organization. A tribe is an organization of clans 
or gentes. A confederacy is an organization of tril)es. A clan 
or gens is composed of persons related bv consanguinity, 
except in cases where individuals an- adoptt'd into families. 
A tribe is composed of persons related b\- atHnir\-. A con- 
federacy is composed of tribes of persons who by conven- 
tion or treaty agree that the members of one tribe shall 
address the members of another by some kinslii[) term. 

19 KTU— 01 IV 


Now, all of these governmental units, families, cliins or 
g-entes, tribes, and confederacies have peace witliin or war 
without as the fundamental motive for organization. ( )n the 
other hand the fraternities have the control of good and evil 
as presented in nature for their fundamental motive. It is 
thus that a fraternity is a religious l)ody with an ecclesiastic 

On the other hand fraternities are organized by constituting 
certain persons priests and liy dividing the functions of the 
society among the mend)ers. The priests are called fathers 
when they are men, and mothers when they are women, and the 
laity call one another brothers and sisters. Tliis custom is the 
same in tribal society and in civilization. Sometimes the fam- 
ily terms of kinship are not only father and mother, son and 
daughter, elder brother and elder sister, younger brother and 
younger sister, but the relation of uncle and aunt, nephew 
and niece may be recognized. 

I have elsewhere described the meaning of the symbols on 
the altar here shown and will now repeat what I then said: 

The festival to which 1 am now to refer was continued throui>h .sev- 
eral days. At one time the .shaman and the memliers of the shaman- 
istic society over which he presided were gathered in a kiva, or under- 
ground assembly hall, where midnight prayers were made for abundant 
crops. On this occasion the customary altar was arranged with the 
paraphernalia of worship. Among other things were wooden tablets 
on which wci'e painted the conventional picture-writings for clouds 
and lightning, below which were the conventional signs of raindrops, 
and below the raindrops the conventional signs for growing corn. 

In order more fully to understand these picture-writings we will 
mention some of the other objects placed on the altar. There were 
wooden birds, painted and placed on perches; there was an ewer of 
water about which ears of corn wei'e placed; there was a case of 
jewels — crystals of quartz, fragments of turquoise, fragments of car- 
nelian, and small garnets; then there was a bowl of honey upon the 
holy altar. When the shaman prayed he asked that the ne.xt harvest 
might be a))undant like the last; he prayed that they might have corn 
of many colors like the corn upon the altar; he prayed that the corn 
might be ripened so as to be hard like the jewels upon the altar; he 
prayed that the corn might be sweet like the honey upon the altar; 
he prayed that the corn mifjht be abundant for men and birds, and that 
the birds might be glad, for the gods loved the birds represented upon 


tho altar as the_y love men. 'I'licii he prayed that the clouds would form 
like the clouds represeutcvl upon the altar, and that the clouds would 
Hash liijlitniiiL;- like the liiihtning' on the altar, and that the clouds would 
rain showers like the showers represented on the altar, and that the 
showers woidd fall upon the {^rowing corn like the corn upon the 
altar— so tliat men and birds and all livino- things would rejoice. 

The ahovi' was written alxuU thirty years after this scene 
was witnessed and under circumstance.s where my notes and 
tlie ilhistration were inaccessible, and I now hnd that I lia\e 
fallen into a trivial error in the description. The so-called 
honey was "honeydew" held in a basket-tray. 

After examining- the painting described above Dr Fewkes 
writes : 

In seeking to identify from the paintino- the altar figured liy Major 
Powell, it has been necessary for me to rely on general, rather than 
special, features. In these latter particulars the painting represents an 
altar which diliers from any which I have studied, but there are cer- 
tain general characters which would eliminate from our consideration 
the majority of Ilopi altars and refer it definitely to that of a woman's 
fraternity of basket dancers known as the Owakiilti. 

The altar of this fraternity is characterized by the relatively large 
size of the upright part composed of numerous vertical wooden slats, 
the majority of which rest on the floor, but more especially by etHgies 
of birds and butterflies mounted on pedestals surrounding a medi- 
cine bow'l. Both of these features are found in the painting. 

The plate represents the interior of a kiva or sacred room devoted 
to ceremonies, the entrance being an opening in the roof. The rire- 
place is in the middle of the floor and near it are specimens of the 
straight-stem pipes, ancient types of these objects among the M<)))i. 

At the left-hand or west end of the room are seen the uprights of tiie 
altar consisting of flat wooden slats upon which various symbols a^^ 
depicted. The group of men in the middle of the picture are seated 
about a cubic object into the cavity of which one of their numbci- is 
blowing tobacco smoke. This cubic object is a medicine bowl and 
the smoke is symbolic of the rain cloud. This episode occurs among 
many other rites in making the medicine by the OwakiUti and various 
othei' Hopi fraternities. 

The ears of corn arranged radiall}' fi-om this medicine howl are of 
different colors; they represent the four world-ciuarters. th(> zenith ami 
the nadir, the colors corresjionding to these directions. The effigies 
mounted on pinlestals, altei-nating witii tiiese radially placed ears of 
corn, represent birds and butterflies. Th(> Owakiilti altar is th(> only one 
known to me having similar objects with like arrangement; a fact 


which has hocii mainly relied on in the idcntitication of the altar. 
The .same symbols are depleted on these upright slats as are found on 
the two altars of this society which I have studied. They are symbols 
of lightning in the form of serpents, rain clouds, maize, various aiiuatic 
animals, and one or more cult-heroes. 

The number, form, and arrangement of these slats with symbols are 
likewise characteristic, resembling that of the Owakiilti. but differing 
from those of other Hopi altars. 

The presence of women in the kiva and the prominence on the wall 
of basket-trays or plaques likewise suggest a basket dance in which 
women participate. The paucity of clothing as shown in the painting 
is interesting, showing that formerly the Hopi women in their secret 
rites divested themselves of most of their apparel. This custom still 
survives among the male priests, to which sex, however, it is now 

There are probably live different Owakiilti altars inTusayan — one at 
Orailii, one at Sichumovi, and three at the Middle mesa. If properly 
identified as an Owakiilti altar this painting represents one of the three 
latter, which would account for some differences between it and the 
two former, of which I have good kodak photographs. 

Conversation regarding the public exhibition which occurred at the 
time this altar was observed bj^ Major Powell has developed the fact 
that it was a woman's basket dance, in which basket-plaques are thrown 
among the spectators, who struggle for their possession. There are 
two of these public dances, called the Lalakonti and the Owakiilti, 
which closely resemble each other. The altar of the former is too widely 
aberrant from the painting to be considered. The plate does not 
represent a Lalakonti altar and there thus remains by elimination only 
the identiffcation indicated above. 

A peculiar and unique interest is attached to this representation, as 
it was the first painting or ffgure of a Hopi altar made by a white man. 
From it dates an ever increasing interest of the objective symbolism 
of the Hopi, and a scientific treatment of the study of tlieir ceremo- 

The AVild Rice Gatherers of the Upper Lakes 

Contrary to a superficial but widespread notion, the Ameri- 
can aboriiiines subsisted in large part on vegetal products, 
man}' of tlie tribes being essentially agricultural. Even the 
nonagricultural tribes made considerable use of Avikl grains, 
fi-uits, berries, roots, and otlier plant products; and these were 
often systematically prepared as comestibles either separately 
or in conjunction with meats, fish, etc. The first in impor- 
tance among aboriginal plant foods was maize, or corn, a ]ilant 


indi<>eiioiis in central Mexico but cultivated and distributed 
over the greater \r,\vt (if the American hemisphere during- pre- 
Cohimbiau times. Prominent among the uoncultivated pLmts 
was that known as wild rice (^Z/^aiiia, of two species), which 
grew extensively in the sAvamps and about the margins of the 
lakes left by the Pleistocene ice sheet m central North America; 
and several tribes learned to harvest, store, and utilize the 
natural crop yielded annually by this plant. Hitherto the 
knowledge concerning the use of wild rice by the aborigines 
has been vague; but in 1898 Dr Albert Ernest Jenks, an 
advanced student in the University of AVisconsin, undertook 
to systemize the knowledg-e by bringing together the refer- 
ences to the use of wild rice scattered through the early and 
rare literature pertaining to the aboiigines of this region. As 
the work })rogressed, his interest grew, and he instituted 
inquiries concerning the use of the plant by surviving tribes- 
men in modern times; and when the results of his work were 
brought to the attention of the Bureau, he was commissioned 
to extend his field operations into northern Wisconsin and 
Minnesota, where the wild-rice crop is still harvested annually. 
The accompanying memoir is the product of Dr Jenks's re- 
searches in the literature and in tlie field. 

As is shown by the descriptions and illustrations, wild rice 
gathering is a well developed industry, playing an important role 
in the ceremonial and ritualistic life of the tribesmen, as well as 
in their domestic economy, though the ritualistic features of 
the harvesting and jjrejjaration of the crop have so far fallen 
into desuetude as to be traceable rather through vestiges than 
through conspicuous observances. A notable feature of the 
industry is the careful foix'thought given to the har\csting, as 
shown l)y the elaborate processes and devices adopted to pro- 
tect the grain from birds, as well as from loss by storms, etc.; 
and this foresight, which is comparable to that of civilized 
agriculture, is brought into the greater prominence by reason 
of the almost total neglect of seeding, or of other devices (save 
those of magicid character) for the preservation of the })lant 
and the maintenance of the important natural resource which 
it I'epresents. Doubtless the unwitting ])rocesses of harvesting 


have reacted on the character and Hfe-history of the phmt, 
probably in such wise as to improve the quahty of the grain 
and to increase the quantity of the crop; yet the unconscious 
cuhivation has been no less destitute of intent and purpose 
than that of the farmer ant of the arid plains. 

Dr Jenks properly calls attention to the potential value of 
wild rice to modern peoples of advanced culture. Should this 
natural product come into the general use to which it seems 
adapted, it will add another to the many debts of Caucasian 
to Indian. 


In pre\noiis reports the five grand classes of human activities 
have been set forth as those connected with pleasures, indus- 
tries, institutions, languages, and opinions. These pentalogic 
activities give rise to live sciences, whicli have been designated 
as esthetolog'y, technology, sociolog}', philology, ;uid sophi- 
olog-v. In order that the nature of these sciences mav be 
made clearer, it becomes necessary to consider them severally; 
and I now propose to define the science of esthetology by 
showing what is included therein as the subject-matter of the 
activities is classified. It sliould l)e kept in mind that the clas- 
sification is g-eneral, and is equally applicable to primitive 
peoples like the American aborigines and to more advanced 
peoples. Tlierefore illustrations are drawn from hig-her cidture 
as well as from lower. 

General Considerations 

.Qualities arise out of tlie properties of bodies when they 
are considered in relation to human purposes. To understand 
this declaration it is necessary to consider the essentials of 
properties and qualities and carefully to note the di-stinction 
between them. Tlie essentials of tlie properties are unity, 
extension, speed, persistence, and consciousness, wiiicli under 
relations give rise to projierties that can be measiu'cd, wliicli 
are designated as (juantities. These quantities are number, 
space, motion, time, and judgment. 

Number is many in one, and the enumeration of the many 
is the measurino- of the number contained in the sum, wliich 
is a unity. Numbei', therefore, is many in one. 



The second quantity is space; its essential is extension, 
but many exteiisions give rise to relative position, and the 
positions can be measured. Hence extension and jxisition 
constitute space, and space is a quantity that can be measured. 

Speed is the essential of motion, but the same particle in 
motion traverses a path. Motion, thei'efore, is speed and path, 
and can be measured in terms of space. Speed and path con- 
stitute motion. Therefore time is a quantity. 

The essential of time is persistence, but the relation of time 
is change; a portion of time from one change to another may 
be measured. Thus persistence and change constitute time, 
and time is a quantity. 

The essential of judgment is consciousness of self. Its rela- 
tion to others is inference aborit others. When consciousness 
is aroused by another, and by inference a judgment is pro- 
duced of that other, it can be measured. If I judge that there 
are eight others, I can measure that judgment by counting the 
others. The judgment is measured by comparing it with the 
fact. If I judge of a distance, I can measure this judgment 
by measuring the distance, and the judgment is measured by 
the fact. If I judge of the rate of a motion or the distance 
which a b()d}' moves, I can measure this rate or distance and 
by comparing the judgment with the fact I obtain a measure- 
ment of the judgment. If I judge of the lapse of time and 
then measure this lapse, the judgment may be measured by 
the fact. 

As the essentials are developed into mathematical properties 
called quantities, so again the quantities are developed by incor- 
poration into classific properties or, simply, properties. In this 
development luimber becomes class, unity becomes kind, and 
plurality becomes mass. The kind is constant as long as the 
body is constant, but the mass is variable. 

When space becomes form, then extension becomes indi- 
viduality and mass becomes structure. The individuality is 
constant as long as the body is constant, but the structure is 

When motion becomes energy, then speed becomes inertia 
and path becomes velocity. Inertia is constant, but velocity 
is ^•ariable. 


Wlicii time hccdiucs causation, tlieii persistence becomes 
state and cliunge becomes event, '^llie state is constant as long- 
as tlie body is constant; the event is varial)le. 

Wlien judgment l^ecomes conception, then conscionsuess Ije- 
comes menioi-}' and choice becomes inference. Memory is con- 
stant as U:)no- as tlie bod\' is constant, but inference is varialile. 

Quantities and properties are reciprocah Number is tlie 
same thing- as class. We call it number when we consider 
the particles of which the body is composed. We call it class 
when we consider the body which they compose. For exam- 
ple, here are ten hollow cvlinders. Organize them into a bodv 
and thcA' become a gas stove. By their organization a new 
kind of body is developed. Hollow cylinders become a stove, 
though the cylinders i-einain cylinders. In like manner space 
and form are reciprocal, motion and energy are reci})rocal, 
time and causation are reciprocal, and, finally, judgment and 
conception are reciprocal. 

Number, space, motion, time, ami judgment are quantities 
that can be measured. Kind, form, energy, causation, and 
consciousness are properties that can he classified. Tlie ([iian- 
tities that can be measured and the properties that can be clas- 
sified are the same things considered from difi'erent standjioints; 
that is, one is the reciprocal of the others. 

There are still other relations which bodies bear to one 
another. All the bodies of the universe have relation to human 
beings, which are good or evil. These relations constitute 
another grade of relativit}' and are qualities. The properties 
give vise to qualities, for every property may produce a quality 
when it is considered in relation to human purposes. A num- 
ber may be few or mauv for a purpose. Ten cents ma}' be 
few if we desire to purchase a dozen oranges, but 10 cents may 
be many if w^e desire to purchase but two; yet the property 
remains the same. A thousand dollars may be few if we desire 
to purchase a farm, or nian\' if we desire to purchase a coat; but 
the })roperty remains the same. A pane of glass may be small if 
we desire to use it in an exhibition window, or it may be large 
if w^e desire to use it in a carriage; but the propert}' remains the 
same. A stone may be small if we use it in the foundation of 


a house, and it may be large if we wisli to throw it as a missile; 
but the property remains the same. An hour seems a short 
time when I am thinking- about a journey to California, but 
seems a long time to endure pain; yet the property remains 
the same. The fall of a spark from a passing engine seems 
but a trivial cause when I consider the soiling of my garment, 
but it seems to be an important cause when I consider it as 
igniting a forest tire; yet the property remains the same. An 
earthquake seems to produce but a slight effect when I observe 
it simply as a tremor, but when I consider it in the ruin of a 
city it appears to have a stupendous eftect, though the property 
remains the same. I see a man ^<lyly approaching a wall, and 
believe him to be a thief, and I have a judgment of evil; if I 
know that he intends to scale the wall in defense of his country 
I believe him to be patriotic and brave; thus the same act may 
be cowardly and vile or patriotic and brave from different 
23oints of view. 

Properties belong to things in themselves, but qualities exist 
in the mind as properties are viewed in relation to human 
designs. Qualities are relations, and the terms of the relation 
are properties on the one hand and purposes on the other. 
Now, we can not expunge either of these terms witliout expung- 
ing the relation. We may not overtly consider the terms, but 
consider only the relation as an abstraction. Tlien the terms 
must be implied, for there is no quality unless there is an exter- 
nal property and an internal purpose. When properties are 
considered as qualities in their relation to lunnau purposes the 
judgments formed are judgments of good and evil. The judg- 
ments which men form of good and evil give rise to a multi- 
tude of human activities which are known iis the arts. Those 
activities which are put forth to secure pleasure and to a\'oid 
])ain are esthetic arts, ;nid the science of the esthetic arts is 

We discover the properties of tilings as causes through our 
senses, and we discover the effect of these properties on our- 
selves through our feelings. One term of the relation, there- 
fore, is discovered by making intellectual judgments; the other 
term is discovered l)v juaking emotional judgnnents. 

administrative report lix 

Ambrosial I'leasures 

Pleasures arise as demotic arts when tliey are designed to 
please others — the people. A lad may play ball for his own 
j)leasure; but the ])rofessional ball player [days for others, his 
own immediate purpose being gain or welfare. This distinc- 
tion must be kept in view: Pleasures are fii'st egoistic, but soon 
become altruistic. When they become altruistic as pleasures 
they become egoistic as industries. 

The metabolic sense is the sense of taste and smell, these 
being varieties of one sense. While yet in the animal state, 
man learns to enjoy the ambrosial senses in partaking of food 
and drink and in inhaling the air laden with luiiiiv particles 
given off by natural Ijodies; but in passing into the human state 
man invents a multiplicity of devices for making his food and 
drink and the air which he breathes pleasurable. All ambrosial 
{jleasures are developed by experience, but the process of en- 
hancing pleasures has its antithesis in the evolution of pain; 
hence many ])leasures and their antitheses, ])ains, have been 
evolved during the historic period. Without entering into a 
systematic treatment of the subject, it may be well to illustrate 
this statement as the facts are shown in individual experience 
and in the liistor}- of peoples. 

When the uninitiated })erson first attempts to use tobacco in 
any form it is unpleasant or even loathsome; but gradually by 
experience he leams to tolerate it and finally' to enjoy it. If 
its use was univei'sal with men, women, and (•liildren,it can not 
be doubted that an hereditary love of tobacco would be devel- 
oped, and thus the taste of tobacco would liecome innate and 
the judgment of its pleasant eriects would be intuitive. Its 
extensive use seems to indicate a tendency to an hereditary 
love of tobacco us(m1 in one or another of the cu.stomai'vmctliods, 
although the jjeriod for which it has been used dates no farther 
back than the discovery of America. That which we wish to 
emphasize in this place is that the pleasure derived from the 
usage is artificial and is developed by experience, and that 
wliilc new pleasures onginate, antitlictic ])iiius arise l)y the 
development of an a])])etitc which, un<:Ti\titicd. is pain. 


If we contemplate the use of intoxicant beverages, like facts 
apjiear, for it is found that pleasures of the inebriating bever- 
age must be developed by experience, and again it is found 
that the love of these bacchanalian pleasures has a tendency 
to become hereditary and to engender an appetite that pro- 
duces })ain. In the case of alcoholic beverages the tendency 
to inherit the taste is more fully developed than in the case of 
tobacco, and the taste has thus certainl}^ become intuitive. 

The love of the taste of some kinds of food of which man 
partakes, and with which he has had experience for untold 
generations, seems to be hereditary and hence intuitive. The 
pleasure derived from the sipidity of honey, sugar, and juices 
of fruits is innate from experience dating back to jjrimordial 
life, for the evidence is at hand that all of these ambrosial 
pleasures are derived and can easily be lost. 

Pleasure may easily be transformed into pain. The attar of 
rose is a pleasant odor intuitive from hereditary experience, 
3'et it is within the experience of the writer that it may become 
loathsome. Once on a time an epidemic of cholera was carry- 
ing off its victims, and he attended many men, women, and 
children in the last sad office of life. It was midsummer, and 
raging heat prevailed, so rosewater was freely used until at 
last it became disgusting to him and has remained so, although 
the distaste is gradually wearing away in later years. 

Thus, when we consider that hereditary and innate pleasures 
may be transmitted into pains, and that new pleasures maj^ be 
derived from old pains, the argument for the derivation of pain 
is in such cases made plain. Ambrosial pleasures and pains 
are artiticial, and no insigiiihcaiit portion of human activit-s' is 
occupied in catering thereto. 

The nature of ambrosial pleasures and pains and the activi- 
ties which arise therefrom have been sufficiently set forth for 
the purpose of recognizing the group. 

Decorativp: Pleasures 

In science antithetic meanings are sometimes embraced in 
one term; thus degrees of plus or minus from a particular 
datum point are combined and their sum is expressed in one 


term. This practice will l)e tumid couveiiieut in the science of 
]isvch()l()<iv and in all of the sciences of human activities. I 
.shall therefore sometimes speak of ])leasnre and pain in terms 
of pleasure, inipl\ iu;^- the antithetic term pain. Sometimes we 
have a word wdiich has the force of its etyniolnnic significance 
and also of its antithesis. "Welfare" is a word of this char- 

Pleasures are teleolog'ic; that is, they are ])otent motives for 
human activities. There is a group of activities produced hv 
forms which result from pleasures. These may be denominated 
the pleasures of form from the standpoint of motive, or the arts 
of decoration from the standpoint of activities. Because there 
are pleasures of form there are activities of decoration and 
hence there are arts of decoration. 

Many activities produce objects solely to gratifv the feelings 
of pleasure. Many activities are induced primarilv bv other 
motives and secondarily by pleasure. In the production of 
these objects, thought and labor are expended over and aljove 
the amount necessary to })roduce the object for utility in order 
that it may give ])leasure, and if it does not give this additional 
pleasure it gives pain. Decorative activities are often of this 
character. An ornament mav" be designed wholh" for decolla- 
tion, as when jewels are worn; but a garment mav have its 
chief purpose in utilit}', through a secondary purpose in oriia- 
inentation, and the form and color of the garment ma\- l)e 
considered as having an importance almost equal to that 
derived from its utility. 

Man is rarely content with utility, but he also desires pleas- 
ure from the objects which are produced through his adivities. 
In both classes of endeavor the decorative arts are iu^olved. 
The decorative arts are arts of form. 

Architectural structures are designed priniai'ih- for a utili- 
tarian purpose, but they are decorated. Vehicles haxc utili- 
tarian ])urposes, yet many devices of decoration ai-e used in 
their construction in order that thev may be ])leasing. Such 
illustrations servt' to show the general nature oi tlie decorative 


Primordial] ^• form is discovered by the sense of toncli; but, 
with the development of vision, form is interpreteil from sym- 
bols of color expressed in hue and tint. The form learned by 
vision is the form which is first learned by touch, l)ut subse- 
quently interpreted by vision, which assumes, throuoh the 
agency of expeinence, that certain arrangements of light imply 
that the object must have certain adjustment of figure. The 
light reflected from the object impinges upon the eye and 
becomes a mark or symbol of the figure as primaril}' learned 
by touch ; not that the particular object seen is first touched, 
but that the elements of form which it presents were first dis- 
covered by touch. Thus vision becomes a vicarious sense 
for touch. Vision is deft, performing not only its fundamental 
function in the discernment of color, but instantaneously and 
skillfully it performes all the offices of touch in the discovery 
of form. 

Here we ha^-e abundant evidence of the derivative nature 
of the decorative pleasures. By a course of experience, that 
which in infancy is unattractive, in maturer years becomes 
pleasurable; but more, that which is beautiful in childhood 
may become ugly in age. If the appeal is made to individual 
experience, all will testify to the derivative or evolutional 
nature of pleasures and pains. The history of decoration is 
loaded with lessons. That which is beautiful in savagei'y 
is unattractive or positively ugly in modern culture, while 
that which is unattractive among the lower races of man- 
kind mav often appear as exquisitely lieautiful in higher cul- 
ture. What we especially wish to note is that decorative 
pleasures and })ains become intuitive by hereditary transmis- 
sion, and these intuitive pleasures and pains may be trans- 
formed in the indi\-idual and the race. Our judgments of 
pleasure and ])ain depend on the ])oint of A^ew from which 
pi'operties are contemplated. There is nothing in form itself 
to make it beautiful or ugly, but the form becomes beautiful 
or ugh' through the agency of experience, by which certain 
forms are found to be desirable or undesirable as the case may 
be. A constant cognition of such forms will produce ;i habit 
of forming judgments of beauty about them which ultimately 


become iiiTuirive. Color Ijeconie.s the symbol of form because 
color is oil the surface and is indicative of surface and thus 
expresses tio-ure; but there is uotliiiiii' ''i colors themselves 
wliic-h makes tliciii citlrT l)eautifnl or u<i'ly. Evcr\- color is 
beautiful wlicu it seems appropriate; every color is u<>-ly when 
it seems imqipropriate. Particular colors seeni to be particu- 
larly beautiful because we have associated them with |)articu- 
larly lieautiful things, while the very same colors will l^e 
considered particularly ugly when they recall things wliich we 
conceive to be ugly. Form or the symbol of form is beautiful 
or ugly only when it produces in the mind that effect ]:)y reason 
t)f the standjtoint of the percei^'er — tjiat is, ])roperties have not 
qualities in themselves, but qualities arise when we consider 
properties in relation to })urposes. 

With the sense of vision, the human mind, having come to 
a knowledge of its power in transforming environment by 
minute increments, gradually so transforms it for the i)leasures 
of decoration. Kxercisiii"- activities in makiiio- artificial trans- 
formations, liumaii beings develop the sense of the beautiful 
and the ugly in qualities of art and transfer them to the prop- 
erties of nature. In the evolution of decoration everywhere 
we find that it proceeds by degree of organization — that is, by 
the differentiation and integration of its elements. This is 
beautifully illustrated in architecture, where a monotonous 
nmltiplicatiou of like elements is replaced by figures of differ- 
entiate I elements. No longer is a uniform facade recognized 
as beautiful, but a variety of features in a \ariet\- of elements 
must be presented in order that a temi)le, a mart, an executive 
building, or a business structure may be considered as a pleas- 
ing example of architecture. Variety is now considered one 
of the essential elements of beauty. 

Athletic Pleast-res 

In the esthetic arls we have to consiiler the pleasure derived 
from jihysical activit\'. In these arts appeal is made to the 
muscular sense. The iiew-liorn beast and the iiew-iiorn babe 
inherit more activity than is demaiiiU'(l for bare existence. 


8ubiert to the care of its elders, the infant is not called on for 
industrial activity, for its physical wants are supplied by 
others. While it is yet gaining its powers for utility, they nve 
trained and expanded for pleasure. So the whelps of the lion 
play in the jungle, the fawns of the stag are gleeful in the 
glade, and lads and lassies are meriy when they join in the dance. 

A controversy has grown np in relation to those athletic 
plays which are here called sports, for we distinguish sports 
from another group of plays of which we are to treat hereafter 
as games. Sports are athletic activities, games are intellectual 
activities; sports develop from mimicry to rivalry, games 
develop from dependence on sorcery for success to dependence 
on skill for success. Now, if we understand the distinction 
between sports and games we are better i^repared to nnder- 
stand the nature of sports themselves. Sports and games alike 
are activities, and the distinction which we draw between 
energy and activity has been set forth in the work to which 
reference has already been given; but an additional remark 
has now to be made. 

Activity is that form of force which is controlled or directed 
by the mind, while energy is a form of force which is con- 
trolled or directed by another form of force, which is also 
energy. Energy involves action and passion as well as action 
and reaction. Action and passion are phenomena of force; 
action and reaction are phenomena of causation, action being 
cause and reaction being effect. In energ}- two or more bodies 
external to one another impinge upon one another and produce 
changes in one another. In activity one body has its path 
directed by the internal collision of its particles; activity is 
thus inherent onl}^ in animal bodies in which metabolism is 
controlled by the mind in such manner that the bod}- itself 
may change its own ])ath. The body itself has a degree of 
freedom to move to and fro in its hierarchal path b}- its own 
initiative. A stone can not move from the hill to the valley 
unless it is acted on by some other external force, when both 
the external body and the stone itself will have their paths 
changed; but the animal body may pass from the liill to the 
valley and back again b^- its own initiative. Not that it can add 



enevg^y to itself or subtract energy from itself; it can not create 
or annihilate motion, but it can direct this motion in a path at 
will; it can pursue the patli of its own choice. All this has 
been set forth fulh' in the former work. 

All activities are controlled bv motives, ami the moTivc tor 
sport is pleasure; but it is a pleasure of a })articular kind — it is 
a pleasure in physical activitv. Now, we must notice that it 
is the pleasure of the body whose structure and metabt)lisin 
are inherited from its ancestors; hence it must be some kind of 
an activitv consistent \\itli the inherited structure. So far, then, 
the activity is fixed by inlieritance, liut within these fixed lim- 
its there is still g-reatvarietN' of activities from which to choose. 
What activit\' will the infant choose! Manifestly it will choose 
that activitA' which is suggested bv its acts of psychosis as they 
are developed innnediately after birth, and perhaps to some 
extent from prenatal activities which we niay not here stop to 
consider. The first activities which the infant animal observes, 
if he belongs to any of the higher groups, ai-e the activities of 
pan-nts. Thus, the infant cliild makes judgments about ])art'ntal 
activities, and, liy the law of genesis, first strives to engage in 
the activities which it sees in the parents. Its wants for food 
being supplied, the food itself produces metabolic processes 
which ramify through its organs in excess of the amount neces- 
sarv for dig-estion. With its inheritance of organization and 
superal)imdance of metabolic activity, it is ready to engage in 
other activities which are first taught by the parent as activi- 
ties of nurture, and the infant is thus led to engage in mimetic 
activities. Connate with these are the activities of metabolism 
itself, the seizing, swallowing", and digestion of f )od; but tiie 
additional acti\ities in which it engag-es an' mimetic. Hence 
it is tliat a long succession of great scholars have fullv appre- 
ciated tliat sports depend on a superabundance of activitv. 

I'lir ]ihi\s of cliildhood are organized gradualh' to mimic 
the activities of cIiUts. Kittens arc trained bv their mothers 
to play at catching mice, and pup))ies are trained by their 
mothers to \)\;\\ in mimic liattle. J*up]n' wolves plav at prowl- 
ing, and kitten ])anthers play at fisticufi's. Kids play in racing, 

19 ETH— 01 V 


and nestling- birds play in niiniic Higlit. This universal instinct 
for play is exhibited in man through many years, in childhood 
on well into adult life. Athletic s))orts are universal alike in 
tribal and in national society. So sports of mimicr}' gradually 
develop into sports of livalry. 

Is the pleasure of sports a property of the activity, or is it 
a (quality which depends on the ])oint of view of the person 
engaged as well as the looker on? It is within the experience 
of every normal human being that these pleasures grow and 
decay; but some are ephemeral and pass away in childhood, 
others pass away in j'outh, and still others pass away in adult 
age, while some undeveloped in childhood and scarcely de- 
veloped in youth continue and grow in old age. Ap],)ealing 
to history, we discover that ephemeral pleasures become more 
ephemeral with advancing culture, while others become more 
intense by demotic development. The antitheses of pleas- 
ures, which are pains, pass through a like history in the indi- 
vidual and in the race. In all this field of activital pleasures 
it is discovered that they become intuitive by inherited expe- 
rience, and that pleasures and pains alike are such from the 
point of view. We are therefttre justified in affirming that 
pleasures and pains are qualities derived from natural proper- 

This may be a stumbling'-block, and hence it requires more 
elaborate consideration. I refer to the pain ])roduced in the 
body by injury, as in cutting, tearing, concussion, compression, 
pinching, the stresses and strains produced by inflammation, 
the lesions of disease, and all the pains known as physical 
discomforts. Is the pain in the tooth a quality or a property"? 
Is pain in the head a quality or a property? Is the pain from 
a bullet wound a quality or a j)roperty? We have already 
seen that all otliei' })leasures and pains are derivative in the 
indi^•idual and in the race, and appear from the point of view. 
Is this true of physical pain? 

First, we must consider whetlier pain is an essential or a 
relational element. 

Is pain, like pleasure, the product of judgment? Am I 
conscious of a- pain, or do I infer it liy an liabitual judgment 
when the signs of pain apjjcar in the body? Is the animal 


body endowed with pain as an essential, or is pain also the 
child of experience ? In order that we may examine this sul)- 
ject somewhat critically, it becomes necessary to repeat In-iefly 
that which has been set forth more elaborately in a former 
work. There we begin with the definition of conscionsness, 
inference, and veritication. Consciousness is awareness of 
self, inference is awareness of the cause of the change in self, 
and veritication is proof of the inference by expei'ience. Now, 
we must especially call attention to the fact that the term con- 
sciousness is used only to signify awareness of self, and that 
it is not used to signify cognition. Witli this understanding 
we are prepared to proceed with tlie exposition. If we are 
conscious of })liysical pain, instead of cognitive, then pain 
itself is an essential; but if we are only cognitive of pain, it 
arises from inference and verification. 

It is a well-attested fact that a soldier receiving a musket- 
ball wound in battle maA" be so occupied with other occurring 
events — so intent upon the progress of the battle — that the 
wound itself may be unobserved and no pain for the time 
experienced. Then pain is not an essential inherent in ani- 
mate matter itself, but something which arises from the point 
of view. It is within the experience of many men, perhaps 
all, that various injuries may be experienced without at once 
arising in consciousness, and that pain supervenes only oii the 
cognition of the evil. 

Again, physical pain grows with the experience of the indi- 
vidual. That which was a slight pain in childhood becomes 
an intense pain in adult life. lu the history of races, bestial 
and human, pain becomes greater with culture. The pains nf 
lesions and bruises grow with developing culture; the pains 
of ]iarturition increase as society liecomes more refined, more 
highly developed in culture. From these and a multitude of 
considerations which the contemplating mind will recall, it is 
made plain that |)hvsical pains, like all oui- pains, arc deri- 
vative; that we have no conscidusness of pain when that term 
is strictly used, but we have cognition of pain. 

We have seen how cognition ])ecomes intuitive by heredi- 
tary transmis.sion. From the earliest tribal life to the highest 


state of culture the way is long and tlie years are counted by 
millions. J]very animate individual in all this time has 
experienced the effects of lesions and bruises, until the concept 
has been woven into the constitution of mankind by experi- 
ence, and the intuition is jjerfected through verified judgments. 
It is unnecessary for the man to pass through a complex ratio- 
cination for the purpose of discovering this variety. x\ trivial 
accident may befall a soldier in line of battle, which he inter- 
prets as a wound; he hears the coming of the shell from a 
piece of field artillery, it strikes the ground and scatters its 
fragments broadcast, together with chips and gravel. A bit of 
wood strikes the soldier; he interprets it as a fragment of shell, 
has the illusion of being wounded, and feels the pain aud 
expresses all the agony which a real wound niay actually pro- 
duce. Animate matter is not endowed with an essential of 
physical pain, but it develops pain by cognition of effects. 

In the evolution of sports we discover a develo])ment from 
individual and unorganized multiple activities in many indi- 
viduals to organized activities, in which special acti\'ities are 
assumed for specisil purjioses, all so differentiated and inte- 
grated as to accomplish a desired end. A hundred savages, 
men, women, and children, will join in a dance to revolve in a 
circle bv uniform and rhythmic steps, and everyone moves 
like every other one. But a game of baseball is organized so 
that every player has a particular function to perform which 
differs from the functions of all the others. This law of the 
org'anization of sports is universal. 


We now reach the fourth group of acti vital pleasures ; these 
are games played in rivalry of skill and chance. Games have 
their root in sorcery, as it is practiced by wildwood man. It 
seems that at tii-st arrows or arrowheads are the pieces played — 
the pawns, knights, castles, kings, and queens of the game, or 
the cards upon which the actors are painted. In the wide 
geographical realm of tribal man many of these games are 
discovered, but they have common elements — that is, they are 
founded on luiiversal concepts, and everywhere in this stage 


of society they are rooted in ili\inatioii or the universal long-ing 
of niiinkiiul to know the causes of thing's and how effects may 
be controlled. In savagery men play for effects and control 
the causes, as they suppose, by necromantic figaires which they 
carve or paint upon the pieces of the game. Thus, they try to 
win by sorcery. In later stages of culture the sorcery to a 
greater or less extent is abandoned and skill is recognized as 
the true cause, but there yet remains an element of chance. 
With primal man chance and sorcery are the elements of all 
games, wliilc with civilized man chance and skill are its 

There is a secondary though potent motive in games which 
inheres in the desire to take advantage for individual profit. 
For this reason gaming is as universal among tribal men as 
gambling, and it is common among civilized men. 

I have witnessed these games of sorcery among' the aboriginal 
tribes of North America, and have seen groups of men or women 
wager their ornaments and all their personal goods, even to 
their articles of clothing, until their bodies were nude. As the 
game proceeds, tlie villagers gathei' abovit and comment on the 
incidents of the game, and reconuuend a variety of necromantic 
feats, which tliey suppose will l)ring luck to their friends. 
Sometimes the play does not stop foi- refreshment or sleep 
until one or the other of the parties have lost all, yet will the 
play proceed with hilarity and end with a feast and a re\elry 
of intoxication. 1 have heard that civilized men gamble with 
the same assiduity. 

Hunting and fishing are primeval industries, by which wild- 
wood men obtain no small portion of their food. To some 
extent, in civilized society, they still remain as industries. In 
fact, fishing is yet a fundamental industry. But hunting and 
fishing are now games, and the fruit of the play is called game. 
Although these activities are often called sports, in science we 
must call them games, as for success they depend on elements 
of chance and skill, and the real gamester or sportsman looks 
with some degree of contempt on the man who hunts or fishes 
for food. 

lxx bureau of american ethnology 

Fixe Arts 

The fifth group of activital plea><iires is that (^f the fine arts. 
We have ah-eady seen that there is a group arising from a cog- 
nition of the pleasures which are derived from metabolism; a 
second group, called the arts of decoration, which arise from 
the cognition of the pleasures of form; a third group, called the 
athletic arts or the arts of sport, which arise from the cognition 
of the pleasures of force; a fourtli group, called the arts of 
amusement or games, which arise from the cognition of the 
pleasures of causation. Here we have a fifth group, which we 
call psychic arts or the fine arts, and which arise from the cogni- 
tion of the pleasures of mind expressed in fine-art works. 

In order that we may adequately set forth the nature (if the 
fine arts, it becomes necessary to make a fundamental classifi- 
cation of them. 

In a former work I set forth the vicarious nature of the 
senses of muscular effort — hearing and vision. These are the 
senses to which apjieal is made. These arts have ])layed an 
important role in the evolution of mankind as demotic bodies, 
and hence they require more elaborate treatment. 

When we desire to classify the fine arts, we find well demar- 
cated groups from the standpoint of the properties of matter in 
the order in which these properties logically appear, from the 
simple to the most complex. We have, first, music; second, 
graphic art; third, drama; fourtli, romance; fifth, poetry. That 
this is the logical order will appear when the subject is more 
thoroughly presented. 


Music is the most fundamental of the fine arts in that it 
more fully expresses the emotions than any of the otliers, wliile 
it is but a feeble method of expressing the intellections. This 
cha]-acteristic is well known, and nuisic has been called the ait 
of expressing the emotions. It further appears tliat few per- 
sons ever learn to read the intellectual character of nuisic when 
it is made by others or even when it is made by themselves. 
I do not mean that they fail to read the staft' in wliicli music 
is written, but I do mean that they fail to read the argument 


or storv of the nuisical coiiiixysitiDii, I)u1 rest satisfied with 
the euiotioi'iil effects produced. Very tew persons read music 
as an intellectual art, and there are but tew critics of the 
art who survey these imellectnal elements. Indeed, the intel- 
lectual thread of a musical (■(impositidu is very slender, and 
much of it in tlie folk sonj^' of tlu^ world is unconsciousl\- 
develo})ed, like the meaning- of words in folk sj)ecch. It is a 
growth by minute increments found to be beautiful in exj)e- 

lilijlthm — Mnsic has its germ in the dance, for it begins with 
the effort to control the i-hythm of the lilting folk. Rhythm, 
therefore, is the first structural element of music, but new ele- 
ments are added from time to time in the history of man as 
he proceeds along the way of life from wildwood time to the 
higher civilization in representative time — a long time indeed. 

Melody — Passing from the hunter stage to the shepherd stage 
we find that a new element is added to music; then melody 
appears fully fledged. As the more complicated dancing steps 
become more pleasing than the primeval monotonous step, the 
melodic chant becomes more pleasing than tlie simple rhythmic 
chant: that is, a rhythm of rhythms is developed which makes 
melody. So nuisic was endowed first with rhythm and tluui 
with melod^•. 

Melody iN a pfeasing succession of sounds, or notes as they 
are called in written nuisic, having a different ])itch, and we 
have to considcn- how such notes come to obtain tliat quality 
wdiich we call melody and which is so delightful to the hearer. 

The dance is a s})ort in which usually many persons simul- 
taneously engage. In pi-imiti\e dancing the time is marked 
by the voice, and the shouts of the dancers constitute a chant 
in which oftentimes they all take part, but at other times 
there is a leader and oidy one marks the time. As the dance 
develops from the sim))le monotonous recognition of the same 
step to a combination of two or more differentiated steps, they 
are marked h\ differences in the pi*ch of the voice. To full\' 
understand the ultimate effect of this device, we nuist appre- 
ciate the universality of dancing and that it continued in the 
first stage of society through thousands of years. 


Harmo))}! — In a succeeding stage of society, which we call 
the monarchical stage, or the tyrant stage, when tribal society 
was developed into national society, music made another 
advance h\ tlie introduction of a new element of pleasure. As 
these new elements appear from time to time in the course of 
human culture, it must he remembered that thev do not come 
into view fully Hedged, but that germs planted in the primor- 
dial uuisic slowly develop until they become recognized as 
elements of such importance that they receive designed devel- 
opment by music makers. The new element added to nuisic 
in this stage of culture is harmony. Now, there existed in 
primitive music the germ of harmony wliich, in the progress 
of the centuries, came to be considered by men of such 
importance that special efforts were made to iinprove that 
fullv recognized element itself. When nuisic was Init rhythm, 
there was a germ of harmony in it, for the waning sound 
would blend with the waxing sound, and the succession of 
sounds that Ijecome melodious also become harmonious; but 
more than this, in folk chant tlie voices of men and women 
differ in ])itch, and still other differences arise in the comming- 
ling (if children's voices. When nuisic became melod\', the 
bonds which held it to tlie dance were broken and melody 
was mamed to song as chant was married to dance, but song 
music was especially adapted to the development of harmony, 
because it became choral music; doubtless song-g were sung 
by individuals for their amusement, and as solos for the amuse- 
ment of otliers, but when many join in the song we liave choral 
music. Thus the blending of tones in melody becomes at 
last the blending of tones in harmony. The pleasure derived 
from harmony does not inhere in sounds themsehes; sounds 
are colorless to the ear. The spoken word is but sound until 
it is informed with a meaning; so sound as sound has no jiower 
to create emotion until it is informed witli^ an emotional mean- 
ing, and liarmony is developed as a ])leasure only by long 
experience. Perfect evidence of this is furuislied through the 
iiKidern and scientific investigation of folk music. Botli the 
mclddx and the harmony of different races differ in the inter- 
vals of pitch exhibited in their music. Tliis is ]jroof that all 


men may read, iiml it dearly teaches that the pleasures of music 
are derivative. 

Here let us pause for a remark about the attitude of idralisui 
and materialism toward this question. Idealism affii-ins tliat 
not only is pleasure, as a (pxality, created by the mind, l)ut tliat 
even the properties of sound itself are created by the mind. 
Materialism atfirms that the property inheres in the sounding- 
body, and the qualit}- also in the sounding body. What Ave 
affirm is that the propert}' inheres in the sounding body, and 
the quality in the body pleased. 

Si/mpho)!// — In modern time, or the time of representative 
government, which also may be considered as the time of 
science par excellence, symphony has been added to music. 
The development of symphonic music is dependent on the 
development of musical instruments. Musical instruments 
themselves have tlieir germ in the hunter stage of society. A 
tree overthrown by a tempest may be crosscut into sections 
with a stone ax, reenforced by fire. Such a section niiiy then 
be hollowed out with a stone adz and living coals A vessel 
thus wrought serves man)- jjurposes. At night, when tlie trilie 
dances in o'lee, this mortar or tub for soaking skins becomes a 
drum. A wild goitrd holding pebliles l)ecomes a tind»i-el 
A staff cut with notches is played upon with anotlier and 
smaller one with rhythmic, rasping thrum, and becomes a viol. 
A reed, or a section of bark, or the hollow bone of a bird, 
makes a fltite. A tablet two fingers Avide and a span in length, 
suspended from a staff with sinew, becomes a roarer which is 
whipped through the air — the first trumpet of priiuitive m;ni. 

A group of such implements (and there are main' others in 
primitive life) constitutes the first orchestra. When science 
comes and the nature of sound itself is understood as a ])rop- 
erty, musical instruments are invented and improved by the 
husbandry of mind until a great variety is developed: thus 
symphony grows from the soil of time. What, then, is sym- 
])lionA-? It is a succession of melodies, every one of which is 
produced by a grouj) of instruments, one of whicli may l)e the 
human voice. Now, as these instruments play in unison, one 
or another is selected to })lay the leading melody, and tlie 


other instruments are made to play subsidiary melodies in 
harmony with the lending melody. As the melodies pass in 
sufoession, a new theme is (^•hosen for the leading- melody, and 
thus there is a succession of themes. 

This elementary statement seems to be necessary tliat we 
may properly understand the evolution of luusic and the 
derivative character of the pleasures which it produces; for 
symphonic music is pleasino- because harmonic music is pleas- 
ing, but in a higher degree ; liarmonic music is pleasing because 
melodic music is pleasing, but in a liigher degree; melodic 
nmsic is pleasing because rhythmic music is pleasing, but in a 
hio-hei' de^'ree. 

In music, as in architecture, the pleasure is developed by 
differentiating and integrating the elements — that is, by higher 
and higher organization. 


We must now consider the nature of graphic art and its evo- 
lution througli the four stages of cultiu'e wliicli wv. have 
denominated the hnuter stage, the shepherd stage, the tyrant 
stage, and the freedom stage. 

Scidpfnre — Hunter man carves images of various objects in 
wood, shell, bone, and stone; he also molds such forms in clay. 
This is the first form of graphic art as discovered in ethnol- 
ogy', which is the science of tribal culture. Now, there is a 
special motive in this stage of society urging men to excel- 
lence in primitive sculpture. Much of the time of wildwood 
men, or men of the hunter stage, is devoted to religious activ- 
ities. Dancing is always a religious activity with jjrimitive 
men, and it is the primeval system of worsliip. But to this 
element another is added, that of representing to the gods 
the desires of men; for this purpose an elaborate system ot 
representation is developed. The gods worshiped are the ani- 
mals, but all tilings known to wildwood men are animals. 
The celestial bodies are animals traveling in a path along the 
firmament, from east to west, where they turn again to find 
their way underground to tlie east. All rocks are animals 
fixed to the earth by magic or scattered loosely upon the earth, 


because, since they are asleej), their g-hosts have de])arte([, for 
that is the theory of sylvan hfe. Trees and smaller ]ilants are 
animals fixed to the earth by necroinaiicA'. ( "loads are ani- 
mals, streams are animals, seas are animals, and the clouds are 
ever descendin;^' upon the earth and niiiiratinii' 1)\- sti'canis to 
the sea, fov every drop of water is an animal. 

This theory of aiiimate life isuni^•('rsal in tribal society. In 
this stage, when men carve in earnest, they are engaged in pro- 
ducing- the instruments of worship. These ol)jects are not 
themselves worshiped in the true sense, thev arc onK- the 
emblems of worship which are displayed before the gods that 
they may comprehend the wishes of the worshii)ers. The 
emblems displayed upon the altar are of two kinds: First, they 
are the emblems of the gods worshiped ; and, second, they are 
emblems of the good things which the worshipers desire. Thus 
a savage altar is adorned with the images of the gods and the 
emblems of the hlessino-s tor which the savao*e man makes 
recjuest. The altar is the table on which these emblems are 
displayed. The tilings desired may be represented by images, 
as when game is asked or when fruits are besought. But there 
may be many accessory objects ])laced U])on the holy table, as, 
when in prayer for corn that it may ripen and become hard, the 
thought is conveyed by fragments of crystal that lie beside it 
on the table. The crystal is an adjective that qualifies the corn. 
Savage men always believe that they have lost the language of 
the gods, and thus thev eke out the meaning of their words bj^ 
the illustrations which they assemble U|)on the altar. That 
prayer may l)e understood is the primitive motive for excellence 
in carving. 

lidkf- — The next step in the evolution of graphic art is taken 
in the shepherd stage. Wildwood men etched crude ])ictiu-es 
on rocks, or scratched them on bones, horns, bark of trees, and 
on the tanned skins of animals. Such etchings are mere Hats; 
they always fail to express relief. In barbarism the}' are made 
to show a truer form, and man learns to ex])ress in painting the 
meaning- of tints and hues as they are reflected from l)odies. 
The motive which urges to excellence is the desire for clearer 
expression in altar symbolism. 


Perspective — In the succeeding stage a third step is taken. 
Here the emblems of the altar are painted also ii])on temjde 
Avails; but the themes of mythology are mainly the themes of 
painting, and with this same moti"\'e the master works of art 
are produce<l. All along the course of the history of painting, 
religious zeal is the potent motive for excellence. 

This third step consists in the acquisition of perspective, when 
objects are placed in the painting in such manner as to show 
their relative position, and the three dimensions of space are 
recognized in the production of the work. Now conventional 
signs are no longer needed. In the stage anterior to this, per- 
spective is conventional, as if a man should say, "I have 
jjainted two horses on the canvas, but this one must be con- 
sidered as far away, because it is put on the riglit side of the 
picture; things on the left nuist be considered as near by." A 
great many devices for conventional perspective were invented 
by tribal men before they acquired the concept of true per- 

We nmst nere call attention to an important law of demotic 
evolution. Growth is made usually by minute increments. 
Rarely indeed is there a sudden outgrowth, but the increments 
of development are all made by men with a genius for the 
activity. Such a man is a leader in the arts. A nudtitude is 
led by one, so that demotic evolution is dependent very largely 
on the few for its initiative which the many learn by imitation. 
This law is observed not ordj- in all the esthetic arts, but it 
rules throughout the whole realm of human activities. But 
initiative through the individual becomes demotic, because the 
many steps in advance which leaders make as minute incre- 
ments of progress are consolidated through their adoption b}' 
the many. A leader must have a following or his leadership 
is in vain. 

Chiaroscuro — In the fourth stage of culture still another ele- 
ment is added to painting*. This is chiaroscuro, or the delicate 
recognition in painting of the effects of light and shade in the 
several hues of the work. This is the highest i-haracteristic of 
art as conceived by the modern j^ainter. The artist may suc- 
ceed in all else, but if he fails in this it is failure indeed. It is 
the difference between the artist and the artisan. 


The intellectual characteristics of works of graphic art are 
more prouoiinccil than those of musical art, while the emo- 
tional characteristics are less vividly expressed. A painting 
may be excellent, though the theme may be trivial ; 1)ut a 
great painting must have a great theme, and the picture nuist 
be judged by its successful presentation of the theme. I can 
not here stop to treat of the evolution of themes, but will 
reserve the subject for a future occasion. Here I will be 
content with the simple expi'ession nf the judgment tliat no 
great and enduring work of art can be wrought which has 
not also a great theme. 

We must not fail to give attention to a branch of graphic art 
which has taken i-oot for itself and thus become independent. 
I refer to the development of j)icture writings for the purpose 
of comnmnicating the thoughts of men to other men. The 
origin of alphabets in picture writing is now' an accepted con- 
clusion of science. \Vheu graphic ai't was not under the 
dominion of the religious m6tive, but was impelled bv utili- 
tarian designs, it worked out a very different result, becoming 
more and more conventional, while painting itself comes to be 
more and more realistic. 


Drama constitutes the third group of fine-art acti\'ities in 
logical order. 

Dance — Again we have to seek for primal motives in reli- 
gion. Already we have atfirmed that dancing is the primeval 
activity of pleasure. It is the first activity which has jov for 
its motive. The dance is deeply embedded in the constitution 
of animal life. The various scientific works and essavs ou 
play which have been produced in modern time clearly set 
forth this doctrine, though some phases of it are yet in con- 

That the dance is a religious activity is reveah^d b\- a study 
of the lower races of mankind. Dance is a play ; not imita- 
tive, but religious ))lay. Here tlie })lay motive and the reli- 
gious moti^'e are differentiated, so that we can separate sport 
from drama, ImU reliti'ion and drama are one in their triljal 


life. Dancing- is the first primeval expression of joy as praise, 
and is the fundamental element of worship. 

Sacrifice — In the second stage there is found an element of 
religion, and hence of drama, which has its beginning in the 
first stage, but is fully developed oidy in the second. In the 
first stage, in order that men ma}' express their wants, they 
dis])lay them either by placing the things themselves or their 
symbols upon tlie altar. In the second stage tlie objects de- 
sired are sacrificed. When a deity is woi'shipped, the things 
desired are poured out ;ipon the ground as ol^lations, or con- 
sumed in the fire as offerings, that the ghosts of the things 
desired may be possessed by the ghostly deity. 

When human beings are buried, whether in the earth, the 
air, or the fire, the same worship is accorded them, and the sac- 
rifice made at the gra\'e. So the second stage of drama or 
worship is sacrificial, while there yet remains the element 
of praise in the dance. We are familiar with the character- 
istics of this stage of the drama in the writings of Homer; 
however, there is a vast bod)' of literature on the subject from 
otlier sources. The science of ethnology reveals its nature 
and characteristics in a manner which is clear and forcible. 
All the tribes which are investigated by ethnologists present 
examples for consideration. 

Ceremony — The third stage of the drama, which is fully 
developed in the imperial stage, also has roots, more or less 
obscxu-e, in the earlier stages; for shamans, in instructing the 
people in mythology, devise curious and interesting methods 
to enforce their teaching by rejiresenting the scenes in a more 
or less dramatic manner, in which the neophytes of the sha- 
manistic order take part, and to some extent other members of 
the tribe are assistants. 

This difference in the nature of the drama of tribal society 
and of national society must be understood. The drama is 
not designed as a language by which men may talk with the 
gods, but it is designed as a language b}' which men may 1)e 
instructed. In savagery, the language by which the gods are 
addressed is sign language; in barbarism, it is gesture speech; 
in monarchy, the national god is the only true god, all others 




are devils, and tliis true jii>d understands and employs the 
national language, and religious di'ania is n gesture speech 
desijinied to instruct men in divine lore. This new element 
appears in one form i'l the moiv liighK' de\cloped savag'i^ 
society, in another I'orm in ])arbaric society, but in tvrnnnic 
society it is fully fledged as ceremony. Tt is .shown in the 
account which we have of the Pjleusinian m^•steries: it appears 
also in the dramatic ])erformance ol mam' nations of I'hirope, 
Asia, and Africa, where the drama l)ecomes an institution pro- 
moted and regulated by the ruler, and drama is the ])rincij)al 
system of worship in the national religion, while local worship 
is restricted largely to tribal methods. This new element of 
worship is deveh)})ed by transmuting the actual sacrifice into 
ceremonial sacrifice. No longer are hecatombs slain; no 
longer are wines jioured u|)on the ground; no longer are 
cereals burned in the fire ; but a ceremony representing these 
things is instituted and held to be sacred, and es])ecially effica- 
cious, while pi'aise is not only terpsichorean as in savagery, 
not only athletic as in barbarism, but it is ])ageantr\-. Thus, 
in the tyrannic stage, we have ceremony. 

Toward the close of this stage religion and ilrama are par- 
tially divorced, so that there is a drama more or less distinct 
from religion. 

Histrionic art — We have n( >\x to consider drama as an esthetic 
art in the fourth stage of culture. This stage is broug-ht about, 
as a revolution in society, fundamentall}' through the agencies 
of science ; not that there is no science anterior to this stage 
of culture, but that it has not attained that potency necessar\' 
to the transmutation. Science is only simple knowledge, 
which is but a verified inference, and in all ages men have 
known something. A few simple facts known in savagery 
become germs that deA^elo]) and nuiltiply through the centuries, 
until science becomes a controlling element in civilization. 

The time of science is marked by events, but the time of 
science as a stage of culture may be considered as beginning 
with the discovery of the new world and the invention of print- 
ing, together with scientific principles that had been developed 
uj) to that time. Research is born of the love of truth, and the 


truth discovered breeds more researeh, so tlif cliild becomes 
the parent that new cliildren may be born; and wlien these 
generations have muhipHed xmtil they become a liost, the mul- 
titude of scientitic motives extant in tlie \\(irld constitute a 
power over society ever more and more efficacious in the 
regeneration of mankind. 

Heretofore Ave have sought a motive for drama in reli<iion; 
now we nuist seek it in the desire to truthfully express life — 
the life of man in society. The promoter of drama, as entre- 
preneur or Tuidertaker of dramatic enterprise, may have a luo- 
tive of gain. The artist may have a motive of ambition, but 
it is soon found that these motives may be gratified to the 
highest degree only by a most deft expression of the truth; so 
the motive for evolution is now the desire to express the trutli 
in the action which is designed to represent a trait of character, 
and the artist, be he dramatic writer or actor, strives to express 
the emotions of the scene in the most vivid and truthful man- 
ner. Columbus discovered America that Jefferson might por- 
tray Rip Van Winkle. 

He who luith ear.s to hear, then let him hear 
And sage l)ecoiiie that he may eoine a seer. 

When the chains which hold drama to religion are dirempt 
and they can go forth to lead a free life, Ijoth start on new 
careers. Drama becomes histrionic art indeed, and the stage 
becomes the mirror in which are refiected the causes and con- 
sequences of the deeds of life. Religion soars on wings of 
aspiration into the empyrean of hope — hope for a purer and 
better life which bears fruit in pin-er and better conduct. 

The germ of dramatic art is the dance, which in its first stage 
is relio-ion. Of course relig-ion must be distinguished from 
theology. Theology is a system of opinions, while religion 
is a system of worship. Religious motives become the seed of 
graphic motives and also the seed of musical motives. We see 
that both musical art and graphic art are founded on religion. 
We shall proceed to show that the other esthetic arts are based 
on religion. 

The intellectual and emotional elements of drama are pretty 
evenly balanced in the last lustrionic stage; but if we consider 


its growth from the boii'innino' I think we sliall liinl n steady 
developineut iroin emotionnl to intellectual art. 

We have yet to note that the pleasures obtained t'nmi dra- 
matic activities are derived. There is in nature no distinct 
propertv on wliich pleasure is founded, but it is tbunded on 
tlie relative element of consciousness which is inference and 
which produces judgments. All our kn(_)wledge of the [deas- 
ures of dramatic entertainment are founded on judgments 
and ai'e good or evil from the point of view whicli we have 
attained in the progress of culture. It needs hut a single 
illustration to make this fact evident: The drama of tlie sav- 
age, dancing about the tirelight which glinls the trees of the 
surrounding forest, does not constitute an entertainment for 
which the civilized man longs and which he would sedulously 
promote. Tliat which brings gladness in one stage, brings con- 
tempt in another. True, the ethnologist may be delighted to 
witness the wildwood scene and even to engage in its revelry; 
but his purpose would be not to dance for joy, but to dance 
for knowledge. 


Romance is the fine art next in logical order. The first form 
of romance is myth. We can not understand its nature with- 
out undei standing the cosmology with wliich it is associated. 
All tribes, savage and barl)aric alike, have a cosmolog\- based 
on a notion of seven worlds. This notion is developed tln-ougli 
that phase of the evolution of language which Max Miiller has 
called a disease. Midler's characterization, though more })oetic 
than scientitic, is yet a legitimate trope. In the evolution of 
language old words are used with new meanings, and often the 
old meanings fade, while the new meanings, which seem to be 
at variance witli the etymological signihcation of the terms, 
become standard. Priinitive languages al)sorb the entire asser- 
tion in one word; their words are holophrastic. A single word 
performs the offices of all the parts of speech, for parts of 
speech are yet undifferentiated; therefore a word is a com- 
plete sentence. When words are sentence words, the phe- 
nomena which men attempt to describe with them are expressed 
19 ETH — 01 VI 


in sxicli terms tlint linguistic development leads to a cosmology 
of space. 

In this manner primitive man is led to speak of seven elements 
of space. There are the here, the center, the midworld; the ze- 
nith, the above, the heaven world; the down, the lower world, 
the nadir, the hell. The apparent rising of the sun in the east 
and its apparent course to the west seem to divide the plane of 
the earth into two parts. In speaking about tlie east, the eastern 
direction, the eastern land gradually becomes an eastern world ; 
and in speaking about the west, the western direction, the west- 
ei'n land, it gradually becomes the western world. Then, as men 
must still talk aliout the north and the south as distinct from the 
east and the west they also become worlds. Thus we have 
the cardinal worlds; these with the midworld, the zenith world, 
and the nadir world constitute the seven worlds of the cosmology 
of savager}-. 

The seven worlds are universal ; every savage and every bar- 
baric tribe recognizes and believes in them, as they are inexora- 
bly developed as notions in the mind through tlie power of the 
language used to express thought about relations of space, 
especially as it refers to commonplace geography. Every day 
the savau'e man has to tell of his wanderino' or tlie wanderings 
of *,tliers over the surface of the earth, or to give directions to 
others how to find places and objects, so that in this use of 
holophrastic terms he unconsciously reifies the relations of 
space and makes them seven distinct worlds. In tribal life 
the notions of se^'en worlds are intuitive as a habit of judg- 

If a man hal)itually speaks of an object in terms which 
involve erroneous notions, the habit of forming the judgments 
involved becomes intuitive. Persuade him that eating parsnips 
on Wednesday is a taboo and may lead to bad consequences, 
a constant avoidance of this habit will lead him to habitual 
iudiiinents of evil, and he will believe that such iudii'ments are 
intuitive, it is thus tliat qualities are generated in the inind 
from tlie point of view of the individual. 

Beast fahU — Wildwood man worships the beasts as gods. 
As we have already seen, he believes that all bodies have 


animate life; that is, lie interi)ivts the phenomena of the world 
from the standpoint of the l)elief that all bodies, like hnman 
bodies, are endowed with mind and that they luvve motives 
and enjin pleasures and feel pains and exereise will as men 
do. The savao'e man interprets the enviroimient of Ixidies as 
if they were human bodies. This is what has been called 

With this view of the world savage man develojis a vast 
body of stoi'v l()re which i'e\"eals liis thoughts of the iiatiu'e of 
things with the causes and effects of events that constitute the 
hi.story of life and change. This lore is mvth. liut more: By 
agencies which are now well recognized in science, he believes 
that every body has a dual existence, as gross body and 
attenuated body, and that the attemiated body may enter the 
gross body or depart from the gross body at will, ;nid tliat the 
attenuated body maA* sojourn in one gross body or another at 

The attenuated body is known in our lanofuag-e as <>-liost, 
but every primitive language has a name of its own, as maj/lhi 
in the Algonquian languages, and pokunt in the Shoshonc^an 
lano'uao'es, and /rakamln in the Siouan lanffuao'es. This o-host 
is held to l)e the cause of things. All events are caused by 
ffhosts. Every distinct linguistic stock of the world lias a 
body of mvth consisting of stories related about tlie doings 
of human beino-s and mythic personaties, which always assume 
that tlie ghosts of the other personages influence the ghosts of 
men, or that the ghosts of men influence the gliosts of other 
personages. '^Fhis is the essence of ))ai'l)nric myth or romance, 
for in\tli and romance are one in this stage of cuhure. 

Power Di/jtJi — In the si-cond stage of m\th or roiuance we 
discover a radical develo]iment in the ])ersonages of the story. 
A new class of deities is found. From the same lingui.stic 
cause, wliich \\c liave set forth, tiie t-onspicuoiis phenomena of 
natiu'e are personitie(l as gods. The ])owei-s of the unixerse as 
thcA' are known in that stage of societA' Ix-come tlie heroes of 
mvth. Tlie animal "ods remain, and with them the human 
beings; but all the gods of savagery are assigned minor parts, 
and the new gods constitute a superior oi-der of heing.s. 


"^riiis stage is pojnilarly known thi-ougli the wi-itings of ]\Iax 
Miiller and others wlio have devoted niuoh time to the stndv of 
Sanskrit literature. It is set forth in the popular accounts of 
Norse mvtliolug}' and also in Germanic mythology. Again we 
find it w(dl recorded in Homer and Hesiod. In fact, there is 
now a larye bod^- of literature o-athered from various lands 
which is being carefully studied ior the purpose of discovering 
the cliaracteristics of this stage of myth. 

While romance is beast fable in savagery, romance is power 
myth in Iiarbarism. To understand this transmutation we must 
see the change which is wrought in the concepts of worlds or 
in cosmoloo-y. It is a chang-e whicli begins in savagery, but 
is more highly developed in barbarism. The concepts of space 
worlds control the concepts of the savage mind to sucli an 
extent that all of the attributes of bodies are referred to the 
worlds as properly belonging to them. Thus colors originally 
come to be classified as seven, for the act of expressing concepts 
in words is more potent than the sense of vision in controlling 
the judgment of the color of objects. 

The j)rismatic colors, as such, are unrecognized; liut hues, 
tints, shades, and even patterns are classified, and there is a 
tendency to classify them as hues. The scheme of colors, 
perhaps, differs from tribe to tribe; of this I am not sure, but 
this 1 do find among some tribes: Blue is the color of the 
zenith, and things are said to have sky color. It is a very 
natural mistake for man to reach the conclusion that sky color 
is made b^' the skA' or tliat it comes from the sky hv the habit 
of languag'e which alread)' lias been set fortli Color is thus 
reified and assigned to a world. Darkness, or black, seem to 
priuiitive man to come from below, and as darkness is reified, 
it is believed to come from the nadir world Green is held to 
belong properly to tlie nndworld, for it is tlie color of jilant 
bodies and is seen nowhere else. 

In tribal society the colors seem to be variously assigned to 
the cardinal worlds as lines, tints, shades, and patterns. In the 
cases which 1 liave especially investigated, i"ed l)elongs to 
the west, white to the east, yellow to the south, and gra}' to the 


In a similar manner, which we can not stop to explain fully, 
all the attributes of bodies as properties or qnnlities are ;issi<ined 
to regions by wildwood men and shepherd uieii. Tiie increasing 
knowledge of the woi-hi leads to a geographic knowledge of 
immense distances on the horizontal plane of the earth as it is 
then supposed to be; but the cardinal attributes still continue 
to be grouj)ed al)out the one which seems to be the most 

A sur\ ival of this classification of attributes in world schemes 
still remains in modern time when attributes of good are assigned 
to a world of space, as the heaven above, and attrilnites of evil 
are assigned to the world below — hell. 

The attril)utes which w^ere assigned to the cardinal worlds are 
grouped about the most conspicuous attribute, as the cardinal 
worlds are abandoned owing to an increasing knowledge of 
geogra))liy. Finally, they settle down into four elements; the 
cardinal w-orlds thus become elements — earth, air, fire, and 
water — and the bodies of the ^'^•orlds are believed to be com- 
posed of these elements in varying proportioias. 

In Greek and Roman classics we find much about these four 
elements; but the development of four elements out of four 
worlds belongs largely to barbarism, though perhaps it is not 
fully completed until the stage of monarchy is reached. 

Necromancy — In the monarchical stage of society the four 
elements — earth, air, fire, and water — play a very important 
role. It is now the theory that bodies are composed of these 
elements, and it is a theory that tlie difterence between bodies 
depends on tlie difi'erent proportions of these elements whicli 
they severally present. The cardinal worlds thus become 
cardinal elements, and a birthmark remains when they are ])ut 
in antithetic pairs. Earth is opposed to air, and fire is opposed 
to water. This stage of society is the stage of alchemy in the 
philosophy of bodies. The Wondrous transimitations tliat 
ap])ear in nature are explained as alchemical changes in com- 
biniu"- or freeiiiff the elements. The stories now invented are 
stories of necromancy in which theories of ghosts and theories 
of alchemy are compounded. This is also the age of chivalry, 


jind tlic stories told are tales of \vars and wiles, and the heroes 
are kini^s, warriors, wizards, dwarfs, giants, and demons. They 
often wander about the world for the i»urpose of adventure or 
because they are en<>-af>-ed in wonderful enterprises. Thau- 
maturgv — not iiiitural wonders, liut invented wonders — now 
constitutes the principal theme of romance. Myth is trans- 
muted into romance. 

The three worlds i-emain as earth, hell, ;nid heaven. We 
can not st()p to catalog- these medieval romances, but they con- 
stitute an extensive literature in themselves and there is an 
extensive l)0(h' of literature about them. Often in the next 
stage they become the themes of poetry Tlie Victorian bard 
has used some of these medieval themes in the Idylls of the 

Novels — It must constantly be borne in niind that romance 
in its various stages may have themes to a greater or less 
extent tlie same throughout, but that they differ in the method 
of treatment. Beast fables may yet be told, but merely as 
faljles to teach a lesson. The natui-e myths may yet be used 
as illustrations and embellishments, and romances may yet be 
written with all the thaumaturgy of the Middle Ages to give 
literary anuisement to people who are not supposed to believe 
in necromancy. 

With this warning we mav g-o on to describe the romance of 
the last stage. To the world's store of romance new tales are 
added — hctitious histories in a series of events where causes 
conspire to produce effects that have an intellectiuTl and emo- 
tional interest. In an especial manner modern tales are 
designed to teach a lesson of good and evil, and there are 
many romances that are doctrinaire in motive. 

This is the transnmtation bnmglit by science U})on the char- 
acteristics of romance. Tales are no longer told to be believed, 
but are told to teach lessons. IJomance is fundamentallv 
designed to give pleasure, but at the same time is made to 
teach wisdom in conduct. If the medicine is but a coated 
pill, it is refused; but if a dram of moral truth is deftly mixed 
with a ]iound of delightful representation of men and things, 
the moral becomes a luxurv. 



The fifth in onler of tlie fine arts is ]K)etiy. All of the 
e'stlietic arts are activities designed to produce pleasure. This 
is their funda;nental jmr])ose. Poetry is an art of pleasure. 
Its fundamental ])urpose nuist be pleasure, althoug-li it some- 
tinifs nia\- l)c a good method of presenting tlie ti-uth; in fact 
it often serves this jiurposc in an admirable manner, Ijut its 
wisdom must be veiled whether it be intellectual or moral. 

That which makes poetry is the method of expression that 
is adopted hv poetr^-. In music the method of ex])ression is 
rh\ thmic soiuid and the combinations of rhythmic .sound which 
appear also in melody, harmony, and symphony. Cxraphic art 
is expression of form which at first gives us form as molded in 
sculpture, then form as relief, then the condjination of form 
in perspective, and finally the delicate expression of forms in 
values or chiaroscuro. In drama we have an art \\hich 
emplovs gesture speech as its mode of expression. Its root is 
the dance, and the first stage of the drama is terpsichorean; its 
second stag-e is sacrifical, its third stag'e is ceremonial, its fourth 
stag"e is histrionic liomance is expression ])y fictitious liistorv. 
It appears first as beast fal)le, then as ])()wer myth, then as 
necromantic tale, and finally in the novel. 

In poetry the method of expression is metajjlior. We are 
yet to see the stages through which metaplior is developed. 
Again 1 must remind mv reader that all of these stages have 
roots in the primitive stage, that they develo]) by minute incre- 
ments, and that a characteristic of poetry is never developed 
in full panoply of action. 

Vcrsonification — Personification is the gei-m of ])oetic expres- 
sion. Personification is the fundamental error in flic philos- 
ophy of savagery. Tylor called this belief animism; already 
we ha\e set forth its nature. It arises from mental necessity 
of making judgments and comparing- them with the inferences 
which the mind draws from sense ii^ipressions. The savage 
interprets the world of ])odies in the environment from the 
concepts of human bodies. From the standpoint of psychol- 
ogy this is anthropomorphism, while from the standpoint of 


philosophy it is animism. This animism or anthropomorphism 
is ])('rsonification from the standpoint of poetry. 

^^'ildwood man is of the opinion that all bodies are animate 
and that all the tribes of the lowei- animals, and all the tribes 
of stars, and all the tribes of clouds and sti'eams, and all the 
tribes of ])lants, and all the tribes of stones are tribes composed 
of clans like his own. The philosophy of savagery is the 
essence of poetry, but before it is recognized as such it must 
undergo wondrous development. This philosophy must first 
become a religion before it is etherealized as trope, which is the 
essence of modern poetry. 

In the earliest poetry holophrastie words are used as nouns 
or substantives with adjecti^■es of (piality in exclamatory sen- 
tences (remember the distinction between qualities and proper- 
ties) to mark the time of a complement of steps in the dance 
of worship. In every clan or tribe in this stage of society 
there is a leader who is the master of the dance and who regu- 
lates it with rhythmic chant in which others may take part, 
when the solo of the shaman becomes the chorus of the people. 
The exuberance of dance and the inspiration of shout unite to 
produce emotion — wildly hilarious if it is a dance of ])raise, 
wildly vengeful if it is a dance of war, wildly wailing if it is a 
dance of mourning for the dead. Thus is produced an ecstasy 
of joy or hate or sorrow. 

In the exclamatory phrases of song are named the personified 
objects that are supposed to be inspired with motives like those 
of men, and hence the adjective element of the song expresses 
the good or evil which is the theme of poetry. The earliest 
poetry in this manner involves a double expression — one of 
personification and another of qualification. 

Similitude — In the second stage powers are personified as if 
they were bodies, and there is developed a new class of deities 
which are supposed to be superior to the old gods, and the old 
gods are called demons ; not yet devils, mind you, but oidy 
demons. Now, there are many kinds of these demons — as elves, 
fairies, muses, sirens, and what not, while huinaii beings are 
sometimes giants and pigmies. This is pertinent to the present 
exposition. Personification in this stage is the creation of 


invisible bodies out of pure forces that are supposed to exist 
independent of l)odies — that is, of properties that can exist in 
some invisiWe state hke tliat of <>-hosts. ^lau jx-rsonities not 
only bodies, l)ut lu' also ])ersonifies qualities. 

In tliis stage qualification is developed into similituilc '^I'hat 
Avhich is affirmed l)v the adjective element as great or small, as 
strong or ^\eak, as Ijeautiful or ugly, or any attribute exjiressed 
by a qualifying adjective, is reenforced by a poetic similitude. 
The attribute or the person acting in ;i specified capacity is 
always like something else, and the poetry in this stage is filled 
with ehilx^rateh' developed similitudes. The best illustrations 
of this cliara(;teristic of ])oetry are found in Homer, l)ut they 
may be found in all the poetry of the up})er stage of tribal 
society. Opening at random a copy of Brj-ant's Odyssey, on 
the first page I chance to see T find this passage: 

for sure 
I never looked on one of mortal race, 
Woman or man. like thee, and as I gaze 
I wonder. Like to thee I saw of late, 
In Delos, a youni;' p:ilm tree growing up 
Beside Apollo's altar ; for I sailed 
To Delos, with nuicli people following me, 
On a disastrous voyage. Long 1 gazed 
L^pon it wonderstruck, as 1 am now, — 
For never from the earth so fail- a tree 
Had sprung. So marvel J, and am amazed 
At thee. O lady, and in awe forbear 
To clasp thy i<nees. 

Tn this stage of poetr\' ([uallfication is nse(l as a poetic ele- 
ment as in the first: then cpialities are ])ersonified as well as 
bodies, and qualification is reenforced by similitude. 

Allegory — In the third stage of society certain world attri- 
butes are explained as world elements; tliese are earth, air, tire, 
and water, and the pro})ortiou of these elements in bodies of the 
earth gives rise to their attril)utes. In philoso])hy this is 
alchemy; but it is only the alcliemy of bodies, while the ghosts 
are psychic beings and only psychic attributes are personified. 

Affnlfniiw exists between "liost iiuil IxmU". The l: host is 
spirit or essence, something which can l>e distilieil jiiid whicii 


may pervade space like an ai-oiua, or itself be wholly spaceless 
and hence formless. It may occupy any point of time present, 
past, or future, for it is timeless; hence it is the ghost of mem- 
ory and prophecy. But the body is now gross matter — dead 
and subject to the manipulations of alchemy. With the devel- 
opment of personification and differentiation in theory between 
ghost and body there comes a development of similitude into 
something else; this we must now set forth. 

The similitude is now elaborated into the foundation of au' 
allegory upon which is erected an edifice of doctrine; or, if 
you will allow another illustration, the similitude becomes a 
war}) into Avhich a woof is woven with patterns which consti- 
tute u tapestry of doctrine. 

I know of no better way of setting forth the nature of 
allegory than by directing the attention of the reader to Spen- 
ser's Faerie Queene, in which he will find an alleg'ory of alle- 
gories — a grand allegory made up of many adjuvant allegories. 
Six books of one allegory are com])Osed, every one, of twelve 
allegories. The principal characters of the grand allegory are 
personified (jualities. In the first book holiness is personified 
as "'St John the Red Crosse Knight;" in the second book 
temperance is personified as Sir Guyon; in the third book 
chastity is personified as Britomartis; in tlie fourth book friend- 
ship is personified in Cambel and Triamond; in the fifth book 
justice is personified in Artegall; in the sixth book courtesy is 
personified in Calidore ; and throughout the poems many other 
qualities of good and evil are personified. , These personifica- 
tions are the heroes of a succession of necromantic tales 
relieved by many wild adventures. 

The literature of romance and poetry alike which belongs 
to this stage of culture is very abundant, and I need but 
mention another instance or two to make it clear to the reader. 
Bunyan's Pilgrim's Progress, Dante's Divine Comedy, and 
Milton's Paradise Lost are excellent examples. 

Trope — In the fourth stage of culture chemistry has sup- 
planted alchemy, medicine has supplanted sorcery, astronomy 
has supplanted astrology, and science has supplanted cosmol- 
ogy. All kinds of personifications appear, but in a new light 


with a distinrt coofiiition that j)ersonification is jiootic. All 
kinds of pt-rsoniiication thus becoiiu- 1n>iics, and mind itself 
is clcarh' understood to Ixdouff onl\' tn animate beino's. 
Qualitication, similitude, and allegory still remain with ;i more 
or less clear coy-nition that (jualities are but qualities, simili 
tildes are but similitudes, and alleg'ories are but alleo-ories, and 
that they are legitimate onh- as metaphors and constitute only 
a poetical method of expression thi'oug'h which the wisdom 
of science may be expressed in such manner as to impress 
it deeply ujton the heart. Trope, therefore, is tlie last aud 
greatest ac(|uisition to poetical art. Romance is poetry with- 
out rhythm. Poetry is romance with rhythm, but there is 
added to it a much higher element of metaphor — the special 
method 111' poetic expression. 

There has grown up in the history of |)oetry a recognition 
of four classes of poetrv, namely, the lyric, the epic, the 
dramatic, and the idyllic. These names pretty well express 
the characteristics of the four kinds of poetry- herein enumer- 
ated. If poetrv is to be classitied under these terms, they 
require both some restriction and enlargement in their limits. 
Lyric poetr}' is pretty well detined when we call it song poetrv. 
Epic poetry is pretty well defined when we call it similitude 
poetry; but ukuu' poems which have sometimes been called 
epics are excluded. Dramatic ])oetr}' is not well defined as 
allegoric poetry if it is held to mean that ])oetrv which is con- 
structed as dialogue; but it is well defined if we untlerstand it 
as that poetry whose principal element is dramatic, for then it 
will l)e seen that every dramatic poem is an allegtn'y of good 
and evil. Idyllic i)oetry is well characterized as poetry whose 
chief element of expre.ssion inheres in troj)e. Ueail again the 
Idylls of the King for the purpose of seeing how their dra- 
matic characteristics are subordinated to tropical expression, 
and I think you will conceive that Tennyson was right in 
characterizing them as the Idylls of the King rather than as 
the Allegoi-ies of the King. 

There is a fact in history that hen; nuist be considered, in 
ordei- that we may not ol)tain an erroneous ojiinion about the 
arjiument st't forth in tlusessa\. The Honian and Hellenic 


peoples expanded prematurely into a degree of culture more 
than two tliousanil years ago, in classical times. The political 
institutions which they developed at that time, because they 
contained an element of hereditary rank and especially an ele- 
ment of slaverv, did not furnish an enduring foundntion to tlie 
highest culture of the age. Historj' now proves that many of 
the elements of culture to which classical times had attained as 
a blossom of fine arts were not sufficient!}' rooted in a soil 
of free institutions. That classical culture might firmly be 
founded, a greater liberty had yet to be given to men, and that 
there might be greater liberty there yet liad to be greater sci- 
entific knowledge. So the superstitions of the dark ages con- 
stituted but a cloud under which mankind labored whih' it laid 
the foundations of representative government. 

We need not review the history of poetry to show how its 
elements have been developed; manifestly all that is good or 
bad is derivative; all of the esthetic arts are found to be 

Pleasures and pains arise from judgments, and do not arise 
from consciousness but from inference. AH of the phenomena 
of pleasure and pain arise in the mind tlu'ough the point of 
view. They are therefore qualities and not properties. All 
matter is not endowed with mind, but all matter is endowed 
with consciousness. The i-elative element is choice, which 
becomes inference in the formation of judgments. There can 
be no mind luitil there are organs of mind. Until this condition 
arises in the development of animate life there is no mind, but 
when it does arise this mind makes judgments. As the judg- 
ments are inferences only, until they are verified, there is no 
cognition until there is verification, and the cognition of pleas- 
ure or pain is reached only by inference and verification. This 
is what we have intended to express by saying that pleasure 
and pain are derivative. 


19 KTH— m 1 






I — Introduction 11 

11 — Historical sketcli of the Cherokee 14 

The traditionary period 14 

The period of Spanish exploration — 1540-? 23 

The Colonial and Revoluti(inary period — 1654-1784 29 

Relations with the United States 01 

From the first treaty to the Removal— 1785-1838 (il 

The Removal— 1838-1839 130 

The Arkansas band— 1817-1838 135 

The Texas band— 1817-1900 143 

The Cherokee Nation of the West— 1840-1900 146 

The East Cherokee— 1838-1900 157 

III— Xotes to the historical sketch 182 

IV — Stories and story-tellers 229 

V— The myths ... ^ 239 

Cosmogonic myths 239 

1. How the world was made 239 

2. The first fire 240 

3. Kana'tl and Selu: Origin of corn and game 242 

4. Origin of disease and medicine 250 

5. TheDaughterof the Sun: Origin of death 252 

6. How they brought back the Tobacco 254 

7. The journey to the sunrise 255 

8. The Moon and the Thunders 256 

9. What the Stars are like 257 

10. Origin of the Pleiades and the Pine 258 

11. The milky way 259 

12. Origin of strawberries 259 

13. The Great Yellow-jacket: Origin of fish and frogs 260 

14. The Deluge 261 

Quadruped myths 261 

15. The four-footed tribes 261 

16. The Rabbit goes duck hunting 266 

17. How the Rabbit stole the Otter's coat 267 

18. Why the Possum's tail is bare 269 

19. How the Wildcat caught the turkeys 269 

20. How the Terrapin beat the Rabbit 270 

21. The Rabbit and the tar wolf l 271 

22. The Rabbit and the Possum after a wife 273 

23. The Rabbit dines the Bear 273 

24. The Rabbit escapes from the wolves 274 

25. Flint visits the Rabbit 274 

26. How the Deer got his horns 275 

27. Why the Deer's teeth are blunt 276 

28. What became of the Rabbit 277 

29. Why the Mink smells 277 

30. Why the Mole lives under ground 277 



V— The myths — Continued. 

Quadrupefl myths — Continued. I'ngt; 

31 . The Terrapin's escape from tlie wolves 278 

32. Origin of the Groundhog clance; The Groundhog's head 270 

33. The migration of the animals 280 

34. The Wolf's revenge: The AVolf and the Dog 280 

Bird myths 280 

35. The bird tribes 280 

36. The ball game of the birds and animals 286 

37. How the Turkey got his beard 287 

38. Why the Turkey gobbles 288 

39. How the Kingfisher got his bill 288 

40. How the Partridge got his whistle 289 

41. How the Redbird got his color 289 

42. The Pheasant beating corn: The Pheasant dance 290 

43. The race between the Crane and the Humming-bird 290 

44. The Owl gets married 291 

45. The Huhu gets married 292 

41). Why the Buzzard's head is bare 293 

47. The Eagle's revenge 293 

48. The Hunter and the Buzzard - 294 

Snake, fish, and insect myths 294 

49. The snake tribe 294 

50. The Uktena and the Uliifisu'ti 297 

51. Agan-Uni'tsi's search for the Uktena 298 

52. The Red ]\Ian and the Uktena .300 

53. The Hunter and the Uksu'hl 301 

54. The Ustu'tli 302 

55. The Uw'tsuii'ta 303 

56. The Snake Boy .304 

57. The Snake ]Man 304 

58. The Rattlesnake's vengeance 305 

59. Tlie smaller reptiles, fishes, and insects 306 

60. Why the Bullfrog's head is striped 310 

61. TheBullfrog lover 310 

62. The Katydid's warning 311 

Wonder stories 31 1 

63. Ilntsaiyi', the Gambler 311 

64. The nest of the TlS'nuwa 315 

65. The Hunter and the TUt'nuwa 316 

66. U'tluii'ta, the Spear-finger 316 

67. Nun'yunu'wi, the stone man 319 

68. The Hunter in the D-lkwil' 320 

69. Ataga'hl, the enchanted lake 321 

70. The Bride from the south 322 

71. The Ice Man 322 

72. The Hunter and Selu 323 

73. The underground panthers 324 

74. The Tsundige'wi 325 

75. Origin of the Bear: The Bear songs 325 

76. The Bear Man 327 

77. The Great Leech of Tlanusi'yi 329 

78. The Nuiine'hl and other spirit folk 330 

79. The removed townhouses 335 


V — Tlie myths — C'oiitiiuied. 

AVonder s^tories — t'oiitimu'il. ''"8*^ 

80. Tlie spirit (U'lVmlcrs of NlkwasI' 336 

81. Tsurk-llu', tlic slant-eyed fjiaiit 337 

82. Kana'sta, the settlement 341 

83. Tsuwe'n-lhl, a legend of Pilot knob 343 

84. The man who married the Thunder's sister 345 

85. The haunted whirlpool 347 

86. Yahula 347 

87. The water eannil>als 349 

Historical traditions 350 

88. First contact witli whites 350 

89. The Iroijuois wars 351 

90. Hiadeoni, the Seneca - - 356 

91. The two Mohawks 357 

92. Escape of the Seneca boys 359 

93. The unseen helpers '. 359 

94. Hatcinondoii's escape from the C'herokee 362 

95. Hemi)-carrier 364 

96. Tlie Seneca peacemakers 365 

97. Origin of t he Yontoil dance 365 

98. Ga'na's adventures among the Cherokee 367 

99. The Shawano wars 370 

100. Tlie raid on Tikwali'tsi - 374 

101. The last Shawano invasion 374 

102. The false warriors of Chilhowee 375 

103. Cowee town 377 

104. The eastern tribes 378 

105. The southern and we.stern tribes 382 

106. The giants from the west 391 

107. The lost Cherokee 391 

108. The massacre of the Ani'-Kuta'nl 392 

109. The war medicine 393 

110. Incidents of perscmal heroism 394 

111. The mounds and the constant fire: The old sacred things 395 

Miscellaneous myths and legends 397 

112. The ignorant housekeeper 397 

113. The man in the stump 397 

114. Two lazy hunters 397 

115. The two old men 399 

116. The star feathers 399 

117. The Mother Bear's song .-- 400 

118. Baby .«ong, to please the children 401 

119. When babies are born: The Wren and the Cricket 401 

120. The Kaveu Mocker - - 401 

121. Herbert's spring 403 

122. Local legends of North Carolina 404 

123. Local legends of South Carolina 411 

124. Local legends of Tennessee 412 

125. Local legends of tieorgia 415 

126. Plant lore 420 

VI— Notes and parallels 428 

VII— Glossary 506 


Plate I. In tlie Cherokee luoimtaiii;? II 

II. Map: The Cherokee and their neighbors' 14 

III. Map: The old Cherokee country 23 

IV. Sequoya (Sikwiiyl) 108 

V. The Cherokee alphabet 112 

VI. Tahchee (Tutsi) or Dutch 140 

VII. Spring-frog or Tooantuh (Du'stu') 142 

VIII. John Ross (Gu'wisguwl') 1 oO 

IX. ColonelW. H.Thomas (Wil-Usdi') 100 

X. Chief X. J. Smith (Tsalndihl') 17S 

XI. Swimmer (A'yiin'inl) 228 

XII. John Ax ( Itagu'niihl) 2;!8 

XIII. Tagwiidihl' 2.56 

XIV. Ayasta 272 

XV. Sawanu'gl, a Cherokee ball player 284 

XVI. Xlkwilsi' mound at Franklin, North Carolina '^'^7 

XVII. Annie Ax (Sadayl) - 3."38 

XVIII. WalinI', a Cherokee woman 378 

XIX. On Oconaluftee river 405 

XX. Petroglyphs at Track-roc-k gap, Georgia 418 

Figure 1. Feather wand nf Eagle dance 282 

2. Ancient Iroquois wampum belts 354 



By Jamks Mooney 


The mvth.s given in this paper are part of a large bod}* of material 
collected among the Cherokee, chiefly in successive field seasons from 
lSb7 to IS'MK inclusive, and comprising more or less extensive notes, 
together with original Cherokee manuscripts, relating to the history, 
archeology, geographic nomenclature, personal names, botany, medi- 
cine, arts, home life, religion, songs, ceremonies, and language of the 
tribe. It is intended that this material shall appear from time to 
time in a series of papers which, when finally brought together, shall 
constitute a monograph upon the Cherokee Indians. This paper may 
be considered the first of the series, all that has hitherto appeared 
being a short paper upon the sacred formulas of the tribe, published 
in the Seventh Anruial Report of the Bureau in 1891 and containing a 
.synopsis of the Cherokee medico-religious theorv, with twenty-eight 
specimens selected from a body of about six hundred ritual formulas 
written down in the Cherokee language and alphabet by former 
doctors of the tribe and constituting altogether the largest body of 
aboriginal American literature in existence. 

Although the Cherokee are proiialily the largest and most impor- 
tant tribe in the United States, having their own national government 
and lumibering at any time in their history from 20.000 to 25.000 per- 
sons, almost nothing has yet been written of their history or general 
ethnology, as compared with the literature of such northern tribes as 
the Delawares, the Iroquois, or the Ojibwa. The difference is due to 
historical reasons which need not be discussed here. 

It might seem at first thought that the Cherokee, with their civi- 
lized code of laws, their national press, their schools and .senunaries, 
are so far advanced along the white man's road as to offer but little 
inducement for ethnologic study. This is largely true of those in the 
Indian Territory, with whom the enforced deportation, two generations 
ago, from ac-customed scenes and surroundings did more at a single 
.stroke to o})litcrate Indian ideas than could have been accomplished 



by fifty years of slow development. There remained behind, however, 
in the heart of the Carolina mountains, a considerable body, outnmn- 
bering today such well-known western tribes as the Omaha, Pawnee, 
Comanche, and Kiowa, and it is among these, the old conservative 
Kitu'hwa element, that the ancient things have been preserved. Moun- 
taineers guard well the past, and in the secluded forests of Nantahala and 
Oconaluftee, faraway from the main-traveled road of modern progress, 
the Cherokee priest still treasures the legends and repeats the mystic 
rituals handed down from his ancestors. There is change indeed in 
dress and outward seeming, but the heart of the Indian is still his own. 

For this and other reasons much the greater portion of the material 
herein contained has been procured among the East Cherokee living 
upon the Qualla reservation in western North Carolina and in various 
detached settlements between the reservation and the Tennessee line. 
This has been supplemented with information obtained in the Cherokee 
Nation in Indian Territory, chiefly from old men and women who 
had emigrated from what is now Tennessee and Georgia, and who 
consequently had a better local knowledge of these sections, as well as 
of the history of the western Nation, than is possessed by their kindred 
in Carolina. The historical matter and the parallels are, of course, 
collated chiefly from printed sources, but the myths proper, with Ijut 
few exceptions, are from original investigation. 

The historical sketch must be understood as distinctly a sketch, not 
a detailed narrative, for which there is not space in the present paper. 
The Cherokee have made deep impress upon the history of the southern 
states, and no more has been attempted here than to give the leading 
facts in connected sequence. As the histoiy of the Nation after the 
removal to the West and the reorganization in Indian Territory pre- 
sents but few points of ethnologic interest, it has been but briefly 
treated. On the other hand the aflairs of the eastern band have been 
discussed at some length, for the reason that so little concerning this 
remnant is to be found in print. 

One of the chief purposes of ethnologic study is to trace the 
development of human thought under varying conditions of race and 
envirotmient, the result showing always that primitive man is essen- 
tially the same in every part of the world. With this object in view 
a considerable space has been devoted to parallels drawn almost entirely 
from Indian tribes of the United States and British America. For 
the southern countries there is but little trustworthj' material, and to 
extend the inquiry to the eastern continent and the islands of the sea 
would be to invite an endless task. 

The author desires to return thanks for many favors from the 
Library of Congress, the Geological Surve}', and the Smithsonian 
Institution, and for much courteous assistance and friendly suggestion 
from the oflicers and statt' of the Bureau of American Ethnology; and 


to iickiiowledifo his iiidcbtodiu'ss to tlio late Cliii^f X. J. Smith :iiul 
family for st'rvii'os as intcrpri'ti'i' and for kindly hos])itality during 
successive field seasons ; to Agent H. W. Spray and wife foi- unvarying 
kindness manifested in many helpful ways; to Mr William Harden, 
lihrai'ian. and the (xeorgia State Historieal Society, for facilities in 
consulting documents at Savannah, (xeorgia; to the late Col. W. H. 
Thomas: Lieut. Col. W. W. Stringtield. of VVaynesville; Capt. James W. 
Terrell, of Webster; Mrs A. C. Avery and Dr P. Ij. Murphy, of Mor- 
ganton; Mr W. A. Fair, of Lincolnton; the late Maj. James Br3'son, of 
Dillshoro: Mr H. G. Trotter, of Franklin; Mr Sibl)ald Smith, of Chero- 
kee; Maj. R. C. -lackson, of Smithwotxi, Tennessee; Mr i). li. Dunn, 
of Conasauga, Tennessee; the late Col. Z. A. Zile, of Atlanta; Mr L. 
M.Greer, of Ellijay, Georgia; Mr Thomas Roliinson, of Portland, 
Maine; Mr Allen Ross, Mr W. T. Canup, editor of the Indian Arrorv, 
and the officers of the Cherokee Nation, Tahlequah, Indian Territory; 
Dr D. T. Day. United States (xeological Survey. Washington, D. C, 
and Prof. G. M. Bowers, of the United States Fish Conmiission, for 
valuable oral information, letters, clippings, and photographs; to Maj. 
.1. Adger Smyth, of Charleston. S. C. for documentary uiuterial; 
to Mr Stansbury Hagar and the late Robert Grant Haliburton, of 
Brooklyn, N. Y., for the use of valuable manuscript notes upon 
Cherokee stellar legends; to Miss A. M. Brooks for the use of valuable 
Spanish document copies and translations entrusted to the Bureau 
of American Ethnology; to Mr James Blythe, interpreter during a 
great part of the time sj)ent l)y the author in the field; and to various 
Cherokee and other informants mentioned in the bod}' of the work, 
from whom the material was obtained. 

The Traditionary Period 

The Cherokee were the mountaineers of the South, holding the 
entire Alleghen\' region from the interlocking head-streams of the 
Kanawha and the Tennessee southward almost to the site of Atlanta, 
and from the Blue ridge on the east to the Cumberland range on the 
west, a territory comprising an area of about 40,000 square miles, 
now included in the states of Virginia, Tennessee, North Carolina, South 
Carolina, Georgia, and Alabama. Their principal towns were upon 
the headwaters of the Savannah, Hiwassee, and Tuckasegee, and along 
the whole length of the Little Tennessee to its junction with the main 
stream. Itsati, or Echota, on the south bank of tht , kittle Tennessee, a 
few miles above the mouth of Tellico river, in Tennessee, was commonty 
considered the capital of the Nation. As the advancing whites pressed 
upon them from the east and northeast the more exposed towns were 
destroyed or abandoned and new settlements were formed lower down 
the Tennessee and on the upper branches of the Chattahoochee and 
the Coosa. 

As is alwaj's the case with tribal geography, there were no fixed 
boundaries, and on every side the Cherokee frontiers were contested 
by rival claimants. In Virginia, there is reason to believe, the tribe 
was held in check in early daj's by the Powhatan and the Monacan. 
On the east and southeast the Tuscarora and Catawba were their invet- 
erate enemies, with hardly even a momentary truce within the historic 
period; and evidence goes to show that the Sara or Cheraw were fully 
as hostile. On the south there was hereditary war with the Creeks, 
who claimed nearly the whole of upper Georgia as theirs bj- original 
possession, but who were being gradually pres.sed down toward the 
Gulf until, through the mediation of the United States, a treaty was 
finally made fixing the boundary between the two tribes along a line 
running about due west from the mouth of Broad river on the Savan- 
nah. Toward the west, the Chickasaw on the lower Tennessee and the 
Shawano on the Cumberland repeatedly turned back the tide of Chero- 
kee in\-asion from the rich central valleys, while the powerful Iroquois 
in the far north set up an almost unchallenged claim of paramount 
lordship from the Ottawa river of Canada southwai'd at least to the 
Kentucky river. 




" ^if^wr 



r -^ — 


Oil the other haiul. liy ihi'ir defeat of the ( "rcn^ks and expulsion of 
the Shawano, the ( 'lierokee made good the claim which the}' asserted 
to all the lands from iiijper (xt'oru-ia to the Oluo river, incliidini;- the 
rich liuntiny grounds of Kentucky. Holding as they did the great 
mountain barrier between the English settlements on the coast and the 
French or Spaiush garrisons along the ]Mississipj)i and the Oldo, tlieir 
geogr!i])hic position, no less than their superior number, would have 
given them tiie balance of power in the South but for a looseness of 
tribal organization in striking contrast to the coin])actiiess of thi> Iro- 
quois league, by which foi' more than a century the French ])ower 
was held in check in the north, 'i'lie English, indeed, found it con- 
viMiient to I'ecognize certain ciiiefs as supreme in the tribe, l)ut the only- 
real attempt to weld tlie whole Cherokee Nation into a political unit 
was that made by the French agent, I'riber. about 17Ij(), which failed 
from its premature discovery by the English. We fre([uently find 
their kingdom divided against itself, their vt-rv nundier pre\-enting 
unity of action, while still giving them an importance above that 
of iKMghboring tribes. 

The proper name liy which the Cherokee call themselves (1)' is 
YuiTwiyii', or Ani'-Yun'wiya' in the third person, signifying "real 
people," or '' ])riiici])al jjeople," a word clos<dy relatinl toOfiwe-iioiiwe, 
the name by which the cognate Iroquois knt)W thems(d\('s. The word 
properly denotes '"Indians," as distinguished from people of other 
races, l)ut in usage it is resti'icted to mean mi'mbers of tiie Cherokee 
tribe, those of other tribes l)eing designated as Creek, Catawba, etc., 
as the case maj^ be. On ceremonial occasions they frequently speak of 
themselves as Ani'-Kitu'hwagi, or " jjcople of Kitu'hwa," an ancient 
settlement on Tuckasegee ri\er and apparently the original nuideus of 
the tribe. Among the western Cherokee this name has l)een adopted 
b}- a secret society recruited from the full-ldood element and pledged 
to resist the advances of the white man's civilization. Under the 
various forms of Cuttawa, Gattochwa, Kittuwa, etc., as .spelled by dif- 
ferent authors, it was also used by st>veral northern Algonipiian lril)es 
as a synonym for Cherokee. 

Cherokee, the name by which they are conunonly known, iias no 
meaning in their owti language, and seems to be of foreign origin. 
As used among themselvt's the form is'lagi' or Tsa'ragi'. It lirst 
appears as Chalaque in the Portuguese narrative of De Soto's expedi- 
tion. ])ublislied originally in Ui^u, while we lind Cheracpii in a French 
document of 1 (!'.•'.<. and Cherokee as an English form as early, at least, as 
1708. Tiie name lias thus an authentic history of 360 years. There 
is evidence that it is derived from the Choctaw word clxil uh or <-/iih(J,\ 
signifying a pit or cave, and comes to us tiirough the so-called Mobilian 
trade language, a corrupted Choctaw jargon formerly used as the 

* See the notes to the historical sketch. 

Iti MYTHS OF THK CHEROKEE [eth.ann.19 

nK'diuiii of c'oiiiiminicatiou iunoiij;- all tlie tribes of the Gulf states, as 
far north as the mouth of the Ohio {2). Within this area many of the 
tribes were commonly known under Choctaw names, even though of 
widely difl'ering linguistic stocks, and if such a name existed' for the 
Cherokee it must undoul)tedly have been communicated to the first 
Spanish explorers by De Soto's interpreters. This theory is borne 
out by their Iroquois (Mohawk) name, Oyata'ge/ronoi!', as given by 
Hewitt, signifying ''inhabitants of the cave country," the Allegheny 
region being peculiarly a cave country, in which "rock shelters,'' con- 
taining numerous traces of Indian occupancy, are of frequent occur- 
rence. Their Catawba name also, Manteraii, as given b_y Gatschet, 
signifying "coming out of the ground," seems to contain the same 
reference. Adair's attempt to connect the name Cherokee with their 
word ior &re, atsila, is an error founded upon imperfect knowledge of 
the language. 

Among other synonyms for the tribe are Rickahockan, or Recna- 
hecrian, the ancient Powhatan name, and Tallige', or Tallige'wi, the 
ancient name used in the Walam Olum chronicle of the Lenape'. Con- 
cerning both the application and the etymology of this last name there 
has been much dispute, but there seems no reasonable doubt as to the 
identity of the people. 

Linguistically the Cherokee belong to the Iroquoian stock, the 
relationship having been suspected by Barton over a century ago, and 
by Gallatin and Hale at a later period, and definitely established by 
Hewitt in 1887.' While there can now be no question of the connec- 
tion, the marked lexical and grammatical differences indicate that the 
sepaiution nuist have occurred at a very early period. As is usually 
the case with a large tribe occupying an extensive territory, the lan- 
guage is spoken in sevf ral dialects, the principal of which may. for 
want of other names, be conveniently designated as the Eastern, Middle, 
and Western. Adair's classification into " Ayrate" (e'ladi), or low, and 
"Ottare" (a' fall), or mountainous, must be rejected as imperfect. 

The Eastern dialect, formerly often called the Lower Cherokee 
dialect, was originally spoken in all the towns upon the waters of the 
Keowee and Tugaloo, head-streauas of Savannah river, in South Caro- 
lina and the adjacent portion of Georgia. Its chief peculiarity is a 
rolling /■, which takes the place of the I of the other dialects. In 
this dialect the tribal ntime is Tsa'nigi', which the English settlers of 
Carolina corrupted to Cherokee, while the Spaniards, advancing from 
the south, became better familiar with the other form, which they 
wrote as Chalaque. Owing to their exposed frontier position, adjoin- 
ing the white settlements of Carolina, the Cherokee of this division 

1 Barton, Benj. S., New Views on the Origin of the Tribes and Nations of America, p. xlv, passim; 
Phila., 1797; Gallatin, Albert, Synopsis of Indian Tribes. Trans. American Antiquarian Society, ii, p. 
91; Cambridge, 1836; Hewitt, J. N. B., The Cherokee an Iroquoian Language, Washington, 1887 (MS 
in the archives of the Bureau of American Ethnology). 


were the first to I't'cl tin* shock of war in th(> riunjiaiirns of 17t>t> and 
I77(i. witli the result tiiat before the elose of tiie KeNolutioii tliey had 
lieeii coiiiiilitcly exiirpatcil t'roiii theii' origTiial territory and scattered 
as refu<;'ees aiuont,'' the more western towns of th(> tribe. The eun- 
se((uence was that they lost their distinctive dialect, wliich is now 
practically extinct. In ISSS it was spoken by liut one man on tiie 
reser\-iition in North Carolina. 

Tile Middle dialect, which might properly be desiynated the Kituhwa 
dialect, was originsdly spoken in the towns on tlu> Tuckasegee and the 
iieadwaters of the Little Tennessee, in the very heart of tlie Cherokee 
country, and is still spoken by the great majority of those now living on 
the Qualla reservation. In some of its phonetic forms it agrees with 
thi> Eastern dialect, but resend)les the Western in having the / sound. 

The Westei'n dialect was spoken in most of tlie towns of east Ten- 
nessee and upper Georgia and uiion Hiwassee and Clieowa rixcrs in 
North Carolina. It is the softest and most nuisical of all the dialects 
of this musical language, having a frequent li(|uid / and eliding many 
of the harsher consonants found in the other forms. It is also the 
literary dialect, and is spoken l)y most of thos(^ now constituting the 
Cherokee Nation in the West. 

Scattered among the other Cherokee aiv individuals whose pronun- 
ciation and occasional peculiar terms for familiar objects give indica- 
tion of a fourth and perhaps a Hfth dialect, which can not now be 
localized. It is possible that these differences may come from for- 
eign admixture, as of Natcln^z, Taskigi, or Shawano blood. 'I'here is 
some reason for believing that the people living on Nantahala river 
differed dialectically from their neighbors on either side (3). 

The Iroquoian stock, to wdiich the Cherokee belong, had its chief 
home in the north, its tril)es occupying a compact territory which 
comprised portions of Ontario, New York, Ohio, and Penn.syhania, 
and extendi'd down the Sus(juehanna and Chesapeake bay almost to (he 
latitude of Washington, .\nother body, including th(> Tuscarora. 
Nottowa}', and perliaps also the Meherrin, occupied territory in norlh- 
eastern North Carolina and the adjacent jjortion of AHi-ginia. The 
Cherokee themsehcs constituted the third and soutiiernniost body. It 
is evident that tribes of couuuon stock must atone time have occupied 
contiguous territories, and such we find to be tlie case in this instance. 
The Tuscarora and Meherrin. and presumal)ly also the Nottoway, are 
known to have come from the north, while traditional and historical 
evidence concur in assigrnng to the Cherokee as th(>ir early home tlu; 
region about the headwaters of the Ohio, innnediately to the south- 
ward of their kinsmen, but bitter enemies, the Iroquois. The theory 
which brings the Cherolvce from northern Iowa and the lro([uois from 
Manitoba is unworthy of .serious consideration. (4) 

The most ancient tradition concerning the Cherokee appears to be 

r.) i:tu— 01 2 


the Deliiwiire tradition of tho expulsion of the Talliucwi from tli(» north, 
as first noted liv the niissionarv Hcckeweldcr in islli, and ])ul)lislied 
more fully by BriTiton in tho Walam Oluiu in 1885. According to 
the first account, the Dcdawares. advancing from the west, found their 
further pi'ooress opposed ))v a powerf id people called Alligewi or Tal- 
ligewi, occupying the country upon a river which Heckewelder thinks 
identical with the Mississippi. ])ut which the sequel shows was more 
probaldy the upper Ohio. The_v were said to have regularly l)uilt 
earthen fortifications, in which they defended themselves .so well 
that at last the Delawares were obliged to .seek the assistance of the 
" ^lengwe." or Iroquois, with the result that after a warfare extending 
over many year.s the Alligewi finally received a cinishing defeat, the 
survivors fleeing down the river and abandoning the country to the 
invaders, who thereupon parceled it out amongst themselves, the 
"Mengwe" choosing the portion about the Great lakes while the Dela- 
wares took possession of that to the south and east. The missic^naiy 
adds that the Allegheny (and Ohio) river was still called by the Dela- 
wares the Alligewi Sipu, or river of the xVlligewi. This would seem 
to indicate it as the true river of the tradition. He speaks also of 
remarka))le earthworks seen by him in 17N!> in the neighborhood of 
Lake Erie, which were said l)y the Indians to have been ])uilt by the 
extirpated tribe as defensive fortifications in the course of this war. 
Near two of these, in the vicinity of Sandusky, he was shown mounds 
under which it was said some hundreds of the slain Talligewi were 
buried.' As is usual in such traditions, the Alligewi were said to have 
been of giant stature, far exceeding their conquerors in size. 

In the Walam Olum, which Is, it is asserted, a metrical translation of 
an ancient hieroglyphic bark record discovered in 1S20. the main tra- 
dition is given in practically the same way, with an appendix which 
follows the fortunes of the defeated tribe up to the })eginning of the 
historic period, thus t'ompleting the chain of evidence. (.5) 

In the Walam Oluni also we find the Delawares advancing from the 
west or northwest until the}' come to "Fish river" — the same which 
Heckewelder makes the Mississippi (6). On the other side, we are 
told, ''The Talligewi possessed the East." The Delaware chief 
"de.sired the eastern land," and some of his people go on, but are 
killed by the Talligewi. The Delawares decide upon war and call in 
the help of their northern friends, the "Talamatan,'' i. e., the Wyan- 
dot and other allied Iroquoian tribes. A war ensues which continues 
through the terms of four successive chief s, when victory declai-es for the 
invaders, and '"all the Talega go .south." The country is then divided, 
the Talamatan taking the northern portion, while the Delawares " stay 
south of the lakes." The chronicle proceeds to tell how, after eleven 
more chiefs have ruled, the Nanticoke and Shawano .separate from the 

1 Heckewelder, John, Indian Nations of Pennsylvania, pp. 47-49, ed. 1876. 


parent tribe and remove to the south. Six other chief.s follow in suc- 
cession until we come to the seventh, who ''went to the Talega moun 
tains." By this time the Dela wares have reached the ocean. Other 
chiefs succeed, after whom "the Easterners and the AVolves" — prob- 
alily th(> Mahican or Wappinger and the Munsee — move off to the 
northeast. At last, after si.x more chiefs, "the whites came on the 
eastern sea," by wliich is probaiily meant the landing of the Dutch on 
Manhattan in I •")(»'.* (T). We may consider this a tally date, approxi- 
mating the beginning of the seventeenth century. Two more chiefs 
rule, and of the second we are told that "He fought at the south; he 
fought in the land of the Talega and Koweta," and again the fourth 
chief after the coming of the whites "went to the Talega." We have 
thus a traditional record of a war of concjuest carried on against the 
Talligewi by four successive chiefs, and a succession of at)out tMcnty- 
tive chiefs between the final expulsion of that ti'ilie and the appearance 
of the whites, in which interval the Nanticoke, Shawano, Mahican, 
and ^lunsee branched off from the parent tribe of the Delawares. 
A\'itliout venturing to entangle ourselves in the devious maze of Indian 
ch ronology , it is sufficient to note that all this implies a very long period 
of time — so long, in fact, that during it several new tribes, each of 
whii'h in time developed a distinct dialect, branch off from the main 
Lenape' stem. It is distinctly stated that all the Talega went south 
after their final defeat: and from later references we find that they took 
refuge in the mountain country in the neighborhood of the Koweta 
(the Creeks), and that Delaware war parties were still making raids 
upon both these tribes long after the first a})pearance of tlie whites. 

Although at first glance it might be thouglit that the name Tallige-wi 
is liut a corruption of Tsalagi, a closer study leads to the opinion that it 
is a true Delaware word, in all prol)ability connected with iraloh or 
ii-nloh. signifying a cave or hole (Zeisl)erger). whence we find in the 
Walam Olum the word oligonvmk rendered as "at the place of ca\es.'' 
It would thus be an exact Delaware rendei'ing of the same name, 
"people of the cave coiuitrv." by wiiich, as we have seen, the Ciicro- 
kee were commonly known among the triljes. Whatever may i)e the 
origin of the name itself, there can be no reasonable doul)t as to its 
applit'ation. "Name, location, and legends combine to identify the 
Cherokees or Tsalaki witii tlie Tallikc; and this is as iinicli e\ idenceas 
we can expect to produce in such researches."' 

The Wyandot confirm the Delaware story and fix the idcntitication of 
the expelled trit)e. According to their tradition, as narrated in 1S(I2, 
the ancient fortifications in the Ohio valley had i)een crectt^d in the 
cours(> of a long war b(>tween themselves and the Cherokee, which 
resulted finally in the defeat of the latter." 

The traditions of the Cherokee, so far as they have been preserved, 

iBrintoii. D.G., Walam Olum, p. 231; Phila.. 18x.'>. 
^Schoolcmft, H. R., Notes im the Iroquois, p. lii'2; Albany. 1S47. 

20 MYTHS OF THE CHEROKEE [eth.a.nn.19 

supplement and corrohoriite of the northern tribes, thus bring-- 
iny the story down to their final settlement upon the headwaters of 
the Tennessee in the rich valleys of the southern AUeghenies. Owing 
to the Cherokee predilection for new gods, contrasting strong!}' with 
the conservatism of the Iroquois, their ritual forms and national epics 
had fallen into decay even before the Revolution, as we learn from 
Adair. Some vestiges of their migration legend still existed in Hay- 
wood's time, but it is now completely forgotten both in the East and 
in the West. 

According to Haywood, who wrote in 1823 on information obtained 
directly from leading members of the tribe long before the Removal, 
the Cherokee formerly had a long migration legend, which was already 
lost, but which, within the memory of the mother of one informant — 
say about 1750 — was still recited by chosen orators on the occasion of 
the annual green-corn dance. This migration legend appears to have 
resembled that of the Delawares and the Creeks in beginning with 
genesis and the period of animal monsters, and thence following the 
shifting fortune of the chosen band to the historic period. The tradi- 
tion recited that they had originated in a land toward the rising sun, 
where they had been placed by the conuuand of "the four councils 
sent from above." In this pristine home were great snakes and water 
monsters, for which reason it was supposed to have been near the sea- 
coast, although the assumption is not a necessary corollary, as these 
are a feature of the mythology of all the eastern tribes. After this 
genesis period there began a slow migration, during which "towns of 
people in many nights' encampment removed," l)ut no details are given. 
From Heckewelder it appears that the expression, "a night's encamp- 
ment," which occurs also in the Delaware migration legend, is an Indian 
figure of speech for a halt of one year at a place.' 

In another place Haywood says, although appariMitly confusing the 
chronologic order of events: "One tradition which they have amongst 
them says they came from the west and exterminated the former 
inhabitants: and then says they came from the upjier parts of the 
Ohio, where they erected the mounds on Grave creek, and that thej^ 
removed thither from the country where Monticello (near Charlottes- 
ville, Virginia) is situated."' The first reference is to the celebrated 
mounds on the Ohio near Moundsville, below Wheeling, West Virginia: 
the other is doubtless to a noted burial mound descriljed by JeflVrson 
in 1781 as then existing near his home, on the low grounds of Rivanna 
river opposite the site of an ancient Indian town. He hini-iclf had 
opened it and found it to contain perhaps a thousand disjointed 
skeletons of both adults and children, the bones piled in successive 
layers, those near the top being least decayed. They showed no signs 

'Heckewelder, Indian Nations, p. 47, ed. 1S76. 

- Haywood. Jolin. Natural and Aboriginal History of Tennessee, pp. 2'2b-22&. Xashyille, 1.S23. 


of violt'iict'. hut wore evidently tlie accuimilatioii of lontjf yeurs from 
the neiifhboriiig Indian town. The distinguished \vrit(!r adds: "Hut 
on whatever occasion they may have been made, they are of consider- 
able notoriety amony- the Indians: for a party passinir. about thirty 
years ago fi. e.. about 1750J, throuoli the part of the country where 
this barrow is. went throuofh the woods directly to it without any 
instructions or enijuiry, and haviny- staid about it some time, with 
expressions which were construed to be those of sorrow, they returned 
to the high road, which they had left about half a dozen miles to pay 
this visit, and pursued their jo\irney."' Although the trilie is not 
named, the Indians were probably Cherolvee. as no other southern 
Indians were then accustomed to range in that section. As serving to 
corroboi'ate this opinion we have the statement of a prominent Cher- 
okee chief, given to Schoolcraft in 1846, that acccording to their tradi- 
tion his people had formerly lived at the Peaks of Otter, in Virginia, 
a noted landmark of the Hlue ridge, near the point where Staunton 
river breaks through the mountains.' 

From a careful sifting of the evidence Haywood concludes that the 
authors of the most ancient remains in Tennessee had spread over that 
region from the south and southwest at a very early period, but that 
the later occupants, the Cherokee, had entered it from the noitii and 
northeast in comparatively I'ecent times, overrunning and exterminat- 
ing the aborigines. He declares that the historical fact seems to be 
established that the Cherokee entered the country from Virginia, mak- 
ing temporary settlements upon New river and the upper Holston. 
until, under the continued hostile pressure from the north, they were 
again forced to remove farther to the south, fixing themselves upon the 
Little Tennessee, in what afterward became known as the middle towns. 
By a leading mixed blood of the tribe he was informed that they had 
made their first settlements within their modern home territory upon 
Nolichucky river, and that, having lived there for a long period, they 
could give no defiiute account of an earlier location. Echota. their 
capital and peace town. '" claimed to be the eldest brother in the nation,''' 
and the claim was genersilly acknowledged.'' In confirmation of the 
.statement as to an early occupancy of the upper Holston region, it uiav 
be noted that '" WataugaOld Fields," now Klizabethtown, were so called 
from the fact that when the first white settlement within the present 
state of Tennessee was begun there, so early as 17(39. the bottom lands 
were found to contain graves and other numerous ancient remains of a 
former Indian town which tradition ascribed to the Cheroke(>. whose 
nearest settlements were then many miles to the southward. 

While the Cherokee chiimed to have built the mounds on the uj)pei- 

^ Jefferson, Thomas. Notes on Virginia, pp, 13(>-i;J7: ed. Boston, 1S02. 

sSc'liooloraft.Notos on tho Iroquois, p. 1()3, 1847. 

3 Haywood, Natural and Aboriginal History of Tennes.see, pp. 23:J. 2:i0. 269. 1S23. 

22 MYTHS OF THK CHERDKEE [eth. an.-j.19 

Ohio, thov yet, according to Haywood, expressl}' disclaimed theauthor- 
sliip of the very iiuinerou.s mounds and petrogh'phs in their later home 
territory, asserting that these ancient works had exhibited the same 
appearance when they themselves had first occupied the rooion.' This 
accords with Bartram's statement that the Cherokee, although some- 
times utilizing the mounds as sites for their own town houses, were as 
ignorant as the whites of their origin or purpose, having only a gen- 
eral tradition that their forefathers had found them in much the same 
condition on first coming into the country. ■ 

Although, as has been noted, Haywood expresses the opinion that 
the invading Cherokee had overrun and exterminated the earlier 
inhabitants, he says in another place, on halfbreed authority, that 
the newcomers found no Indians upon the waters of the Tennessee, 
with the exception of some Creeks living upon that river, near the 
mouth of the Hiwassee, the main body of that tribe being established 
upon and claiming all the streams to the southward.^ There is 
considerable evidence that the Creeks preceded the Cherokee, and 
within the last century they still claimed the Tennessee, or at least 
the Tennessee watershed, for their northern boundary. 

There is a dim l)ut persistent tradition of a strange white race pre- 
ceding the Cherokee, some of the stories even going so far as to locate 
their former settlements and to identify them as the authors of the 
ancient works found in the country. The earliest reference appeal's 
to be that of Barton in 1797, on the statement of a gentleman whom 
he quotes as a valuable authority upon the southern tribes. "The 
Cheerake tell us, that when they first arrived in the country which 
they inhabit, they found it possessed by ceiiain 'moon-eyed people,' 
who could not see in the day-time. These wretches they expelled.'' 
He seems to consider them an albino race.' Haywood, twenty-si.x 
years later, says that the invading Cherokee found "white people" 
near the head of the Little Tennessee, with forts extending thence down 
the Tennessee as far as Chickamauga creek. He gives the location of 
three of these forts.. The Chei'okee made war against them and 
drove them to the mouth of Big Chickamauga creek, where they 
entered into a treaty and agreed to remove if permitted to depart in 
peace. Permission being granted, they abandoned the country. Else- 
whei'e he speaks of this extirpated white race as having extended into 
iLentucky and probably also into western Tennessee, according to the 
concurrent traditions of different tribes. He describes their houses, 
on what authority is not stated, as having been small circular structures 

1 Haywood, Nat, and Aborig. Hist. Tennessee, pp. 226, 234, 1823. 
-' Bartram, Wm. , Travels, p. 365: reprint, London, 1792. 
" Haywood, op. cit., pp. 234-237. 
* Barton, New Views, p. xliv, 1797. 

( ^ /- 





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s-h THE cheiu)kj^:e country 






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MooNKY] TflK \n: SOTO KXrEPITIOX l."i4(l "id 

of uprig'ht log's, coveivd with (>;ii'lli wliicli hiul liccn dajr out from the 

Harry Sinitli. a halfbrocd lioiai al)out isl."). fatlicr of tlic lati' chief 
of the East Clu'i'okcc, infoniu'd tlic aiitlioi' that when a boy lie liad 
been told by an old woman a tradition of a race of very small people, 
perfectly white, who once came and lived for some time on the site of 
the ancient mound on the northern side of Hiwassee. at the mouth of 
Peachtree creek, a few miles above the present Murphy, North Caro- 
lina. The}^ afterward removed to the West. C'olonel Thomas, iht^ 
white chief of the East Cherokee, born about the begimiing of the 
century, had also heard a tradition of another rac(^ of ])eople. who 
lived on Hiwassee, opposite the present Murphy, and warned the 
Cherokee that they must not attempt to cross over to the south side 
of the river or the great leech in the water would swallow them.'' 
Thev linally went west, "long before the whites came." The two 
stories are plainly the same, although told independently and many 
miles apart. 

The Period of Spanish Exploration — 1.540-? 

The definite history of the Cherokee bi>oins with the year 1540. at 
w-hich date we tind them already established, where they were always 
afterward known, in the mountains of Carolina and Georgia. The 
earliest Spanish adventui'(n-s failed to penetrate so far into the interior, 
and the tirst entry into their country was made l)y De Soto, advancing 
up the Savannah on his fruitless quest for gold, in Maj' of that year. 

While at Cotitachiqui. an important Indian town on the lower 
Savamiah governed by a "queen," the Spaniards had found hatchets 
and other objects of copper, some of which was of finer color and 
appeared to be mixed with gold, although they had no means of testing 
it.'' On inquiry they were told that the metal had come from an interior 
mountain province called Chisca, but the country was represented as 
thinly peopled and the way as imi)assable for horses. Some time before, 
while; advancing through eastern (leorgia, they had heard also of a 
rich and plentiful province called (yO^a, toward tht; northwest, and by 
the people of Cofitachiqui thev were now told that Chiaha. the nearest 
town of Coya province, was twelve days inland. As both nuMi and 
animals were already nearly exhausted from hunger and hard travel, 
and the Indians eithei' could not or would not furnish suiticient pro- 
vision for their needs, De Soto determined not to attempt the passage 
of the mountains then, but to push on at once to Coya, there to rest 
and recuperate before undertaking further exploration. In the mean- 

' Haywood, Nat. ami .Vborig. Hist. Tennessee, pp. 166, 234-235, 287-289, 1823. 

-See story, "Tlie Great Leecli of Tianusi'yl, " p. 328. 

■'Garciiaso de la Vega. La Fiorida del Inca, pjj. 129, 133-13J: Madrid. 1723. 


tiiii(> he hoped also to ol)tiiin more definite infornmtion oonceniiiio- the 
mines. A.s the chief purpose of tiie expedition was the discovery of 
the mines, many of the officers regarded this change of plan as a 
mistake, and favored .staying where they wei"e until the new crop 
should be ripened, then to go directly into the mountains, but as the 
general was "a stern 7nan and of few words," none ventured to oppose 
his resolution.' The province of Cova was the territory of the Creek 
Indians, called Ani'-Kusa by the Cherokee, from Kusa, or Coosa, their 
ancient capital, while Chiaha was identical with Chehaw. one of the 
principal Creek towns on Chattahoochee river. Cotitachi(|ui may 
have b(>en the capital of the Uchee Indians. 

The outrageous conduct of tlie Spaniards had so angered the Indian 
cjueen that she now refused to furnish guides and carriers, whereupon 
De Soto made her a prisoner, with the design of compelling her to act 
as guide herself, and at the same time to use her as a hostage to com- 
mand the obedience of her sul)jects. In.stead. however, of conducting 
the Spaniards by the direct trail toward the west, she led them far 
out of their course until she tinally managed to make her escape, 
leaving them totind their way out of the mountains as best they could. 

Departing from Coiitachiqui, they turned first toward the nt)rth, 
passing through several towns subject to the (pieen, to whom, although 
a prisoner, the Indians everywhere .showed great respect and obe- 
dience, furnishing whatever assistance the Spaniards compelled hei- to 
demand for their own purposes. In a few days they came to "'a 
province called Chalacjue," the territory of the Cherokee Indians, 
probably upon the waters of Keowee river, the eastei'u head-stream 
of the Savannah. It is described as the poorest country for corn that 
they had yet seen, the inhabitants .subsisting on wild roots and 
herbs and on game Avhich they killed with bows and ari'ows. They 
were naked, lean, and unwarlike. The country abounded in wild 
turkeys (••gallinas"). whitli the people gave very freely to the 
strangers, one town presenting them with seven hundred. A chief 
also gave De Soto two deerskins as a great present." (xarcilaso, writ- 
ing on the authority of an old soldier nearly fifty years afterward, 
says that the ""Chalaques" deserted their towns on the approach of 
tlic white men and tied to the mountains, lea\'ing liehind only old men 
and women and some who were nearly blind.'' Although it was too 
eaily for the new crop, the poverty of the people may have been 
moi'c a}iparent than real, due to their unwillingness to give any part 
of their stored-up provision to the unwelcome strangers. As the 
Spaniards w'ere greatly in need of corn ft)i' themselves and their 
horses, they made no stay, but hurried on. In a few days they arrived 

' Gentleman of Eh-as. Piiblicafions of the Hakhiyt Society, i x. pp. .52,5s, &i: London. 1851. 

-Iliirl., p. (iO. 

^Gaix'ilaso, La P^lorida del Inca. p. i:>(i, ed. 1723. 


;il (iiuiquili. wliicli is nuMitioncd only l)v RiXiijcl. who doos not .specify 
wiu'ther it was a (own or a pro\ince — i. (>.. a triliai tci ritoi'v. It was 
probably a small town, llorethey were wclcoincd in a fiicndly man- 
ner, the ln<lians yivino' them a littlr corn and many wild tiirUeys, 
toucther with some doo-s of a peculiar small s])ecies. which were bred 
for eatiny purposes and did not hark.' They were also .supplied with 
men to help cai'ry the ha<ii;'aye. The name (iua(|tuli has a Cherokee 
sound and may l)e connectt'd witli /'•u'gHli', " whippoorwill." iiif(T(ii'll^ 
'•foam," or y/7t, '"dog." 

Travelinu" still toward the nortii. they arrived a day oi' two later in 
the provini-e of Xuala. in which we recog-nize the territory of the 
Suwali. Sara, or C'heraw Indians, in the piedmont region about the 
head of Broad river in North Carolina. Garcilaso. who did not see it, 
represents it as a rich coimtry, while the Klvas narrative and Biedma 
agree that it was a rough, bi-oken country, thinly inhabited and poor 
in provision. According to (xarcilaso, it was under the rule of the 
queen of Cotitachitpu, although a distinct province in itself.' The 
principal town was beside a small rapid stream, (dose under a moun- 
tain. The chief r(>ceived them in friendly fashion. gi\ ing them coi'n, 
dogs of the small breed already mentioned, carrying baskets, and bur- 
den bearers. The coiuitry roundabout showed greater indications of 
gold nnnes than any they had yet seen.' 

Here De Soto turned to the west, crossing a \ery high mountain 
range, which appears to have been the Blue ridge, and descending on 
the other side to a stream flowing in the opposite direction, which 
was pro))ably one of the upper tributaries of the French Broad.'' 
Although it was late in May, they found it very cold in the moun- 
tains.* After several days of such travel they arrivi>d. about the end 
of the month, at the town of (kiasili, or (iua.xnle. 'I'hc chitd' and 
principal men came out some distance to welcome them, dressed in 
tine robes of skins, with feather head-dresses, after the fashion of the 
country. Before reaching this point the (pieen had manag(>d to make 
her escape, together with three slaves of the Spaniards, and the last 
that was heard of her was that she was on her way back to her own 
country with one of the runaways as her husband. What grieved 
De Soto most in the matter was that she took with her a .small box of 
pearls, wdiich he had intended to take from her befon* releasing her, 
but had left with her for the present in order "'not to discontent 
her altogether."' 

(xuaxule is described as a vi'ry large town surroundcnl by a nuiidjer 
of small mounttiin streams which united to form the large river down 
which the .Spaniards proceeded after leaving the plac(>." Mere, as 

^Ranjel, in Oviedo. Historia General y Natural de la.** Indias. i. p. 5(>2; Madrid, 18.M. 
'Garcilaso, La Florida del Inca. p. 137, \Tl'i. 'Ranjel. up. eit., i. p. .ili'J. 
'See note 8, De Soto's route. ^ Elvas, Hakluyt Society, i x, p. (11. 1S51. 

■'(.iarcilaso, op. cit., p. 139. 

26 MYTHS OF THK CHEKOKKK [eth.ann,19 

elsewhere, the Iiiduin.s received the white men with tcindness and hos- 
pitality — so mueh so that the name of Guaxule became to the army a 
synonym for good fortune.' Among other things they gave the Span- 
iards 300 dogs for food, although, according to the Elvas narrative, 
the Indians themselves did not eat them." The principal orticers of 
the expedition were lodged in the "chief's house," by which we arc to 
understand the townhouse, which was upon a high hill with a roadway 
to the top.-^ From a close study of tlie narrative it appears that this 
"hill" was no other than the great Nacoochee mound, in White 
county, Georgia, a few miles northwest of the present Clarkesviile.* 
It was within the Cherokee territory, and the town was probably a 
settlement of that tribe. From here De Soto sent runners ahead to 
notify the chief of C'hiaha of his approach, in order tliat sufficient corn 
might be ready on his arrival. 

Leaving Guaxule, they proceeded down the river, which we identity 
with the Chattahoochee, and in two days arrived at Ciinasoga. or Cana- 
sagua, a frontier town of the Cherokee. As they neared the town 
they were met by the Indians, bearing baskets of '" nnilberries,''" more 
probably the delicious service-berry of th(> southern mountains, which 
ripens in early summer, while the nudberry matures later. 

From here they continued dow n the river, which grew constantly 
larger, through an uninhabited country which formed the disputed 
territory between the Cherokee and the Creeks. About five days after 
leaving Canasagua they were met ))y messengers, who escorted them 
to Chiaha, the first town of the province of Co^a. De Soto had crossed 
the state of (xeorgia, leaving the Cherokee country behind him, and 
was now among the Lower Creeks, in the neighborhood of the present 
Columbus, Georgia." With his subsequent wanderings after crossing 
the C'hattahoochee into Alabama and beyond we need not concern 
ourselves (8). 

While resting at Chiaha De Soto met with a chief who confirmed 
what the Spaniards had heard before concerning mines in the province 
of, saying that there was there "a melting of copper" and of 
another metal of about the same color, but softer, and therefon* not so 
much used.' The province was northward fi-om Chiaha, somewhere in 
upper Georgia or the adjacent part of Alabama or Tennessee, through 
all of which mountain region native copper is found. The other 
mineral, which the Spaniards understood to be gold, may have been 
iron pyrites, although there is some evidence that the Indians occa- 
sionally found and shaped gold nuggets." 

1 Oviedo, Historia, i. p. 563, 1851. 

-Elvas, Biedma. and Ranjel all make special reference to the dogs given them at this place: they 
seem to have been of the same small breed ( " perrillos ") which Ranjel says the Indians used for food. 
'Garcilaso, La Florida del Inca, p. 139, 1723. < See note 8, De Soto's route. 

5 See Elvas, Hakluyt Society, ix,p. 01, 1S51; and Ranjel, op. cit., p. .563. 
•* See note 8, De Soto's route. ^ Elvas, op. cit., p. 64. 

MooNF.Y] TAKDoV KXl'EDITMNS 1566—67 27 

Accordingly two soldiers were .sent on foot with Indian <;uidcs to 
find Chisca and Icani the truth of the .stories. They rejoined the unny 
some time after the mavch had been resumed, and reported, according 
to the Elvas chronicler, that their ouidcs had t;d<en them through a 
country so poor in corn, so rough, and over so high nn)uiitains that it 
would be impossible for the army to follow, wherefore, as the way 
gi-ew long and lingering, they had turned back after reaching a little 
poor town where they saw nothing that wa.s of any profit. They 
brought back with them a dressed buffalo skin which the Indians there 
had given them, the ever obtained l)y white men, and described in 
the quaint old chronicle as " an ox hide as thin as a calf's skin, and the 
hair like a soft wool between the coarse and fine wool of sheep."''s glowing narrative gives a somewhat different impr(\ssion. 
According to this author the .scouts returned full of enthusiasm for 
the fertility of the country, and reported that the mines were of a fine 
.species of coiJ])er. and had indications also of gold and silver, while 
their progress from one tt)wn to another had been a contiiuial .series of 
feastings and Indian hospitalities." However that may have been, 
De Soto made no further efiort to reach the Cherokee mines. l)ut con- 
tinued his course westward through the Creek country, having spent 
altogether a month in the mountain region. 

There is no record of any .second attempt to penetrate the Cherokee 
country for twentj^-six years (9). In 1561 the Spaniards took formal 
pos.session of the bay of Santa Elena, now Saint Helena, neai- Port 
Royal, on the coast of South Carolina. The next year the French 
made an unsuccessful attempt at settlement at the same place, and in 
lotiH Menendez made the Spanish occupancy sure by estal)lishing there 
a fort which he called San Felipe.^ In November of that yearCa])tain 
rluan Pardo w^as .sent with a party from the fort to explore the intei'ior. 
Ai'companied by the chief of " Juada" (which from Vandera's narra- 
tive we find should be "•.loara." i.e., the Sara Indians already men- 
tioned in the De Soto chronicle), he proceeded as far as the territory of 
that tribe, where he built a fort, but on account of the snow in the 
mountains did not think it advisable to go farther, and returned, 
leaving a sergeant with thirty soldiers to garri.son the i)ost. Soon 
after his return ii(> received a letter from the sergeant stating that the 
chief of — the rich mining country of which De Soto had heard — 
was very hostil(> to the Spaniards, and that in a recent battle the latter 
had kiUed a thou.sand of his Indians and burned fifty with 
almost no damage to themselves. Either the sergeant or his chronicler 
nuist have been an unconscionable liar, as it was asserted that all this 
was done w ith oidy fifteen men. Immediately afterward, according 
to the same story, the sergeant marched with twenty men about a day's 

1 Elvns, Hiikluvt Society, ix, p. f>6, SGnroilnso. La Floriilii flul Incii. p. 141. ed. 17'J3. 

>Shta, J.G.,in Winsor, Justin, Niirnitive uihI Critical History of .\niericn, ii. pp. ■.>60,27S; Boston, IXHC. 



[ETH. ANN. 19 

distaiipc in tlip Jiiouiitiiiiis iiuii'mst another h<)stil(> chief, whom he found 
in a .strongly pali.-sadeil town, wiiich, after a hard tight, he and hi.s men 
.stormed and burned, ivilling tifteen hundred Indian.^ without losing a 
single man themselves. Under instructions from his superior officer, 
tlie sergi'ant with his small party then proceeded to explore what la\' 
beyond, and. taking a road which they were told led to the territory 
of a great chief, after four days of hard marching they came to his 
town, called Chiaha (Chicha. b_y mistake in the maiuiscript transla- 
tion), the same where De Soto had rested. It is de,scribed at this time 
as pali.saded and strongly fortified, with a deep river on each side, and 
defended by over three thousand tighting men. there being no women 
or cliildi-en among them. It is possible that in view of their former 
expeiience with the Spaniards, the Indians had sent their families 
away from the town, while at the .same time they may have sununoned 
warriors from the neighboring Creek towns in order to be prepared 
for any emergency. However, as before, they received the white 
men with the greatest, and the Spaniards contiruied for 
twelve (lays through the territories of the ,sametril)e until they arrived 
at the principal town (Kusa^), where, ])y the invitation of the chief, 
they l>uilt a small fort and awaited the coming of Pardo. who was 
expected to follow with a larger force from Santa Elena, as he did in 
the summer of l;")*!?. being met on his arrival with every show of 
hos]iitality from the C'reek chiefs. This second fort was said to be one 
hundred and forty leagues di.stantfrom that in the Saracomitry. which 
latter was called one hundred and twenty leagues from Santa F^lena.' 

In the summer of 15fi7, according to previt)us agreement. Captain 
Pardo left the fort at Santa Elena with a small detachment of troops, 
and after a week's travel, sleeping each night at a different Indian 
town, arrived at "Canos. which the Indians call Canosi, and by another 
name. C'of eta^-que " (the Cotitachiqui of the De Soto chronicle), 
which is described as situated in a favorable location for a large city, 
fifty leagues from Santa Elena, to which the easiest road was ))y a 
river (the Savannah) which flowed by the town, or by another which 
they had pass(>(l ten leagues farthei' liack. Proceeding, they passed 
Jagaya. Gueza. and Arauchi, and arrived at Otariyatiqui. or Otari, 
in wliich we have perhaps the Cherokee (x'tdrl or d'fdli^ "mountain". 
It may have lieen a frontier Chei'okee settlement, and. according to 
the old chronicler, its chief and language ruled nuu'h good country. 
From here a trail went northward to Guatari, Sauxpa, and Usi, i. e., 
the Wateree, Waxhaw (or Sissipahaw i). and Fshery or Catawba. 

Lea\'ing Otariyati(jui, they went on to Quinaiuuiui. and then, turn- 
ing to the left, to Issa, where they found mines of crystal (micaO- 
They came next to Aguaquiri (the Guaquiii of the De Soto chronicle), 
and then to Joara, "'near to the mountain, where Juan Pardo arrived 

1 Narrative of Pardo's expedition b.v Martinez, about 1568, Brooks manuscripts. 


with his sorfr(>iiiit on his first trij)." 'I'his. as has ])oeii noted, was tiie 
Xiiala of th(> Dp Soto chronich', th(> tcrritoiT ot" the Sara Indians, in 
the foothills of the Blue ridije, southeast from the present Asheville, 
North Caroliiui. ^'an(lera makes it one hundred leaeues from Santa 
Elena, wjiile Martinez, ali'eady (luoted, makes the distance one hundred 
and twenty leagues. The ditt'ei-ence is not important, as both state- 
ments were only estimates. From thei'c they followed "along the 
mountains" to Tocax (Toxaway i'), Cauehi (Naeooehe(>0. iind Tanas- 
qui — apparently Cherokee towns, although the forms can not he id(>n- 
tified — and after restitig three days at th(> last-niimed place went on 
''to Solameco, otherwise called Chialui." where the sergeant met them. 
The combined forces afterward went on. through Cossa (Kusa). Tas- 
quiqui (Taskigi). and other Creek towns, as far as Tascaluza. in the 
Alabama country, and retui'ned thence to Santa Elena, having appar- 
ently met with a friendly reception everywhei'e along the route. 
From Cotitac]ii(iui to Tascaluza they went over about the same road 
traversed by De Soto in lo-iO.^ 

We come now to a great gap of nearly a century. Shea has a notit'c 
of a Spanish mission founded among the t'herokee in 1B43 and still 
flourishing when visited b}' an English traveler ten years later," but as 
his information is derived entirely from the fraudulent work of Davies, 
and as no such mission is mentioned l)v Barcia in any of these years, 
we may regard the story as spurious (10). The first mission work 
in the tribe appears to have been that of Priber, almost a hundred 
years later. Long before the end of the sixteenth century, however, 
the existence of mines of gold and other metals in the Cherokee country 
was a matter of common knowledge among the Sparuards at St. Augus- 
tine and Santa Elena, and more than one expedition had l)een fitted out 
to explore the interior.'' Numerous traces of ancient mining i)pera- 
tions, with remains of old shafts and foi-tilicatious, evidently of Euro- 
pean origin, show that these discoveries were followed up, although 
the policy of Spain concealed the fact from the outside world. How 
nnich permanent impression this early Spanish intercourse made 
on the Cherokee it is impossi})le to estimate, but it nuist have lieen 
consideral)h' (II). 

TiiK C()i>()NiAi> AND Ki:v()ia;ti<)\akv I'kku)!! — lt;.'i4— 17S4 

It was not until l()."i4 that tiie English first ainw into contact with 
the Cherokee, called in tlie records of the jjeriod Kechahecrians. a cor- 
ruption of Kickaliockan. apparently the name by which they were 
known to tlie Powhatan tribes. In that year tiii> \'irginia colony, 
which had only recently concluded a long and extei-ininating war with 
the Powhatan, was thrown into alarm by the news that a great bodj' of 

1 VaiMlura narriilivi-, 15(19. in French, B. F., Colls. of Ln.,nu\v series, pp. iH9-'292; Now York, 1875. 

ssheii, .I.G.,Ciitlu)lie Missions, p. 72; New York, 18r». 

'See Brooks muiuiscripts, in the archives of the Bureau of Amerienn Ethnology. 

30 MYTHS OF THE CHEKUKKK [eth.ann.19 

six or .seven hundred Rechahecrian Indians — liy which is |)ro1)aV)ly 
meant that niimlKT of warriors — from the mountains had invaded tlie 
lower country and established themselves at the falls of .lames river, 
where now is the city of Richmond. The assembly at once passed 
resolutions " that these new come Indians be in no sort sntfered to seat 
themselves there, or an}^ place near us, it having cost so much blood 
to expel and extirpate those perfidious and treacherous Indians which 
were there formerly." It was therefore ordered that a force of at least 
100 white men be at once sent against them, to be joined by the war- 
riors of all the neighboring subject tribes, according to treaty obliga- 
tion. The Pamunkey chief, with a hundred of his men, responded to 
the summons, and the combined force marched against the invaders. 
The result was a bloody battle, with disastrous outcome to the Vir- 
ginians, the Pamunkey chief with most of his men being killed, while 
the whites were forced to make such terms of peace with the Recha- 
hecrians that the assembly cashiered the commander of the expedition 
and compelled him to pay the whole cost of the treaty from his own 
estate.' Owing to the imperfection of the Virginia records we have 
no means of knowing the causes of the sudden invasion or how long 
the invaders retained their position at the falls. In all prol)a))ility it 
was only the last of a long series of otherwise unrecorded irruptions 
by the mountaineers on the more peac^-ful dwellers in the lowlands. 
From a remark in Lederer it is probable that the Cherokee were assisted 
also by some of the piedmont tribes hostile to the Powhatan. The 
Peaks of Otter, near which the Cherokee claim to have once lived, as 
has been already noted, are only about one hundred miles in a straight 
line from Richmond, while the burial mound and town site near 
Charlottesville, mentioned by .Jefferson, are but half that di.stance. 

In 1655 a Virginia expedition sent out from the falls of .James river 
(Richmond) crossed over the mountains to the large streams flowing 
into the Mississippi. No details are given and the route is uncertain, 
l)ut whether or not they met Indians, they must have passed through 
Cherokee territory.'-' 

In l(j70 the German traveler, John Lederer, went from the falls of 
.lames river to the Catawba country in South Carolina, following for 
most of the distance the path used by the Virginia traders, who already 
had regular dealings with the southern tribes, including probably the 
Cherokee. He speaks in several places of the Rickahockan, which 
seems to be a more correct form than Rechahecrian, and his narrative 
and the accompanying map put them in the mountains of North Caro- 
lina, back of the Catawba and the Sara and southward from the head 
of Roanoke river. They were apparently on hostile terms with the 
tribes to the eastward, and while the traveler was stopping at an Indian 

1 Burk. John, History of Virginia, ii, pp. 104-107: Petersburg, 180.'S., J. G. M., Annals of Tennessee, p. 37; Ctiarleston, 1853 (unoting Martin, North Carolina, i, 
p. 115, 1853). 


village on Dan river, about the present Clarksvillo. Virtfinia. a dele<ja- 
tioii of Rickahockun, which had come on trilial Ijusiness, was barba- 
rously uuirdeiedat a dance prepared on the night of their arrival by 
their treacherous hosts. On reaching the Catawba country he lieai'd 
t)f white men to the southward, and incidentally mentions that tiie 
neighboring mountains were called the Suala mountains l)y the Span- 
iards.' In the next year, l(i71. a party from Virginia under Thomas 
Batts explored the northern branch of Roanoke ri\er and crossed 
over the Blue ridge to the headwaters of New river, where they found 
trace.s of occupancy. I)ut no Indians. By this time all the tribes of 
this section, east of the mountains, were in possession of firearms." 

The first permanent English settlement in South Carolina was estab- 
lished in 1670. In lt)90 James Moore, secretary of the colony, made 
an exploritig expedition into the mountains and reached a point at 
which, according to his Indian guides, he was within twenty miles of 
where the Spaniards were engaged in mining and smelting with bel- 
lows and furnaces. l)ut on account of some misunderstanding he 
returned without visiting the place, although he procured specimens 
of ores, which he sent to England for assay.' It may have ])een in the 
neighborhood of the present Lincolnton, North Carolina, where a dam 
of cut stone and other remains of former civilized occupancy lia\ c 
recently been discovered (11). In this year^^also, Cornelius Dougherty, 
an Irishman from Virginia, established himself as the first trader 
among the Cherokee, with whom he spent the rest of his life.* Some 
of his descendants still occu])v iionored positions in the tribe. 

Among the manuscri])t archives of South Carolina there was said to 
be. some tifty years ago. :^ treaty or agreement made with the gov(>rn- 
ment of that colony liy the C-herokee in 1684. and signed with the 
hieroglyphics of eight chiefs of the lower towns, viz. Corani. tlu' 
Raven (Kii'lanu); Sinnawa, the Ilawk (Tla'nuwa); Nellawgitehi; (ioi-- 
haleke. and Owasta, all of Toxawa: and Canacaught, the great Con- 
juror. Gohoma. and Cannasaita. of Keowa. If still in existence, tliis 
is probably the oldest Cherokee treaty on r(>cord.' 

What seems to !»' the next mention of the Cherokee in the South 
Cai'f)lina records occurs in ItiHl, when we tind an inquiry ordered in 
regard to a rep<)rt that some of the colonists '"have, without any ])roc- 
lamation of war. fallen upon and murdered" several of that tribe.'' 

In 1693 some Cherokee cliiefs went to Charleston with presents for 
the governor and oliers of fri(Midship. to ask the protection of South 
Carolina their enemies, the Ksinv (Catawba), Savanna (Shawano), 

' Leilerer, .lohn. Discoveries, pp. 15, 2(1. 27. 29. :!3. and map; reprint. Chnrleston. 18SI1; Mcumey. sioimn 
Tribe.s of the Ea.>;t (bulletin of Bureau of Ethnology i. pp. i'i-bi, 18»4. 
2Mooney, op. cit.. pp. 34-3.5. 

"Dooument of 1699. quoteil in South Carolina Hist. Soo. Colls., i. p. 209: Chnrle.ston. I.s.i7. 
« Haywood. Nat. and .\borig. Hist. Tennessee, p. 2.33. 1S23. 
f- Noted in Cherokee .\dvoeate. Tahlequali. Indian Territory. .Tanuary 30, 1845. 
•'Document of 1C91. South Carolinti Hist. 8oe. Colls., I. p. 120. 

32 MYTHS OP' THE CHEROKEE [eth.ann.19 

and Congaree, all of that colony, who had made war upon thoni and 
.sold a mnnber of their trilx'snien into .slavery. They were told that 
their kin.snieii could not now be recov^ered, but that the de.sired 
friend.ship with their tribe, and that the Government would see that 
there would l>e no future oround for such complaint.' The promise 
was apparently not kept, for in 1705 we find a bitter aceu.sation biought 
against Governor Moore, of South Carolina, that he had granted com- 
missions to a numlier of persons "to set upon, as.sault. kill, destroy, 
and take captive as many Indians as they pcs.sible [.svVJ could." the 
prisonei's l)eing sold into slavery for his and their private profit. By 
this course, it was asserted, he had "already almost utterly ruined the 
trade for skins and furs, whereby we held our chief correspondence 
with England, and turned it into a trade of Indians or slave making, 
whereby the Indians to the .south and west of us are already invohed 
in blood and confusion." The an-aignment concludes with a warning 
that such conditions would in all pro1)ability draw down upon the colony 
an Indian war with all its dreadful consequences." In view of what 
happened a few years later thi.sreads like a prophecy. 

About the year 1700 the first guns were introduced among the Cher- 
okee, the event l)eing fix(>d ti'aditionally as having occurred in the girl- 
hood of an old woman of the tribe who died about 177.5.'' In 17os we 
find them described as a numerous people, living in the mountains 
northwest from the Charleston settlements and having sixty towns, but 
of small importance in the Indian trade, lieing "but ordinary hunters 
and less warriors."' 

In the war with the Tusearora in 1711-1713. which resultfd in the 
expulsion of that tribe from North Carolina, more than a thousand 
southern Indians reenforced the South Carolina volunteers, among 
theuj being over two hundred Cherokee, hereditary enemies of the 
Tusearora. Although these Indian allies did their work well in the 
actual encounters, their assistance M'as of doubtful advantage, as they 
helped them.selves freely to whatever they wanted along the way, so 
that the settlers had reason to fear them almost as much as the hostile 
Tusearora. After torturing a large number of their prisoners in the 
usual savage fashion, they returned witli the remainder, whom they 
afterwai'd sold as .slaves to South Carolina. ' 

Having wiped out old scores with the Tusearora, the late allies of 
the English proceeded to discuss their own grievances, which, as we 
have seen, were sufficiently galling. The result was a combination 

1 Hewat. South Carolina and Georgia, i, p. 127, 1778. 

-Documents of 1705, in Xorlli Carolina Colonial Records, ii, p. 904: Raleigh, ismi. 

■1 Haywood, Nat. and Aborig. Tenn., p. 237,1823; with the usual idea that Indians live to extreme 
old age, Haywood makes her 110 years old at her death, putting back the introduction of firearms 
to 1677, 

< Letter of 1708, in Rivers, South Carolina, p, 238, ISoti. 

■■' Royce, Cherokee Nation, Fifth .\nn. Rep. Bureau of Ethnology, p. 140, 1888; Hewat, op. cit.,p, 216 
et passim. 



against the whites, embracing all the tribes from Cape Fear to the, 
('hattahooch(>e, including the Cherokee, who thus for the first time 
raised theii- hand against tiie English. The war opened with a terrible 
massacre by tlie Yamassee in April, 1715, followed by assaults along 
the whole frontier, until for a time it was seriously feared that the 
colony of South Carolina would be wiped out of existence. In a 
contest between savagery and civilization, however, the tinal result is 
inevitable. The settlei's at last rallied their whole force under (iov- 
ernor Craven and administered such a crushing blow to the Yamassee 
that the remnant abiuidoned their country and took refuge with the 
Spaniards in Florida or among the Lower Creeks. The English then 
made short work with the smaller tribes along the coast, while those 
in the interior were soon glad to sue for peace.' 

A number of Cherokee chiefs having come down to Charleston in 
company with a trader to ex])i-ess their desire for peac^e, a foic(> of 
several hundred white troops and a number of negroes under ('olonel 
Maurice ]\Ioore went up tiie Savannah in the winter of iTlo-KJ and 
made headquarters among the Lower Cherokee, where they were 
met by the chiefs of the Lowei- and some of the western towns, 
who reaffirmed their desire for a lasting peace with the English, but 
refused to tight against the Yamassee, although willing to prcx'eed 
against some other tribes. They laid the blame for most of tin; 
trouble upon thetraders. who " had been very abuseful to them of late." 
A detachment under Colonel George Chicken, sent to the Upper 
Cherokee, penetrated to "Quoneashee" (TIanusi'yi, on Hiwassee, 
about the present ]Muri)liy) where they found the chiefs more defiant, 
resolved to continue the war against the Creeks, with whom the Eng- 
lish were then trying to make peace, and demanding large sui)plies of 
guns and ammunition, saying that if they made a peace with the other 
tribes they would have no means of getting slaves with which to buy 
ammunition for themselves. At this tim(> they claimed 2,87u war- 
riors, of whom half were believed to have guns. As the strength of 
the whole Nation was much greater, this estimate may have been for 
the Upper and Middle Cherokee only. After "abundance of per- 
suading" by the olficers. they finally "told us they would trust us 
once again." and an arrangement was made to furnish them two hun- 
dred guns with a supply of aiimuinition. together with tifty white 
soldiers, to assist them against the tribes with which the English wei'e 
still at war. In March, iTlti, this force was increased by one hundred 
men. The detachment under Colonel (thicken returned by wav of the 
towns on the upper jwrt of the Little Tennessee, thus penetrating- the 
heart of the Cherokee countrj'." 

' Hewat, South Carolina and Georgia, i. p. 216 et passim, 1778. 

2 See .lournal of Colonel Cenrge Chicken, 171.5-liJ, with non-s. in Clmrleftcui Vi^arbool;. pp. ais-iW, 

lit ETH— Ul 8 

34 MYTHS OF THE CHKRuKKE [eth.asn.I'J 

Steps were now tiikeii to secui'e pouce by iimugurating a satisfiu-toi'v 
trade .system, for which purpose a large (iiiaiitity of .suitable goods 
was pureha.sed at the pul)lic (expense of South ('aroiiiuu and a eorre- 
spondingly large party was eljuipped for the initial tri]).' In 1721. 
in order still more to systematize Indian afi'airs. Govei'uor Nicholson 
of South Carolina invited the chiefs of the Cherokee to a conference, 
at which thirty-seven towns were represented. A treaty was made 
by which trading methods were regulated, a boundary line between 
their teri'itory and the English settlements was agreed upon, and an 
agent was appointed to superintend their atfairs. At the governor' .s 
suggestion, one chief, called Wrosetasatow {{)' was formally connnis- 
sioned as supreme head of the Nation, with authority to punish all, including nuu'der. and to represent all Cherokee claims to 
the colonial government. Thus were the Cherokee reduced from their 
former condition of a free people, ranging where their pleasure led. to 
that of dependent vas.sals with bounds fixed by a colonial governor. 
The negotiations were accompanied by a cession of land, the first in 
the history of the tribe. In little more than a century thereafter they 
had signed away their whole original territory.* 

The document of iTlti already quoted puts the strength of the Chero- 
kee at that time at 2,870 warriors, but in this estimate the Lower 
Cherokee seem not to have been included. In 1715. according to a 
trade cen.sus compiled by Governor Johnson of South Carolina, the 
tribe had thirty towns, with -1,000 warriors and a total population of 
11,210.* Another census in 1721 gives them fifty-three towns with 
3. 51(1 warriors and a total of 10.37!!.'' while the report of the board of 
trade for the .same year gives them 8,soi» warriors," equivalent, by the 
same proportion, to nearly 12.000 total. Adair, a good authority on 
such inatter.s, estimates, about the year 1735. when the counti'v was 
better known, that they had "", sixty-four towns and villages, populous 
and full of (children." with more than 6,000 fighting men," equivalent 
on the same liasis of computation to between 16,000 and 17.000 souls. 
From what we know of them in later times, it is probable that this 
last estimate is \'ery nearly correct. 

By this time the colonial government had become alarmed at the 
advance of the French, who had made their tirst permanent establish- 
ment in th(> Gulf states at Biloxi bay. Mississippi, in lt)99, and in 
171+ had built Fort Toulouse, known to the English as "the fort at 

1 Journal of South Carolina Assembly, in North ("arolina Colonial Records, ii, pp. 22.V2'27, IS.S1;. 
- For notic-e. see the glossary. 

^Hewat, South Carolina and Georgia, i. pp. 2',i7-2',is, ITT.s; Uoyee. Cherokee Nation, in Fifili .\nn. 
Rep. Bureau o£ Ethnology, p. 144 ami map, 
■iRoyee, op. cit., p. 142. 

'•rioeument of 1724. in Feriiow, Berthokl. Ohio Valley in Colonial Days, pp. 273-27.i: .\ll)any. 1890. 
' Report of Board of Trade. 1721, in North Carolina Colonial Records, n, p. 422, 1S.W. 
^.Vdair. James. American Indians, p. 227; London. 1775. 

MooNKv) CUMINO'S TREATY 1T:!(> 35 

tlir Al;ili;imas." (iti Coosa ri\('r, a IVw iiiilcs aliovc the jjicsciit Mont- 
<i-oiiiiT\ . Alal>aiiia. From this cciitial \aiitaf»'e point they hud rapidly 
t'xtoiidcd their iiitlueiice aiiioiiii- all tiie neiii-hhoring- tribes until in 
17:^1 it was estimated that H.4i)(> wai'rioi-s who had formerly traded 
witii Cai'oliiia liad l)een ••entirely dehauched to the French interest," 
while :.\0(M» more were wavei'ini;-. and only tiie Cherokee could still be 
considered f)-iendly to the Eni;-lish.' From this time until the tinal 
withdrawal of the Frencli in lli't'A the explanation of our Indian wars 
is to he found in the strugjile between the two nations for teri-itorial 
and commercial supremacy, the Indian beiiio- simply the cat's-paw of 
one or the other. For reasons of their own. the Chickasaw, whose 
tei'ritory lay within the recoynized limits of Louisiana, soon became the 
uncompromising enemies of the French, and as their position enabled 
them in a measure to control the approach from the Mississippi, the 
Carolina government saw to it that they were kept well supjilied with 
guns and anununition. British traders were in all their towns, and 
on one occasion a French force, advancing against a Chickasaw 
palisaded village, found it giirrisoniMl by Englishmen flying the British 
flag." The Cherokee, although nonunally allies of the Knglish. were 
stroiigh' disposed to favor the French, and it recjuired every efl'ort of 
the Carolina gox'ernment to hold them to their allegiance. 

In 1730, to further tix the Cherokee in the English interest. Sir 
Alexander Cuming was dispatched on a secret mission to that tril)e, 
which was ag-ain smarting under grievances and almost ready to join 
with the Creeks in an alliance with the French. Proceeding to the 
ancient town of Nequassee (Nikwasi', at the present Franklin. North 
Carolina), he so impressed the chiefs l>y his bold beai'ing that they 
conceded without (question all his demands, submitting thiMuselves 
and their people for the second time to the English doiuinion and 
designating Moytoy.'' of Ttdlico. to act as their "■emperor" and to 
represent the Nation in all transactions with tlie whit(>s. Se\-en chiefs 
were selected to visit England, where, in the palace at Whitehail, 
they solemnly renewed the treaty, acknowledging the so\-ereignty of 
England and binding themselves to have no trade or alliance with any 
other nation, not to allow any other white people to settle among 
them, and to deliver up any fugitive slaves who might seek refuge 
with them. To contirm their words they delivered a "crown", five 
eagle-tails, and four scalps, which they had brought with them. In 
return they rec(dved the usual glittering pi-omises of love and per- 
petual friendship, together with a substantial quantity of guns, ainnm- 
nition. and red paint. The treaty being concluded in September, 

' Board of Trade report, !7'J1. North Carolina Colonial RofOrds. ii, p. 422. 1*86. 
2 Pickett, H. A., Historj- of Alabama, pp. 234, 280, 288; reprint. Sheffield, 1896. 
» For notice, see the glossary. 


thfv took ship for Caroliiiii, wlicir tlu>y arrived, a.s we are told l)y 
the yovernor, "in good liealth and mightily' well satisfied with His 
Majesty's bounty to them."' 

In the next year some action was taken to use the Cherokee and 
Catawba to subdue the refractory renuiant of the Tuscarora in North 
Carolina, but when it was found that this was liable to l)rin<)' down the 
wrath of the Iroquois upon the Carolina settlements, more peaceable 
methods were used instead." 

In 1738 or 173^ the smallpox, brought to Carolina by slave ships, 
broke out among the Cherokee with such teirible effect that, according 
to Adair, nearly half the tribe was swept away within a year. The 
awful mortality was due largely to the fact that as it was a new and 
strange disease to the Indians they had no proper remedies against it, 
and therefore resorted to the universal Indian panacea for '"strong" 
sickness of almost any kind, viz, cold plunge l)aths in the running 
stream, the worst treatment that could possibly be devised. As the 
pestilence spread unchecked from town to town, despair fell upon the 
nation. The priests, believing the visitation a penalty for violation of 
the ancient ordinances, threw away their sacred paraphernalia as things 
which had lost their protecting power. Hundreds of the warriors 
committed suicide on beholding their frightful disligurement. ''Some 
shot themselves, others cut their throats, some .stabbed themselves 
with knives and others with sharp-pointed canes; many threw them- 
selves with sullen madness into the tire and there slowly expired, as if 
they had been utterly divested of the native power of feeling pain."^ 
Another authority estimates their loss at a thousand warriors, partly 
from smallpox and partly from rum brought in by the traders.' 

About the year 17-10 a trading path for horsemen was marked out 
by the Cherokee from the new settlement of Augusta, in Georgia, to 
their towns on the headwaters of Savannah river and thence on to the 
west. This road, which went up the .south side of the river, soon 
l)ecame much frequented.* Previous to this time most of the trading 
goods had been transported on the backs of Indians. In the same 
year a party of Cherokee under the war chief Ka'lanu. "The Raven," 
took part in Oglethorpe's expedition against the Spaniai'ds of Saint 

In 173(5 Christian Priber, said to be a Jesuit acting in the French 
interest, had come among the Cherokee, and, by the facility with which 
he learned the language and adapted himself to the native dress and 

'Hevvat, South Carolina and Georgia, ii, pp. 3-11, 1779; treaty documents nl 1730, North Carolina 
Colonial Records, m, pp. 128-133, 1886: Jenkinson, Collection of Treaties, ii, pp. 315-318: Drake, S.G.. 
Early History of Georgia: Cuming's Emba,ssy; Boston, 1872; letter of Governor Johnson, December 27, 
1730, noted in South Carolina Hist. Soc. Colls., i, p. 246, 18.57. 

- Documents ol 1731 and 17:52, North Carolina Colonial Records, ii i , pp. 153, 202, 34.'i, Siltf, :!93. 1886. 

■'Adair, American Indians, pp. 232-234. 1775. 

^Meadows (?|, State of the Province of Georgia, p. 7, 1742, in Force Tracts, i. is:iij. 

'Jones, C. (;., History of Georgia, i. pp. ;i27,328; Boston, 1883. 

MooNEY] priber's work — i7:!(;-4i 87 

mode of litV. had i|uicklv ac(iiiircd a Icadiny infliiciicc aiiinnu' tliciii. 
He drew up t'oi- their adoption a sciienie of u-oviMMiiuenl modeled after 
the European plan, with the capital at (ireat Tellieo. in Tennessee, 
the principal medicine man as iMupiM-or. and himself as the emperor's 
sccr(>tary. L nder this title he corresi)oiided with the Soutli ("ai'olina 
government until it began to he feared that li(> would ultimately win 
over the whole tribe to the French side. A conunissioner was sent to 
arrest him. but the Cherokee refused to yive him up. and the deputy 
was ol)lio'ed to return under safe-conduct of an escort furnished by 
Priber. Five years after the inauguration of his work, liowever. ho 
was seized by some Kngiish traders while on his way to Fort Toulouse, 
and brought as a })risoner to Frederica, in Georgia, where he soon 
afterward died while under confinement. Although his enemies had 
represented him as a monster, inciting the Indians to the grossest 
immoralities, he proved to be a gentleman of polished address, exten- 
sive learning, and rare courage, as was sliown later on the occasion of 
an explosion in the barracks magazine. Besides (ireek. Latin. French, 
German, Spanish, and Huent English, he spoke also the Cherokee, 
and among his papers which were seized was found a manuscript 
dictionary of the language, which he had prepared for ])ublication — 
the first, and even yet, perhaps, the most important study of the lan- 
guage ever made. Says Adair: '"As he was learned and possessed 
of a very sagacious penetrating judgment, and had exery ([ualitication 
that was requisite for his bold and difficult enterjjrise, it was not to be 
doubted that, as he wrote a Cheerake dictionary, designed to be 
published at Paris, he likewise set down a great deal that would have 
been very acceptable to the curious and serviceable to the representa- 
tives of South Carolina and Georgia, which may be readily foxuid in 
Frederica if the manuscripts have had the good fortune to escajje the 
despoiling hands of military power." lie claimed to be a .Ii'suit. acting 
under orders of his superior, to introduce habits of steady industry, 
civilized arts, and a regular form of government among the southern 
tribes, with a view to the ultimate founding of an independent Indian 
state. From all that can bo gathered of him. e\-en though it comes 
from his enemies, thcvo can be little dt)ubt that he was a worthy 
memljer of that illustrious ordei- whose name has been a .synonym for 
scholarship, devotion, and courage fi'oni the days of Jogues and Mar- 
C|uette down to De Smet and Mengai'ini.' 

Up to this time no civilizing or mission work had l)een nndei-taken 
by either of the Carolina governments among any of the tribes within 
their borders. As one writer of the period ipiaintly puts it. "The 
go.spel spirit is not yet .so gloriously arisen as to seek them more than 
theirs." while another in stronjjer terms allirms. "To the shame of 

' .\(lair, .\meriran Indians, pp. 240-2J3, 1775; Stevens, W. B., History of Georgia, i. pp. UU-U>T: Pliila., 

38 MYTHS OF THE CHEROKEE [kth.ann.19 

the Christian namo. no pains have ever Ijeeii taken to convert them to 
Christianity; on the contrary, their morals are perverted and cor- 
i'upted hy the sad example they daily have of its depraved professors 
residing in tiieir towns." ^ Readers of Lawson and other narratives 
t>l' the period wiM feel the force of the rebuke. 

Throughout the eighteenth century the Cherokee were engaged in 
chronic warfare with their Indian neighl)ors. As these quarrels con- 
cerned the whites hut little, however momentous they may have been 
to the principals, we have but few details. The war with the Tusca- 
rora continued until the out))reak of the latter tribe against Carolina 
in 1711 gave opportiuiity to the Cherokee to cooperate in striking the 
blow which drove the Tuscarora from their ancient homes to seek 
refuge in the north. The Cherokee then turned their attention to the 
Siiawano on the Cumberland, and with the aid of the Chickasaw finally 
expelled them from that region about the year 1715. Inroads upon 
the Catawba were proliably kept up until tiie latt(M' had liecome so far 
reduced by war and disease as to be mere dependent pensioners upon 
the whites. The former friendship with the Chicka.saw was at last 
broken through the overbearing conduct of the Cherokee, and a war 
followed of which we find incidental notice in 17.57," and which termi- 
nated in a decisive victory for the Chickasaw about 1768. The bitter 
war with the Iro([uois of the far north contiiuied, in spite of all the 
efforts of the colonial governments, until a formal treaty of peace was 
brought about by the efforts of Sir William .Tohn.son (12) in the same 

The hereditary war with the Creeks for possession of upper Cxeorgia 
continued, with lirief intervals of peace, or even alliance, until the 
United States finally interfered as mediator between the rival claimants. 
In 1718 we find notice of a large Cherokee war party moving against 
the Creek town of Coweta, on the lower Chattahoochee, but dispersing 
on learning of the presence there of some French and Spanish officers, 
as well as some English traders, all bent on arranging an alliance with 
the Creeks. The Creeks themselves had declared their willingness to 
be lit peace with the English, while still determined to keep the l>loody 
hatchet uplifted against the Cherokee.'' The most important incident 
of the struggle between the two tribes was pro))ably the l)attl(> of 
Tali'wa about the year 1755.' 

l\v this timathe weaker coast trit)es had become practically extinct, 
and the more powerful tribes of the interior were beginning to take 
the alarm, as they saw the restless boi'derers pushing every year farther 
into the Indian country. As early as 174S Dr Thomas Walker, with a 
company of hunters and woodsmen from Virginia, cnjssed the moun- 

lAnonymous writer in Carroll, Hist.Colls. of South Carolina, ii, pp. 97-98. . 517, LSSii. 

- Buckle, .lournnl, 17.57, in Rivers, Soutli Carolina, p. 57, iy56. 

■'Barcia,, Ensnyo Clironologico \>nrn la Historia (Jcncral ili- I;i i-'Iorida. pp. o35,:l::ti, .Ma<lri(i, 

* For more in ri'tiard lo llu'sr intiTInlKil wars sru the historical trailitinns 

Moo.vEY] FRKNCH AND INDIAN WAU 17r)4-i;l 89 

tains to the southwest, cliscovi'i-iiii;' and iianiiuji- the oi'lobrated C'liiulx-r- 
land gap and passing on to the headwaters of Cumberland river. 
Two years later he made a second exph)i'ation and penetrated to Ken- 
tucky river, but on account of the Indian troubk^s no permanent 
settlement was then attempted.' This invasion of their territory 
awakiMied a natural res(Mitment of th(> native owners, and we find 
proof also in the \'irginia rei'ords that the ii'responsit)le borderers 
seldom let pass an opportunity to kill and plundei' any stray Indian 
found in their iKMghhorhood. 

In 175.5 the Cherokee w(^re oliiciaily reported to number 2.5!M) war- 
riors, as against probabh' twice that number previous to the great 
smallpox epidemic sixteen years before. Their neighboi's and ancient 
eiuimies. the Catawba, had dwindled to 2-K) men.' 

Although war was not formally declared by England until 1750, 
hostilities in the seven year's struggle between France and Kngland, 
commonly known in America as the " French and Indian war," began 
in April. 175-1. when the French seized a small which the English 
had begun at the present site of Pittsl)urg, and which was afterwiird 
finished by the French under the name of Fort Du Quesne. Strenuous 
efforts were made by the English to secure the Cherokee to their 
interest against tlie French and their Indian allies, and treaties were 
negotiated by which they promised assistance.' As these treaties, 
however, carried the usual ces.sions of territory, and stipulated for 
the building of several forts in the heart of the Cherokee country, it 
is to be feared that the Indians were not duly impressed by th^ disin- 
terested character of the proceeding. Their preference for the French 
was but thinly veiled, and only immediate policy prevented them from 
throwing their whole force into the scale on that side. TJie reasons 
for this preference are given by Timberlake. the young Virginian 
otiicev who visittnl the tribe on an embassy of conciliation a f(>w years 

I fouml tlie nation inui-li rtltachcil to the French, who have the pniilence, by 
familiar politeness — which cost.s but little and often doe,« a great deal — and conform- 
ing theniselve.s to their ways and temper, to conciliate the inclinations of almost all 
the Indians they are acquainted with, while the pride of our officers often disgusts 
them. Nay, they did not scrapie to own to me that it was the trade alone that 
induced them to make peace with us, and not any preference to th(> French, wliom 
they loved a great <leal better. . . The Knglish are now so nigh, and encroachecl 

daily so far upon them, that they not only felt the bad <'ffects of it in their hunting 
grounds, which were spoiled, hut had all the reason in the world to apprehend Vicing 
swallowed up by so potent neighbors or driven from the country inhaliitud liy Their 
fathers, in which they were 1)orn and brought up, in tine, their native soil, for which 
all men have a particular tenderness and affection. 

' Walker, Thoma.s, Journal of an Exploration, etc., pp. 8, 35-3"; Boston, 1S88: Monette (Valley of 
tile Miss. I, I). 317; New Yo?k, 1S4.S) erroneously tnakcs tliu secoiul dale 1758. 

= Letter of Governor Dobbs, IVfw, in North Carolina ("olonlal Keeords, v. pp. 320. 321. 1SS7. 

•■"Ramsey. Tcnnes.see, pp. .TO-Sa, 18.53; Koyce, Cherokee Nation, in Fifth .\nn. Xeji. Kiir. "f Klh- 
nology, p. 14.1, 1888. 


Ikth.ann. 19 

He adds that only dire necessity iiad induced thorn to make peace 
with the English in 1761/ 

In accordance with the treaty stij)uiati()ns Fort Prince George was 
built in 1756 adjoining the important Cherokee town of Keowee, on 
the headwaters of the Savannah, and Fort Loudon near the junction 
of Tellico river with the Little Tennessee, in the center of the 
Cherokee towns ))ey()nd the mountains." By special arrangement with 
the influential chief. Ata-kullakuUa (Ata'-gur'kalu'),-' Fort Dobbs was 
also built in the same year a))out 2n miles west of the present Salis- 
bury. North Carolina.* 

The Cherokee had agreed to furnish foui' hundred warriors to 
cooperate against the French in the north, liut before Fort Loudon 
had been completed it was very evident that they had repented of 
their promise, as tlieir great council at Echota ordered the work 
stopped and the garrison on the way to turn back, plainlj^ telling the 
officer in charge that they did not want so many white people among 
them. Ata-kuUakulla. hitherto supposed to be one of the stanchest 
friends of the English, was now one of the most determined in the oppo- 
sition. It was in evidence also that they were in constant communi- 
cation with the French. By much tact and argument their objec- 
tions were at last overcome for a time, and they very unwillingly set 
about raising the promised force of warriors. Major Andrew Lewis, 
who superintended the building of the fort, became convinced that 
the Cherokee were really friendly to the French, and that all their 
professions of friendship and assistance were ' ' onlj' to put a gloss on 
their knaveiy." The fort was finally completed, and, on his suggestion, 
was garrisoned with a strong force of two hundred men under Captain 
Demere.' There was strong ground for believing that some depreda- 
tions committed about this time on the heads of Catawba and Broad 
rivers, in North Carolina, were the joint work of Cherokee and nortiiern 
Indians.'' Notwithstanding all this, a considerable body of Cherokee 
joined the British foi'ces on the Virginia frontier.' 

Fort I)u Quesn(> was taken by the American provincials under Wash- 
ington. November 25, 175S. Quebec was taken September 13, 175'J, 
and by the final treaty of peace in 1763 the war ended with the transfer 
of Canada and thi» Ohio valley to the crown of Elngland. Louisiana 
had already been ceded )jy France to Spain. 

Although France was thus eliminated from the Indian problem, the 

' Timberlako, Henry, Memoirs, pp. 73, 74; London, 176.=i. 

- Ramsey. Tennessee, p. .51, 18.53; Royce, Cherokee Nation, in Fiftli Ann. Kept. Bur. of Ethnology, 
p. 145, 1888. 

3 For notice see Ata'-g(ll"kill<j', in the glossary. 

^ Ramsey, op. eit., p. .50. 

•'Letters of Major -Vndrew I^ewis an<l Governor Dinwiddio. IT.'if'i. in North Carolina Colonial Records 
V, pp. .58.5, 61'2-til4, iBo, 6:i7, 1887: Ramsey, op, cit., iip. 61. W. 

Letter of Governor Dobbs, 17.56, in North Carolina Colonial Records, v, p. tiOl, 1887, 

" Din^viddic letter, 1757, ibid., p, 7ti5. 

MooNEY] LKWls" KXI'KUITION 17.")(i 41 

Indiiiiis thi'iiisclve.s were not ready to accf])t the sottlciiiciil. In tli(> 
north the contVdei'iitcd trilx's under Pontine continued to war on their 
own aiTount until 17<i."i. In tlie South the\ei'y ('heroke<> wlio had 
aeted as allies of the British ayainst Fort I)u Quesne. and iiad \()hui- 
tarily ottered to iruai'd the frontier soutli of the PotonuK-. retui'ned 
to I'ouse tiieir trilie to resistan<'e. 

The innnediateexeitiny cause of the ti'ouhle was an unfortunate expe- 
dition undertaken against tlie hostile Siiawano in Felniiary. 1 7.")(i, by 
Major Andrew Lewis (the same who liad liuilt Kort Loudon) with some 
two hundivd Virginia troops assisted hy about one hundred Ciierokee. 
After six weeks of fruith'ss tranipin"' throuuh the woods, witli the 
g-round covered with snow and the streams so swollen by rains (hat 
they lost their proxisions and anununition in crossiny'. they were obliycd 
to return to the settlements in a stai'viny coudition. having' killed theii- 
horses on the way. Th(> Lidian contingent had from the tii"st been 
disgusted at the contem]it and neglect experienced fi'om those whom 
they had com(^ to assist. The Tuscarora and others had already gone 
home, and the Cherokee^ noiv .started to return on foot to their own 
counti'y. Finding some horses running loose on the range, they 
appropriated them, on the theoi-y that as they had lost their own 
animals, to say nothing of having risked theii' lives, in the service 
of the colonists, it was only a fair exchange. Th(> fiontiersmen 
took anothei' view fif the ((ii(>stion however, attacked the returnuig 
Cherokee, and killed a number of them, \ariously stated at from 
tw"cl\e to forty, including several of their pi'ominent men. Accord- 
ing to Adair they also scalped and mutilated the bodies in the savage 
fashion to whicli they had become accustomed in the border wars, and 
l)rought the scalps into th(> settlements, where they were represented 
as those of French Indians and sold at the regular pi'ii-e then estab- 
lished by law. The young warriors at once prepared to tak(^ revenge, 
but were restraininl by the chiefs until satisfaction could bi' demand(>d 
ill the ordinary way, accordingto the ti'caties ari'ang(>d with thi> colonial 
governments. Application was made in turn to \ irginia. North 
Carolina, and South Carolina, but without success. W'hih^ the wonuMi 
were still W'ailing night and morning for th(>ir slain kindled, and the 
Creeks wore taunting the warrior.s for their cowardice in thus quietly 
submitting to the injury, some lawless ofiicers of Fort Prince George 
committed an unpardonaiile outrage at tli(> neighlioring Indian town 
whil(> most of the men were away hunting.' The warriors could no 
longer be restrained. Soon there was lunvs of attacks upon the back 
settlements of Carolina, while on tlie other side of the mountains two 
soldiers of the Fort Loudon garrison were killed, ^^'ar seemed at 

'.\(1air, AmtTiciin Inclians, 21.>-2-16, 1775; North Carolina Colonial Uocords, v, p. .\lvii). 1S.S7; Hrwat, 
quoted in Ramsey, Tennessue. p. 51, 1853. 


At lliis juiu-lurc, ill Novciiilicr. 1 T'j.s, u party ol' inlliicntial cliict'.s. 
hiiving" first ordered hack a wai' party just aliout to set out t'r<jin tlie 
westei'u towns ayaiiist tlie Carolina si^ttleinents, eaiiie down toCharlivs- 
toii and sueeceded in aiTanuing tiie difficulty u])on a friendly basis. 
The assembly had officially dei'lared peace witli tlie Chei-okec. wlieii. in 
May of ITolt, Governor Lyttleton unexpectedly came forward with a 
demand for the surrender for execution of every Indian wholiad killed 
a white man in the recent skirmishes, among tliese l)eiiio- the chiefs of 
Citico and Tt^Uico. At the same time the commander at Fort Loudon, 
forgetful of the fact that he had but a small garrison in the midst of 
several thousands of restless savages, made a demand for twenty-four 
other chiefs whom lie suspected of unfriendly action. To compel their 
surrender orders were given to stop all trading supplies intended for 
the upper Cherokee. 

This roused the whole Nation, and a delegation representing every 
town came down to Charleston, protesting the desii'c of the Indians for 
peace and friendship, ])ut declaring their inability to surrender their own 
chiefs. The governor replied liy declaring war in November, 17o!>, at 
once callingout ti'oops and sending messengers to secure the aid of all 
the surrounding tribes against the Clierokee. In the meantime a second 
delegation of thirty-two of the most prominent men, led by the young- 
war chief Oconostota (Agan-stata),' arrived to make a further etlort 
for peai'C, liut the governor, refusing to li.sten to them, seized the 
whole paj'ty and confined them as prisoners at Fort Prince George, in 
a room large enough for oidy six soldiers, while at the same time he 
set fourteen hundred tnjops in motion to invade the Cherokee country. 
On further representation by Ata-kullakulla (Ata'-gur'kahV), the civil 
chief of the Nation and well known as a friend of the P^nglish, the gov- 
ernor released Oconostota and two others after compelling some half 
dozen of the delegation to sign a paper by which th(\v pretended to 
agree for their tril)e to kill or seize any FrtMU'hmen entering their 
country, and consented to the imprisonment of the party until all the 
warriors demanded had been surrendered for execution or otherwise. 
At this stage of affairs the smallpox liroke out in the Cherokee towns, 
rendering a further stay in their neighborhood unsafe, and tliinking 
the whole matter now settled on his own basis, Lyttleton returned 
to Charleston. 

The event soon proved how little he knew of Indian temper. Ocono- 
stota at once laid siege to Foit Prince George, completely cutting ofi' 
comnumication at a time when, as it was now winter, no help could 
well be expected from Ijelow. In February, 1760, after having kept 
the fort thus closely invested for some weeks, ho sent word one day 
l)y an Indian woman that he wished to speak to the conmiander. Lieut- 
enant Coytmore. As the lieutenant stepped out from the stoclvade 

' For noii(;es srt' the glossary. 


to soo what was Avanted, Oconostota. .standini^ on tho (ipposito side of 
the river, swung a bridle above his liead as a signal to his warriors 
concealed in the bushes, and the oflicer was at once shot down. The 
soldiers immediately broke into tiie room \\here the hostages were 
confined, every one being a chief of prominence in tiie triTH\ and 
butchered them to the last iuuti. 

It was now war to the imhI. Led l)y Oconostota, the Cherokee 
descended upon the frontier settlements of Carolina, while the warriors 
across the mountains laid close siege to Fort Loudon. Li June, 1760, 
a strong force of over 1,600 men, under Colonel Montgomery, started 
to reduce the Cherokee towns and relieve the ])eleagu(>r(>d garrison. 
Crossing the Indian frontier, Montgomery ((uickly drove the enemj^ 
from about Fort Prince George and then, rapidly advancing, surprised 
Little Kcowee, killing every man of the defenders, and destroyed in 
succession every one of the Lower Cherokee towns, Ijurning them to 
the ground, cutting down the cornfields and orchards, killing and 
taking more than a hundred of their men, and driving th(> whole popu- 
lation into the mountains before him. His own loss was very slight. 
He then sent messengers to the Middle and I'pper towns, suuuuoning 
them to surrender on penalty of the like fate, but, receiving no reply, 
he led his men across the divide to the waters of the Little Tennessee 
and continued down that stream without ojjposition until he came in 
the vicinity of Echoee (Itse'yi), a few miles al)ove the sacred town of 
Nikwasi', the present Franklin. North Carolina. Here the Cherokee 
had collected their full force to resist his progress, and the result was 
a desperate engagement on .lune '27, 1760, by which Montgomery was 
compelled to retire to Fort Prince George, after losing neai'ly one 
hundred men in i<illed and wounded. The Indian loss is unknown. 

His retreat sealed the fate of Fort Loudon. The garrist)n. though 
hard pressed and reduced to the necessity of eating horses and dogs, 
had l)een enabh^d to hold out tlirough the kindness of the Indian 
women, many of whom, having f()und swcetliearts among the soldiers, 
brought them sup])lies of food daily. When tlireatened by tlie chiefs 
the women l)oklly n^plied lliat the soldiers were their liusbands and it 
was their duty to iieli> tiieni. and that if any harm came to themselves 
for their devotion their English rehitives would avenge them.' The 
end was only delayed, liowexer, and on August .S, 17f')0, the garrison 
of aliout two hundred men, under Captain Demere, surrendered to 
Oconostota on promises that the}^ should be allowed to retire uruuo- 
lested with their arms and sufficient anununition for th(> marcli. on 
condition of delivei'ing up all the I'dnaining warlike stores. 

The troops marchivl out and pi-oceeded far enough to camp for the 
night, while the Indians swarmed into the fort to see what plunder 
they might lind. " 15\' accident a discovery was mad<J of ten l>ags of 

' Timberlake, Memoirs, p. 05, 1765. 


powcU'i- and a large quantity of ball that bad been sc(^-etly buried in 
the fort, to prevent their falling into the enemy'.s hands" (Hewat). 
It is said also that cannon, small arms, and ammunition had been 
thrown into the river vrith the same intention (Haywood). Enraged 
at this lireach of the capitulation the Cherokee attacked the soldiers 
next morning at daylight, killing Demere and twenty-nine others at 
the first fire. The rest were taken and held as prisoners until ran- 
somed some time after. The second officer. Captain Stuart (1?.), for 
whom the Indians had a high regard, was claimed by Ata-kullakulla, 
who soon after took him into the woods, ostensibly on a hunting 
excursion, and conducted him for nine days through the wilderness 
until he delivered him safely into the hands of friends in Virginia. 
The chief's kindness was well rewarded, and it was largely through 
his influence that peace was tinally brought about. 

It was now too late, and the settlements were too much exhausted, 
for another expedition, so the fall and winter were employed M' the 
English in preparations for an active campaign the next year in force 
to crush out all resistance. In June ITfil. Colonel Grant with an 
army of 2,600 men, including a number of Chickasaw and almost 
every i-i-maining warrior of the Catawba,' set out from Fort Prince 
George. Refusing a request from Ata-kullakulla for a friendly accom- 
modation, he crossed Rabun gap and ad\anced rapidly down the 
Little Tennessee along the same trail taken by the expedition of the 
previous year. On June 10, when within two miles of Montgomery's 
battlefield, he encountered the Cherokee, whom he defeated, although 
with considerable loss to himself, after a stubborn engagement lasting 
several hours. Having repulsed the Indians, he proceeded on his 
way, sending out detachments to the outlying settlements, until in 
the course of a month he had destroyed every one of the Middle 
towns, 15 in all, with all their granaries and cornfields, driven the 
inhabitants into the mountains, and "pushed the frontier seventy 
miles farther to the west." 

The Cherokee were now reduced to the greatest extremity. With 
some of their best towns in ashes, their fields and orchards wasted for 
two successive years, their ammunition nearly exhausted, many of 
their bravest warriors dead, their people fugitives in the mountains, 
hiding in caves and living like beasts upon roots or killing their 
horses for food, with the terrible scourge of smallpox adding to the 
miseries of starvation, and withal torn Ijy factional difierences which 
had existed from the very beginning of the war— it was impossible 
for even brave men to resist longer. In September Ata-kullakulla, 
who had all along done everything in his power to stay the disaffec- 
tion, came down to Charleston, a treaty of peace was made, and the 

1 Catawba reference from Milligan, 1763, in Carroll, South Carolina Historical Collections, ii, p. 
519, 1S3C. 


war was oikIimI. l-'roiii an ('stiniat(>(l population of at least 5,000 war- 
rioTH some \('ars lict'oii'. tli(> Clicrokoc^ had now l)oon roducod to about 
2.800 men.' 

Ill tlic iiicaiitiiiic a for<^c of Virginians under Colonel Stephen had 
advanced as far as the Great island of the Holston — now Kingsport, 
Tennessee — where they were met by a large delegation of Cherokee, 
who sued for peace, which was concluded with them liy Colonel 
Stephen on November 19, lltil. independently of what was being done 
in South Carolina. On the urgent request of the chief that an othcer 
might visit their people for a short time to cement the new friendship, 
Lieutenant Henry Timlierlake. a young Virginian who had already dis- 
tinguished himself in active service, volunteered to return with them to 
their towns, where he spe"nt several months. He afterward conducted 
a delegation of chiefs to England, where, as they had come without 
authority from the Government, they met such an unpleasant recep- 
tion that they returned disgusted. " 

On the conclusion of peace between England and Franct' in ITtlr!. by 
which the whole western territory was ceded to England, a great 
council was held at Augusta, which was attended by the chiefs and 
principal men of all thi> southern Indians, at which Captain John 
Stuart, superintendent for the southern tribes, together with the colo- 
nial governors of Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, and (xeor- 
gia, explained fully to the Indians the new condition of aliairs. and a 
treatv of nuitual peace and friendship was concluded on November 10 
of that year. ^ 

Cnder several leaders, as Walker, Walleii. Smith, and Boon, the tide 
of emigration now surged aci'oss the mountains in spite of every ctt'ort 
to restrain it.' and the period between the end of the Cherokee war 
and the opening of the Revolution is principally notable for a number 
of treaty cessions by the Indians, eacii in fruitless endeavor to tix a 
permanent barrier between themselves and the advancing wav(> of 
white settlement. Chief among these was the famous Henderson ])ur- 
chase in 1775, which included the whole tract between the Kentucky 
and Cumberland rivers, embracing the greater part of the present 
state of Kentucky. By these treaties the Cherokee were shorn of 
practically all their ancient territorial claims north of the present 
Tennessee line and east of the Blue ridge and the Savaiuiah. including 
much of their best hunting range; their home settlements were, how- 
ever, left still in their possession. ' 

' Figures from Adair, American Indians, p. 227, 1775. When not otherwise noted this slictch of 
the Cherokee war of 1760-01 is compiled ehiefly from the contemporary dispatches in the Gentleman's 
Magazine, supplemented from Hewat's Historical account of South Carolina and Georgia, 177S; with 
additional details fron\ .\dair, .Vmerican Indians; Ramsey, Tennessee; Royce, Clierokee Nation; North 
Carolina Colonial Records, v, documents and introtluction; etc. 

^Timbcrlake, Memoirs, p. y et i>assini, l"t'ir). 

^Stevens, Georgia, ii, i)p. 'ItWii, l,s.')9. 'Ramsey, Tennessee, pp. n.5-70, 18,5,3. 

'•Royee, Cherokee Nation, in Fiftli' .Vun, Keii. Bur. of Ethnology, pp. lir.-i iv 1>^^s 

46 MYTHS OK THK CHKHOKKE [eth.ann.19 

As one consequence of the late Cherokee war. a royal prochinuition 
had been issued in ITO:^). with a view of checlving future encroaclinients 
by tiie whites, whicli proliibited any private land purchases from the 
Indians, or any granting of warrants for hinds west of the sources 
of the streams flowing into the Atlantic' In ITti.S, on the appeal of 
the Indians themselves, the British superintendent for th(> southern 
tribes, Captain John Stuart, had negotiated a treaty at Hard Labor 
in South Cai'olina by which Kanawha and New rivers, along their 
whole course downward from the North Carolina line, were fixed as 
the boundary between the Cherokee and the whites in that direction. 
In two years, however, so many borderers had crossed into the Indian 
country, where the}' were evidently determined to remain, that it was 
found necessary to substitute another treaty, by which the line was 
madi^ to run due south from the mouth of the Kanawha to the Holston. 
thus cutting oil' from the Cherokee almost the whole of their hunting 
grounds in Virginia and West Virginia. Two years latei'. in 177:2, 
the Virginians demanded a further cession, by which everything east 
of Kentucky river was surrendered; and finally, on March 17, 1775, 
the great Henderson purchase was consunnnated. including the whole 
tract between the Kentucky and Cumberland rivers. By this last 
cession the Cherokee were at last cut oft' from Ohio river and all their 
rich Kentucky hunting grounds.^ 

While these transactions were called treaties, they weie really 
foi'ced upon the native proprietors, who resisted each in turn and 
finally signed only under protest and on most solemn assurances that 
no further demands would be made. Even before the purchases were 
made, intruders in large numbers had settled upon each of the tracts 
in question, and they refused to withdraw across the boundaries now 
established, but remained on one pretext or another to await a new 
adjustment. This was particularly the case on Watauga and upper 
Holston rivers in northeastern Tennessee, where the settlers, finding 
themselves still within the Indian lioundary and being resolved to 
remain, effected a temporary lease from the Cherokee in 1772. As 
was expected and intended, the leas(> became a permanent occupancy, 
the nucleus settlement of the future State of Teiuiessee.^ 

Just before the outbreak of the Revolution, the botanist, AVilliam 
Bartram. made an extended tour of the Cherokee country, and has left 
us a pleasant account of the hospitable character and friendly dispo- 
sition of the Indians at that time. He gives a list of forty-three towns 
then iidiabited by the tribe.* 

The opening of the great Revolutionary struggle in 177») found the 
Indian tribes almost to a man ranged on the British side against the 

■Royce, Cherokee Nation, op. eit.,p. 149; Ramsey. Tennessee, p. 71, 1853. 

^Ramsey, op.cit.,pp. 93-122: Royee, op. cit. jip. lJfi-149. 

2 Ramsey, op.eit.,pp. 109-122; Royce, op. i-it. p. Ull et passilrl. 

< Bartram, Travels, pp. 3(«J-372, 1792. 


Aiiicricaiis. 'I'Ikmm' \v:i.-. yood reason t'oi' this. Siiico tlio tall ol' 
the Fi'oiicli ))()\v('r the British (iovoriiiiiciit luid stood to thciii as tho 
.soI(i. voprcscntatixt^ of authority, and tlic iiuardian and j)i'ot(>ctor of 
tlii'ir rig'htsaoainst constiMit cncroaciiHH'nts hv tiic Aiiit'ricaii Imrdcrors. 
LiccnstMl Ui-itisii traders were resident in e\-erv tribe and many iiad 
intermarried and raised families amony them, while the border man 
looked ui)oii tile Indian only as a enmlterer of the (>artli. Tiie British 
superintendents. Sir William .lohnson in tiie north and Claptain -lohn 
Stuart in the south, they knew as gen(>rous friends, whil(> hardly a 
warrior of them all was without some old cause of resentment against 
their backwoods neighboi-s. They felt that the only barrier l)etweeii 
themselves and national extinction was in th(> strength of the I^ritish 
gxtvernment. and when the final sevcrence ('ame they threw theii- 
whole power into the British scale. They were encouraged in this 
resolution by presents of clothing and other goods, with pi'omises of 
})lunder from the settlements and hopes of recovering a portion of their 
lost territories. The British go\-erimient liaving determined, as early 
as June, 1775, to call in the Indians against the Aiuericans, supplies 
of hatchets, guns, and anununition were issued to the warriors of all 
the tribes from the lakes to the gulf, and bounties were ofl'ered for 
Auierican scalps brought in to the coiiuuamling officer at Detroit or 
Oswego.' Even the Six Nations, who had agreed in solemn treaty to 
I'tMuain neutral. wer(> won over by these persuasions. Tn August, 1775, 
an Indian "• talk" was intercepted in whicli the Cherokee assured Cam- 
eron, the resident agent, that their warriors, enlisted in the service of 
the king, were ready at a signal to fall upon the back settlements of 
Carolina and (T(n)i-gia.'' Circular letters were sent out to all those 
persons in the back country supposed to be of royalist sympathies, 
dii'ecting them to repair to Cameron's head(iuai't(M-s in the Cherokee 
country to join the Indians in the invasion of the settlements.' 

In .lune, 177ti, a British fleet under command of Sir Peter I'arker. 
with a large naval and military forc(% attacked ('harleston. South Caro- 
lina, both by land and sea. and simultaneously a body of Cherokee, led 
by Tories in Indian disguise, came down from the moun ta i n s a n d ravaged 
the exposed frontier of South Carolina, killing and burning as they 
went. After a gallant defense by the garrison atCharl(>ston the British 
were repulsed, whereupon their Indian and Tory allies withdrew.' 

.Vbout the same time the wai'uing came from Nancy ^^'al■d (14), a 
noted friendly Indian woman of great authority in the Cherokee Nation, 
that seven hundred Cherokee warriors were advancing in two divisions 
against the Watauga and Holston settlements, with the design of 

' Ramsey, Tennessee, pp. 143-150, 1853; Monette, Valley of the Mississippi, i, p[i. 4U0, JOl, 131, 132, and 
II, pp. 33. 34, 1846; Roosevelt, Winning or the West, i. pp. 'JTH-Ml, anil ii, pp, 1-0, 18S9, 
2 Ramsey, op. eit., p. 143. 

■*Qm»te(l from Stedman. in Riimsey, op. trit., p. Iti'J. 
* Ramsey.op. cit.,p. Itl'J. 

48 MYTH8 OF THE CHEROKEE [eth.ann.19 

d(>str<)\-ing- everything' :is fur up as New river. The Holstoii men 
from both sides of the Virginia line hastily collected under Captain 
Thompson and marched against the Indians, whom they met and 
defeated with signal loss after a hard-fought liattle near the Long- 
island in the llolston (Kingsport, Tennessee), on August 20. The 
next daj' the second dixision of the Cherokee attacked the fort at 
Watauga, garrisoned l)y oidy forty men under Captain James Robert- 
son (15), but was repulsed without loss to the defenders, the Indians 
withdrawing on news of the result at the Long island. A Mrs. Bean 
and a l)oy named Moore were captured on this occasion and carried to 
one of the Cherokee towns in the neighborhood of Tellico, where the 
boy was burned, but the \voman, after she had l)een condemned to 
death and everything was in readiness for the tragedy, was rescued by 
the interposition of Nancy Ward. Two other Cherokee detachments 
moved against the upper settlements at the same time. One of these, 
finding all the inhabitants securely shut up in forts, returned without 
d(nng nuich damage. Th(> other ravaged the country on Clinch river 
almost to its head, and killed a man and wounded others at Black's 
station, now Abingdon, Virginia.' 

At the same time that one part of the Cherokee were raiding the 
Tennessee settlements others came down upon the frontiers of Caro- 
lina and Georgia. On the upp(n' Catawl>a they killed many people, but 
the whites took refuge in the stockade stations, where they defended 
themselves until General Rutherford (16) came to their relief. In 
Georgia an attempt had been made by a small party of Americans to 
seize Cameron, who lived in one of the Cherokee towns with his Indian 
wife, but, as was to have been expected, the Indians interfered, killing- 
several of the party and capturing- others, who were afterward tortured 
to death. The Cherokee of the Upper and ]\Iiddle towns, with some 
Creeks and Tories of the vicinity, led by Camei-on himself, at once 
beg-an ravaging the South Carolina border, l)urning houses, driving ofl' 
cattle, and killing men. women, and children without distinction, until 
the whole country was in a wild panic, the people abandoning- their 
farms to seek safety in the garrisoned forts. On one occasion an 
attack bj^ two himdred of the enemy, half of them being Tories, stripped 
and painted like Indians, was repulsed })y the timely arrival of a body 
of Americans, who succeeded in capturing thirteen of the Tories. The 
invasion extended into G(!orgia. where also property was destroyed 
and the inhabitants were driven from their homes.'-' 

Realizing- their common danger, the border states determined to 
strike such a concerted bhjw at the Cherokee as should render them 
passive while the struggle with England continued. In accord with 
this plan of cooperation the frontier forces were quickly mobilized and 

I Ramsey, Tennessfe, pp. 150-159, 1853. 

^Roosevelt, Winning of Hhe West, i, pp. 293-297, 1889. 


in the summer of 177fi four expoditiou.s were equipped froui Virginia. 
North Carolina, South Carolina, and Georgia, to enter the Cherokee 
territoi-y .simultaneously from as many different directions. 

In August of that year the army of North Carolina, 2,400 strong, 
under (Jeiieral (Jriffith Rutherford, crossed the Blue ridge at Swaa- 
nanoa gap, and following tlie main trail almost along the present line 
of the railroad, struck the first Indian town. Stika'yi, or Stecoee, on 
the Tuekasegee, near the present Whittier. The inhal)itants having 
fled, the soldii>rs hurncd the town, together with an unfinished town- 
house ready for the roof, cut down the standing corn, killed one or 
two straggling Indians, and then proceeded on their mission of destruc- 
tion. Every town upon Oconaluftee, Tucka.segee, and tii(^ upper 
part of Little Tennessee, and on Hiwassee to below the junction of 
Valley river — tliirty-six towns in all — was destroyed in turn, the corn 
cut down or trampled under the lioofs of the stock driven into the 
fields for that puipose. and the stock itself killed or carried off. Before 
such an overwhelming fori'C, supplemented as it was Viv three others 
simultaneously advancing from other directions, the Cherokee made 
but poor resistance, and Hed with their women and children into the 
fastnesses of the Great Smoky mountains, leaving their desolated fields 
and smoking towns behind them. As was usual in Indian wars, the 
actual number killed or taken was small, but the destruction of pro- 
perty was beyond calculation. At Sugartown (Kulsetsi'yi, east of the 
present Franklin) one detachment, sent to destroy it, was surprised, 
and escaped only tlirough the aid of another force sent to its rescue. 
Rutherford himself, while proceeding to the destruction of the Hiwas- 
see towns, encountered the Indians drawn up to oppose his progress in 
the Wayagap of the Nantahala mountains, and one of the hardest fights 
of the campaign resulted, the soldiers losing over forty killed and 
wounded, although the Cherokee were finall}' repulsed (IT). One of 
the Indians killed on this occasion was afterward discovered to be a 
woman, painted and armed like a warrior.^ 

On September 26 the Soutli Carolina army. 1,860 strong, under 
Colonel Andi-ew Williamson, and including a number of Catawba 
Indians, cH'ected a junction with Rutherford's forces on Hiwassee 
river, near the present Mui'phv, North Carolina. It had been expected 
that Williamson would join the northern army at Cowee, on the Little 
Tennessee*, when they would proceed together against the western 
towns, l)ut he had been delayed, and the work of destruction in tliat 
direction was already completed, so that after a short rest each army 
returned home along the rout(> t)y ^vhich it had come. 

The Soutli Carolina men had centered bv different detachments in 

'See no. no, "Incidentsof Personal Heroism." ForRntherford'scxpedition. sec Moore. Rutherford's 
K,xpedition. in North Carolinu I'niversity Magazine. February. 1KS.S; Swain, Sketch of the Indian War 
in 1770, iljid.. May. 1Xii2. reprinted in Historical Magazine. November, 1867; Ramsey, Tennessee, p. 164, 
18-53; RiMjsevelt. Winnini; of the West. I. pp. 291-302, 1889, ete. 

19 ETH 01 4 

50 MYTHS OF THE CHEROKEE [eth,asn.19 

the lowei" Cherokee towns about the head of Savannah river, burninj^ 
one town after another, cutting down the peach trees and ripened 
corn, and having an occasional brush with the Cherokee, who hung con- 
stantly upon their flanks. At the town of Seneca, near which they 
encountered Cameron with his Indians and Tories, they had desti'oyed 
six thousand bushels of corn, besides other food stores, after burning all 
the houses, the Indians having retreated after a stout resistance. The 
most serious encounter had taken place at Tomassee, where several 
whites and sixteen Cherokee were killed, the latter being all scalped 
afterward. Having completed the ruin of the Lower towns, Wil- 
liamson had crossed over Kabun gap and descended into the valley of the 
Little Tennessee to cooperate with Rutherford in the destruction of the 
Middle and Valley towns. As the army advanced every house in every 
settlement met was burned — ninety houses in one settlement alone — and 
detachments were sent into the fields to destroy the corn, of which the 
smallest town was estimated to have two hundred acres, besides pota- 
toes, beans, and orchards of peach trees. The stores of dressed deer- 
ski ns and other valua))les were carried off. Everything was swept clean, 
and the Indians who were not killed or taken were driven, homeless 
refugees, into the dark recesses of Nantahala or painfully made their 
way across to the Overhill towns in Tennessee, which were already 
menaced by another invasion from the north.' 

In July, while Williamson was engaged on the the upper Savannah, 
a force of two hundred Georgians, under Colonel Samuel Jack, had 
marched in the same direction and succeeded in burning two towns on 
the heads of Chattahoochee and Tugaloo rivers, destroying the corn 
and driving ofi' the cattle, without the loss of a man, the Cherokee 
having apparently falltMi liack to concentrate for resistance in the 

The Virginia army, al)out two thousand strong, under Colonel 
William Christian (18), rendezvoused in August at the Long island 
of the Holston. the i-egular gathering place on the Tennessee side of 
the mountains. Among them were several hundred men from North 
Carolina, with all who could be spared from the garrisons on the 
Tennessee side. Paying but little attention to small bodies of Indi- 
ans, who tried to divert attention or to delay progress by flank attacks, 
they advanced steadily, but cautiously, along the great Indian war- 
path (ly) toward the crossing of the French Broad, where a strong 
force of Cherokee was reported to be in waiting to dispute their pas- 
sage. Just before reaching the river the Indians sent a Tory trader 

'For Williamson's expedition, see Ross Journal, with Rockwell's note.s, in Historical MngaEine, 
October, 1876; Swain, Sketch of the Indian War in' 1776, in North Carolina University Magazine for 
May, 1852, reprinted in Historical JIagazine, November, 1867; Jones, Georgia, ii, p. 246 et passim, 
1883; Ramsey, Tennessee, 163-164, lS.i3; Roosevelt, Winning of the West, i. pp. '296-303, 1S89. 

= Jones, op. cit.,p. '246; Ramsey, op. cit, p. 163: Roosevelt, o|). cit..p. '29.'). 

MooxEY] christian's expedition 17T() 51 

with ;i fluy of tiiicc to discuss terms. Ktiowiiiji' that his own strength 
w;is overwheiniino-. Christian allowed the envo}' to go through the 
whole camp and then sent him back with the message that there could 
be no terms until the Cherokee towns had been destroyed. Arriving 
at the ford, he kindled tires and made all preparations as if intending 
to camp there for several days. As soon as night fell, however, he 
secretly drew otl' half his force and crossed the river lower down, to 
come upon the Indians in their rear. This was a work of great diffi- 
culty: as the water was so deep that it came up almost to the shoulders 
of the men, while the current was so rapid that they were obliged to 
support eacli otht>r four aln-east to prevent being swept off their feet. 
However, they kept their guns and powder dry. On reaching the 
other side they wei'e surprised to find no enemy. Disheartened at the 
strength of the invasion, the Indians had tied without even a show of 
resistance. It is prol)able that nearly all their men and resources had 
been drawn oil to oppose the Carolina forces on their eastern border, 
and the few who remained felt themselves unequal to the contest. 

Advancing without opposition. Christian reached the towns on 
Little Tennessee early in Xovemt)er, and, finding them deserted, pro- 
ceeded to destroy them, one after another, with their outlying fields. 
The few lingering warriors discovered were all killed. In the mean- 
time messages had been sent out to the farther towns, in response to 
which several of their head men came into Christian's camp to treat 
for peace. On their agreement to surrender all the prisoners and 
captured stock in their hands and to cede to the whites all the disputed 
territory occupied by the Tennessee settlements, as soon as represent- 
atives of the whole tribe could be assembled in the spring. Christian 
consented to susi)end hostilities and retire without doing further 
injury. An exception was made against Tuskegee and another town, 
which had been concerned in the burning of the 1)oy taken from 
Watauga, already noted, and these two were reduced to ashes. The 
sacred "peace town.'' Echota ('20). had not been molested. ]\Iost of 
the troops were disl)anded on their return to the Long island, ])ut a 
part remained and Ijuilt Fort Patrick Henry, where they went into 
winter quarters.^ 

From incidental notices in narratives wi-itt(Mi by some of the partici- 
pants, we obtain interesting side-lights on the niert'iless character of this 
old l)order warfare. In addition to the ordinary destruction of war — the 
l)ui'iiing of towns, the wasting of fruitful Helds. and the killing of the 
defenders — we find that every Indian warri(U' killed was scalped, when 
opportunity permitted; women, as well iis men. were shot down and 
afterward '"helpc'd to theii- end": and prisoniM-s taken were put up at 
auction as slaves when not killed on the spot. Near Tomassee a small 

' For the Virginia-Tenne.s.iee expedition see Roosevelt, Winning of the West, i, pp. 303-305, 1889; 
Ramsey, Tennessee, pp. 16.5-lTO, 1853. 

52 MYTHS OF THE CHEROKEE [eth.anx. 19 

party of Iiidiiiiis was surrounded and entirely cut ott'. "Sixteen ^yerc 
found dead in the valley when the battle ended. These our men 
scalped." In a personal encounter "a stout Indian engaged a sturdy 
3'oung white man, who was a good bruiser and expert at gouging. 
After breaking their guns on each other they laid hold of one another, 
when the cracker had his thumbs instantly in the fellow's eyes, who 
I'oared and cried ' raiudy'' — enough, in Eiiglisii. "Damn you,' says 
the white man. "you can never have enough while you arc alive.' He 
then threw him down, set his foot upon his head, and scalped hnu 
alive; then took up one of the broken guns and knocked out his brains. 
It would have been fun if he had let the latter action alone and sent 
him home without his nightcap, to tell his countrymen how he had 
been treated." Later on some of the same detachment (Williamson's) 
seeing a woman ahead, fired on her and brought her down with two 
serious wounds, but 3'et able to speak. After getting what informa- 
tion she could give them, through a half-breed interpreter, "the 
informer being unable to travel, some of our men favored her so far 
that they killed her there, to put her out of pain." A few days later 
"a party of Colonel Thomas's regiment, being on a hunt of plunder, 
or some such thing, found an Indian squaw and took her prisonei', she 
being lame, was unable to go with her friends. She was so sullen 
that she would, as an old saying is, neither lead nor drive, and by their 
account she died in their hands; but I suppose they helped her to her 
end." At this place — on the Hiwassee — they found a large town, 
having "upwards of ninety houses, and large quantities of corn,'' and 
"we encamped among the corn, whei"e we had a great plenty of corn, 
peas, beans, potatoes, and hogs," and on the next daj^ "we were 
ordered to assemble in companies to spread through the town to 
destroy, cut down, and liurn all the vegetables l)elonging to our 
heathen enemies, which was no small undertaking, they being so 
plentifully supplied.'' Continuing to another town, "we engaged in 
our former labor, that is, cutting and destroying all things that might 
be of advantage to our enemies. Finding here curious ])uildings, 
great apple trees, and whitc-man-like improvements, these we 
destroyed." ^ 

While crossing over the mountains Ruthci'ford's men approached a 
house belonging to a ti'ader, when one of his negro slaves ran out and 
"was shot by the Reverend James Hall, the chaplain, as he ran, mis- 
taking him for an Indian."" Soon after they captured two women 
and a boy. It was proposed to auction them oil' at once to tiie highest 
bidder, and when one of the officers protested that the matter should 
l)e left to the disposition of Congress, "the greater part swore bloodily 
that if they were not sold for slaves upon the spot they would kill and 

iRoss Journal, in Historical Jlagazine, October, 1867. 

-Swain, Sketch of the Indian War of 177fi, in Hi.storical JIagu/.inc, Xovembcr, 1M7. 


scalji th(Mii iniiiu'diately." Tlu' pi'isoiicrs wore accord inijly sold for 
about tAvchc liimdi'ed dollai's.' 

At tlio Wolf Hills .settloiiHMit. now Aliiiiudoii. ^'il•^■illia. a party sent 
out from the foi't returned with the scalps of eleven warriors. Haviiiii' 
recovei'ed tlie hooks which tiieir ininister liad left hehiiul in iiis cabin, 
they held a service of prayer for their success, after which tlie fi-(\sh 
scalps were hune' u{)on a pole above the gate of the foi't. The l)arl)a- 
rous custom of scalpino- to which the border men had become habitu- 
ated in the earlier wars was practiced upon every occasion when 
opportunity pi-esented. at least upon the bodies of wari-iors. and the 
South Cart)lina lejiislature oii'ered a liounty of seventy-five pounds tor 
every warrior's scalp, a higher reward, however. Iieing oti'ercd for 
prisoners." In spite of all the l)itterness which the war aroused there 
seems to l)e no record of any scalping of Tories or other whites by the 
Americans (21). 

The effect upon the Cherokee of this irruption of more than six 
thousand armed enemies into their tei-ritory was well nigh paralyzing. 
More tlian tifty of their towns had ))een burned, their orchards cut 
down, their lields wasted, their cattle and horses killed or driven ofl'. 
their stores of buckskin and other personal property plundered. 
Hundreds of their people had Ijeen killed or had died of starvation 
and exposure, others wei'e prisoners in the hands of the Americans, 
and some iiad been sold into slavery. Those who had escaped were 
fugitives in the mountains, living upon acorns, chestnuts, and wild 
game, or were refugees with the British.^ From the Virginia line to 
the Chattahoochee the chain of destruction was complete. For the 
present at least any further resistance was hopeless, and they were 
compelled to sue for peace. 

By a treaty concluded at DeWitts Corners in South Carolina on Ma}' 
2<», 1777. the first ever made with the new states, the Lower Cherokee 
surrendered to the conqu(>ror all of their remaining territory in South 
Carolina, excepting a narrow strip along the western boundary. Just 
two months later, on July 20, by treaty at the Long island, as had been 
arranged liy Christian in the preceding fall, the ^liddle and Upper 
Cherokee ceded everything east of the Blue ridge, together with all 
the disputed tei'ritory on the Watauga, Nolichucky, upper Holston, 
and New ri\ers. By this second treaty also Captain James Robei'tson 
was appointed agent for the Cherokee, to reside at Echota, to watch 
their movements, recover any captured property, and prevent their 
correspondence with ])ersons luifriendly to tiie American cause. As 
tlie Federal government was not yet in perfect operation these treaties 

' J[oore's narrative, in North Carolina University Magazine, February, 1888. 

= Roosevelt, Winning of the West, I. pp. 285, 290, 303. 1S8'J. 

3 About live hundred sought refuge with Stuart, the British Indian superintendent in Florida, 
where they were fed for some time at the expense of the British government (Jones, Georgia, ii, 
p. 246, 1883). 

54 MYTHS OF THE CHEROKEE [f,th.ann.19 

were negotiated by eoinmissioner.s from the four states adjoining the 
Cherokee country, the territory thus acquired being parceled out to 
South Carolina, North Carolina, and Tennessee/ 

While the Cherokee Nation had thus been compelled to a treaty of 
peace, a very considerable portion of the tribe was irreconcilaljly hos- 
tile to the Americans and refused to be a party to the late cessions, 
especially on the Teimessee side. Although Ata-kullakulla sent word 
that he was ready with five hundred young warriors to fight for the 
Americans against the English or Indian enemy whenever called upon, 
Dragging-canoe (Tsivu-gunsi'ni), who had led the opposition against 
the Watauga settlements, declared that he would hold fast to Caiueron's 
talk and continue to make war upon those who had taken his hunting 
grounds. Under his leadership some hundreds of the most warlike 
and implacable warriors of the tribe, with their families, drew out 
from the Upper and Middle towns and moved far down upon Tennes- 
see river, where they established new settlements on Chickaniauga 
creek, in the neighborhood of the present Chattanooga. The locality 
appears to have been already a rendezvous for a sort of Indian ban- 
ditti, who sometimes plundered boats disabled in the rapids at this 
point while descending the river. Under the name ''Chickamaugas" 
they soon became noted for their uncompromising and never-ceasing 
hostility. In 1782, in consequence of the destruction of their towns 
by Sevier and Campbell, thej^ abandoned this location and moved 
farther down the river, where they built what were afterwards known 
as the "five lower towns," viz. Running Water, Nickajack, Long- 
Island. Crow town, and Lookout Mountain town. These were all on 
the extreme western Cherokee frontier, near where Tennessee river 
crosses the state line, the fii'st three being within the present limits of 
Tennessee, while Lookout Mountain town and Crow town were 
respectively in the adjacent corners of Georgia and Alabama. Their 
population was recruited from Creeks, Shawano, and white Tories, until 
they were estimated at a thousand warriors. Here they remained, 
a constant thorn in the side of Tennessee, until their towns were 
destroyed in 1794." 

The expatriated Lower Cherokee also removed to the farthest west- 
tern })order of their tribal territory, where they might hope to be 
secure from encroachment for a time at least, and built new towns for 
themselves on the upper waters of the Coosa. Twenty years after- 

1 Royce, Cherokee Nation, in Fifth Ann. Rep. Bureau of Ethnology, p. 150 and map, 1SS8; Ramsey, 
Tennessee, pp. 172-174, 1853; Stevens, Georgia, ii, p. 144, 1859: Roosevelt, Winning of the West, i, p. 
306, 1889. 

- Ramsey, op. eit., pp. 171-177, 185-186, 610 et passim; Royce, op. cit., p. 1.50; Campbell letter, 1782, 
and other documents in Virginia State Papers, iii, pp. 271, .571, 599, ISH'i, and iv, pp. 118, 286. 1884: 
Blount letter, January 14, 1793, American State Papers: Indian Affairs, i, p. 431, 1832. Campbell says 
they abandoned their first location on account of the invasion from Tennessee. Governor Blount 
says they left on account of witches. 


ward Hiiwkins t'ouiul tli(> jropulation of ^^'illstowtl, in cxtrt'iiK' western 
Goorgfia. entii'ely made u}) of i^efiiijiM's from the Savannah, and the 
ehildren so familiar from their parents witli stories of AViliiamson's 
in\asion that they ran screaming fi'om tlie face of a white man (22).' 

In Apiil. 1777. the legislature of North Carolina, of whicli Tennes- 
see was still a part, authorized bounties oi land in the new teriitory to 
all ahle-liodied men who should volunteer against tiie remaining iiostile 
C'hei-okee. I'nder tiiis act comiJanies of rangei's were kept along the 
e.\])osed l)order to cut off I'aiding i)ai'ti(»s of Indians and to protect the 
steady advance of the pioneei-s, with the result that the Tennessee set- 
t lements enjo\'od a brief respite and were even able to send some assist- 
aiK'e to their bi'ethren in Kentucky, who were sorely pressed by the 
Shawano and other northern trii)es.' 

The war betw(>en England and tiie colonies still continued, however, 
and tiit> British government was unremitting in its effort to secui'c the 
acti\e assistance of the Indians. AVith the Creeks raiding the Georgia 
aud South Carolina frontier, and with a British agent, Colonel Brown, 
aiul a number of Torv refugees regularlv domiciled at Chickamauga,^ 
it was impossible for the Cherokee long to remain cjuiet. In the 
spring of 1779 the warning came fi'om -Robertson, stationed at Echota, 
that three hundred warriors from Chickamauga h;id stai'ted against the 
back settlements of North Carolina. Without a day's delay the states 
of North Carolina (including Tennessee) and Virginia united to send a 
strong force of volunteers against them under command of Colonels 
Shelby and Montgomery. Descending the Holston in April in a fleet 
of canoes built for the occasion, they took the Chickamauga towns so 
completely by surprisi^ that the few warriors remaining fled to the 
mountains without attempting to give battle. Several were killed, 
Chickamauga and the outlying villages were burned, twenty thousand 
busliels of corn were destroyed and large numl)ers of horses and cattle 
captured, together with a great ([uantity of goods sent l)y the British 
Governor Hamilton at Detroit for distribution to the Indians. The 
success of this expedition frusti'ated the execution of a project by 
Hamilton for uniting all the northern and southern Indians, to lie 
assisted by British regulars, in a concerted attack along the whole 
Auiei'ican fi'onti(M-. On learning, through ruimers. of the blow that 
had befallen them, the Chickamauga wari-iors gave uj) ;ill idea of 
invading the settlements, and returned to their wasted villages.* They, 
as well as the Creeks, however, kept in constant communication with 

' Hawkins, manuscript joiirnnI, 17%. with <ici)rj;iu Historical Siiciety. 

-Kiiiiise.v. TcMines.soe. pp. 174-178. ISM. 

'Campbell letter. l'S'>. Virginia State Tapers, in. p. 271. ISK?. 

<Ramsc.v, op. cit. pp. ISG-ISS; Roosevelt, WinniiiK of the West. n. pp. 236-288, 1889. Ramse.v's stiUc- 
ments. chiefly on Haywood's authority, of the strength of the exportition, the number of warriors 
killed, etc., are so evidently overdrawn that they are here omitted. 


the British coiimiiindcr in Savannah. In this year also a delegation of 
Cherokee vi.siteci the Ohio towns to otfer condolences f)n the death of 
the noted Delaware chief, White-eyes.' 

In the early spring of 1780 a large company of emigrants under 
Colonel John Donclson descended the Holston and the Tennessee to 
the Ohio, whence they ascended the Cumlierland, ett'cctcd a junction 
with another party under Captain James Robertson, which had just 
arrived by a toilsome overland I'oute, and made the first settlement on 
the present site of Nashville. In passing the Chickamauga towns they 
had run the gauntlet of the hostile Cherokee, who pursued them for a 
considerable distance beyond the whirlpool known as the Suck, where 
the river breaks through the mountain. The famil}- of a man named 
Stuart being infected with the smallpox, his boat dropped behind, and 
all on board, twenty-eight in number, were killed or taken by the 
Indians, their cries being distinctly heard by their friends ahead who 
were unalile to help them. Another boat having run upon the rocks, 
the three women in it, one of whom had become a mother the night 
before, threw the cargo into the river, and then, jumping into the 
water, succeeded in pushing the boat into the current while the hus- 
band of one of them kept the Indians at bay with his rifle. The infant 
was killed in the confusion. Three cowards attempted to escape, 
without thought of their companions. One was drowned in the river; 
the other two were captured and carried to Chickamauga, where one 
was burned and the other was ransomed Ijy a trader. The rest went 
on their way to found the capital of a new commonwealth.^ As if in 
retributive justice, the smallpox bi'oke out in the Chickamauga band in 
consequence of the capture of Stuart's familj', causing the death of 
a great number.^ 

The British having reconcjuered Georgia and South Carolina and 
destroyed all resistance in the south, early in 1780 Cornwallis, with his 
subordinates, Ferguson and the merciless Tarleton, prepared to invade 
North Carolina and sweep the country northward to Virginia. The 
Creeks under McCTillivray (23), and a manlier of the Cherokee under 
various local chiefs, together with the Tories, at once joined his 

While the Tennessee backwoodsmen were gathered at a barbecue to 
contest for a shooting prize, a paroled prisoner brought a demand 
from Ferguson for their submission; with the threat, if they refused, 
that he would cross the mountains, hang their leaders, kill every man 
found in arms and burn every settlement. Up to this time the moun- 
tain men had confined their efl'ort to holding in check the Indian 
enemy, but now, with the fate of the Revolution at stake, they felt 

1 Heckewelder, Indian Nations, p. 327, reprint of 187(j. 

-Donelson's Journal, etc., in Ramsey, Tennessee, pp. 197-203, 1853; Kiicjsevelt, Winning u! tlie West, 
II, pp. 324-340. 1SS9. 
»Ibid., II, p. 337. 


that tlio timo for widcM- actioTi hud conio. They resolved not to await 
the attat'k. tmt to anticipate it. Witliout order or authority from 
Congress, without tents, commissary, or supplies, the Indian fightei's 
of Virginia, North Carolina, and Tennessee quickly assembled at the 
Sycamore shoals of the ^\ atauga to tlie iumi})er of about one thousand 
men under Campl)ell of Virginia, Sevier (24) and Shelby of Temiessee, 
and McDowell of North Carolina. Crossing the moimtains, they met 
Fergu.^on at Kings mountain in South Carolina on October 7, 17^0, 
and gained the decisive victoi'v that turned the tide of the Kexolutioii 
in the South.' 

It is in place here to quote a de.scription of these men in buckskin, 
white by liiood and tradition, but half Indian in habit and in.stinct, 
who, in half a century of continuous contiict, drove l)ack Creeks, 
Cherokee, and Shawano, and with one hand on the plow and tiie other 
on the ritle redeemed a wilderness and carried civilization and frt-e 
government to the banks of the Mississippi. 

"They were led by leaders they trusted, they were wonted to Indian 
warfare, they were skilled as horsemen and marksmen, thej^ knew how 
to face every kind of danger, hardship, and privation. Their fringed 
and tasseled hunting shirts were girded by l)ead-worked belts, and the 
trappings of their horses were stained red and yellow. On their heads 
they wore caps of coon skin or mink skin, with the tails hanging 
down, or else felt hats, in each of which was thrust a buck tail or a 
sprig of evergreen. Every man carried a small-bore rifle, a toma- 
hawk, and a scalping knife. A very few of the officers had swords, 
and there was not a bayonet nor a tent in the army."- 

To strike the blow at Kings mountain the border men had been 
forced to leave their own homes unprotected. Even before they could 
cross the mountains on their return the news came that the Cherokee 
were again out in force for the destruction of the upper settlements, 
and their luuuerous small bands were killing, burning, and plundering 
in the usual Indian fasiiion. ^\'ithout loss of time the Holstoii settle- 
ments of Virginia and Tennessee at once raised seven hundred mounted 
riflemen to mai'ch against the enemy, the conuuand being assigned to 
Colonel Arthur Campl)ell of Virginia and Colonel John Sevier of 

Sevier started first with nearly three hundred men, going south 
along the great Indian war trail and dri\ing small parties of the 
Cherokee before him, until he crossed the French Broad and came 
upon seventy of them on Hoytls creek, not far fi'om the present Seviei'- 
ville, on December 16, 1780. Ordering his men to spread out into a 
half circle, he sent ahead some scouts, who, by an attack and feigned 
retreat, managed to draw the Indians into the trap thus prepared, 

> Roosevelt. Win!>ing of the West, ii, pp. 241-294, 1889; Ramsey, Temies-see, pp. 208-249, 1853. 
- RooseveU, op. cit., p. 256. 

58 MYTHS OF THE CHEROKEE [eth.ans.19 

with the result that they lef t thii'teen dead and all their plunder, while 
not one of the whites was even wounded.' 

A few daj's later Sevier was joined by Campbell with the remainder 
of the force. Advancing to the Little Teimessee with but slight 
resistance, they crossed three miles below Echota while the Indians 
were watching for them at the ford above. Then dividing into two 
bodies, they proceeded to destroy the towns along the river. The 
chiefs sent peace talks through Nanc}' Ward, the Cherokee woman 
who had so befi-iended the whites in ITTfi, but to these overtures 
Campbell returned an evasive answer until he could first destroy 
the towns on lower Hiwassee, whose warriors had been particularly 
hostile. Continuing southward, the troops destroyed these towns, 
Hiwassee and Chestuee, with all their stores of provisions, finishing 
the work on the last day of the year. The Indians had fled before 
them, keeping spies out to watch their movements. One of these, 
while giving signals from a ridge by beating a drum, was shot b\' the 
whites. The soldiers lost only one man, who was bui'ied in an Indian 
cabin which was then burned down to conceal the trace of the inter- 
ment. The return march was begun on New Year's dav. Ten prin- 
cipal towns, including Echota, the capital, had been destroj'ed, besides 
several smaller villages, containing in the aggregate over one thousand 
houses, and not less than fifty thousand bushels of corn and large stores 
of other provision. Everything not needed on the return march 
was coiumitted to the flames or otherwise wasted. Of all the towns 
west of the mountains only Talassee, and one or two about Chicka- 
mauga or on the headwaters of the Coosa, escaped. The whites had 
lost only one man killed and two wounded. Before the return a 
proclamation was sent to the Cherokee chiefs, warning them to make 
peace on penalty of a worse visitation.' 

Some Cherokee who met them at Echota, on the return march, to 
talk of peace, brought in and surrendered several white prisoners.^ 
One reason for the slight resistance made bj' the Indians was prob- 
ably the fact that at the very time of the invasion many of their 
warriors were away, raiding on the Upper Holston and in the neigh- 
borhood of Cumberland gap.* 

Although the Upper or Overhill Cherokee were thus humbled, 
those of the middle towns, on the head waters of Little Tennessee, still 
continued to send out parties against the back settlements. Sevier 

1 Roosevelt. Winning of the West, ii, pp. 298-300, 1S89; Ramsey, Tennessee, pp. 2fil-264, 18.53. There 
is great discrepanc.v in the various accounts of this tight, from the attempts of interested historians 
to magnify the size of the victory. One writer gives the Indians 1,000 warrior.s. Here, as el-sewhere, 
Roosevelt is a more reliable guide, his statements being usually from ottieial documents. 

^Roosevelt, op. cit., pp. 300-304: Ramsey, op. oit., pp. 2e.5-2C8; Campbell, report, .January 1,5, 1781, in 
Virginia State Papers, i, p. 436. Haywood and others after him make the expedition go as far as 
Chickamauga and Coosa river, hut Campbell's report expressly denies this. 

■'Ramsey, op. cit., p. 20(). 

* Roosevelt, op. cit., p. 302. 


det(M'miiiod to iiuiko a suddon stroko upon tlicMii. and oarly in March 
of tlio same yt>ar, ITSl, with l.")0 ))icked horsenicn, he, started to cross 
the Great Smoky mountains over trails never In^fore attempted l)\^ 
white men, and so rou<fh in places that it was hardly possible to lead 
horses. Fallino- unexpectedly upon Tuckasegee. near the present 
Webster. North Carolina, he took the town completely by surprise, 
killing" several warriors and capturing- a luuuber of women and chil- 
dren. Two other principal towns and three smaller settlements were 
taken in the same wa}^ with a quantity of provision and al)Out '2(H) 
horses, the Indians ])eing entirely ofl" their guard and unprepared to 
make any effecti\e resistance. Having spread destruction through 
the middle towns, with the loss to himself of only one man killed and 
another wounded, he was off again as suddenly as iu^ had conH>, moving 
so rapidly that he was well on his homeward way ])efore the Cherokee 
could gather for pursuit.' At the same time a smaller Tennessee expe- 
dition went out to disperse the Indians who had been making head- 
quarters in the mountainsabout Cumberland gapand harassing travelers 
along the road to Kentucky." Numerous indications of Indians were 
found, but none were met, although the coiuitry was scoured for a con- 
8ideral)le distance.' In sunnner the Cherokee made another incursion, 
this time upon the new settlements on the French Broad, near the present 
Newport, Tennessee. With a hundred horsemen Sevier fell suddenly 
upon their camp on Indian creek, killed a dozen warriors, and scat- 
tered the rest.* By these successive blows the Cherokee were so worn 
out and dispirited that they were forced to sue for peace, and in mid- 
sunnuer of 1781 a treaty of peace — doubtful though it might l)e — was 
negotiated at the Long island of the Holston.'' The respite came just 
in time to allow the Teunesseeans to send a detachment against Corn- 

Although there was truce in Tennessee, there was noiu' in the South. 
In November of this year the Cherokee made a sudden inroad upon 
the Georgia settlements, destroying everything in their way. In 
retaliation a force under General Pickens marched into their country, 
destroying their towns as far as Valley river. Finding further ])rog- 
ress blocked b}' lieavy snows and learning thr<jugh a prisonei' that the 
Indians, who had retired before him, were collecting to oppose him in 
the mountains, he withdrew, as ht> says, "through absolute necessity," 
having accomplished very little of the result expected. Shortly after- 
ward the Cherokee, together with some Ci'(>(>ks, again invaded (xeorgia, 

I CiiinplH'U, k'tttT. Miircli as, 17.H1, in Virginia StaU' I'afjors, I, |i. 602, IsTS; Miirtin, lotUT. March .SI, 17S1, 
ibid., p. 6i;i; Ranisuy, Tennessee, p. 2tiS, 1853; Roosevelt, Winning of tlie West, ii, pp. 30.V307, 18S9. 

'Campbell, letter, JIarch 28. 1781, in Virginia State Papers, i, p. ri02, 187,5. 

3 Ramsey, op. cit., p. 209. 

*Ibid.; Roosevelt, op. cit., p. 307. 

'Ibid.; Ramsey, op. cit., pp. 2(')7, 268. Tlie latter authority .seems to nnike it 1782, whii-h is evidently 
a mistake. 

60 MYTHS OF THE CHEROKEK [et)i.ans.19 

hilt woro met on Oconee I'iver iind driven baek })V a detiu-hniont of 
Ameriean troops.' 

The Overhill Cherokee, on lower Little Tennessee, seem to have been 
trying- in good faith to hold to the peace established at the Long 
island. Early in 1781 the government land office had been closed to 
further entries, not to be opened again until peace had been declared 
with England, but the borderers paid little attention to the law in 
such matters, and the rage for speculation in Tennessee lands grew 
stronger daily.' In the fall of 1782 the chief, Old Tassel of Echota, 
on behalf of all the friendly chiefs and towns, sent a pathetic talk 
to the governors of Virginia and North Carolina, complaining that 
in spite of all their eti'orts to remain quiet the settlers were constantly 
encroaching- upon them, and had built houses within a day's walk of 
the Cherokee towns. They asked that all those whites who had settled 
beyond the boundary last established should be removed.-' As was 
to have been expected, this was never done. 

The Chickamauga band, however, and those farther to the south, 
were still bent on war. lieing actively encouraged in that disposition 
by the British agents and refugee loyalists living- among them. They 
continued to raid both north and south, and in September, 1782, 
Sevier, with 200 mounted men, again made a descent upon their towns, 
destroying- several of their settlements about Chickamauga creek, and 
penetrating as far as the important town of Ustana'li, on the head- 
waters of Coosa river, near the present Calhoun, Georgia. This also 
he destroyed. Every warrior found was killed, together with a white 
man found in one of the towns, papers showed that he had been 
active in inciting the Indians to war. On the return the expedition 
halted at Echota. where new assurances were received from the 
friendly element.' In the meantime a Georgia expedition of over 400 
men, under General Pickens, had been ravaging the Cherokee towns 
in the same quarter, with such effect that the Cherokee were forced to 
purchase peace by a further surrender of territory on the head of 
Broad river in Georgia." This cession was concluded at a treaty of 
peace held with the Georgia commissioners at Augusta in the next 
year, and was confirmed later b\r the Creeks, who claimed an interest 
in the same lands, but was never accepted by either as the voluntary' 
act of their tribe as a whole." 

By the preliminary treaty of Paris, November 30, 1782, the long 
Revolutionar}' struggle for independence was brought to a close, and the 
Cherokee, as well as the other tribes, seeing the hopelessness of con- 

1 Stevens, Georgia, ii, pp. 282-285, 1859; Jones. Georgia, ii, p. 503, 1SS3. 

= Roosevelt, Wiimins; of tlie West, ii, p, 311, 1889. 

"Old Tassel's talk, in Ramsey, Tennessee, p. 271, 1853, and in Roosevelt, op. eit.,p. 315. 

< Ramsey, op. eit., p. 272; Roosevelt, op. cit., p. 317 et passim. 

^Stevens, op. cit., pp. 411—115. 

«Royce, Cherokee Nation, in Fifth Ann. Rep. Bureau of Ethnology, p. 151, 1888. 


tiiuiiiio- the contest alone, hogun to .suo for poai'O. By sovcii years of 
t'onstaiit warfare thcj' had been reduced totlie lowest depth of misery, 
almost indeed to the verge of extinction. Over and over again their 
towns had i)een laid in ashes and thcii' fields wasted. Their best war- 
riors liad been killed and their women and children had sickened and 
starved in the mountains. Their great war chief, Oconostota, who 
had led them to victory in 1780, was now a broken old man, and in 
this year, at Echota, formally resigned his oflice in favor of his son, 
The Terrapin. To complete their brinmiing cup of misery the small- 
pox again l)rokc out among them in 17s3.' Deprived of the assistance^ 
of their former white allies they wee left to their own cruel fate, 
the last feeble resistance of the mountain warriors to the advancing 
tide of settlement came to an end with the burning of C'owee town." and 
the way was left open to an arrangement. In the same year the North 
Carolina legislature appointed an agent for the Cherokee and made 
regulations foi- the government of tradei's among them.' 

Relatujxs with the United States 
from the first treaty to the removal — 1785-1s38 

Passing over several unsatisfactory and generally abortive negotia- 
tions conducted bj- the various state governments in iTSS-B-i. includ- 
ing the treaty of Augusta already noted,* we come to the turinng 
point in the history of the Cherokee, their first treaty with the new 
government of the United States for peace and boundaiy delimitation, 
concluded at Hopewell {■2o) in South Carolina on November 28. 1785. 
Nearly one thousand Cherokee attended, the commissioners for the 
United States being Colonel Benjamin Hawkins (2t3). of North Caro- 
lina; (reneral Andrew Pickens, of South Carolina; Cherokee Agent 
Joseph Martin, of Tennessee, and Colonel Lachlan Mcintosh, of 
Georgia. The instrument was signed by thirty-seven chiefs and prin- 
cipal men, representing nearly as many different towns. The negotia- 
tions occupied ten days, being complicated by a protest on the part of 
North Carolina and (xeorgia against the action of the govermuent com- 
missioners in continuing to the Indians some lands which had already 
been appropriated as l)ounty lands for state troops without the con.sent 
of the Cherokee. On the other hand the Cherokee complained that 
;3.0()() white settlers were at that momiMit in occupancy of unceded land 
between the Holston and the French Broad. In spite of their prot(>st 
these intruders were allowed to remain, although the tcri'itory wa< 
not acquired })y treaty until some years later. As Hnally arranged 
the treaty left the Middle and Upper towns, and those in the vicinity 

•See rtocuments in Virginia State Papers, in, pp.234,398, .527, 1SS.3. 

= Riimsey. Tennesice. p. 2*0, IS.^:!. ^ n^i,]. _ p. 27'i. 

<See Koyce, Clierokec Nation, op.cit., pp. 151,1.32: Ranjsey, op. cit., p. 299 I'l passim. 

62 MYTHS OF THE CHEROKEE [eth.ann.19 

of Coosa river, undisturbed, while the whole country east of the Blue 
ridge, with the Watauga at d Cumberland settlements, was given over 
to the whites. The general boundary followed the dividing ridge 
between Cumberland river and the more southern waters of the Ten- 
nessee eastward to the junction of the two forks of Holston, near the 
present Kingsport, Tennessee, thence southward to the Blue ridge 
and southwestward to a point not far from the present Atlanta, 
Georgia, thence westward to the Coosa river and northwestwai'd to a 
creek running into Tennessee river at the western line of Alabama, 
thence northward with the Tennessee river to the beginning. The 
lands south and west of these lines were i-ecognized as belonging to the 
Creeks and Chickasaw. Hostilities were to cease and the Cherokee 
were taken under the protection of the United States. The proceed- 
ings ended with the distribution of a few presents.' 

While the Hopewell treaty defined the relations of the Cherokee to 
the general government and furnished a .safe basis for future negotia- 
tion, it yet failed to bring conjplete peace and security. Thousands 
of intruders were still settled on Indian lands, and minor aggressions 
and reprisals were continually occurring. The Creeks and the north- 
ern triljes were still hostile and remained so for some years later, and 
theii' warriors, cooperating with those of the implacable Chickamauga 
towns, continued to annoy the exposed settlements, particularly on the 
Cumberland. The British had withdrawn from the South, but the 
Spaniards and French, who claimed the lower Mississippi and the 
Gulf region and had their trading posts in west Tennessee, took every 
opportunity to encourage the spirit of hostility to the Americans." 
But the spirit of the Cherokee nation was broken and the Holston 
settlements were now too surely established to be destroyed. 

The Cumberland settlements founded by Robertson and Donelson in 
the winter of 1779-80 had had but short respite. Early in spring the 
Indians — Cherokee, Creeks, Chickasaw^ and northern Indians — had 
Vjegun a series of attacks with the design of driving these intruders 
from their lands, and thenceforth for years no man's life was safe out- 
side the stockade. The long list of settlers shot down at work or while 
hunting in the woods, of stock stolen and property destroyed, while 
of sorrowful intei'est to those most nearh^ concerned, is too tedious for 
recital here, and only leading events need be chronicled. Detailed 
notice maj' be found in the works of local historians. 

On the night of January 15, 17.S1, a band of Indians stealthily 
approached Freeland's station and had even succeeded in unfastening 

' Indian Treaties, p. 8 et passjm, 1837. For a full discussion of the Hopewell treaty, from official docu- 
ments, see Koyce, Cherokee Nation, in Fifth .\nn. Rep. Bureau of Ethnology, pp. l.Vi-l.'jS, 1.888, with map: 
Treaty Journal, etc., American State Papers; Indian .\ffairs. i. pp. 3.S-44. 183'J; also Stevens, Georgia, 
It, pp. -117-429,18.59; Ramsey, Tennessee, pp. 336, 337, 18.53; see also the map accompanying this work. 

2 Ramsey, oj). cit,, pp. 459-461; Agent Martin and Hopewell commissioners, ibid., pp. 318-336: 
Bledsoe and Robertson letter, ibid., p. 465; Roosevelt, Winning of the West, ii, p.3l&, 1899. 


the strong'ly Ivirri'd yate when llohertson, being awake inside, heard 
the noise and spnini;' up just in time to rouse the g-arrison and ))eat oli' 
the assailants, who continued to tire throiiji'h tiie loopholes after they 
had been driven out of the fort. Only two .Vniei-icans wcrr killc<i., 
althoua'h the escape was a narrow oni>.' 

About three months later. <>n April :.'. a lary-e bddy of Cherokee 
approached the fort at Nashville (then called Nashliorough. or simpl}' 
'"the Blurt"), and by sending a decoy ahead succeeded in drawing a 
large part of the garrison into an ambush. It seemed that they would 
be cut off, as the Indians were between them and the fort, when those 
inside loosed the dogs, which rushed so furiously upon the Indians 
that the latter found W(jrk enough to defend themselves, and were 
finally forced to retire, carrying witii thcui, liowever, five American 
scalps. - 

The attacks continued tiiroughout this and the next year to such an 
extent that it seeuaed at one time as if the Cumberland settlements 
must be abandoned, but in June, 1783, commissioners from Virginia 
and North Carolina arranged a treaty near Nashville (Nashborough) 
with chiefs of the Chickasaw, Cherokee, and Creeks. Tais treaty, 
although it did not completely stop the Indian inroads, at least greatly 
diminished them. Thereafter the Chickasaw remained friendly, and 
only the Cherokee and Creeks continued to make trouble.'' 

The valley towns on Hiwassee, as well as those of Chickamauga, 
seem to have continued hostile. In 1786 a large body of their warriors, 
led In' the mixed-blood chief, John Watts, raided the new settlements 
in the vicinity of the present Knoxville, Tennessee. In retaliation 
Sevier again marched his volunteers across the mountain to the \aliey 
towns and destroyed three of them, killinganumlierof warrioivs: but he 
retired on learning that the Indians were gathering to give him battle.* 
In the spring of this year Agent Martin, stationed at Echota, had made 
a tour of inspection of the Cherokee towns and reported that they 
were generally friendly and anxious for peace, with the exce])tion of 
the Chickamauga band, under Dragging-ciinoe, who. acting with the 
hostile Creeks and encouraged by the French and Si)aniar(ls, were 
making ]ire)iarations to destroy the Cund)erland settlements. Not- 
witlistaniliiig the friendly professions of tiie othei's, a jjarty sent out 
to obtain .satisfaction for the nunxler of four Chci-okee by the Tennes- 
seeans had com(> ))ack with fifteen white scalj)s, and sent word to Sevier 
that they wanted peace, but if the wiutes wanted war they would get 
it.'' Witii Lawless men on both sides it is evident that ))eace was in 
jeopardy. In August, in conse(|uetice of further killing and rejirisals, 
commissioners of the new "state of Franklin," as Tennessee? was now 

■Roosevelt, Winning of tlie West, ii, p. 353, 1889. 
2 Ibid., p. 355, 188<J; Rnnisoy, Tennessee, pp. 152-454, 18.53. 
'Ibid., pp. 35H-3«;, 1889. < Ibid., p. 341. 1853. 

'Miirtin U'ltur of May 11, ITsU, ibid., p. 312. 

64 MYTHS OF THE CHEROKEK [eth.a.nn.19 

called, concluded a negotiation, locally' known as the "treaty of 
Coyatec." with the chiefs of the Overliill towns. In spite of references 
to peace, love, and hrotlicrly friendship, it is very doubtful if the era 
of good will was in any wise hastened by the so-called treaty, as the 
Tennesseeans, wlio had just Imrned another Indian town in reprisal for 
the killing of a white man, announced, without mincing words, that 
they had been given by North Carolina — against which state, by the 
way, they were then in organized rebellion —the whole country north 
of the Tennessee river as far west as the Cumberland mountain, and 
that they intended to take it "by the sword, which is the best right to 
all countries." As the whole of this country was within the limits of 
the territory solemnly guaranteed to the Cherokee by the Hopewell 
treaty only the year before, the chiefs simply replied that Congress 
had said nothing to them on the subject, and so the matter rested.' 
The theoi-y of state's rights was too complicated for the Indian under- 

While this conflict between state and federal authority continued, 
with the Cherokee lands as the prize, there could be no peace. In 
March, 178T, a letter from Echota, apparently written by Agent 
Martin, speaks of a recent expedition against the Cherokee towns, 
and the confusion and alarm among them in consequence of the daily 
encroachments of the "Franklinites" or Tennesseeans, who had pro- 
ceeded to make good their promise by opening a land office for the sale 
of all the lands southward to Tennessee river, including even a part of the 
beloved town of Echota. At the same time messengers were coming 
to the Cherokee from traders in the foreign interest, telling them that 
England, France, and Spain had combined against the Americans and 
urging them with promises of guns and ammunition to join in the 
war." As a result each further advance of the Tennessee settlements, 
in defiance as it was of iiny recognized treaty, was stubl)ornly con- 
tested by the Indian owners of the land. The record of these encoun- 
ters, extending over a period of several years, is too tedious for recital. 
"Could a diagram be drawn, accurately designating every spot sig- 
nalized by an Indian massacree. surprise, or depredation, or courageous 
attack, defense, pursuit, oi' victory 1;)y the whites, or statioii or fort 
or battlefield, or personal encounter, the whole of that section of 
country would be studded over with delineations of such incidents. 
Every spring, ever}' ford, every path, everj' farm, everj' trail, every 
house nearly, in its first settlement, was once the scene of danger, 
exposure, attack, exploit, achievement, death. "^ The end was the 
winning of Tennessee. 

In the meantime the inroads of the Creeks and their Chickamauga 

1 Reports of Tennessee commissioners and replies hy Cherokee chiefs, etc., 1786, in Ramsey, Tennes- 
see, pp. 343-346, 1853. 
^Martin (7) letter of March 25, 1787, ibid., p. 3-59. 
3 Ibid., p. 370. 


!illi(>s upon the Georgia frontiiT und tlie Ciiniherlaiid settlciuents 
aroiiiul Nashville became so threatciiini:- that measures were taken for 
a joint eampaijin by the eomt)ine(l forces of Georgia and Tennessee 
(•'Franklin"). The enterprise came to naught through the interfer- 
ence of the federal authorities.' All through the year 178S we hear 
of attacks and reprisals along the Tennessee border, although the 
agent for the Cherokee declared in his official rejiort that, with the 
exception of the C'hickamauga band, the Indians wished to he at 
peace if the whites would let them. In March two exp(>ditioiis under 
Sevier and Kennedy set out against the towns in the direction of the; 
French Broad. In INIay several persons of a family named Kirk were 
murdered a few miles south of Knoxvilie. In retaliation Sevier 
raised a large party and marching against a town on Hiwassee river — 
one of those which had been destroyed some years before and rebuilt — 
and burned it. killing a number of the inhabitants in the river while 
they were trying to escape. He then turned, and proceeding to the 
towns on Little Tennessee burned several of them also, killing a num- 
ber of Indians. Here a small party of Indians, including Abraham 
and Tassel, two well-known friendly chiefs, was brutally massacred 
by one of the Kirks, no one interfei'ing, after they had voluntarily 
come in on request of one of the officers. This occumnl during the 
temporary absence of Sevier. Another expedition under Captain 
Fayne was drawn into an ambuscade at Citico town and lost several 
in killed and wounded. The Indians pursued the survivors almost to 
Knoxvilie, attacking a small station near the present Maryville by 
the way. They were driven oil' by Sevier and others, who in turn 
invaded the Indian settlements, crossing the mountains and penetra- 
ting as far as the valley towns on Hiwassee, ha.stily retiring as they 
found the Indians gathering in their front." In th<> same summer 
another expedition was organized against th(^ Chickamauga tt)wns. 
The chief command was given to General .Martin, who left White's 
fort, now Knoxvilie, with foui- iiundred and fifty men and made a 
rapid march to the neighborhood of the jjresent Chattanooga, whei-e 
the main force encamped on the site of an old Indian settlement. A 
detachment sent ahead to surprise a town a few miles fai'ther down 
the river was tired upon and driven l)ack, and a general engagement 
took place in the narrow pass between the blurt' and the river, with 
such disastrous r(\sults that thi-ee captains wei'e killed and the men 
so badly demoralized that they refused to advance. Martin was 
compelled to turn back, after burying the dead oflicers in a large 
townhouse, which was then burned down to conceal th(> gi-ave.' 

In October a large party of Cherokee and Creeks attacked Gilles- 
pie's station, south of the present Knoxvilie. The .small garrison was 

'Ramsey, Tennessee, pp. 393-399, 1853. '-Ibid., pp. 417-123, IKW. 

^Ibid., pp. 517-519, and Brown's uarnuive, ibid., p. 515. 

lit ETH— 01 5 

()<) MYTHS OF THK CHEROKEE [kth. ann. I'.i 

overpowerod after a short resistance, and twenty-eight persons, inehid- 
ing several women and ehildren, were kiikxl. The Indians left behind 
a letter signed by four chiefs, including John Watts, expressing 
regret for what they called the accidental killing of the women and 
children, reminding the whites of their own treachery in killing 
Abraham and the Tassel, and defiantly concluding, "When you move 
off the land, then we will make peace." Other exposed stations were 
attacked, until at last Sevier again mustered a force, cleared the 
enemy from the frontier, and pursued the Indians as far as their 
towns on the head waters of Coosa river, in such vigorous fashion that 
they were compelled to ask for terms of peace and agree to a surrender 
of prisoners, which was accomplished at Coosawatee town, in upper 
Georgia, in the following April.' 

Among the captives thus restored to their friends were Joseph 
Brown, a boy of sixteen, with his two younger sisters, who, with 
several others, had been taken at Nickajack town while descending 
the Tennessee in a flatboat nearly a year before. His father and the 
other men of the party, about ten in all, had been killed at the time, 
while the mother and several other children were carried to various 
Indian towns, some of them going to the Creeks, who had aided the 
Cherokee in the capture. Young Brown, whose short and simple 
narrative is of vivid interest, was at first condemned to death, but was 
rescued by a white man living in the town and was afterward adopted 
into the family of the chief, in spite of the warning of an old Indian 
woman that if allowed to live he would one day guide an army to 
destroy them. The warning was strangely prophetic, for it was 
Brown himself who guided the expedition that finally rooted out the 
Chickamauga towns a few j^ears later. When rescued at Coosawatee 
he was in Indian costume, wnth shirt, breechcloth, scalp lock, and 
holes bored in his ears. His little sister, five years old, had become 
so attached to the Indian woman who had adopted her, that she 
refused to go to her own mother and had to be pulled along by force.' 
The mother and another of the daughters, who had been taken by the 
Creeks, were afterwards ransomed by McGillivray, head chief of the 
Creek Nation, who restored them to their friends, generously refusing 
any compensation for his kindness. 

An arrangement had been made with the Chickasaw, in 1783, by 
which they surrendered to the Cumberland settlement their own claim 
to the lands from the Cumberland river south to the dividing ridge of 
Duck river.' It was not, however, until the treaty of Hopewell, two 
years later, that the Cherokee surrendered their claim to the same 
region, and even then the Chickamauga warriors, with their allies, the 

1 Ramsey, Tennessee, pp. 515. 519. 

• Brown's narrative, etc., ibid., pp. 50S-516. 

8 Ibid., pp. 459, 489. 


li()stil(> ("I'ct'ks and Sliawaiio. refused to aeknowledije the cession and 
eoiitiiiued their attacks, with the avowed purpose of (h'stroyiiiy tlie new 
settlements. Until the final running of the boundary line, in 17'.»7, 
Spain elaiiued all the territory west of the nioiuitains and soutli of 
Cunitierland river, and her agents were accused of stirring up tlie 
Indians against the Americans, even to the extent of offering rewards 
for American scalps.' One of these raiding parties, which liad killed 
the brother of Captain Robertson, was tracked to t'oldwater, a small 
mixed town of Cherokee and Creeks, on the south side of Tennessee 
river, about the present Tuscumbia, Alabama. Robertson determined 
to destroy it, and taking a force of vohuiteers, with a couple of Chick- 
asaw guides, crossed the Tennessee without being discovered and 
surprised and burnt the town. The Indians, who numl)ered less than 
lift}' men, attempted to escape to the river, Ijut were surrounded and 
over twenty of them killed, with a loss of but one man to the Tennes- 
seeans. In the town were found also several French traders. Three 
of these, who refused to surrender, were killed, together with a white 
woman who was accidentallv shot in one of the boats. The others 
were afterward released, their large stock of trading goods having 
been taken and sold for the benefit of the troops. The aflair took 
place about the end of June, 1787. Through this action, and an effort 
made by Roliertson about the same time to come to an understanding 
with the Chickamauga band, there was a temporary cessation of 
hostile inroads upon the Cumberland, but long before the end of the 
year the attacks were renewed to such an extent that it was found 
necessary to keep out a force of rangers with orders to scour the 
country and kill every Indian found east of the Chickasaw boundary.^ 
The Creeks seeming now to be nearly as much concerned in these 
raids as the Chei'okee, a remonstrance was addressed to McGillivray, 
their principal chief, who replied that, although the Creeks, like the 
other southern tribes, had adhered to the British intt-rest during the 
Revolution, they had accepted proposals of friendship, but while 
negotiations were pending six of their people had been killed in the 
affair at Coldwater, which had led to a renewal of hostile feeling. He 
promised, however, to use his best efforts to bring about peace, and 
seems to have kept his word, although the raids continued through 
this and the next year, with the usual sequel of pursuit and reprisal. 
In one of these skirmishes a company under Captain Muri'av followed 
some Indian raiders from near Nashville to their camp on Tennessee 
river and succeeded in killing the whole party of eleven warriors.' 
A treaty of peace was signed with the Creeks in 1790, but, owing to 
the intrigues of the Spaniards, it had little practical effect,* and not 

1 Bledsoe and Robertson letter of June 12, 1787, in Ramsey, Tennessee, p. 465, 1853. 

2 Ibid., with Robertson letter, pp. jeS-t'C). 

3Ibitl.. pp. J-'.Wxe. 

< Mouette, Valley of the Mis.«is.sippi. i, p. 505, 1846. 


until Wayne's dcci.sive victory over the confederated northern tri))e.s 
in 17H-i and the tinal destruction of the Nickajack towns in the same 
year did real peace came to the frontier. 

By deed of cession of February 25, I7l»(), Tennessee ceased to be a 
part of North Carolina and was organized under federal laws as "'The 
Territorj' of the United States south of the Ohio river,"' preliminary 
to taking full rank as a state six years later. William Blount (27) 
was appointed tirst territorial governor and also superintendent for the 
southern Indians, with a deputy resident with each of the four prin- 
cipal tribes.' Pensacola, [Mobile. St. Louis, and other southern posts 
were still held by the Spaniards, who claimed the whole country south 
of the Cmnberland, while the British garrisons had not yet been with- 
drawn from the north. The resentment of the Indians at the occupancy 
of their reserved and guaranteed lands by the whites was sedulously 
encouraged from both quarters, and raids along the Tennessee fron- 
tier were of common occurrence. At this time, according to the 
official report of President Washington, over live hundred families of 
intruders were settled upon lands belonging rightly to the Cherokee, 
in addition to those between the French Broad and the Holston.^ 
More than a year before the Secretary of War had stated that ' ' the 
disgraceful violation of the treaty of Hopewell with the ( 'herokee 
requires the serious consideration of Congress. If so direct and man- 
ifest contempt of the authority of the United States be suffered with 
impunit}', it will be in vain to attempt to extend the arm of govern- 
ment to the frontiers. The Indian tribes can have no faith in such 
imbecile promises, and the lawless whites will ridicule a government 
which shall on paper only make Indian treaties and regulate Indian 
boundaries."' To prevent any increase of the dissatisfaction, the 
general government issued a proclamation forbidding any further 
encroachment upon the Indian lands on Tennessee river; notwith- 
standing which, early in 17l»l, a party of men descended the river in 
boats, and, landing on an island at the Muscle shoals, near the present 
Tuscumbia, Alabama, erected a lilockhouse and other defensive works. 
Immediately afterward the Cherokee chief. Glass, with a))Out sixty 
warriors, appeared and quietly informed them that if they did not at 
once withdraw he would kill them. After some parley the intruders 
retired to their boats, when the Indians set lire to the buildings and 
reduced them to ashes.* 

To forestall more serious difficulty it was neces.^^ary to negotiate a 
new treaty with a view to purchasing the disputed territory. Accord- 
ingly, through the efforts of Governor Blount, a convention was held 
with the principal men of the Cherokee at White's fort, now Knox- 

1 Ramsey, Tennessee, pp. hlH, 541, 561, 1853. 

2 Washington to the Senate. August U,1790. .\merican State Papers: Inajan .\fTairs, I,p..s3, 1832. 
^Secretary Kno.\ to President Washington, July 7, 17*9, ibid., p. .53. 

^ Ramsey, op. cit., pp. 550, -551. 

Mcu.NEY] TREATY OF HoLSTON 17!»1 (59 

villi'. Tennessee, in tlie summer of 17H1. With nmeh ditticulty the 
C'lierokee were finally brought to consent to si cession of :i triaiiuular 
section in Tennessee and North Carolina extending fioni Clinch river 
almost to the Blue ridge, and including nearly the whole of the 
French Broad and the lower Holston. with the sites of the present 
Knoxville, Greenville, and Ashcx illc The whole of this area, with a 
considerable territory adjacent, was already fully occupied by the 
whites. Permission was also given for a road from the eastern 
settlements to those on the Cumberland, with the free navigation of 
Tennessee river. Prisoners on both sides were to be restored and 
perpetual peace was guaranteed. In consideration of the lands sur- 
rendered the Cherokee were to receive an amiuitv of one thousand 
dollars with some extra goods and some assistance on the road to 
civilization. A treaty was signed by forty -one principal men of the 
tribe and was concluded July 2. 171*1. It is officially described as being 
held ""on the bank of the Holston, near the mouth of the French 
Broad." and is commonly spoken of as the "treaty of Holston.'' 

The Cherokee, however, were dissatisfied with the arrangement, 
and before th(> end of the year a delegation of .six principal chiefs 
appeared at Philadelphia, then the seat of government, without any 
previous amiouncement of their coming, declaring that when they had 
been summoned by Governor Blount to a conference they were not 
aware that it was to persuade them to sell lands: that they had 
resisted the proposition for days, and only yielded when compelled 
by the persistent and threatening demands of the governor; that the 
consideration was entirely too small; and that they had no faith that 
the whites would respect the new boundary, as they were in fact 
already settling beyond it. Finally, as the treaty had been signed, 
they asked that these intruders be removed. As their presentation of 
the case seemed a just one and it was desirable that they should carry 
home with them a favoralile impression of the government's attitude 
toward them, a supplementary article was added, increasing the 
annuity to eight thousand rive hundred dollars. On account of renewed 
Indian hostilities in Ohio valley and the desire of the government tt) 
keep the good will of the Cherokee long enough to obtain their help 
against the northern tribes, the new line was not surveyed until 17!I7.' 

As illustrating Indian custom it may be noted that one of the prin- 
cipal signers of the original treaty was among the protesting delegates, 
l)ut having in the meantime changed his name, it appears on the 
supplementary paragraph as "Iskagua. or Clear Sky, formerly 
Nenetooyah, or Bloodv Fellow.'" " As he had been one of the prin- 

1 Indian Treaties, pp. 31-38, 1.S87; Se<Tetar;- of War, report, January 5, 1798, in American State 
Papers, i. pp. 628-631, 1832; Ramsey. Tennessee, pp. .i.>l-.i60. ls.53: Koyee, Cherokee Nation, Fifth 
Ann. Rep. Bureau of Ethnology, pp. 158-170. with full discussion and map, 18SS. 

- Indian Treaties, pp. 37, 38. 1837. 

70 MYTHS OF THE CHEROKEE [eth.asn.19 

cij)iil raiders on the Tennessee frontier, the new name may have been 
syuibolic of his change of heart at the prospeet of a return of peace. 

The treaty seems to have had little eti'ect in preventing Indian hos- 
tilities, probaljly because the intruders still remained upon the Indian 
lands, and raiding still continued. The Creeks were known to be 
responsible for some of the mischief, and the hostile Chickamaugas 
were supposed to be the chief authors of the rest.' Even while the 
Cherokee delegates were negotiating the treat}' in Philadelphia a boat 
which had accidentally run aground on the Muscle shoals was attacked 
by a party of Indians under the pretense of offering assistance, one 
man being killed and another severely wounded with a hatchet.'^ 

While these negotiations had been pending at Philadelphia a young 
man named Leonard D. Shaw, a student at Princeton college, had 
expressed to the Secretary of War an earnest desire for a commission 
which would enable him to accompany the returning Cherokee dele- 
gates to their southern home, there to study Indian life and charac- 
teristics. As the purpose seemed a useful one, and he appeared well 
qualified for such a work, he was accordingly commissioned as deputy 
agent to reside among the Cherokee to observe and report upon their 
movements, to aid in the annuity distributions, and to render other 
assistance to Governor Blount, superintendent for the southern tribes, 
to study their language and home life, and to collect materials for an 
Indian history. An extract from the official instructions under which 
this first United States ethnologist began his work will be of interest. 
After defining his executive duties in connection with the annuity 
distributions, the keeping of accounts and the compiling of olEcial 
reports, Secretary Knox continues — 

A due performance of your duty will probably require the exercise of all your 
patience and fortitude and all your knowledge of the human character. The school 
will be a severe but interesting one. If you should succeed in acquiring the affections 
and a knowledge of the characters of the southern Indians, you may be at once use- 
ful to the United States and advance your own interest. 

You will endeavor to learn their languages; this is essential to your conmiunica- 
tions. You will collect materials for a history of all the southern tribes and all 
things thereunto belonging. -You will endeavor to ascertain their respective limits, 
make a vocaliulary of their respective languages, teach them agriculture and such 
useful arts as you may know or can acquire. You will correspond regularly with 
Governor Blount, who is superintendent for Indian affairs, and inform him of all 
occurrences. You will also cultivate a correspondence with Brigadier-General 
McGillivray [the Creek chief], and you will also keep a journal of your proceedings 
and transmit them to the War Office. . . . You are to exhibit to Governor 
Blount the Cherokee book and all the writings therein, the messages to the several 
tribes of Indians, and these instructions. 

Your route will be hence to Reading: thence Harris's ferry [Harrisburg, Penn- 
sylvania] to Carlisle; to ferry on the Potomac; to Winchester; to Staunton; to 

1 Ramsey, Tennessee, p. 557, 1853. 

'Abel deposition, April 16, 1792, American State Papers: Indian Affairs, i, p. 274, 1832. 


-, ami tn Hnlstiiii. I -jhoiilil Ikijh' that you wouM travel U))\var(ls ni twenty 

miles each ilay, ami that you woulil reach Holston in about thirty days.' 

Tho joiiriicy, which sciuiipd then .so lono', was to he iiiaclc hy wag-oiis 
from Philadelphia to tho hoadof navij^ation on Ilol.stoii river, thence by 
boats to the Cherokee towns. Shaw seems to have taken up his resi- 
dence at Ustanali, which had superseded Eciiota as the Cherokee capital. 
We hear of him as present at a council thcM-e in June of the same year, 
with no evidence of unfriendliness at his presence." The friendly feel- 
ing was of short continuance, however, for a few months lattu- we find 
him writing' from l^stanali to (xovernor Blount that on account of the 
aggressive hostility of the Creeks, whose avowed intention was to kill 
every white man they met, he was not safe 50 yards from the house. 
Soon afterw'ards the Chickamauga towns again declared war, on which 
account, together with rencAved threats by the Creeks, he was advised 
by the Cherokee to leave Ustanali, which he did early in Sept(>ml)er, 
179^, proceeding to the home of Genera! Pickens, near Seneca, South 
Carolina, escorted by a guard of friendly Cherokee. In the follow- 
ing winter he was dismissed from the service on serious charges, and 
his mission appears to have been a failure.' 

To prevent an alliance of the Cherokee, Creeks, and other south- 
ern Indians with the confederated hostile northern tribes, the govern- 
ment had endeavored to persuade the former to furnish a conting(Mit 
of warriors to act with the army against the northern Indians, and 
special instruction had been given to Shaw to use his efforts for this 
result. Nothing, however, came of the attempt. St Clair's defeat 
turned the scale against the United States, and in September, 1792, 
the Chickamauga towns formally declared war.* 

In November of this year the governor of Georgia officially reported 
that a party of lawless Georgians had gone into the Cherokee Nation, 
and had there Ijurned a town and barbarously killed three Indians, 
while about the same tiiue two other Cherokee had been killed within 
the settlements. Fearing retaliation, he ordered out a patrol of troops 
to guard th(> frontier in that direction, and sent a contdliatory letter to 
the chi(>fs, expressing his regret for what hsid happened. No answer 
was returned to the message, but a fe\v days later an entire family was 
found nuirdercd — four women, three children, and n young man- all 
scalped and mangled and with arrcjws stii'king in the Ixxlies, while, 
according to old Indian war custom, two war clubs were left upon 

1 Henry Knox, Secretary of War, Instructions to Leonard Shaw, temporary agent to the Cherokee 
Nation of Indians. February 17, 17'/_>, in American State Papers: Indian Affairs, i, 217, l.S,32; also Knox, 
letters to Governor Blount, .lanuary 31 and February Id, 1792, ibid., pp. 2-1.'), 2J(1. 

- Estanaula conference report, June 2(). 1792, ibid., p. 271; Dcraqne, deposition, .September Ih. 17y2, 
ibid., p. 292: Pickens, letter, September 12, 17',I2. ibid., p. 317. 

3See letters of Shaw, Casey, Pickens, and Bloinit, 17'J2-9a, ibid., pp. 277, 278, :il7, 436, .137, 4-10. 

*Knox. instructions to Shaw, February 17, 1792, ibid., p. 247; lilount, letter, March 20, 1792, ibid., 
p. 263: Knox, letters, October 9, 1792, ibid., pp. 261, 262. 

72 MYTHS OF THE CHEKOKEK [eth.ans.19 

the ground to show liy whom the (h>ed wsis done. So swift was savage 

Early in 1792 a messenger who had heen sent on business for Gov- 
ernor lilount to the Chickaniauga towns returned with the report that 
a party had just come in with prisoners and some fresh scalps, over 
which the chiefs and warriors of two towns were then dancing; that 
the Shawano were urging the Cherokee to join them against the Ameri- 
cans; that a strong body of Creeks was on its waj' against the Cum- 
berland settlements, and that the Creek chief. Mcdillivray, was trying 
to form a general confederacy of all the Indian tribes against the 
whites. To understand this properlj' it must be remembered that at 
this time all the tribes nortiiwest of the Ohio and as far as the heads 
of the Mississippi were banded together in a grand alliance, headed 
by the warlike Shawano, for the purpose of holding the Ohio river as 
the Indian boundary against the advancing tide of white settlement. 
They had just cut to pieces one of the finest armies ever sent into the 
West, under the veteran General St Clair (28), and it seemed for the 
moment as if the American advance would be driven back behind the 

In the emergency the Secretary of War directed (rovernor Blount 
to hold a conference with the chiefs of the Chickasaw. Choctaw, and 
Cherokee at Nashville in June to enlist their warriors, if possible, in 
active service against the northern tribes. The conference was held 
as proposed, in August, but nothing seems to have come of it, although 
the chiefs seemed to be sincere in their assurances of friendship. 
Very few of the Choctaw or Cherokee were in attendance. At the 
annuity distribution of the Cherokee, shortly liefore, the chiefs had 
also l)een profuse in declarations of their desire for peace. '^ Notwith- 
standing all this the attacks along the Tennes.see frontier continued to 
such an extent that the blockhouses were again put in order and gar- 
risoned. Soon afterwards the governor reported to the Secretary of 
AVar that the live lower Cherokee towns on the Tennessee (the Chicka- 
niauga). headed l)v John Watts, had finally declared war against the 
United States, and that from three to six hundred warriors, including 
a hundred Creeks, had started against the settlements. The militia 
was at once called out. both in eastern Temiessee and on the Cumber- 
land. On the Cumberland side it was directed that no pursuit should 
he continued beyond the Cherokee boundary, the ridge between the 
waters of Cumberland and Duck rivers. The order issued by Colonel 
^Vhite, of Knox county, to each of his captains show's how great was 
the alarm: 

1 Governor Telfair's letters of November 14 and December 5, with inclosure, 1792, American State 
I'apers: Indian ASairs, i, pp. 332, 336, 337, 1832. 

2 Ramsey, Tennessee, pp. 562-663, 598, 1853. 


Knciwmu.k, Siili'iiiliir II, 77ft/. 
Sir: You are licivlvy roiiiiimnilcil tn n-iiair witli yniir cDinpany to Knoxville, 
equi|i|ieil. to ])rotect the frontiers; tliere is iiiiiuiin'iil (lanf;er. Briii}; witli you two 
days' provisions, if possible; but you are not to delay an hour on that head. 

I am, sir, yours, 

.Tamks WniTi;.' 

A))out iindiii(ilit on tlio Hotli of Scptciiii)^-. ITl'ii. the Iniliun foice, 
c•on^si.stinJ>• of iscvoral hiuidred Cliu-kaiiiiuioii.s and othrr C'licrokt'c. 
Creeks, and iShawano, attacked Biifh!uian*.s .station, a few miles .soiitii 
of Nashville. Although numbers of families had collected inside the 
stockade for safety, there were les.s than twenty able-bodied men 
among them. The approach of the enemy alarmed the cattle, by 
which the garrison had warning just in time to close the gate when 
the Indians were already within a few yards of the entrance. The 
assault was furious and determined, the Indians rushing up to the 
stockade, attempting to set fire to it, and aiming their guns through 
the port holes. One Indian succeeded in climbing upon the roof with 
a lighted torch, but was shot and fell to the ground, holding his torch 
against the logs as he drew his last breath. It was learned afterwaixl 
that he wtis a half blood, the step.son of the old white trader who had 
once rescued the boy Joseph Brown at Nickajack. He wtis a desperate 
warrior and when only twenty-two years of age had alretid}- taken six 
white scalps. The attack was repulsed at every point, and the assail- 
ants finally drew off. with considerable loss, carrying their dead and 
wounded with them, and leaving a number of hatchets, pipes, and other 
spoils upon the ground. Among the wounded was the chief John 
Watts. Not one of those in the fort was injured. It has been well 
said that the of Buchanan's station bv such a handful of men 
against an attacking force estimated all the way at from three to seven 
hundred Indians is a feat of bravery which has scarcely been surpassed 
in the annals of border warfare. The effect upon the Indians nuist 
have been thoroughly disheartening.- 

In the same month arrangements were made for protei'ting the fron- 
tier along the French Broad by means of a series of garrisoned block- 
houses, with scouts to patrol regularly from one to another. North 
Carolina cooperating on her side of the line. The hostile inroads still 
continued in this section, the Creeks acting with the hostile Cherokee. 
One raiding party of Creeks ha\'ing been traced toward Chilhowec 
town on Little Tenne.ssee, the whites were aliout to ))urn that and a 
neighljoring Cherokee town when Sevier interposed and prevented.'' 
There is no reason to suppose that the people of these towns were 
directl}' concerned in the depredations along the frontier at this period, 

' Ramsey, Tenne.ssee. pp. 562-565, 18.53. 

- Blount, letter, October 2, 1792, in .\mericiin State Papers: Indian .VlTairs, i, p. 291, 1832: Blount, letter, 
etc.. in Ramsey, op. eit., pp. 566, .567,,599-601: seealso Brown's narrative, ibid., 511, 512; Koyce, Cherokee 
Nation, Fifth Ann. Rep. Bureau of Ethnology, p. 170, 1888. 

3 Ramsey, op. eit.. 56S-571. 

74 MYTHS OF THK f'HEROKKK [eth.ann.19 

the mischief being doiie liy tiiosc fai'thcr to the south, in conjunction 
M'ith the Creeks. 

Toward the close of this year, ll'J-2, Captain Samuel Handley, while 
leading- a small party of men to reenforce the Cumberland settlement, 
was attacked l)y a mixed force of Cherokee. Creeks, and Shawano, 
near the Crab Orchard, west of the present Kingston, Tennessee. 
Becoming s(>parated from his men he encountered a warrior who had 
lifted his hatchet to strike when Handley seized the weapon, crying- 
out '"Canaly"" (for higina'Ui), "friend," to which the Cherokee 
respond(>d with the same word, at once lowering his arm. Handley 
was carried to Willstown, in Alaliama, where he was adopted into the 
Wolf clan (^it) and remained until the next spring. After having 
made use of his services in writing a peace letter to Governor Blount 
the Cherokee finally sent him home in safety to his friends under a 
protecting escort of eight warriors, without iiny demand for ransom. 
He afterward resided near Tellico blockhouse, near Loudon, where, 
after the wars were over, his Indian friends frequently came to visit 
and stop mth him.' 

The year 179:-5 began with a series of attacks all along the Tennes- 
see frontier. As before, most of the depredation was by Chicka- 
maugas and Creeks, with some stray Shawano from the north. The 
Cherokee from the towns on Little Tennessee remained peaceable, l>ut 
their temper was sorely tried by a regrettable circumstance which 
occurred in June. While a number of friendly chiefs were assembled 
for a conference at Echota, on the express request of the President, 
a party of men under connuand of a Captain John Beard sud- 
denly attacked them, killing about fifteen Indians, including several 
chiefs and two women, one of them being the wife of Hanging-maw 
(Ushwa'li-guta), principal chief of the Nation, who was himself 
wounded. The murderers then fled, leaving others to suffer the conse- 
quences. Two hundred warriors at once took up arms to revenge their 
loss, and only the most earnest appeal from the deputj' governor could 
restrain them from swift retaliation. AVhile the chief, whose wife 
was thus murdered and himself wounded, forebore to revenge himself, 
in order not to Ijring war upon his people, the Secretary of War was 
obliged to report, "to my great pain, I find to punish Beard hy law just 
now is out of the question." Beard was in fact arrested, but the trial 
was a farce and he was acquitted." 

Believing that the Cherokee Nation, with the exception of the 
Chickamaugas, was honestly trying to preserve peace, the territorial 
government, while making provision for the safety of the exposed 
settlements, had strictly prohibited any invasion of the Indian country. 
The frontier people were of a difl'erent opinion, and in spite of the 
prohibition a company of nearly two hundred mounted men under 

1 Kamsey, Tennessee, pp. 571-573, 1863. = Ibid., pp. 574-578, 1853. 


Colonels Dohorty :ind McFarhuid crossed over the niouiitaiiis in the 
suminor of this year and destroyed six of the middle towns, returning 
with fifteen scalps and as many prisoners.' 

Late in Septemher a stronji' foi'ce estimated at one thousand wai'- 
riors — seven hundred Creeks and three hundred Cherokee — under Jolm 
Watts and Doublehead, crossed the Tennessee and advanced in the 
direction of Knoxville. where the public stores were then de])osited. 
In their eagerness to reach Knoxville thev passed quietl}' by one or 
two smaller settlements until within a short distance of the town, when, 
at daybreak of the 25th, they heard the garrison fire the sunrise gun 
and imagined that they were discovered. Difi'erences had already 
broken out among the leaders, and without venturing to advance 
farther they contented themselves with an attack upon a small block- 
house a few miles to the west, known as Cavitts station, in which at 
the time were only three men with thirteen women and children. 
After defending themselves bravely for some time these suri-endered 
on promise that they should be held for exchange, but as soon as they 
came out Doublehead's warriors fell upon them and put them all to 
death with the exception of a boy, who was saved by John Watts. 
This bloody deed was entirelj^ the work of Doublehead, the other 
chiefs having done their best to prevent it.^ 

A force of seven hundred men under (xeneral Sevier was at once put 
upon their track, with orders this time to push the pursuit into the 
heart of the Indian nation. Crossing Little Tennessee and Hiwassee 
they penetrated to Ustairali town, near the present Calhoun, Georgia. 
Finding it deserted, although well filled with provision, they 
rested there a few days, the Indians in the meantime attempting 
a night attack without success. After burning the town, Sevier con- 
tinued down the river to Etowah town, near the present site of Rome. 
Here the Indians — Cherokee and Creeks — had dug intrenchments and 
prepared to make a stand, but, being outflanked, were defeated with 
loss and compelled to retreat. This town, with several others in the 
neighborhood belonging to both Cherokee and Creeks, was destroyed, 
with all the provision of the Indians, including three hundred cattle, 
after whiih the army took up the homeward mai'ch. The Americans 
had lost but three men. This was the last military service of Sevier.^ 

During the absence of Sevier's force in the south the Indians made 
a sudden inroad on the French liroad, near the present Dandridge, 
killing and scalping a woman and a boy. \\'hile their friends were 
accompanying the remains to a neighboring burial ground foi' inter- 
ment, two men who had incautiously gone ahead were fired upon. One 

' Rftmsey, Tennessee, p. 579. 

2Ibid., pp. O80-5S3. 1S53; Smith, letter. September 'J7. 1793. .\meriean State Pupers: Indian Affairs, 
I, p. Jes. 1832. Ramsey K'ves the Indian force 1.000 \viirrit)rs; Smith says that in many places they 
marclied in files of '2H abreast, each lile beiiiK supiiosed to number 10 men. 

^Ramsey, op. eil., pp. .5M-.'>H>v. 

76 MYTHS OF THE CHEROKEE [eth.ann.19 

of them osfiiped, Imt tlio other one \v;is found killed find scalpi'd when 
the rest of theeonipuny cunie up, and wiis buried with the tir^it victims. 
Sevier's success brought temporar}' respite to the Cumberland settle- 
ments. During- the early part of the year the Indian attacks In- 
small raiding parties had l)een so frequent and annoying that a force 
of men had been kept out on patrol service under officers who adopted 
with some success the policy of hunting the Indians in their camping 
places in the thickets, rather than waiting for them to come into the 

In February, ITDi, the Territorial assembly of Tennessee met at 
Knoxville and, among other business transacted, addressed a strong 
memoi"ial to Congi-ess calling for more efficient protection for the 
frontier and demanding a declaration of war against the Creeks and 
Cherokee. The memorial states that since the treaty of Holston (-July, 
ITl'l), these two tribes had killed in a most barbarous and inhuman 
manner more than two hundred citizens of Tennessee, of both .sexes, 
had carried others into captivity, destroyed their stock, burned 
their houses, and laid waste their plantations, had robbed the citizens 
of their slaves and stolen at least two thousand horses. Special atten- 
tion was directed to the two great invasions in September, 1792, and 
September, 1793, and the memorialists declare that there was scarcely 
a man of the assembly but could tell of "a dear wife or child, an aged 
parent or near relation, liesides friends, massacred by the hands of these 
bloodthirsty nations in their house or fields."^ 

In the meantime the raids continued and every scattered cabin was a 
target for attack. In April a party of twenty warriors surrounded 
the house of a man named Casteel on the French Broad about nine 
miles above Knoxville and massacred father, mother, and four children 
in most brutal fashion. One child only was left alive, a girl of ten 
years, who was found scalped and bleeding from six tomahawk gashes, 
yet survived. The others were buried in one grave. The massacre 
roused such a storm of excitement that it required all the efi'ort 
of the governoi- and the local officials to prevent an invasion in force 
of the Indian country. It was learned that Doublehead, of the Chicka- 
mauga towns, was trying to get the support of the valley towns, which, 
however, continued to maintain an attitude of peace. The friendly 
Cherokee also declared that the Spaniards were constantly in.stigating 
the lower towns to hostilities, although John Watts, one of their prin- 
cipal chiefs, advocated peace." 

In June a boat under conmiand of William Scott, laden with pots, 
hardware, and other property, and containing six white men, three 
women, four children, and twenty negroes, left Knoxville to descend 

1 Ramsey, Tennessee, pp. 590, 602-605, 1853. 

'Haywood. Civil and Political History of Tennessee, pp. 300-302; Knoxville, 1823. 
3 Ibid., pp. 303-308, 1.S23: Ramsey, op. cit., pp. .591-594. Haywood's history of thi.s period is little more 
than a continuous record of killings and petty encounters. 


Tciiiu'sseo riv<'r to Xutclicz. As it p;i.--s('(l the ('lii(k;iiii!m^:i towns it 
was tired upon from Kimnini;- ^\■ilt('r and Long island witliout damage. 
The whites returned the fire, wounding two Indians. A large party of 
Cherokee. Iieaded ))v Whitt>-inaii-l\iller (Fne'ga-dihi'). then started in 
pursuit of tiie boat, which th(\y ovei'took at Muscle shoals, where they 
killed all the white people in it, made prisoners of the negroes, and 
plundei'ed the goods. Three Indians were killed and on(> was wounded 
in the action.' It is said that the Indian actors in this massacre tied 
across the Mississippi into Spanish territory and became the nucleus of 
the Cherokee Nation of the West, as will be noted elsewhere. 

On June 2t), 1794, another treaty, intended to be supplementary to 
that of Holston in 1791, was negotiated at Philadelphia, being signed 
by the Secretary of War and by thirteen principal men of the Chero- 
kee. An arrangement was made for the proper marking of the 
boundary then established, and the annuity was increased to five 
thousand dollars, with a proviso that fifty dollars were to be deducted 
for every horse stolen by the Cherokee and not restored within three 

In July a man naiued John Ish was shot down while plowing in his 
field eighteen miles below Knoxville. By order of Hanging-maw, the 
friendly' chief of Echota, a party of Cherokee took the trail and cap- 
tured the murderer, who proved to be a Creek, whom they brought 
in to the agent at Tellieo blockhouse,- where he was formally tried 
and hanged. When asked the usual question he said that his people 
were at war with the whites, that he had left home to kill or be killed, 
that he had killed the white man and would have escaped but for the 
Cherokee, and that there were enough of his nation to avenge his 
death. A few days later a party of one hundred Creek warriors 
crossed Tennessee river against the settlements. The alarm was given 
by Hanging-maw. and fifty-three Cherokee with a few federal troops 
started in pursuit. On the 10th of August they came up with the 
Creeks, killing one and wounduig another, one Cherokee being slightlv 
wounded. The Creeks retreated and the victors returned to the 
Cherokee towns, where their return was aiuiounced l)y the death song 
and the firing of guns. "'The night was spent in dancing the scalp 
dance, accoi-ding to the custom of warriors after a victory over their 
enemi(!s, in which the white and red people heartily joined. The 
Upper Ch(>rokee had now stepped too far to go back, and their pro- 
fessions of friendship were now no longer to be questioned." In the 
same month there was an engagement between a detachment of about 

1 Haywood, Civil and Political Uistory of Tennessee, p. 308.1823; Ramsey, Tennessee, \t. 591. lSo3; see 
also memorial in P\itnam, Middle Tennessee, p. 502, ISijg. Haywood ealls the leader Uiiacala, which 
should he Une'xa-dihl', •' White-man-killer." Compare Haywood's .statement with that of 
burn, on pase 100. 

■-Indian Treaties, yip. :w, 40. IKIiT; Royee, Cherokee Nation, Fifth Ann. Rep. Bureau of Kthnology, 
PIi. 171, 172. Ifvs.s; I)ocument.s of 1797-98, .•Vmerican Slate Papers: Indian Atlairs, i, pp. 028-031, 1832. 
The treaty is not mentii>ned by the Tennessee historians. 

78 MYTHS OF THK CHKROKEE [eth.ann.19 

forty soldiers and a large body of Creeks near Cral) Oreliard. in which 
several of each were killed.' It is evident that niueh of the damage 
on lioth sides of the Cumberland range was due to the Creeks. 

In the meantime Governor Blount was trying to negotiate peace 
with the whole Cherokee Nation, but with little success. The Cher- 
okee claimed to Ije anxious for permanent peace, but said that it was 
impossible to restore the property taken by them, as it had been taken 
in war, and they had themselves been equal losers from the whites. 
They said also that they could not prevent the hostile Creeks from 
passing through their territory. About the end of July it was learned 
that a strong body of Creeks had started north against the settlements. 
The militia was at once ordered out along the Tennessee frontier, and 
the friendly Cherokees offered their services, while measures were 
taken to protect their women and children from the enemy. The 
Creeks advanced as far as Willstown, when the news came of the com- 
plete defeat of the confederated northern tribes by General Wayne 
(3U), and fearing the same fate for themselves, they turned back and 
scattered to their towns. ^ 

The Tennesseeans. especially those on the Cumberland, had long ago 
come to the conclusion that peace could be l)rought about only through 
the destruction of the Chickamauga towns. Anticipating some action 
of this kind, which the general government did not think necessary or 
advisable, orders against any such attempt had been issued by the 
Secretary of War to Governor Blount. The frontier people went 
about their preparations, however, and it is evident from the result 
that tiie local military authorities were in connivance with the under- 
taking. General Robertson was the chief organizer of the volunteers 
about Nashville, who were reenforced by a company of Kentuckians 
under Colonel Whitley. Major Ore had been sent bv Governor 
Blount with a detachment of troops to protect the Cumberland settle- 
ments, and on arriving at Nashville entered as heartily into the project 
as if no counter orders had ever been issued, and was given chief com- 
mand of the expedition, which for this reason is commonly known as 
"■Ore's expedition." 

On September 7, 1794, the armj^ of five hundred and tifty mounted 
men left Nashville, and five days later crossed the Tennessee near the 
mouth of the Sequatcheo river, their guide being the same Joseph 
Brown of whom the old Indian woman had said that he would one day 
bring the soldiers to destroy them. Having left their horses on the 
other side of the river, they moved up along the south bank just after 
daybreak of the 13th and surprised the town of Nickajack, killing 
several warriors and taking a number of prisoners. Some who 
attempted to escape in canoes were shot in the water. The warriors 

1 Haywood, Civil and Political History of Tennessee, pp. 309-311, 1823; Ramsey, Tennessee', pp. 594, 
59.5, 18.13. 

2 Haywood, up. cit., pp. 314-316; Ramsey, op. cit., p. 596. 


in Kimniiii,'' Wiitcr town, four miles al)ovo, iicard the liriii<.r ;in<l tsime 
iit once to the assistiince of their fi'ieiids, hut were driven haeiv iifter 
attempting to hold their ground, and the second town shared the fate 
of the tirst. More than fifty Indians had l)oen killed, a mmiher were 
prisoners, Ijoth towns and all their eontents iiad been destroyed, with 
a loss to the assailants of only three nu'n wounded, 'i'he Breath, the 
chief of Running AVater, was among those? Iviiled. Two fresh scalps 
with a large quantity of plunder from the settlements were found in 
the towns, together with a supph' of aumiunition said to have been 
furnished b^v the Spaniards.' 

Soon after the return of the expedition Robertson sent a message to 
John Watts, the principal leader of the hostile Cherokee, threatening 
a second visitation if the Indians did not very soon surrender their 
prisoners and give assunuices of peace." The destruction of their 
towns on Tennessee and Coosa and the utter defeat of the northern 
confederates had now broken the courage of the Cherokee, and on their 
own request Governor Blount held a conference with them at Tellico 
t)lockhouse, November 7 and 8, 179Jr, at which Hanging-maw, head 
chief of the Nation, and Colonel John "Watt, principal chief of the hos- 
tile towns, with about four hundred of their warriors, attended. The 
result was satisfactorj^; all diflferenees were arranged on a friendly 
basis and the long Cherokee war came to an end.' 

Owing to the continued devastation of their towns during the Rev- 
olutionary struggle, a number of Cherokee, principally of the Chicka- 
niauga band, had removed across the Ohio about 1782 iind settled on 
I'aint creek, a branch of the Scioto river, in the vicinity of their 
friends and allies, the Shawano. In 1787 they were reported to num- 
l)er about seventy w'arriors. They took an active part in the hostili- 
ties along the Ohio frontier and were present in the great l)attle at the 
Maumee rapids, by which the power of the confederated nortiier n tribes 
was eflectually l)roken. As they had failed to attend the treaty con- 
ference held at Greenville in August, 17t»5, General Wayne sent them 
a special message, through their chief Long-hair, that if they refused 
to come in and make terms as the others had done they would be con- 
sidered outside the protection of the government. Upon this a part 
of them came in and promised that as soon as they could gather their 
crojjs the whole band would leave Ohio forever and return to their 
people in the south.' 

1 Haywood, Political and Civil History of Tennessee, pp. 392-396. 1823; Ramsey, Tennessee (with 
Major Ore's report), pp. 60S-('ilS, 1S53: Rojce, Clierokee Nation. Fifth .\nn. Rep. Biiroau Ethnology, p. 171, 
IS.S8; Ore, Robertson, and Blonnt. reports, American State Papers: Indian .VITairs, i, pp. i32-fi34, 1832. 

2 Ramsey, op. cit., p. 018. 

^Tellico conference, November 7-8, 1794, American Statu Papers: Indian AITairs, i, pp. .SSG-SSS, 1832, 
Roycc, op. cit., p, 173: Ramsey, op. cit., p. .5%. 

« Beaver's talk, 1784, Virginia State Papers, iii, p. 571, 1883; McDowell, report, 1786, ibid., iv, p. 118, 
18S4; McDowell, report. 1787, ibid., p. 286: Todd, letter, 1787, ibid., p. 277; Tellico conference, Novem- 
ber 7, 179 1, American .State Papers: Indian Affairs,!, p. 538, 1832; Greenville treaty conference, August, 
1793, ibid., pp. 58'2-583. 

80 MYTHS OF THE CHEKOKEE [eth.axn.19 

The Creeks were still hostile and continued their inroads upon the 
western settlements. Early in January, 1795, Governor Hlount held 
another eonference with the Cherokee and endeavored to pei'suade 
them to organize a company of their young men to patrol the frontier 
against the Creeks, but to this proposal the chiefs refused to consent.' 

In the next j'ear it was discovered that a movement wa.s on foot to 
take possession of certain Indian lands south of the Cumberland on 
pretense of authority formerly granted by North Carolina for the 
relief of Revolutionary soldiers. As such action would almost surely 
have resulted in another Indian war. Congress interposed, on the rep- 
resentation of President Washington, with an act for the regulation of 
intercourse between citizens of the United States and the various 
Indian tribes. Its main purpose was to prevent intrusion upon lands 
to which the Indian title had not been extinguished ])y treaty with the 
general government, and under its provisions a number of squatters 
were ejected from the Indian country and removed across the boundary. 
The pressure of border sentiment, however, was constantly for extend- 
ing the area of white settlement and the result was an immediate agita- 
tion to procure another treaty cession." 

In consequence of urgent representations from the people of Ten- 
nessee, Congress took steps in 1797 for procuring a new treaty with 
the Cherokee bj^ which the ejected settlers might be I'einstated and the 
l)oundaries of the new state so extended as to bring about closer com- 
munication between the eastern settlements and those on the Cumlier- 
land. Th(^ Revolutionary warfare had forced the Cherokee west and 
south, and their capital and central gathering place was now Ustanali 
town, near the present Calhoun, Georgia, while Echota, their ancient 
capital and lieloved peace town, was almost on the edge of the white 
settlements. The commissioners wished to have the proceedings con- 
ducted at Echota, while the Cherokee favored Ustanali. After some 
debate a choice was made of a conv^enient place near Tellico block- 
house, where the conference opened in July, but was brought to an 
abrupt close by the peremptory refusal of the Cherokee to sell any 
lands or to permit the return of the ejected settlers. 

The rest of the summer was spent in negotiation along the lines 
already proposed, and on October 2, 1798, a treaty, commonly known 
as the "tirst treaty of Tellico," was concluded at the same place, and 
was signed by thirty-nine chiefs on behalf of the Cherokee. By this 
treaty the Indians ceded a tract between Clinch river and the Cumber- 
land ridge, anotiier along the northern bank of Little Tennessee 
extending up to Chilhowee mountain, and a third in North Carolina on 
the heads of French Broad and Pigeon rivers and including the sites 

1 Royoe, Clierokoe Nation. Fifth Ann. Rep. Bureau of Ethnology, p. 173, 1888. 
= Ibid.,pp.l74,175; Ramsey, Tennessee, pp. 679-685, 1853. 


of tile present \\';i\ iicsvillo and I Icndci'sonvillc. 'llicso cessions 
included most or all of the lands from wliicli settlers had been ejected. 
Permission was also given for layin<;' out the '•("umherland road." to 
connect the east Tennessee settlements witli tliose about Nasiiville. In 
consitleration of the lands and I'ights surrendered, the I'nited States 
agreed to deliver to the Ciierokee five thousand dollai's in goods, and 
to increase their existing amuiity by one thousand dollars, and as usual, 
to "continue the guarantee of the remaindei' of their country forever."' ' 

Wayne's victor}^ over the northern tribes at the battle of the Mau- 
mee rapids completely broke their power and compelled them to accept 
the terms of peace dictated at the treat}' of Greenville in the summer 
of 1795. The immediate result was the surrender of the Ohio river 
boundary by the Indians and the withdrawal of the British garrisons 
from the interior posts, which up to this time they had continued to 
hold in spite of the treaty made at the close of the Revolution. By 
the treaty made at ^Tadrid in October, 1795. Spain gave up all claim 
on the east side of the Mississippi north of the thirty- -first parallel, but 
on various pretexts the formal transfer of posts was delayed and a 
Spanish garrison contiiuied to occupy San Fernando de Barrancas, at 
the present Memphis, Tennessee, until the fall of 1797, while that at 
Natchez, in Mississippi, was not surrendered until March, 1798. The 
Creeks, seeing the trend of affairs, had made peace at Colerain, 
Georgia, in June, 17!H). With the hostile European influence thus 
eliminated, at least for the time, the warlike tribes on the north and 
on the south crushed and dispirited and the Chickamauga towns wiped 
out of existence, the Cherokee realized that they uuist accept the 
situation and, after nearly twenty years of continuous warfare, laid 
aside the tomahawk to cultivate the arts of peace and civilization. 

The close of the century found them still a compact people (the 
westward movement having hardly yet begun) numbering probably 
about 2(1,000 souls. After repeated cessions of large tracts of land, to 
some of which the}* had but doubtful claim, they remained in recog- 
nized possession of nearly 43,000 square miles of territory, a country 
about (Mjual in extent to Ohio, Virginia, or Temiessee. Of this'terri- 
tory about one-half was within the limits of Tennessee, the remainder 
being almost equally divided between Geoi-gia and Alabama, witli a 
small area in the extreme south westei-n corner of North C^arolina.'' 
The old Lower towns on Savannah river had been broken up for 
twenty years, and the whites had so far enca-oached upon the Upper 
towns that the capital and council tire of the nation had been removed 
from the ancient peace town of Echota to Ustanali, in Georgia. The 

■Indian Treaties, pp. 78-82. 183"; Ramsey, Tennessee, pp. 692-697, 1S53; Royee, Cherokee Nation 
(witli map and full discussion). Fifth Ann. Rep. Bureau of Ethnology, pp. 174-183, 1888. 
-'See tahle in Royee, op. cit., p. 378. 

19 KTii— 01 •; 

82 ' MYTHS OK THE CHEROKEE 1ktii.ann.19 

towns on Coosa river iiud in Alubanui were almost all of recent estul)- 
ii.shnient, peopled by refugees from the east and north. The Middle 
towns, in North Carolina, were still surrounded by Indian country. 

Fii'earm.s had iieen introduced into the tribe aliout one hundred 
years before, and the Cherokee had learned well their use. Such 
civilized goods as hatchets, knives, clothes, and trinkets had become 
so common before the first Cherokee war that the Indians had declared 
that they could no longer live without the traders. Horses and other 
domestic animals had. been introduced early in the century, and at the 
opening of the war of 1760, according to Adair, the Cherokee had "a 
prodigious luimber of excellent hoi-ses," and although hunger had 
compelled them to eat a great many of these during that period, thej' 
still had, in 1775, from two to a dozen each, and bid fair soon to have 
plenty of the 1)est sort, as, according to the same authority, they were 
skilful jo(?keys and nice in their choice. Some of them had grown 
fond of cattle, and they had also an abundance of hogs and poultry, 
the Indian pork being esteemed better than that raised in the white 
settlements on account of the chestnut diet. ' In Sevier's expedition 
against the towns on Coosa I'iver, in 1793, the army killed three hun- 
dred beeves at Etowah and left their carcasses rotting on the ground. 
While crossing the Cherokee country in 1796 Hawkins met an Indian 
woman on horseback driving ten very fat cattle to the settlements for 
sale. Peach trees and potatoes, as well as the native corn and beans, 
were abundant in their fields, and some had bees and honey and did a 
considerable trade in beeswax. They seem to have quickly recovered 
from the repeated ravages of war, and there was a general air of pros- 
perity throughout the'nation. The native arts of potter}^ and basket- 
making were still the principal employment of the women, and the 
warriors liunted with such success that a party of traders iirought 
down thirty wagon loads of skins on one trip." In dress and house- 
Iniilding the Indian style was pi'uctically unchanged. 

In pursuance of a civilizing policy, the government had agreed, by 
the treaty of 1791, to furnish the Cherokee gratuitously with farming 
tools and similar assistance. This policy was continued and l^roadened 
to such an extent that in fSOl Hawkins reports that "'in the Cherokee 
agency, the wheel, the loom, and the plough is [sic] in pretty general 
use. farming, manufactures, and stock raising the topic of conversation 
among the ujen and women." At a conference held this year we find 
the chiefs of the mountain towns complaining that the people of the 
more western and southwestern settlements had received more than 
their share of spinning wheels and cards, and were consequently more 
advanced in making their own clothing as well as in farming, to which 

1 A<liiir, American Indiiins, pp. 230, 231,1775. 

-Sue Hawkins, MS journftl from South Carolimi to the Creeks, 1796, in library of Georgia Historical 


the others retoi-ted that these thiiius had Ix'cii otlVred to all alike at 
the .same time, but while the lowland pt^opie had Ix-en (|ui('k to accept, 
the mountaineers had hung bai-k. "Those who complain came in late. 
We have got the start of them, which W(> are detei'niined to keep." 
The pi-ogressives, under John Watts, Doublehead, and \N' ill, threatened 
to secede from the rest and leave those east of Chilhowee mountain to 
siiift for themselves.^ We see here the germ of dissatisfaction which 
led ultimately to the emigration of the western band. Along with 
other things of civilization, negro slavery had been introduced and 
several of the leading men were now slaveholders (31). 

Much of the advance in civilization had been due to the intermar- 
riage among them of white men. chiefly traders of the ante-Revolu- 
tionary period, with a few Americans from the back settlements. The 
families that have made Cherokee history were nearly all of this mixed 
descent. The Doughertys, Galpins, and Adairs were from Ireland: the 
Rosses, Vanns, and Mclntoshes, like the McCiillivrays and Graysons 
among the Creeks, were of Scottish origin; the Waffords and others 
were Americans from Carolina or Georgia, and the father of Sequo3'a 
was a (Pennsylvania^) German. Most of this white blood was of good 
stock, very diti'erent from the "squaw man" element of the western 
tril)es. Those of the mixed blood who coidd aliord it usually sent their 
hildren away to be educated, while some built schoolhouses upon 
tiieir own grounds and brought in private teachers from the outside. 
With the beginning of the present century we tind influential mixed 
bloods in almost every town, and the civilized idea dominated even the 
national councils. The ]Middlc towns, shut in from the outside world 
by high mountains, remained a stronghold of Cherokee conservatism. 

With the exception of Priber, there seems to be no authentic record 
of any missionary worker among the Cherokee before 1800. There is, 
indeed, an incidental notice of a Presbyterian minister of North Caro- 
lina being on his way to the tribe in 1758, but nothing seems to have 
come of it, and we tind him soon after in South Carolina and sc|)arated 
from his oi-iginal jurisdiction.'' The first permanent mission was estab- 
lished by the Moravians, those peaceful German immigrants whose 
teachings were so well exemplified in the lives of Zeisberger and 
Heckewelder. As early as 1784, while temporarily settled in (ieoi'gia, 
they had striven to bring some knowledge of the Christian religion to 
the Indians immediately about Savaiuiah, including ju'rhajis some 
stray Chei'okee. Later on they estai)lislu'd missions among the Dela- 
wares in Ohio, where their first Cherokee conveit was received in 
1778, being 0!ie who had been ca])tui-ed by the Delawarcs wiien a 
boy and had grown up and married in the tribe. In 175-2 they had 
formed a settlement on the upper Yadkin, near the present Salem, 

' Uawkiii!<. Treuty Commission, IHOI, maiuisc'ript Xo. 5, mi library of Georgia Historical Society, 
■-Footc (?), ill Xorlli Carolina Colonial Records, v, p. 1T16, 1.SS7. 



North Carolina, where they made friendly acquaintance with the 
Cherokee.' In ITltlt, hearing that the Cherokee desired teachers — or 
perhaps by direct invitation of the chiefs — two missionaries visited 
the tribe to investio-ate the matter. Another visit was made in the 
next summer, and a council was held at Tellico agency, where, after a 
debate in which the Indians showed considerable difference of opinion, 
it was decided to open a mission. Permission having been obtained 
from the government, the work was begun in April, 1801, ))y Rev. 
Abraham Steiner and Rev. Gottlieb Byhan at the re.sidetice of David 
Vann, a prominent mixed-blood chief, who lodged them in his own 
house and gave them every assistance in liuilding the mission, which 
they afterward called Spring place, where now is the village of the 
saiue name in Murray county, northwestern Georgia. They were 
also materially aided l)y the agent, Colonel Return J. Meigs (32). It 
was soon seen that the Cherokee wanted civilizers for their children, 
and not new theologies, and when they found that a school could not 
at once be opened the great council at Ustanali sent orders to the 
missionaries to organize a school within six months or leave the nation. 
Through Vann's help the matter was arranged and a school was 
opened, several sons of prominent chiefs being among the pupils. 
Another Moravian mission was established by Reverend J. Gambold 
at Oothcaloga, in the same county, in 1821. Both were in flourishing 
condition when broken up, with other Cherokee missions, by the State 
of Georgia in 183-t. The work was afterward renewed beyond the 

In 1801 the Reverend Gideon Blackburn, a Presbyterian minister of 
Tennessee, opened a school among the Cherokee, which continued for 
several years until abandoned for lack of funds.' 

Notwithstanding the promise to the Cherokee in the treaty of 1798 
that the Government would "continue the guarantee of the remain- 
der of their country forever," measures were begun almost imme- 
diately to procure another large cession of land and road privileges. 
In spite of the strenuous objection of the Cherokee, who sent a 
delegation of prominent chiefs to AVashington to protest against any 
further sales, such pressure was brought to bear, chieflj' through the 
efforts of the agent. Colonel Meigs, that the object of the Government 
was accomplished, and in 1801 and 1805 three treaties were negotiated 
at Tellico agency, by which the Cherokee were shorn of more than 
eight thousand square miles of their remaining territor3\ 

By the first of these treaties — October 24, 1804 — a purchase was 
made of a small tract in northeastern Georgia, known as the " Wafford 

1 N'orth Carolina Colonial Records, v, p. x, 1887. 

-Reichel, E. H., Historical Sketch of the Church and Missions of the United Brethren, pp. G.VSl; 
Bethlehem, Pa.. 1848: Holmes, John, Sketches of the Missions of the United Brethren, pp. 124, 12.i, 
209-212: Dublin, ISIS; Thompson, A. C, Moravian Missions, p. 341; New York, 1890; De Sehvveinitz, 
Edmund, Life of Zeisberger, pp. 394, mi. Mil; Phila., 1870. 

3 Morse, American Geography, i, i>. 577, 1819. 


settlement." upon which a party led by Colonel Watiord had located 
some years before, under the impression that it was outside the bound- 
ary established by the Ilopewell treaty. In compensation the Cherokee 
were to receive an iniUiediate payment of five thousand dollais in 
{roods or cash with an additional annuity of one thousand dollars. Hy 
the other treaties — October 25 and '27, 1805 — a large tract was obtained 
ill central Tennessee and Kentucky, extending between the Cumlier- 
land range and the western line of the Hopewell treaty, and from 
Cumberland river southwest to Duck river. One section was also 
secured at Southwest pcnnt (now Kingston, Tennessee) with the design 
of establishing there the state capital, which, however, was located at 
Nashville instead seven years later. Permission was also obtained for 
two mail roads through the Cherokee country into Georgia and Ala- 
bama. In consideration of the cessions by the two treaties the United 
States agi'eed to pay fifteen thousand six hundred dollars in working 
implements, goods, orcash, with an additional annuity of three thousand 
dollars. To secure the consent of some of the leading chiefs, the 
treaty commissioners resorted to the disgraceful precedent of sei-ret 
articles, by which several valualjle small tracts were reserved for 
Doublehead and Tollunteeskee, the agreement being recorded as a part 
of the treaty, but not embodied in the copy sent to the 8enate for con- 
firmation.' In consequence of continued abuse of his official position 
for selfish ends Doublehead was soon afterward killed in accordance 
with a decree of tiie chiefs of the Nation, Major Kidge being selected 
as executioner." 

By the treaty of October 25. 1805, the settlements in eastern Tennessee 
were brought into connection with those about Nashville on the Cumber- 
land, and the state at last assumed compact form. The whole southern 
portion of the state, as defined in the charter, was still Indian coun- 
try, and there was a sti-ong and constant pressure for its opening, the 
prevailing sentiment l»'irig in favor of making Tennessee river the 
boundary between the two I'aces. New immigrants were constantly 
crowding in from tiie east, and, as Royce says, '"the desire to settle 
on Itidian land was as potent and insatiable with the average border 
settler then as it is now." Ahnost within two montiis of the last 
treaties another one was concludccl at Washington on .lanuary 7, LSdti, 
liy whici) the Cherokee ceded their claim to a large tract between 
Ouck river and the Tennessee, embracing nearly seven thousand 
sipiare miles in 'lY>nness(>e and .Vlabama. together with the Long island 
(Great island) in Holston river, which up to this time they had claimed 
as theirs. They were promised in compensation ten thousand dollars 
in five cash installments, a grist mill and cotton gin, and a life annuity 

' Indian treaties, pp.108, 121, 125, 1837; Royce, Cheroljee Nation, Fiftli Ann. Rep. Bureau of Ethnol- 
OKV, pp. 1S3 19S. 18* (map ami full discussion). 
-McKeuuey and Hall, Indian Tribes, ii, p. 92, 1858. 

S6 MYTHS OF THE CHEKOKEE (i;th. a.n.n.19 

of OIK" huiulrcfl dollars for Rlack-fox. the ayed head chief of the nation. 
The signers of the instrument, including l)oul)lehead and ToUuuteeskee, 
were accompanied to Washington by the same commissionei-s who had 
procured the pr(>vious treaty. In consecjuence of some misunderstand- 
ing, the l)oundaries of the ceded tract were still further extended in a 
supplementary treaty concluded at the Chickasaw Old Fields on the 
Tennessee, on Septem))er 11, 1S07. As the country between Duck 
river and the Teimessee was claimed also by the Chickasaw, their title 
was extinguished by separate treaties.' The ostensible compensation 
for this last Cherokee cession, as shown by the treaty, was two thou- 
sand dollars, but it was secretly agreed bj- Agent Meigs that what he 
calls a "silent consideration''' of one thousand dollars and some rifles 
should lie given to the chiefs who signed it." 

In lb07 Colonel Elias Earle, with the consent of the Government, 
obtained a concession from the Cherokee for the establishment of iron 
works at the mouth of Chickamauga creek, on the south side of Ten- 
nessee river, to be supplied from ores mined in the Cherokee country. 
It "was hoped that this would be a considerable step toward the civili- 
zation of the Indians, besides enabling the Government to obtain its 
supplies of manufactured iron at a cheaper rate, but after prolonged 
efl'ort the project was finally abandoned on account of the refusal of 
the state of Tennessee to sanction the grant. '^ In the same year, by 
arrangement with the general government, the legislature of Tennessee 
attempted to negotiate with the Cherokee for that part of their unceded 
lands l.ying within the state limits, but without success, owing to the 
unwillingness of the Indians to part with an}' more territory, and their 
.special dislike for the people of Tennessee.' 

In 1810 the Cherokee national council registered a further advance 
in civilization by formally abolishing the custom of clan revenge, 
hitherto universal among the tribes. The enactment bears the signa- 
tures of Black-fox (Ina'li), principal chief, and seven others, and reads 
as follows: 

In Council, Oostinaleh, A/jri! IS, ISIO. 

1. Be it known this day, Tluit tlie various clans or tribes which compose the Cher- 
okee nation have unanimously passed an act of ol)livion for all lives for which they 
may have been indebted one to the other, and have mutually agreed that after this 
evening the aforesaid act shall become binding upon every clan or tribe thereof. 

2. The aforesaid clans or tribes have also agreed that if, in future, any life should 
be lost without malice intended, the innocent aggressor shall not l.)e accounted guilty; 

1 Indian Treaties, pp. 132-136, 1837; Royce, Cherokee Nation, Fifth Ann. Rep. Bureau of Ethnology, 
pp. 193-197, 1888. 

-Meigs, letter, September 28. 1807, .\meriean .State Paper.'*: Indian ,\fFairs, i, p. ~M, 1832; Royce, 
op. cit., p. 197. 

^See treaty, December 2, 1807, and Jefferson's message, with inclosures, March 10, 1808, .\merican 
State Papers: Indian Affairs, i, pp. 7.52-7.54. 1832; Royce, op. cit., pp. 199-201. 

<lbid., pp. 201,202. 


and, should it so happen th;it a hrothiT, fdr^fttinir his natural affi'ctions, should 
raise his hands in an^er and kill his lirothor, he shall he accounted j;uilty of murdi-r 
and suffer accordingly. 

3. If a man have a horse stolen, and overtake the tliief, ami sliould his anirer he 
so great as to cause him to shed his bluod, let it remain ou his nwn conscience, but 
no satisfaction shall be required for his life, from his relative nr clan he may have 
belonged to. 

By order of the seven elans. ' 

Under an ao-reenicnt with the Cherokee in isi;', a c<iiiipaiiy ((unijosed 
of representatives of Tennessee, Georgia, and tiic Cherokee nation 
wasoi-ganized to lay out a free ))ul)lii' rotid from 'I'enncssee river to 
the head of na\ioation on the Tuoahx) })ranch of SiUiinnah river, with 
provision for convenient stopping places along the line. 'I'iie road 
was completed within the next three vears. and 1)ecame the great liigh- 
way from the coast to the Tennessee settlements. Heginning on the 
Tugaloo or SaA'annah a short distance below the entrance of Toccoa 
creek, it crossed the upper Chattahoochee, passing throngh Clarkes- 
ville, Nacoochee valley, the Unicoi gap, and Hiwassee in (ieorgia; 
then entering North Carolina it descended the Hiwassc(\ passing 
through Hayesville and Murphy tmd over the Creat Smoky range into 
Tennessee, until it reached the terminus at the Cherokee c;ii)ital, 
Echota, on Little Tennessee. It was officially styled the Unicoi turn- 
pike' but was commonly known in North Carolina as the Waciiesa 
trail, from Watsi'.sa or Wachesa, a prominent Indian who li\'cd near 
the crossing-place on Beaverdani creek, below Murphy, this portion 
of the road being laid (uit along the old Indian trail which already 
bore that name.^ 

Passing over for the pre.sent some negotiations having for their i)ur- 
pose the removal of the ('herokee to the West, we arrive at the period 
of the Creek war. 

Ever since the treaty of (irccnville it had been thedreauiof 'I'cciun- 
tha, the great Shawano chief (88), to weld again the confed(>riicy of tiie 
northern tribes as a barrier iigainst the further aggressions of the white 
man. His own burning eloquence was ably seconded by the subtler 
persuasion of his brother, who assiuued the role of ii ])roj)het witli ti 
new revelation, the burden of which was that the Indians must return 
to their old Indian life if they would preserve their national existence. 
The new doctrine sj)read among till the northern tribes and at last 
reached those of the south, where Tecuni*ha himself h:id gone to enlist 
the warriors in the great Indian confederacy. The prophets of the 
Ujiper Creeks eagerly accepted the doctrine and in a siiort time their 
warriors were dancing the '"dance of the Indians of the lakes." In 

iln American State Papers: Indian Affairs, ii, p. 283, 1834, 

2See contract appended to Wa-sliington treaty, 1819, Indian Treaties, pp, 269-271, 1837; Hoyec map. 
Fifth Ann. Rep. Bureau of Ethnology, 1888. 
■■* Author's persontil informution. 


anticipation of an cxpcctod war with the United States the Bi'itisli 
agents in Canada had been (Mieoiiraging the hostile feeling toward the 
Americans l)y talks and presents of goods and ammunition, while lh(> 
Spaniards also covertly fanned the flame of discontent.' At the height 
of the ferment war was declared between this country and England on 
June -2^, lcS13. Tecumtha, at the head of tifteen hundred wari'iors. at 
once entered the British service with a commission as g(>neral. while 
the Creeks began murdering and burning along the southern frontier, 
after having vainly attempted to .secur&the cooperation of the Cherokee. 

From the Ci'eeks the new revelation was brought to the Cherokee, 
whose priests at once began to dream dreams and to preach a return to 
the old life as the oid}' hope of the Indian race. A great medicine 
dance was appointed at Ustanali. the national capital, where, after the 
dance was over, the doctrine was publiidy announced and explained by 
a Cherokee prophet introduced by a delegation from Coosawatee. He 
began by saying that some of the mountain towns had abused him and 
refused to receive his message, but nevertheless he must continue to 
bear testimony of his mission whatever might happen. The Cherokee 
had broken the road which had })een given to their fathers at the begin- 
ningof the world. They had taken the white man's clothes and trinkets, 
they had beds and tables and mills; .some even had books and cats. All 
this was bad, and because of it their gods were angry and the game 
was leaving their country. If they would live and be happy as before 
they must put off the white man's dress, throw away his mills and 
looms, kill their cats, put on paint and buckskin, and be Indians again: 
otherwise swift destruction would come upon them. 

His speech appealed strongly to the people, who cried out in great 
excitement that his talk was good. Of all those present only Major 
Ridge, a principal chief, had the courage to stand up and oppose it, 
warning his hearers that such talk would inevitably lead to war with 
the United States, which would end in their own destruction. The 
maddened foUow-ers of the prophet sprang upon Kidge and would have 
killed him but for the interposition of friends. As it was, he was thrown 
down and narrowly escaped with his life, while one of his defenders 
was stabtjed by his side. 

The prophet had threatened after a certain time to invoke a terrible 
storm, which should destroy all but the ti'ue believers, who were 
exhorted to gather for safety on one of the high peaks of the Great 
Smoky mountains. In full faith thej^ abandoned their bees, their 
orchards, their slaves, and everything that had come to them from the 
white man, and took up their toilsome march for the high moiuitains. 
There they waited until the appointed day had come and passed, show- 

• Mooney, Ghost-dance Religion, Fourteenth Ann. Rep. Bureau of Ethnology, p. 670 et passim, 
lb96; contemporary documents in .\merican State Papers: Indian Affairs,!, pp. 798-801, iy45-850, 1832 

MooxKY] BKGINNINr. I>K CKKEK WAR 18i;{ 89 

in<'' their hopos ami fcai's to !«' i.Toim(ll('ss. whi'ii thcv sadly returned 
to tiieir homes and the jireat Indian revival anionj;' tiie ('hei'i>kee caiiK! 
to an end.' 

AnionL;' tlie Creeks. \vher<" other hostile influences were at work, the 
exeitoment euhninatetl in theCrt^^k war. Several murdei'sand outi'iijj'es 
had already been eonnnitted. l)ut it was not until the teirihle massacre 
at Fort 'Minis (:-i4). on August 'MK I8I0. that the whole American nation 
was aroused. Throu<;h the inihuMice ot Ridge and other ])i-oniin(>nt 
cliit'fs th(> Chtn'okee had refused to join the hostile Creeks, and on the 
contrarv had jjroniised to assist the whites and the friendly towns." 
More than a year before the council had sent a friendly iettei- to the 
Creeks warning them taking the British side in the a])j)roach- 
ing war. while several prominent chiefs had proposed to enlist aC'hero- 
kee force for the service of the I'nited States.^ Finding that no help 
was to be expected from the Cherokee, the Ci'eeks took occasion to kill 
a Cherokee woman near the town of Etowah, in Georgia. A\'ith th(> 
help of a conjurer the murderers were trailed and overtaken and killed 
on the evening of the second day in a thicket where they had concealed 
theni.selves. After this there could be no alliance between the two 

At the time of the Fort Mims massacre Mcintosh (35), tiie chief of 
the friendly Lower Creeks, was visiting the Cherokee, among whom 
he had relatives. By order of the Cherokee council he was escorted 
home by a delegation under the leadership of Ridge. On his return 
Ridge brought with him a request from the Lower Creeks that the 
Cherokee would join with them and the Americans in putting down 
the war. Ridge himself strongly urged the proposition, declaring 
that if the prophets were allowed to have their wa}' the work f>f civil- 
ization would be destroyed. The council, however, decided not to 
interfere in the affairs of other tribes, whereupon Ridge called for 
\()lunteers. with the result that so many of the warriors resjxmded that 
the council reversed its decision and declared war against the Creeks.'"' 
For a proper understanding of the situation it is necessary to state that 
the hostile feeling was contin(Hl almost entirely to the l'j)per Creek 
towns on the Tallapoosa, where the prophets of the new religion had 
their residence. The half-breed chief, Weatherford (3t!), was the 
leader of the war party. The Lower Creek towns on the Chattahoo- 

■See Mooney, Ghost diiiicr Religion. Fourteenth Ann. Rep. Bureau nf KthnoIoK.v, pp. 670-677, 1896; 
MeKenney and Hall. Indian Tribes, m. pp. 'J;i-y.5, 18.W; see also eontemporary letters (1813, ete.) by 
Hawkins. Cornells, and others in .\nierican State Papers: Indian AITairs, i, 1,S32. 

-Letters of Hawkins. Pinekney. and Cussetah King, .Inly, 1813, American State I'apers: Indian 
Allairs. 11, pp. 847-811), 1.S3-J. 

■'Meiifs, letter. May 8, IHPJ, and Hawkins, letter, May 11, 1S12. ibid., p.809. 

< Author's information from .lames D. WalTord. 

'MeKenney and Hall, Indian Tribes, ii, pji. 9(>-'.i", IS.5S. 


choo, under Mcintosh, another half-breed fhi(>t', were fricMidly, and 
acted with the Cherokee and tlie Americans against their own brethren. 

It is not our purpose to give a history of the Creek war, but only 
to note the part which the Cherokee had in it. The friendly Lower 
Creeks, under Mcintosh, with a few refugees from the Upper towns, 
operated chieHy with the army under General Floyd whicii invaded 
the southern part of the Creek country from Georgia. Some friendly 
Choctaw and Chickasaw also lent their assistance in this direction. 
The Cherokee, with some friendly Creeks of the Upper towns, acted 
with the armies under Generals White and Jackson, whicli entered 
the Creek country from the Tennessee side. While some hundreds 
of their wai'riors were thus lighting in the field, the Cherokee at home 
were busily collecting provisions for the American troops. 

As Jackson approached from the north, about the end of October, 
1813, he was met by runnel's asking him to come to the aid of Path- 
killer, a Cherokee chief, who was in danger of being cut oS l)y the 
hostiles, at his village of Turkeytown, on the upper Coosa, near the 
present Center. Alabama. A fresh detachment on its way from east 
Tennessee, under General White, was ordered by Jackson to relieve 
the town, and successfully performed this work. White's force con- 
sisted of one thousand men. including four hundred Cherokc^e under 
Colonel Gideon Morgan and John Lowrey.' 

As the army advanced down the Coosa the Creeks retired to Tallasee- 
hatchee, on the creek of the same name, near the present Jacksonville, 
Calhoun county, Alabama. One thousand men under General Coifee, 
together with a company of Cherokee under Captain Kichard Brown 
and some few Creeks, were sent against them. The Indian auxiliaries 
wore headdresses of white feathers and deertails. The attack was 
made at daybreak of November 3, 1813, and the town was taken after 
a desperate resistance, from which not one of the defendei's escaped 
alive, the Creeks having been completely surrounded on all sides. 
Says Coffee in his official report: 

They made all the resistance that an overpowered soldier could do — they fought as 
long as one existed, but their destruction was very soon completed. Our men rushed 
up to the doors of the houses and in a few minutes killed the last warrior of them. 
The enemy fought with savage fury and met death with all its horrors, without 
shrinking or f<jmplaining — not one asked to he spared, but fought as long as they 
could stand or sit. 

Of such fighting stufi' did the Creeks prove themselves, against over- 
whelming numljers, throughout the war. The t)odies of nearly two 
hundred dead warriors were counted on the field, and tlie general 
reiterates that ''not one of the warriors escaped.'' A niunber of 
women and tliildren were taken prisoners. Nearly every man of the 
Creeks had a bow with a bundle of arrows, which he used after the 

1 Drake, Indian-s, pp. 395-396, ISSO; Pickett, Alabamii, p. .5.56, reprint of 1.H96. 


first tire with liis »;iiii. Tli<> Ainciii-iii loss wus only five killed jiiid 
fortv-one wounded, wliicli may not include the Indian conf inyvnt.' 

White's advance yiiai'd. consistinji' chietly of the lour hundred olh(>r 
Cherokeeninder Moro:an and Lowrey. reached 'rallaseehatchee the same 
evening, only to tind it already destroyed. They i)icked up twenty 
wounded Creeks, whom they ludu^ht with thi'in In Turkeytown.- 

The next great hattle was at Talladega, on the site of tlie present 
town of the same name, in Talladega county. Alaliama. on Novend)er '.t, 
1813. Jackson couunande(l in jH'rson with two thousand infantry and 
cavalry. Although the Cherokee are not sju'citically mentioned they 
were a part of the army and nuist have taken part in the engagement. 
The town itself was occupied by fiiendly Creeks, who were besieged 
by the hostiles. estimated at over one thousand wari-iors on the out- 
side. Here again the battle was simply a slaughter, tlie odds ))eing 
two to one, the Creeks being also without cover, although they fought 
so desperately that at one time the militia was driven l)ack. They 
left two hundred and ninety-nine dead bodies on the field, which, 
according to their own statement afterwards, was only a part of 
their total loss. The Americans lost fifteen killed and eighty-tive 

A day or two later the people of Hillabee town. ai>out th(> site of 
the present village of that name in Clay county, Alabama. s(Mit mes- 
sengers to Jackson's camp to ask for peace, which that conuiiander 
immediately granted. In the meantime, even while th(> peace mes- 
sengers were on their way home with the good news, an army of one 
thousand men from east Tennessee under General White, who claimed 
to be independent of Jackson's authority, together with four hundred 
Cherokee under Colonel (xideon ^Morgan and John Lowrey. surrounded 
the town on November IS, 1S13. taking it bj' surprise, the inhabitants 
having trusted so contidently to the success of their peace embassy 
that they had made no pn^paration for defense. Sixty warriors were 
killed and over two hundred and hfty prisoners taken, with no loss to 
the Americans, as there was practicall}' no resistance. In White's 
official report of the atiair he states that he had sent ahead a j)ai-t of 
his force, together with the Cherokee under ^Morgan, to suiTound I lie 
town, and adds that "Colonel Morgan and the (TieroktH's under iiis 
fommand ga\'e 'undeniabl(>, evidence tiiat the}' merit t\w em])liiy of 
their govermnent."' Not knowing that the attack had been uiad(> 
without Jackson's sanction or knowdedge. the Creeks natuialh- con- 

'Coffee, report, etc., in Drake, Indiana, p. 396, 1880; Lossing, Field Book of the War of 1812, pp. 
762,763 [n. d. (1869)]; Pickett, Alabama, p. .'iSS. reprint of 1896. 

-Ibid., p. .>5ti. 

3 Drake, Indians, p. 396, 1880; Pickett, op. i-it.. pp. S.'M, 5.5.i. 

< White's report, etc., in Fay and Davison, sketches of the War, pp. 240. 241: Rntland, Vl., lsl.'>; 
Low, John, Impartial History of the War, p. 199; New York, 181.5; Drake, op. cil.. p. 397; I'icki-tl, up. 
cit., p. 5,i7; Lossing. op. cit., p. 767. Low .says White had about 1,100 mouuied men, "101111111111,' 
upward of 300 Cherokee Indians." Pickett gives White '100 Cherokee. 


eluded that peace overtures were of no avail, and tlieneefortli until 
the of the war th(>re was no talk of siirrend(>r. 

On Nov(>inher 29, 1.S13, tlie Georgia army under (iencral Floyd, 
consisting of nine hundred and fifty American troops and four hun- 
dred friendly Indians, ehietly Lower Creeks under Mcintosh, took 
and destroyed Autosse(> town on the Tallapoosa, west of the present 
Tuskegee. killing about two hundred warriors and burning four hun- 
dred well-built hous(>s. On I)eceml)er 23 the Creeks were again 
defeated by (leneral Claiborne, assisted by some friendly Choctaws, 
at Eeanaehaca or the Holy Ciround on Alabama river, near the pivsent 
Benton in Lowndes county. This town and another a few miles away 
were also destroyed, with a great quantity of provisions and other 
pi-o])erty. ' It is doubtful if any Cherokee were concerned in either 

Before the close of the year Jackson's force in northern Alabama 
had been so far reduced by mu<:inies and expiration of service teiins 
that he had but ow hundred soldiers left and was oliliged to employ 
the Cherokee to garri-son Fort Armstrong, on the upper Cocsa, and to 
protect his provision depot. '■ With the opening of the new .rear, 181-1, 
having received reinforcements from Tennessee, together with about 
two hundred friendly Creeks and sixty-live more Cherokee, he left his 
camp on the Coosa and advanced against the towns on the Tallapoosa. 
Learning, on arri\ing near the rivei', that he was wichin a few miles 
of the main body of the enemy, he halted for a reconnoissance and 
camped in order of liattle on Enmkfaw creek, on the northern bank of 
the Tallapoosa, only a ihort distance from the famous Horseshoe bend. 
Here, on the morning of June 24, 1814, he was suddenly attacked by 
the enemy with such fury that, although the troops charged with the 
Vjayonet, the Creeks returned again to the tight and were at last broken 
only by the help of the friendly Indians, who came upon them from 
the rear. As it was, Jackson was so badly crippled that he retreated 
to Fort Strother on the Coosa, carrying his wounded, among them Gen- 
eral Coffee, on horse-hide litters. The Creeks pursued and attacked 
him again as he was crossing Enotochopco creek on January 24. but 
after a severe hght were driven Ijack with dischai'ges of grapeshot from 
a six-pounder at close range. The arnn' then continued its reti'eat to 
Fort Strother. The American loss in these two battles was about one 
hundred killed and wounded. The loss of the Creeks was nuich greater, 
but they had compelled a superior force, armed with bayonet and 
artillery, to retreat, and without the aid of the friendly Indians it is 
doubtful if Jackson could have saved his army from demoralization. 
Th(^ Creeks themselves claimed a victory and boasted afterward 
that they had "whipped Jackson and run him to the river." 

1 Drake. Indians, pp. 391. 398, 1880; Pickett, Alabama, pp. .5.57-5.59, 572-676, reprint of 1.896. 
- Ibid., p. .579: Lossing, Field Book of the War of 1812, p. 773. 


Pickott states, on what sooins o-ood authority, that the Creeks eiii;ajjpd 
(lid not numher more tiian five himdi-ed warriors. Jackson had prob- 
aliiv at least one thousand two inindred men, including Indians.' 

While these events wei'e transpiring in the north, (ieneral Floyd 
aoain advanced from (ieorgia with a force of about one thousand three 
hundred Americans and four hundred friendly Indians, but was sur- 
prised on (_'aleel)i'e criH'k. near the jjresent Tuskegee, Alabama, on the 
morning of January 27, 1S14. and compelled to retreat, leaving the 
enemy in of the Ktdd.- 

We come now to the tinai event of the Creek war, the tei'ril)le t)attle 
of the Horseshoe liend. IIa\ing received large recnforcements from 
Tennessee, Jackson left a garrison at Fort Strother. and, about the 
middle of ]March. descended the Coosa river to the mouth of Cedar 
creek, southeast from the present Columbiana, whei'e he built Fort 
Williams. Leaving his stores here with a garrison to protect them, 
he began his march for the Horseshoe bend of the Tallapoosa, where 
the hostiles were reported to iiave collected in great force. At this 
place, known to the Creeks as Tohopki or Tohopeka, the Tallapoosa 
made a bend so as to inclose some eighty or a hundred acres in a nar- 
row peninsula opening to the north. On the lower side was an island 
in the river, and about a mile below was Emukfaw creek, entering from 
the north, where Jackson had been driven back two months before 
Both locations were in the present Tallapoosa county, Alabama, within 
two nuies of tlie present post village of Tohopeka. Across the neck of 
the peninsula the Creeks had l)uilt a strong breastwork of logs, behind 
which were their houses, and l)ehind these were a numl)er of canoes 
moored to the bank for use if retreat became necessary. The foit was 
defended V)v a thousand warriors, with whom were also about three 
hundred women and children. Jackson's force luanbered about two 
thousand men, including, according to his own statement, five hundred 
Cherokee. He had also two small cannon. The account of tiie battle, 
or rather massacre, which occurred on the morning of March -27 . IS14, 
is best condensed from the official reports of the principal connuanders. 

Having arrived in the neighborhood of the fort. Jackson disposed 
his men for the attack by detailitig (ieneral Coflee witii the mounted 
men and nearly the whole of the Indian force to cross the river at a 
ford about three miles lielow and suri'ound the bend in such manner 
fhat none could escape in that direction. He himself, witii the rest of 
his force, advanced to the front of the breastwork and planted hiscan- 

'Fay and Davison, Sketches of the War, pp. 2-47-250. 1S15; Pickett, Alabama, pp. .')79-.'iSJ. reprint of 
1896; Drake, Indians, pp. 398-100, 18S0. Pickett says Jackson had ■■7117 men. witli 200 friendly Indians" : 
Drake says he started with 930 men and was joined at Talladega hy 2CKI friendly Indians: .lackson 
himself, as quoted in Fay and Davi.son. says that he started with 930 men, crcludhiii Iiirliam, and 
was joined at Talladega "by between 200 and 300 friendly Indians." IB being (;herokee. the rest 
Creeks. The inference is that he already had a number of Indians with him at the start— probably 
the Cherokee who had been doing garrison duty. 

2 Pickett, op. eit., pp.5M-.586. 

94 MYTHS (PK THE CHEUoKEK [kth..ixn.19 

noil upon a .slioht rise within oiulity yiird.s of the fortification. He tlien 
directed a heavy cannonade iijion the center of the breastwork, while 
the rifles and nmsliets kept up a galling- lire upon the defenders when- 
ever they showed themselves behind the logs. The breastwork was 
very strongly and conijiactly built, from live to eight feet high, with a 
double row of portholes, and so planned that no enemy could approach 
without being- exposed to a crosslire from those on the inside. After 
about two houi's of cannonading- and rifle fire to no great purpose, 
"Captain RusseU's company of spies and a party of the Cherokee 
force, headed in' their gallant chieftain, Colonel Richard Brown, and 
conducted by the brave Colonel Morgan, crossed over to the peninsula 
in canoes and set fire to a few of their ])uilding-s there situated. They 
then advanced with great gallantry towai'd the breastwork and com- 
menced firing upon the enemy, who lay liehind it. Finding that this 
force, notwithstanding the determination they displayed, was wholly 
insufficient to dislodge the enemy, and that General Coffee had secured 
the opposite banks of the river, I now determined on taking possession 
of their works }jy storni." ' 

Coffee's official report to his commanding officer states that he had 
taken seven hundred mounted troops and about six hundred Indians, 
of whom five hundred were Cherokee and the rest friendly Creeks, 
and had come in behind, having directed the Indians to take position 
secreth' along- the bank of the river to prevent the enemy crossing, as 
already noted.' This was done, but with fighting going on so near at 
hand the Indians could not remain quiet. Continuing, Coffee says: 

The firing of your cannon and small arms in a short time became general and 
heavy, which animated our Indians, and seeing about one hundred of the warriors 
and all the squaws and children of the enemy running about among the huts of the 
■village, which was open to our view, they could no longer remain silent spectators. 
While some kept up a tire across the river to prevent the enemy's approach to the 
bank, others plunged into the water and swam the river for canoes that lay at the 
other shore in considerable numliers and brought them over, in which crafts a num- 
ber of them emliarked and landed on the bend with the enemy. Colonel Gideon ■ 
Morgan, who conunan<led the Cherokees, C'aiitain Kerr, and Caiitain ^^'illiam Rus- 
sell, with a part of his company of spies, were among the first that crossed the river. 
They advanced into the village and very soon drove the enemy from the huts up 
the river bank to the fortified works from which they were fighting you. They 
pursued and continued to annoy during your whole action. This movement of my 
Indian forces left the river bank unguarded and made it necessary that I should send 
a part of my line to take jio-ssession of the river bank.-' 

According to the official report of Colonel Morgan, who commanded 
the Cherokee and who was himself severeh^ wounded, the Cherokee 
took the places assigned them along the bank in such regular order 

'Jackson's report to Governor Blount, March 31, 1814, in Fay and Davison, Slietches of the War, 
2 General Coffee's report to General Jackson, April 1, 1814, ibid., p. 257. 


thiit no part was left unoccupied, and the fow fug'itivos wlio attoniptod 
to escape from the fort l)y water '•fell an easy prey to their \en- 
geance." Finally, seeinu" that the cannonade iiad no more effect upon 
the )>r(>astwork tlian tt> l)ore hoh's in tlie logs, some of tiie ('iieroiv(>e 
])iung(Hi into tiie river, and swinnning' over to the town hrouylit l)ack 
ii num))er of canoes. A part crossed in these, under co\-erot' tlie guns 
of their conqjanions. and siieltei'cd themsolves under tiie iianic wliile 
tlie canoes wei'e sent l)aci< foi- reenforceuients. In this way they :dl 
crossed ovei' and then advanced up the bank, where at once they wcr(> 
warmly assailed from every side except the rear, which tiiey ke])t (i])en 
only by hard tiyiitiny.' 

The Creeks had been tighting- the Americans in theii- fi-ont at .~-uch 
ciost> ([uai'ters tliat their buUets flattened upon the biiyonets thrust 
tlirough tiie portholes. 'Phis attack from the rear ])y five iuuidred 
Cherokee divei'ted tiieir attention and gave opportunity to the 'I'emies- 
seeans, Sam Houston among' tliem, cheering- them on, to swarm over 
the breastwork. AVitii death from die l>ullet, the bayonet and the 
hatchet all around them, and the smoke of their blazing homes in tlieii- 
eyes, not a wai-rior begged for his life. Wlicn more than half their 
number lay dead upon the ground, the rest turned and i)lunge(i into 
the river, only to find the lianks on the opposite side UikmI with enemies 
and escape cut otf in every direction. Sa\'s General Cotiee: 

Attempts to crosis the river at all points of the bend were made by the enemy, but 
not one ever escaped. Very few ever reached the bank and that few was killed the 
instant they landed. From the rejjort of my officers, as well as from my own obser- 
vation, I feel warranted in saying that from two hundred and fifty to three hundred 
of the enemy was linried under wati'r and was not nundicrcd with the dead that 
were found. 

Some swam for the island below the bend. Imt here too a detacli- 
iiKMit had been jiosted and "• not one e\er landed. Thev were sunk b\' 
Lieut(Miant l?ean"s couuuand ere they reached the bank."" 

(Quoting again from .bickson — 

The enemy, although many of them fought to the last with that kind of bravery 
which ilesperation insijires, were at last entirely routed and cut to pieces. The battle 
may be said to have continued with severity for about five hours, but the firing and 
slaughter continued until it was suspended by the darkness of night. The next 

morning it wa.s resumed and sixteen of the enemy slain who had cdi ulrd tliem- 

selves under the banks.'' 

It was supposed that the Creeks had about a thousand wari'iors, 
besides their women and children. The men sent out to count the 
dead found five hundred and fifty-seven warriors lying dead within the 
indosure, and Coffee estimates that from two hundred and fifty to 

' Colonel Morgan's report to Governor Blount, in Fay and Davison, Sketches of the War, pp. SiS, 
259 1815. 
^ColTce's report to Jackson, iliid.. pp. 2.')7,2.W. 
■'.lai'kson's report to Oovenior Bloimt. iliid,. pp. 2.W,2/J6. 


three hundred were shot in the water. How many more there may 
have been can not be known, but Jackson hhiiself states that not more 
than twcnity could have escaped. There is no mention of any wounded. 
About three hundred prisoners were taken, of whom only three were 
men. . The defenders of the Horseshoe had been exterminated.' 

On the other side the loss was -itj Americans killed and 1(>7 wounded, 
IS Cherokee killed and 36 wounded, 5 friendly Creeks killed and 11 
wounded. It will be noted that the loss of the Cherokee was out of 
all proportion to their numt)ers, their tio-hting- having been hand t<j 
hand work without protecting cover. In view of the fact that Jack- 
son had only a few weeks before been compelled to retreat before this 
same enemy, and that two hours of artillery and rifle fire had producinl 
no result until the Cherokee turned the rear of the enemy by their 
daring passage of the river, there is considerable truth in the boast of 
the Cherokee that they saved the day for Jackson at Horseshoe bend. 
In the number of men actually engaged and the immense proportion 
killed, this ranks as the greatest Indian battle in the history of the 
United States, with the possible exception of the battle of Mauvila, 
fought by the same Indians in De Soto's time. The result was decisive. 
Two weeks later Weatherford came in and surrendered, and the Creek 
war w^as at an end. 

As is usual where Indians have acted as auxiliaries of white troops, it 
is diflicult to get an accurate statement of the number of Cherokee 
engaged in this war or to apportion the credit among the various 
leaders. Cottee's ofiicial report states that five hundred Cherokee 
were engaged m the last great battle, and from incidental hints it 
seems probalde that others were employed elsewhere, on garrison duty 
or otherwise, at the same time. McKenney and Hall state that Kidge 
recruited eight hundred warriors for Jackson,- and this may be near 
the truth, as the tribe had then at least six times as many fighting men. 
On account of the general looseness of Indian organization we com 
monly find the credit claimed for whichever chief may be best known 
to the chronicler. Thus, McKenney and Hall make Major Ridge the 
hero of the war, especially of the Horseshoe fight, although he is not 
mentioned in the official reports. Jackson speaks particularly of the 
Cherokee in that battle as being "headed by their gallant chieftain. 
Colonel Richard Brown, and conducted by the brave Colonel .Mor- 
gan." Coffee says that Colonel Gideon Morgan " commanchnl the 
Cherokees," and it is ]\Iorgan who makes the official report of their 
part in the battle. In a Washington newspaper notice of the treaty 

1 Jackson's report and Colonel Morgan's report, in Fay and Davison, Sketches of the War, pp. •25.'j, 
266, 259, 1815. Pickett makes the loss of the white troops 32 killed and 99 wounded. The Houston 
reference is from Lossing. The battle is described also b.v Pickett, Alabama, pp. 588-691, reprint 
of 1896; Drake, Indians, pp. 391, 4011, 1S.S0; McKenney and Hall, Indian Tribes, ii, pp. 98, 99, 1858. 

2 McKenney and Hall, op. cit, p. 98. 



delegation of 1S16 the six sig-iiers are iiu'iitioncd as Colonel |.l()hn| 
Lowrcy, ^lujorl.rohnj \\'alkcr. Major liidnc Captain |Kieliar(l| Taylnr, 
Atljutunt [.lohnj Ross, and Kuiinesee (Tsi'yu-gunsi'ni. Clieueunseiie) and 
are deserihed as men ot eidtivation, nearly all of whom had serv'ed as 
odieers of the Cherokee forces with Jackson and distinguished themselves 
as well by their bravery as by their attai'hnient to the I'nited States.^ 
Among the East Cherokee in Carolina the only name still remembered 
is that of their old chief, .(unaluska (Tsunii'iaiuin'ski). who said after- 
ward: ■■ If I had known that .Jackson would drive us from our homes 
I would have killed him that day at the Horseshoe." 

The Cherokee returned to their homes to find them despoiled and 
ravaged in their absence by disoi'derly white troops. Two years after- 
ward, l)y treaty at Washington, the Government agreed to reimburse 
them for the damage. Interested parties denied that they had sutfei'ed 
any damage or rendered any services, to which their agent indignantly 
replied: "It may he answered that thousands witnessed both; that iti 
nearly all the battles with the Creeks the Cherokees rendered th(> most 
efficient service, and at the expense of the lives of many line mcTi, 
whose wives- and children and brothers and sisters are mourning their 

In the spring of ISlti a delegation of seven principal men, accom- 
panied by Agent Meigs, visited Washington, and the result was the 
negotiation of two treaties at that place on the same date, March '22, 
ISltj. By the first of these the Cherokee ceded for live thousand dollars 
their last remaining territory in South Carolina, a small strip in the 
extreme northwestern corner, adjoining Chattooga river. By the sec- 
ond tri^aty a boundary was established between the lands claimed by the 
Cherokee and Creeks in northern Alabama. This action was made 
necessary in order to determine the boundaries of the great tract 
which the Creeks had been compelled to surrender in punishment for 
their late uprising. The line was run from a point on Little Bear 
creek in northwestern Alabama direct to the Ten islands of the 
Coosa at old Fort Strother, southeast of the present Asheville. Gen- 
eral .lackson protested strongly against this line, on the ground that 
all the territory south of Tennessee river and west of the Coosa 
belonged to the Creeks and was a part of their cession. The Chicka- 
saw also protested against considering this tract as Cherokee terri- 
tory. The treaty also granted free and unrestricted road ])rivileges 
throughout the Cherokee country, this concession being the result of 
years of persistent eflort on the part of the Government; and an 
appropriation of twenty -five thousand five hundred dollars was made 

1 Dmku, Iniiians, p. 401, 1880. 

•Indian Treaties, p. 187, 1837; Meigs' letter to Secretary of War, August I'J, l.sUi, in American Slnte 
Papers: Indian Affairs, ii, pp. 113, 114, 1834. 

1!) ETII— 01 7 

98 MYTHS OF THE CHEROKEE [kth.ann.19 

for damages sustained ])y the Cherokee from tht- depredations of the 
troops passing through their country dui'ing the Creek war.' 

At the hist treaty the Cheroke(> had resisted every effoi-t to induce 
them tci c('(h' more hmd on either side of tlic 'i'cnncssce, tiie (rovern- 
mciit being especially desirous to extinguish their claim north of that 
ri\-er within the limits of the state of Tennessee. Failing in this, 
pressure was at once begun to bring about a cession in Alabama, with 
the r(>sult that on Septeml)er 14 of the same year a treaty was con- 
cluded at the Chickasaw council-house, and afterward ratified in gen- 
eral council at Turkeytown on the Coosa, b\- which the Cherokee 
ceded all their claims in that state south of Tennessee river and west 
of an irregular line running from Chickasaw island in that sti-eam, 
below the entrance of Flint river, to the junction of Wills creek w itli 
the Coosa, at the present Gadsden. For this cession, em1)racing an 
area of nearh' three thousand live hundred square miles, they were to 
receive sixty thousand dollars in ten annual payments, together with 
five thousand dollars for the improvements abandoned." 

We turn aside now for a time from the direct narrative to note the 
development of events wliich culminated in the forced expatriation of 
the Cherokee from their ancestral homes and their removal to the far 
western wilderness. 

^\'ith a few notable exceptions the relations between the Fi-ench 
and Spanish colonists and the native tribes, after the first occupation 
of the country, had been friendly and agreeable. Under the rule of 
France or Spain there was never any Intlian boundary. Pionet'r ;ind 
Indian liuilt their cabins and tilled their fields side by side, ranged 
the woods together, knelt before the same altar and frequently inter- 
married on terms of e([uality, so far as race was concerned. The 
result is seen to-day in the mixed-blood communities of Canada, and 
in ^Mexico, where a nation has been built upon an Indian foundation. 
Within the area of English colonization it was otherwise. From the 
first settlement to the recent inauguration of the allotment system it 
never occurred to the man of Teutonic blood that he could have for a 
neighbor anyone not of his own stock and color. While the English 
colonists recognized the native proprietorship so far as to make trea- 
ties with the Indians, it was chiefly for the purpose of ti.xing limits 
beyond which the Indian should never come after he had once parted 
with his title for a consideration of goods and trinkets. In an early 
Virginia treaty it was even stij)ulated that friendl\' Indians crossing 
the line should suffer death. The Indian was regarded as an incum- 
brance to be cleared off, like the trees and the wolves, before white 
men could live in the country. Intermarriages were practically 

1 Indian Treaties, pp. 185-187, 1837; Royoe, Cherokee Nation, Fifth Ann. Rep. Bureau of Ethnology, 

pp. 197-209, 1S8S. 
-Indian Treaties, pp. I'.i9, 'JOO, 18S7; Royce, op. tit., pp. ■J()9-'-'ll. 


uiikiiowii. and tlio cliililrcii <t( such union were usuiiUy c()nip(>ll('(l by 
race antipathy to cast their lot with the savage. 

Under such circuinstances the tril)es viewed the advance of tlie 
English and their successors, tlie Americans, with keen distrust, and 
as early as the close of the Frencli and Indian war we tind some of 
them removing from the neigliborhood of the P^nglish settlements to 
a safer shelter in the more remote tei-ritories still held hy Spain. Soon 
after the French withdrew from Fort Toulouse, in IT'iH, a ])art of the 
Alabama, an incorporated tribe of th(> Creek confederacy, left their 
villages on the Coosa, and crossing the Mississippi, where they halted 
for a time on its western bank, settled on the Sabine river under 
Spanish protection.' They were followed some years later by a part 
of the Koasati, of the same confederacy," the two tribes subsequently 
drifting into Texas, where they now reside. The Hichitee and others 
of the Lower Creeks moved down into Spanish Floi-ida. where the 
Yamassee exiles from South Carolina had long before ])receded them, 
the two combining to form the modern Seminole tribe. A\'hen the 
Revolution lirought al>out a new line of division, the native tribes, 
almost without exception, joined sides with Fngland as against the 
Americans, with the result that about one-half the Iroquois fled to 
Canada, where they still reside upon lands granted by the British gov- 
ernment. A short time before Wayne's victoiy a part of the Shawano 
and Delawares, worn out by nearly twenty years of battle with the 
Amei-icans. crossed the Mississippi and settled, by permission of the 
Spanish government, upon lands in the vicinity of Cape Girardeau, in 
what is now southeastern Missouri, for which they obtained a regular 
deed from that government in 1793.'' Driven out l»y the Am(>ricans 
some twenty yeai"s later, they removed to Kansas and thence to Indian 
territory, where they are now incorporated with their old friends, the 

AVhen the tirst Cherokee crossed the Mississippi it is impossible to 
say. but there was probably never a time in the history of the tribe 
when their warriors and hunters were not accustomed to make excur- 
sions beyond the great river. According to an old tradition, the 
earliest emigration took place soon after the first treaty with Carolina, 
when a portion of the ti'ibe. under the leadei'ship of Yunwi-usga'siVtl, 
"Dangerous-man," forseeing the inevitable end of yielding to the 
demands of the colonists, refu.sed to have any relations with the white 
man. and took up their long march for th(> unknown West. Coiiunu- 
lucation was kept up with the home body until after c-rossing the 
Mississippi, when they were lost sight of and forgotten. Long 3'ears 

• Claiborne, letter to Jefferson, November 5, 1808, American State Papers, i, p. 755, 1832; Gatschet, 
Creek Migrntion Legend, i. p. 88, l>m. 
= Hawl!ins. 17'J'J, iiuoleil in Giitschet, op. cit.. p. 89. 
'See Treaty of St Louis, 1825, and of Castor hill, 1852, in Indian Treaties, pp. 388, 539, 1837. 


aftcrwui-d a runior rame from the west that they were still lixiiig- near 
the base of the Rocky luouiitaiiis.' In 1782 the Cherokee, who had 
fought faithfully on the British side throughout the long Kevolution- 
arj^ struggle, applied to the Spanish governor at New Orleans for 
permission to settle on the west side of the Mississippi, within Spanish 
territory. Permission was granted, and it is probable that some of 
them lemoved to the Arkansas country, although there seems to be no 
definite record of the matter.- We learn incidentally, however, that 
about this peried the ho.stile Cherokee, like the Shawano and other 
northern tribes, were in the habit of making friendly visits to the 
Spanish settlements in that ([uarter. 

According to Reverend Cephas Washburn, the pioneer misssionary 
of the western Cherokee, the first permanent Cherokee settlement 
beyond the Mississippi was the direct result of the massacre, in 1794, 
of the Scott party at Muscle shoals, on Tennessee river, bj' the hostile 
warriors of the Chickamauga towns, in the summer. As told by the 
missionary, the story differs considerably from that given by Haywood 
and other Tennessee historians, narrated in another place. ^ According 
to Washburn, the whites were the aggressors, having first made the 
Indians drunk and then swindled them out of the annuity mon(\v with 
whicli they were just returning from the agencj' at Tellico. ^Vilen 
the Indians became sober enough to demand the return of their money 
the whites attacked and killed two of them, whereupon the others 
boarded the boat and killed everj' white man. They spared the women 
and children, however, with their negro slaves and all their personal 
belongings, and permitted them to continue on their way, the chief 
and his party personally escorting them down Tennessee, Ohio, and 
Mississippi rivers as far as the mouth of the St. Francis, whence the 
emigi'ants descended in safety to New Orleans, while their captors, 
under their chief. The Bowl, went up St. Francis river — then a part of 
Spanish territory — to await the outcome of the event. As soon as 
the news came to the Cherokee Nation the chiefs formally repudiated 
the action of the Bowl party and volunteered to assist in ari'csting 
those concerned. Bowl and his men were finally exonerated, but had 
conceived such Ijitteriiess at the conduct of their former friends, and, 
moreover, had found the soil so rich and the game so al)undant where 
they were, that they refused to return to their tribe and decided to 
remain permanently in the West. Others joined them from time to 
time, attracted ))y the hunting prospect, until they were in sufficient 
number to obtain recognition from the Government.* 

iSee number 107. "The Lost Cherokee." 

-See letter of Governor Estevan Miro to Robertson, April 20. ITSU, in Roosevelt. Winning of the 
West, II, p. 407. 1S89, 

3 See pp. 76-77. 

< Washburn, Reminiseeliees, pp. 76-79, 1S69; see Royce, Cheroliee Nation. Fifth Ann. Rep. Bureau 
of Etlinology, p. 2W, 188S. 

MoosEY] THK TioWL EMIGRATION 1794 101 

^Vliile the niissioiiiirv may he pardoned for iiiakinir the best show- 
iug possible for his friends, his statement contains several evident 
errors, and it is probable that Haywood's account is more correct in 
the main. As the Cherokee annuity at that time amounted to but 
fifteen hundred dollars for the whole tribe, or somewhat less than ten 
cents per head, they could hardly have had enough money from that 
source to pay such extruvao-aiit prices as sixteen dollars apiece for 
pocket mirrors, which it is alleged the boatmen obtained. Moreover, 
as the Chickamauga warriors had refused to sign any treaties and were 
notoriously hostile, they were not as yet entitled to receive paynicMits. 
Haywood's statement that the emigrant part}' was first attacked while 
passing the Chickamauga towns and then pursued to the Muscle shoals 
and there massaci'ed is probably near the truth, although it is quite 
possible that the whites may have provoked the attack in some such 
way as is indicated by the missionary. As Washburn got his account 
from one of the women of the party, living long afterward in New 
Orleans, it is certain that some at least were spared by the Indians, 
and it is probable that, as he states, only the men were killed. 

The Bowl emigration may not have been the first, or even the most 
important removal to the western country, as the period was one of 
Indian uni-est. Small bands were constantly crossing the Mississippi 
into Spanish territorv to avoid the advancing Americans, only to find 
themselves again under American jurisdiction when the whole western 
country was ceded to the United States in 1803. The persistent land- 
hvuiger of the settler could not be restrained or satisfied, and early in 
the .same year President -leflerson suggested to Congress the desira- 
bility of removing all the tribes to the west of the Mississippi. In 
the next 3'ear, 1804. an ap])ropriation was made for taking prelimi- 
nary steps toward such a result.' There were probably but few Chero- 
kee on the Arkansas at this time, as they are not mentioned in Sibley's 
list of tribes south of that river in 180.5. 

In the summer of 1808, a Cherokee delegation being about to visit 
Washington, their agent, Colonel Meigs, was instructed by the Secre- 
tary of War to use every efl'ort to obtain their consent to an exchange 
of their lands for a tract beyond the Mississippi. By this time the 
government's civilizing policy, as carried out in the annual distribution 
of farming tools, spinning wheels, and looms, had wrought a consider- 
able difierence of habit and sentiment between the northern and 
southern Cherokee. on Little Tennessee and Hiwassee were 
generally farmers and stock rai.sers, producing also a limited (juantity 
of cotton, which the women wove into cloth. Those farther down in 
Georgia and Alabama, the old hostile element, still preferred the 
hunting life and rejected all efl'ort at innovation, although the game 
had now become so scarce that it was evident a change nmst soon 

> Royce, Cherokee Nation, FUth Aim. Rep. B\ireau of Ethnology, pp. 202,203, 1888. 

102 MYTHS OV THE CHEROKEE [eth.ann.19 

come. Jealousies bad arisen in consequence, and the delegates repre- 
senting the progressive element now proposed to the government that 
a line be run through the nation to separate the two parties, allowing 
those on the north to divide their lands in severalty and become citi- 
zens of the United States, while those on the south might continue to 
be hunters as long as the game should last. Taking advantage of this 
condition of attairs, the government authorities instructed the agent to 
submit to the conservatives a proposition for a cession of their share of 
the tribal territory in return for a tract west of the Mississippi of suf- 
ficient area to enable them to continue the hunting life. The plan was 
approved by President Jefferson, and a sum was appropriated to pay 
the expenses of a delegation to visit and inspect the lands on Arkansas 
and White rivers, with a view to removal. The visit was made in the 
summer of 1809, and the delegates brought back such favorable report 
that a large number of Cherokee signified their intention to remove at 
once. As no funds were then available for their removal, the matter 
was held in abeyance for several years, during which period families 
and individuals removed to the western country at their own expense 
until, before the year 1817, they numbered in all two or three 
thousand souls.' They became known as the Arkansas, or Western, 

The emigrants soon became involved in difficulties with the native 
tribes, the Osage claiming all the lands north of Arkansas river, while 
the Quapaw claimed those on the south. Upon coiuplaining to the 
government the emigrant Cherokee were told that they had originally 
been permitted to remove only on condition of a cession of a portion 
of their eastern territory, and that nothing could be done to protect 
them in their new western home until such cession had been carried 
out. The body of the Cherokee Nation, however, was strongly opposed 
to any such sale and proposed that the emigrants should be compelled 
to return. After protracted negotiation a treaty was concluded at 
the Cherokee agency (now Calhoun, Tennessee) on July 8, 1817, by 
which the Cherokee Nation ceded two considerable tracts — the first in 
Georgia, lying east of the Chattahoochee, and the other in Tennessee, 
between Waldens ridge and the Little Sequatchee — as an equivalent 
for a tract to be assigned to those who had already' removed, or 
intended to remove, to Arkansas. Two smaller tracts on the north 
bank of the Tennessee, in the neighborhood of the Muscle shoals, 
were also ceded. In return for these cessions the emigrant Cherokee 
were to receive a tract within the present limits of the state of Arkan- 

' Royce, Cherokee Nation, Fifth Ann. Rep. Bureau of Ethnology, pp. 202-204. 1888; see also Indian 
Treaties, pp. 209-215, 1837. The preamble to the treaty of 1817 says that the delegation of 1808 had 
desired a division of the tribal territory in order that the people of the Upper (northern) towns might 
"begin the establishment of fixed laws and a regular government," while those of the Lower 
(southern) towns desired to remove to the Nothing is said of severalty allotments or 


tiiiti. bounded on the north and south by White river and Arkansas 
river, respectively, on the east by a line running between those 
streams approximately from the i)resent l^atesville to Lewisburir, and 
on the west by a line to be dctermincHl later. As afterward estab- 
lished, this western line ran fi'om the junction of the Little North 
Fork with White river to just beyond the point where the i)resent 
western Arkansas boundary strikes Arkansas river. Provision was 
made for taking the census of the whole Cherokee nation east and 
west in order to apportion anmiities and other paymiMits properly in 
the future, and the two bands were still to be considered as forming 
one people. The United States agreed to pay for any sul)stantial 
improvements aliandoned by those removing from the ceded lands, 
and each emigrant warrior who left no such valuable property behind 
was to be given as full compensation for his abandoned field and cabin 
a rifle and amimuiition. a blanket, and a kettle or a beaver ti'ap. The 
government further agreed to furnish boats and provisions for the 
journey-. Provision was also made that individuals residing upon 
the ceded lands might retain allotments and become citizens, if they 
so elected, the amount of the allotment to be deducted from the total 

The commissioners for the treat}' were General Andrew .lackson, 
General David Meriwether, and Governor Joseph McMiim of Ten- 
nessee. On behalf of the Cherokee it was signed by thirtj^-one princi- 
pal men of the eastern Nation and fifteen of the western band, who 
signed by proxy. ^ 

The majority of the Cherokee were bitterly opposed to any cession 
or removal project, and before the treaty had been concluded a 
memorial signed by sixty-seven chiefs and headmen of the nation was 
presented to the commissioners, which stated that the delegates who 
had lirst liroached the subject in Washington some years before had 
acted without an}- authority from the nation. They declared that the 
great body of the Cherokee desired to remain in the land of their 
birth, where they were rapidly advancing in civilization, instead of 
being compelled to revert to their original sav;ige conditions and sur- 
roundings. They therefore prayed that the matter might not be 
pressed further, but that they might be allowed to remain in peaceable 
possession of the land of their fathers. No attention was paid to the 
memorial, and the treaty was carried through and ratified. \\'ithout 
waiting for the ratitication, the authorities at once took steps for the 
removal of those who desired to go to the West. Boats were provided 
at points between Little Tennessee and Sequatchee rivers, and the 
emisj^i-ants were collected under the direction of (Jovcrnor McMinn. 
Within the next year a large number had emigrated, and before the 

'Indian Treaties, pp. 209-215, 1837; Royce, Cherokee Nation, Fifth .\nn. Rep. Bureau of Kthnology, 
pp. 21*2-217, 1888; see also maps in Royce. 

104 MYTHS OF THE CHEROKEE [eth.ann.19 

end of 181!> the number of emij^Tants was said to have inereased to six 
thousand. The chiefs of the nation, however, tdaimed that the esti- 
mate was greatly in excess of the truth.' 

■"There can be no question that a very large portion, and jjrobably 
a majority, of the Cherokee nation residing east of the Mississippi had 
bei'n and still continued bitterly opposed to the terms of the treaty of 
1817. They viewed with jealous and aching hearts all attempts to 
drive them from the homes of their ancestors, for they could not but 
consider the constant and urgent importunities of the federal authori- 
ties in the light of an imperative demand for the cession of more 
territorJ^ They felt that they were, as a nation, being slowly but 
surely compressed within the contracting coils of the giant anaconda 
of civilization; yet they held to the vain hope that a spirit of justice 
and mercy would be born of their helpless condition which would 
finally prevail in their favor. Their traditions furnished them no 
guide by which to judge of the results certain to follow such a contlict 
as that in which they were engaged. This ditference of sentiment in 
the nation upon a subject- so vital to their welfare was productive of 
nmch bitterness and violent animosities. Those who had favored the 
emigration scheme and had been induced, either thi'ough personal 
preference or liy the subsidizing influences of the government agents, 
to favor the conclusion of the treaty, l)ecame the object of scorn and 
hatred to the remainder of the nation. They were made the subjects 
of a persecution so relentless, while they remained in the eastern 
countrj', that it was never forgotten, and when, in the natural course 
of events, the remainder of the nation was forced to remove to the 
Arkansas country and join the earlier emigrants, the old hatreds and 
dissensions broke out afresh, and to this day they find k)dgment in 
some degree in the breasts of their descendants.''" 

Two months after the signing of the treaty of July 8, 1817, and 
three months before its ratihcation, a council of the nation sent a dele- 
gation to Washington to recount in detail the improper methods and 
influences which had been used to consummate it, and to ask that it be 
set aside and another agreement substituted. The mission was without 

In 1817 the American Board of Conunissioners for Foreign Missions 
established its first station among the Cherokee at Brainerd. in Ten- 
nessee, on the west side of Chickamauga creek, two miles from the 
Georgia line. The mission took its name from a distinguished pioneer 
worker among the northern tribes (37). The government aided in the 
erection of the buildings, which included a schoolhouse, gristmill, 
and workshops, in which, besides the ordinary branches, the boys were 
taught simple mechanic arts while the girls learned the use of the 

1 Royee, Cherokee Nation, Fifth Ann. Rep. Bureau of Ethnology, 217-218, 1888. 
= Ibid., pp. 218-219. a Ibid., p. 219. 


ihmmIIc and th(> spinning-wheel. Tiiere was also a lartre work farm. 
'I'iie mission prospered and others were csta})lished at Willstowii, 
Hiuhtower, and elsewhere by the same board, in whicii two luindred 
pupils were receivinuf instriu'tion in 1820.' Among the earliest and 
most noted w'orkers at the Brainerd mission were Reverend I). S. But- 
trick and Reverend S. A. Worcester (38), the latter especially lui\ in<f 
done much for the mental elevation of the Cherokee, and more than once 
ha\ing suti'ered imprisonment for his zeal in defending their cause. 
The missions flourished until broken up by the state of Georgia at the 
beginning of the Removal troubles, and they were afterwards renewed 
in the western country. Mission ridge preserves the memory of the 
Brainerd establishment. 

Pearly in 1818 a delegation of emigrant Cherokee visited Washing- 
ton for the purpose of securing a more satisfactory determination of 
the lioundaries of their new lands on the Arkansas. Measures were 
soon afterward taken for that purpose. They also asked recognition in 
the future as a separate and distinct tribe, but nothing was done in the 
matter. In order to remove, if possible, the hostile feeling lietween 
the emigrants and the native Osage, who r(>garded the forniei' as 
intrudei's, Governor William Clark, superintendent of Indian atlairs 
for Missouri, arranged a conference of the chiefs of the two tribes at 
St. Louis in Octobt>r of that year, at which, after protracted effort. Ik^ 
succeeded in establishing friendly relations between them. Eti'orts 
were made about th(» same time, both by the emigrant Cherokee and 
by the government, to persuade the Shawano and Delawares then 
residing in Missouri, and the Oneida in New York, to join the western 
Cherokee, but nothing came of the negotiations.' In 1825 a delegation 
of western Cherokee visited the Shawano in Ohio for the same pui'pose, 
but without success. Their object in thus inviting friendly Indians to 
join them was to strengthen themselves against the Osage and other 
native tribes. 

In the meantime the government, through Governor McMinn, was 
bringing strong pressure to bear upon the eastern Cherokee to compel 
their removal to the West. At a council conviMied by him in November. 
1818. the governor represented to the chiefs that it was now no longer 
possible to protect them from the encroachments of the surrounding 
white population: that, however the government might wish to help 
them, their lands would be taken, their stock stolen, their women cor- 
rupted, and their ni(>n made drunkards unless they removed to the 
western ])ai'adise. He ended by proposing to pay them one hundred 
thousand dollars iov their whole territory, with the of removal, 
if they would go at once. Cpon their prompt and indignant refusal 
he offered to double the amount, but with as little success. 

' Morse, OeoKriipliy, i, p. 577, 1819; and p. 18,5, 1.S2'2. 

= Koycu, Cherokee Nation, Fifth Ann, Rep. Bureau of Kthnoloyy, pp. 221- 


Evm-y point of the iiuuotiiitioii having failed, aiiotiier course was 
adopted, and a delegation was selected to visit Washington under the 
conduct of Agent Meigs. Here the eti'ort -was renewed until, wearied 
and discouraged at the persistent importunity, the chiefs consented 
to a large cession, which was represented as necessary in order to com- 
l)eiisate in area for the tract assigned to the emigrant Cherokee in 
Arkansas in accordance with the previous treaty. This estimate was 
based on the figures given by Governor McMinn, who reported 5,291 
Cherokee enrolled as emigrants, while the eastern Cherokee claimed 
that not more than 3,5UU had removed and that those remaining num- 
bered 12,544, or more than three-fourths of the whole nation. The 
governor, liowever, chose to consider one-half of the nation as in favor 
of removal and one-third as having alreadj' removed.' 

The treaty, concluded at Washington on February 27, 1819, recites 
that the greater part of the Cherokee nation, having expressed an 
earnest desire to remain in the East, and being anxious to begin the 
necessary measures for the civilization and preservation of their nation, 
and to settle the differences arising out of the treaty of 1817, have 
offered to cede to the United States a tract of country '"at least as 
extensive" as that to which the Government is entitled under the 
late treaty. The cession embraces (1) a tract in Alaltama and Ten- 
nessee, between Tennessee and Flint rivers; (2) a tract in Tennessee, 
between Tennessee river and Waldens ridge; (3) a large irregular tract 
in Tennessee, North Carolina, and Georgia, eml)racing in Tennessee 
nearly all the remaining Cherokee lands north of Hiwassee river, and 
in North Carolina and Georgia nearly everything remaining to them 
east of the Nantahala mountains and the upper western branch of the 
Chattahoochee; (4) six small pieces reserved by previous treaties. The 
entire cession aggregated nearh' six thousand square miles, or more 
than one-fourth of all then held )iy the nation. Individual reservations 
of one mile square each within tin? ceded area were allowed to a num- 
ber of families which decided to remain among the whites and become 
citizens rather than abandon their homes. Payment was to be made 
for all sul)stantial improvements aliandoned, one-third of ail tribal 
annuities were hereafter to be paid to the western band, and the treaty 
was declared to be a final adjustment of all claims and differences aris- 
ing from the treaty of 1817.'^ 

Civilization had now progressed so far among the Cherokee that in 
the fall of 1820 they adopted a regular republican form of govern- 
ment modeled after that of the United States. Under this arrangement 
the nation was divided into eight districts, each of which was entitled 

1 Royce. Cherokee Nation, Fifth Ann. Rep. Bureau of Ethnology, pp. 222-228, 1888. 
^Indian Treaties, pp. 265-269, 1837; Royce, op. cit., pp. 219-221 and table, p.378. 


to send four representiitivL'.s to the Chei'okee luitioiuil le<^isl:iturc, 
which mot at Newtown, or New Echota, the capital, at the junction 
of Conusauofa and Coosawateo riv(>rs, a few miles above tlu^ present 
Calhoun, Geor(j;ia. The legislature consisted of an upper jind a 
lower house, desionated, respectively (in the Cherokee language), the 
national committee and national council, the members being elected 
for limited terms by the voters of each district. The principal officer 
was st3'led president of the national council; the distinguished John 
Ross was the first to hold this office. There was also a clerk of the 
committee and two principal members to express the will of the coun- 
cil or lower house. For each district there were appointed a council 
house for meetings twice a year, a judge, and a marshal. Companies 
of "light borse" were organized to assist in the execution of the laws, 
with a ■'ranger" for each district to look after stray stock. Each head 
of a familj' and each single man under the age of sixty was subject to 
a poll tax. Laws were passed for the collection of taxes and debts, 
for repairs on roads, for licenses to white persons engaged in farming 
or other business in the nation, for the support of schools, for the 
regulation of the liquor traffic and the conduct of negro slaves, to pun- 
ish horse stealing and theft, to compel all marriages between white 
men and Indian women to be according to regular legal or church 
form, and to discourage polygamy. By special decree the right of 
l)lood revenge or capital punislunent was taken from the seven clans 
and vested in the constituted authorities of the nation. It was made 
treason, punishable with death, for an}- individual to negotiate the sale 
of lands to the whites without the consent of the national council (3'.l). 
White men were not allowed to vote or to hold office in the nation.' 
The system compared favorably with that of the Federal government 
or of any state government then existing. 

At this time there were five principal missions, besides one or two 
small branch establishments in the nation, viz: Spring Place, the old- 
est, founded by the Moravians at Spring place, Georgia, in ISOI; 
Oothcaloga, Geoi'gia, founded by the same denomination in 1821 on 
the creek of that name, near the present Calhoun; Brainerd, Tennes- 
see, founded by the American Board of Commissioners for Foreign 
Missions in 1817; •'Valley-towns," North Carolina, founded by the 
Baptists in 1820, on the site of the old Natchez town on the north side 
of Hiwassee river, just above Peachtree creek; Coosavvatee, Cieorgia 
("'Tensawattee," f)y error in the State Papers), founded also by the 
Baptists in 1821, near the mouth of the river of that name. All were 
in fiourishing condition, the Brainerd estahlishmcrit especially, with 
nearly one hundred pupils, being obliged to turn awaj' applicants for 

1 Laws of the Clierokoe Xatiou (several (loeiHneiit.s). 1820, American State Papers: Indian AlTairs. ii. 
pp.279-a«J, 1834; letterquoted by McKenuey, W2b, ibid., pp. (Vil. 6,i2; Dralie, Indians, pp.43", 43S, ed. 1880. 

108 MYTHS OF THK CHEROKEE (eth.ann.19 

lack of iicfommodation. The suj)ciiiilcM(lont reported that the children 
were apt to learn, willing to Ial)()r. and readily submissive to discipline, 
addine- that the Cherolvee wer(> fast advaiieiiio- toward civilized life and 
generall}- manifested an ardent desire for instruction. The Valley- 
towns mission, established at the instance of Currahee Dick, a promi- 
nent local mixed-blood chief, was in charge of the Reverend Evan 
Jones, known as the translator of the New Testament into the Cherokee 
language, his assistant being James D. Wafl'ord, a mixed-blood pupil, 
who compiled a spelling book in the same language. Reverend S. A. 
Worcester, a prolific translator and the compiler of the Cherokee 
almanac and other works, was stationed at Brainerd, removing thence 
to New Echota and afterward to the Cherokee Nation in the West.' 
Since 1817 the American Board had also supported at Cornwall, Con- 
necticut, an Indian school at which a number of young Cherokee were 
being educated, among them being Elias Boudinot. afterward the 
editor of the Chevo'kee Phan'ui'. 

About this time occurred an event which at once placed the Cherokee 
in the front rank among native tribes and was destined to have profound 
influence on their whole future history, viz., the invention of the 

The inventor, aptly called the Cadmus of his race, was a mixed- 
blood known among his own people as Sikwa'yi (Sequoya) and 
among the whites as George Gist, or less correctly Guest or Guess. 
As is usually the case in Indian biography much uncertainty exists in 
regard to his imrentage and early life. Authorities generally agree 
that his father was a white man, who drifted into the Cherokee Nation 
some jrears before the Revolution and formed a temporary alliance 
with a Cherokee girl of mixed blood, who thus became the mother of 
the future teacher. A writer in the Cherokee Phcenix, in 1828, says 
that only his paternal grandfather was a white man." McKenney and 
Hall say that his father was a white ni;in named Gist.' Phillips 
asserts that his father was George Gist, an unlicensed German trader 
from Georgia, who came into the Cherokee Nation in 17<i8.' By a 
Kentucky family it is claimed that Sequoya's father was Nathaniel Gist, 
son of the scout who accompanied Washington on his memorable 
excursion to the Ohio. As the story goes, Nathaniel Gist was cap- 
tured by the Cherokee at Braddock's defeat (17.55) and remained a 
prisoner with them for six yi-ars. during which time he became the 
father of Sequoya. On his return to civilization he married a white 
woman in Virginia, by whom he had other children, and afterward 

iList of missions and reports of missionaries, etc., American State Papers; Indian Affairs, ii, pp. 
277-279, 459, 1834; personal information from James D. Wafl'ord concerning Valley-towns mission. 
For notices of Worcester, Jones, and Waflord, see Pilling. Bibliography of the Iroquoian Languages, 

-G. C, in Cheroliee Phieni.x; reprinted in Christian Advocate and Jovirnal, New York, September 26, 

sMcKenney and Hall, Indian Tribes, i, p. 35, et passim, 1858. 

* Phillips, Sequoyah, in Harper's Magazine, pp. 542-548, September, 1870. 



iKrciiii Mi-Ki'liiii-y nn<l lliills luijy iif llif urigiliiLl imilUiiii; ul IsiS) 


removed to Kentucky, where Sequoya, then a Baptist i)r('achor, fre- 
quently visited him and was always recognized by the family as his son.' 

Aside from the fact that the Cherokee acted as allies of the Enji'lish 
during the war in which Braddock's defeat occurred, and that Se(ju()ya, 
so far from being a preacher, was not even a Christian, the story con- 
tains other elements of improbability and appears to be one of those 
genealogical myths built upon a chance similarity of name. On the 
other hand, it is certain that Sequoya was born before the date; that 
Phillips allows. On his mother's side he was of good family in the 
tribe, his uncle being a chief in Echota." According to personal infor- 
mation of James Watford, who knew him well, being his second cousin, 
Setjuoya was probably born a))out the year 1760, and lived as a boy 
with his mother at Tuskegee town in Tennes.see, just outside of old 
Fort Loudon. It is quite possible that his white father may have been 
a soldier of the garrison, one of those lovers for whom the Cherokee 
women risked their lives during the siege.'' What became of the 
father is not known, but the mother lived alone with her son. 

The only incident of his boyhood that has come down to us is his 
presence at Echota during the visit of the Iroquois peace delegation, 
about the year 1770.' His early years were spent amid the stormy 
alarms of the Revolution, and as he grew to manhood he devel- 
oped a considerable mechanical ingenuity, especially in silver work- 
ing. Like most of his tribe he was also a hunter and fur tradm-. 
Having nearly reached middle age before the tirst mi.ssion was estab- 
lished in the Nation, he never attended school and in all his life never 
learned to speak, read, or write the English language. Neither did 
he ever abandon his native religion, although from frequent visits to 
the Moravian mission he became imbued with a friendly feeling 
toward the new civilization. Of an essentially conteuiplative disposi- 
tion, he was led 1)\' a chance conversation in ISOU to reflect upon the 
ability of the white men to communicate thought by means of writing, 
with the result that he s(>t about devising a similar system for his own 
people. By a hunting accitlent, which rendered him a crippk' for life, 
he was fortunately atforded more leisure for study. The preseiu-e of 
his name, George Cniess, appended to a treaty of 1816, indicates that 
he was already of some promiiuMice in the Nation, even before the per- 
fection of his great invcMition. After years of patient and unremitting 
labor in the face of ridicule. diset)uragement, and i-ept':it('(i failure, he 
flnali}' evolved the Cherokee syllabary and in 1S21 submitted it to a 
public test by the leading men of the Nation. By this time, in con- 
sequence of repeated cessions, the Cherokee had lieen dispossessinl of 
the country about Echota, and Sequoya was now living at Wilistown, 

'Manuscript letters by Johu Mason Brown, January 17. 18, 22, and February 4, 1889, in archives o£ 

the Bureau of American Kthnology. 
- McKeniiey and Hall, Indian Tribes, i, p. 15, 1S58. 
'See page 43. * See number 8y, "The Iroqu^tis wars." 

110 MYTHS OF THE CHEROKEE [eth.ann.19 

on an upper branch of Coosa I'iver, in Alaljania. The ,syHa})ai'y was 
soon recognized as an invakiable invention for the elevation of the 
tribe, and within a few months thousands of hitherto iliitei-ate Chero- 
kee were able to read and write their own hmguage, teaching each 
other in the cabins and along the roadside. The next year Sequoya 
visited the West, to introduce the new science among those who had 
emigrated to the Arkansas. In the next year, 1823, he again vi.sited 
the Arkansas and took up his permanent abode with the western band, 
never afterward returning to his eastern kinsmen. In the autumn of 
the same year the Cherokee national council made public acknowledg- 
ment of his merit by sending to him, through John Ross, then presi- 
dent of the national committee, a silver medal with a commemorative 
inscription in both languages.' In 1828 he visited Washington as one 
of the delegates from the Arkansas band, attracting much attention, 
and the treaty made on that occasion contains a provision for the pay- 
ment to him of five hundred dollars, "for the great benefits he has 
conferred upon the Cherokee people, in the beneficial results which 
they are now experiencing from the use of the alphabet discovered by 
him.'" His subsequent history belongs to the West and will be treated 
in another place (10).' 

The invention of the alphabet had an immediate and wonderful 
effect on Cherokee development. On account of the remarkable adapta- 
tion of the syllabary to the language, it was only necessary to learn 
the characters to be able to read at once. No schoolhouses were built 
and no teachers hired, but the whole Nation became an academy for the 
study of the system, until, "in the course of a few months, without 
school or expense of time or money, the Cherokee were able to read 
and write in their own language.* An active correspondence began 
to be carried oil between the eastern and western divisions, and plans 
were made for a national press, with a national library and museum to 
be established at the capital. New Echota.^ The missionaries, who had 
at first opposed the new alphabet on the ground of its Indian origin, 
now saw the advisability of using it to further their own work. In 
the fall of 1824 Atsi or John Arch, a young native convert, made a 
manuscript translation of a portion of St. ,fohn's gospel, in the sylla- 
))ary, this being the first Bible translation ever given to the Cherokee. 
It was copied hundreds of times and was widely disseminated through 

1 McKenney and Hall, Indian Tribes, i, p. 46, 1,S5S; Phillips, in Harper's Magazine, p. 547, September, 

- Indian Treaties, p. 425, 1837. 

3 For details concerning the life and in%'ention of Sequoya, see McKenney and Hall, Indian Tribes, 
I, 1858; Phillips, Sequoyah, in Harper's Magazine, September 1870- Foster, Sequoyah, 1.S85. and Story 
of the Cherokee Bible, 1899, based largely on Phillips' article; 6. C, Invention of the Cherokee 
Alphabet, in Cherokee Phcenix, republished in Christian Advocate and Journal, New York, Septem- 
ber 26, 1828: Pilling, Bibliography of the Iroquoian Languages, 1888. 

< G. C, Invention of the Cherokee Alphabet, op. cit. 

f* (Unsigned) letter of David Brown, September 2, 18"25, quoted iu American State Papers: Indian 
Affairs, II, p. 65-2, 1834. 


the Nation.' In Septem})er. 1825, David Brown, a prominent lialf- 
l>rced ijn^aclicr. who had already iniuh' some attinnpt at translation in 
the Roman alphabet, completed a translation of the New 'IVstamenl in 
the new SA'lhibary. the work being handed about in manuscript, as 
there W(>r(> as yet no types east in the Seipioya characters.-' In the same 
month he forwarded to Thomas AlcKenney, chief of the Bureau of 
Indian Affairs at Washinoton, a manuscript table of the chai-acters. 
with explanation, this beiiii;- prolialdy its first introduction to ofticial 

In 1827 the Cherokee council haviiif;- formally resolved to establish 
a national paper in the Cherokee lanjiiiag'e and characters, types for 
that purpose were cast in Boston, under the supervision of the noted 
missionarj', Worcester, of the American Board of Commissioners for 
Foreign Missions, who. in Deceml)er of that year contributed to the 
Mitisionanj Herald five verses of Genesis in the neM' syllabary, this 
seeming to be its first appearance in print. Early in the next year 
the press and types arrived at New Echota, and the first luunber of 
the new paper, Txit'lCufi TKu'lehlxuttun'hl^thQ C7ie/'iAee P/ia'H/',i; -pviuted 
in both languages, appeared on February 21, 1828. The first printers 
were two white men. Isaac N. Harris and John F. Wheeler, with 
John Cand}', a half-blood apprentice. Elias Boudiuot (Giilagi'na, "The 
Buck"), an educated Ch(>rokee, was the editor, and Reverend S. A. 
Worcester was the guiding spirit who brought order out of chaos and set 
the work in motion. The office was a log house. The hand press and 
types, after having been shipped by water from Boston, were trans- 
ported two hundred miles by wagon from Augusta to their destination. 
The printing paper had been overlooked and had to be brought Ijy the 
same tedious process from Knoxville. Cases and other equii)ments 
had to be devised and fashioned by the printers, neither of whom 
understood a word of Cherokee, but simply set up the characters, as 
handed to them in manuscript by Worcester and the editor. .Such was 
the beginning of journalism in the Cherokee nation. After a precari- 
ous existence of about six years the Phaniix was suspended, owing to 
the hostile action of the Georgia authorities, who went so far as to 
throw Worcester and Wheeler into prison. Its successor, after the 
removal of the Cherokee to the West, was the Clierohee Adrorafi. of 
which the first num})or appeared at Tahlcquah in 1844, with AVilliam 
P. Ross as editor. It is still continued under the auspices of the 
Nation, printed in both languages and distributed free at the expense 
of the Nation to those unable to read English — an example without 
parallel in any other government. 

In addition to numerous Bible translations, hymn books, and other 

• Foster, Sequoyah, pp. 120, 121, 1885. '■ Pilling, Iroquoian Bibliography, p. 'il, 1888. 

^Broun ktttr (unsigncfl), in Ameriain State Papers: Indian Affairs, ii, p. (»2, 18S4. 

112 MYTHS OF THE CHEROKEE [i:th.ann.19 

rcliyioMs works, there have been printexl in the Cherokee kuio-uage unci 
•syllahiiry the ('lierohv I'liO'ni.r (journal), Clicrokec Adriiattc (journal), 
Cherokee Messenger (periodical), Cherokee AIukumc (annual), Cherokee 
spelling- T)Ooks, arithmetics, and other sehoolhook.s for those unable to 
read English, several editions of the laws of the Nation, and a large 
body of tracts and minor publieations. Space forbids even a mention 
of the names of the devoted workers in this ecjnneetion. Besides this 
printed literature the syllabary is in constant and daily use among the 
non- English-speaking element, both in Indian Territory and in North 
Carolina, for letter writing, council records, personal memoranda, etc. 
What is perhaps strangest of all in this literary evolution is the fact 
that the same invention has been seized by the priests and conjurers 
of the conservative party for the purpose of preserving to their suc- 
cessors the ancient rituals and secret knowledge of the tribe, whole 
volumes of such occult literature in manuscript having been obtained 
among them Ijy the author.' 

In 1819 the whole Cherokee population had been estimated at 15,000, 
one-third of them being west of the Mississippi. In 1S2.5 a census of 
the eastern Nation showed: native Cherokee, 1.3,56.3; white men mar- 
ried into the Nation, 147; white women married into the Nation, 73; 
negro slaves, 1,277. There were large herds of cattle, horses, hogs, 
and sheep, with large crops of every staple, including cotton, tol)acco, 
and wheat, and some cotton was exported by boats as far as New Or- 
leans. Apple and peach orchards were numerous, butter and cheese 
were in use to some extent, and both cotton and woolen cloths, espe- 
cially blankets, were manufactured. Nearly all the merchants were 
native Cherokee. Mechanical industries flourished, the Nation was out 
of debt, and the population was increasing." Estimating one-third 
beyond the Mississippi, the total number of Cherokee, exclusive of 
adopted white citizens and negro slaves, must then have been about 

Simultaneously with the decrees establishing a national jaress, the 
Cherokee Nation, in general convention of delegates held for the pur- 
pose at New Echota on July 26, 1827, adopted a national constitution, 
based on the assumption of distinct and independent nationality. John 
Ross, so celebrated in connection with the history of his tribe, was 
president of the convention which framed the instrument. Charles R. 
Hicks, a Moravian convert of mixed blood, and at that time the most 
influential man in the Nation, was elected principal chief, with John 

1 For extended notice of Cherokue literature and authors see numerous references in Pilling. Bibli- 
ography of the Iroquoian Languages, 1888; also Foster, Sequoyah, 1885, and Story of the Cherokee 
Bible, 1899. The largest body of original Cherokee manuscript material in existence, including 
hundreds of ancient ritual formulas, was obtained by the writer among the East Cherokee, and is 
now in possession of the Bureau of .\merican Ethnology, to be translated at some future time. 

-Brown letter (unsigned), September 2, 1825, American State Papers: Indian Affairs, ii, pp. 651,652, 



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Ross as assistant fhit;!'. ' With a toiistitution and national press, a 
well-developed system of industries and home education, and a gov- 
ernment administered hy edueated Clii-istian men, the Cherokee were 
now justly entitled to be considered a civilized people. 

Tile idea of a civiliz(>d Indian government was not a new one. The 
first treatv ever negotiated by the United States with an Indian tribe, 
in 1778, held out to the Delawares the hope that by a confederation of 
friendly tribes they might be able " to form a state, whereof the Dela- 
ware nation shall be the head and have a representation in Con- 
gress.''' Priber, the Jesuit, had already familiarized the Cherokee 
with the forms of civilized government before the middle of the eight- 
eenth century. As the gap b(>tween the conservative and progressive 
elements widened after the Revolution the idea grew, until in 1S08 
representatives of both parties visited Washington to propose an 
arrangement by which those who clung to the old life might lie allowed 
to remove to the western hunting grounds, while the rest should remain 
to take up civilization and '"begin the establishment of fixed laws and 
a i-egular government." The project received the warm encourage- 
ment of President Jefierson, and it was with this understanding that 
the western emigration was first ofliciallv recognized a few years later. 
Immediatel}^ upon the return of the delegates from Washington the 
Cherokee drew up their first brief written code of laws, modeled agree- 
ably to the friendly suggestions of Jefl'erson.^ 

By this time the rapid strides of civilization and Christianity had 
alarmed the conservative element, who saw in the new order of things 
only the evidences of apostasy and swift national decay. In 1828 
White-path (Xiiii'na-tsune'ga), an infiuential full-blood and councilor, 
living at Turniptown (U'luii'yi), near the present Ellijay, in Gilmer 
county, (jcorgia, headed a rebellion against the new code of laws, with 
all that it implied. Ho soon had a large band of followers, known to 
the whites as "Red-sticks," a title sometimes assumed by the more 
warlike element among the Creeks and other southern tribes. From 
the townhouse of Ellijay he preached the rejection of the new consti- 
tution, the discarding of Christianity and the white man's ways, and 
a return to the old tribal law and custom — the .same doctrine tliat had 
more than once constituted the burden of Indian revelation in the past. 
It was now too late, however, to reverse the wheel of progress, and 
under the rule of such men as Ilicks and Ross the conservative oppo- 
sition gradually melted away. White-path was deposed from his seat 

> See Royee. Cherokue Katioti. Fifth Aim. Kep. Bureiiu of Etlinology, p. 241, 18S8; Mereilith. in The Five 
Civilized Tribes, Extra Census BulU'lin. \>. -11, 1,S9I; Morse, Amerienn Geography, i, p. 577, 1819 (for 

2 Fort Pitt treaty, September 17, 1778, Indian Treaties, p. 3, 1837. 

» Cherokee Agency treaty. .Inly 8, 1817, it)id., p. 209; Drake, Indians, p. 4.tO. ed. 1880: Johnson in 
Senate Report on Territories; Cherokee Memorial, .laniiary IS. 18:51; see lawsof 1808. 1810, and hiler, 
in American State Papers: Indian Atlairs, ii, pp, 279-28:*, 1831, The volume of Cherokee laws, com- 
piled in the Cherokee language by the Nation, in 1850, begins with the year 1S08. 

19 ETH— 01 8 


ill couiuil, l)ut subsequently- mude subiuission and was reinstated. He 
was afterward one of the detachment commanders in the Removal, but 
died while on the march.' 

In this year, also, John Ross became principal chief of the Nation, 
a position which he held until his death in 1866, thirty-eight years 
later.'- In this long period, comprising the momentous episodes of 
tlie Removal and the War of the Rebellion, it maj' be truly said that 
his history is the historj' of the Nation. 

And now. just when it seemed that civilization and enlightenment 
were about to accomplish their perfect work, the Cherokee began to 
hear the first low muttering of the coming storm that was soon to 
overturn their whole governmental sti'ucture and sweep them forever 
from the land of their birth. 

By an agreement between the United States and the state of Georgia 
in 1802, the latter, for valuable consideration, had ceded to the general 
government her claims west of the present state boundary, the United 
States at the same time agreeing to extinguish, at its own expense, 
but for the benefit of the state, the Indian claims within the state 
limits, "as early as the same can be peaceably obtained on reasonable 
terms." '^ In accordance with this agreement several treaties had 
already been made with the Creeks and Cherokee, by which large 
tracts had been secured for Georgia at the expense of the general 
govcriunent. Notwithstanding this fact, and the terms of the proviso, 
Georgia accused the government of bad faith in not taking summary 
measures to compel the Indians at once to surrender all their remaining 
lands within the chartered state limits, coupling the complaint with a 
threat to take the matter into her own hands. In 1820 Agent Meigs had 
expressed the opinion that the Cherokee were now so far advanced tliat 
further government aid was unnecessarj-, and that their lands should 
be allotted and the surplus sold for their benefit, they themselves to 
be invested with full rights of citizenship) in the several states within 
which they resided. This suggestion had been approved by President 
Monroe, but had met the most determined opposition from the states 
concerned. Tennessee absolutelj^ refused to recognize individual 
reservations made bj- previous treaties, while North Carolina and 
Georgia bought in all such reservations with money appropriated 
by Congress.' No Indian was to be allowed to live within those states' 
on any pretext whatsoever. 

In the meantime, owing to persistent pressure from Georgia, 
repeated unsuccessful eft'orts had l)een made to procure from the 
Cherokee a cession of their lands -within the chartered limits of the 

1 Personal information from James D. Wafforrl. So farasisknown this rebellion of the conservatives 
has never hitherto been noted in print. 

2See Resolutions of Honor, in Laws of the Cherokee Nation, pp. 137-140. 1.S6.S: Meredith, in The 
Five civilized Tribes, Extra Census Bulletin, p.41.1K94; Appleton, t^'clopedia of .Imerican Biography. 

■' See fourth article of "Articles of agreement and cession," .\pril 24. 1S02. in American State Papers: 
class vin. Public Lands, i, quoted also by tJreeley, ..American Conflict, i. p. 103, 1864. 

<Royce, Cherokee Nation, Fiftli Ann. Kep. Bureau of Ethnology, pp. 231-233, 1888. 


state. Every oflort iiiet with :i lii'iii rofusul, tlif Indians dccUiring' 
that having already made ecssion after cession from a territory- once 
extensive, their remaining lands were no more than were needed for 
themselves and their children, more especially as experienc-e had 
shown that each concession would be followed by a further d(!mand. 
They conclude: "It is the fixed and unalterable determination of this 
nation never again to cede one foot more of land." Soon aftei'ward 
they addressed to the President a memorial of similar tenor, to which 
Calhoun, as Secretary of War, returned answer that as Georgia 
objected to their presenci^ cither as a tribe or as individual owners or 
citizens, they must prepare their minds for removal beyond the Mis- 

In reply, the Cherokee. 1\v their delegates — John Ross, George 
Lowrey, Major Ridge, and Elijah Hicks — sent a strong letter calling 
attention to the fact that by the very wording of the 1802 agreement 
the compact was a conditional one which could not be carried out 
without their own voluntary consent, and suggesting that Georgia 
might be satisfied from the adjoining government lands in Florida. 
Continuing, they remind the Secretary that the Cherokee are not 
foreigners, but original inhabitants of America, inhal)iting and stand- 
ing now upon the soil of their own territory, with limits defined ))y 
treaties with the United States, and that, confiding in the good faith 
of the government to respect its treaty stipulations, they do not hesitate 
to say that their true interest,, prosperity, and happiness demand their 
permanency where they are and the retention of their lands. ' 

A copy of this letter was sent by the Secretary to Governor Troup 
of Georgia, who returned a reply in which he l)lamed the missionaries 
for the refusal of the Indians, declared that the state would not permit 
them to become citizens, and that the Secretary must either assist the 
state in taking possession of the Cherokee lands, or, in resisting that 
occupancy, make war upon and shed the blood of lirothers and friends. 
The Georgia delegation in Congress addressed a similar letter to Presi- 
dent Monroe, in which the government was censured for having 
instructed the Indians in the arts of civilized life and ha\'ing tli('rel>y 
imbued them with a desire to acquire property.^ 

For answer the President submitted a report liy Secretary Caiiioun 
showing that since the agreement had been made with Georgia in 1.S02 
the government had, at its own expense, extinguished the Indian claim 
to 24,r)()0 square miles within the limits of that state, or more than 
thiee-fifths of the whole Indian claim, and had paid on that and other 
accounts connected with the agreement nearlv seven and a half million 

'Cherokee correspondence, 1823 and 1824, American Stntc Papers: Indian Affairs, ii, pp. 4IW-173, 
1834; Royce. Clieroliec Nation, Fiftli Ann. Rep. Bureau of Ethnology, pp. 236-237, 1888. 

= Cherokce memorial, February U, 1824, in American State Papers: nidian Affairs, it. pp. 473. 494, 
1834: Royce. op. eit.. p. 2:!7. 

■'Letters of Governor Troup of Georgia. February 28, 1824, and of Georgia delCKates, March 10,1824, 
American State Papers: Indian Affairs, ii, pp. 47.5, 477, 1834; Royce. op. cit., pp. 2;)", 238. 

116 MYTHS OF THE CHEROKEE [eth,anx.19 

dollars, of which by far the greater part had gone to Georgia or her 
citizens. In regard to the other criticism the report states that the 
civilizing policy was as old as the government itself, and that in per- 
forming the high duties of humanity to the Indians, it had never Ijeen 
conceived that the stipulation of the convention was contravened. In 
huiuling in the report the President again called attention to the con- 
ditional nature of the ag-reement and declared it as his opinion that the 
title of the Indians was not in the slightest degree affected by it and 
that there was no obligation on the United States to i-emove them by 

Further efforts, even to the employment of secret methods, were 
made in 1827 and 1828 to induce a cession or emigration, but without 
avail. On July 2(i, 1827, as already noted, the Cherokee adopted a 
constitution as a distinct and sovereign Nation. Upon this the Georgia 
legislature passed resolutions affirming that that state ''had the power 
and the right to possess herself, by any means she might choose, of 
the lands in dispute, and to extend over them her authority and laws," 
and reconmiending that this l)e done by the next legislature, if the 
lands were not already acquired bj' successful negotiation of the gen- 
eral government in the meantime. The government was warned that 
the lands belonged to Georgia, and she must and would have them. It 
was suggested, however, that the United States might l)e permitted to 
make a certain number of reservations to individual Indians.'' 

Passing over for the present some important negotiations Avith the 
western Cherokee, we come to the events leading to the final act in the 
drama. Up to this time the pressure had been for land only, but now 
a stronger motive was added. About the year 1815 a little Cherokee 
boy pla3'ing along Chestatee river, in upper Georgia, had brought in 
to his mother a shining yellow pebble hardly larger than the end of his 
thumb. On 1)(>ing washed it proved to lie a nugget of gold, and on 
her next trip to the settlements the woman carried it with her and sold 
it to a white man. The news spread, and although she probably con- 
cealed the knowledge of the exact spot of its origin, it was soon known 
that the golden dreams of DeSoto had been realized in the Cherokee 
country of Georgia. Within four j'ears the whole territory east of 
the Chestatee had passed from the possession of the Cherokee. They 
still held the western bank, but the prospector was abroad in the 
mountains and it could not ])e for long.'* About 1828 gold was found 
on Ward's creek, a western branch of Chestatee, near the present 
Dahlonega,* and the doom of the nation was sealed (41). 

1 Monroe, message to the Senate, with Calhoun's report, March 30, 1824. American State Papers: 
Indian Affairs, ll. pp. 460, 462, 1834. 

= Royce, Cheroliee Nation, Fifth Ann. Rep. Bureau of Ethnolog.v, pp. 241 , 242, l.SSS. 

^Personal information from J. D. Wafford. 

■•Nitze, H. B. C. in Twentieth Annual Report United States Geological Surve.v, part (Mineral 
Resources), p. 112,1899. 


III Novcnihor. 1828, Andrew Jackson was elected to succeed John 
Quiiiev Adams as President. lie was a frontiersman and Indian hater, 
and the, ehani^'c Ixjded no good to the (."herok(>e. His position was well 
understood, and there is good ground for believing that the action at 
once taken In* Georgia was ;it his own suggestion.' On Decemlier 20, 
1828, a month after his election, Georgia passed an act annexing that 
part of the Cherokee country within her chartered limits and extending 
over it her jurisdiction; all laws and customs esta))lished among the 
Cherokee were declared null and void, and no person of Indian hlood 
or descent residing within the Indian country was henceforth to be 
allowed as a witness or party in any suit where a white man should Ik? 
defendant. The act was to take etlect June 1, 1830 (42). The whole 
territory was soon after mapped out into counties and surveyed by 
state surveyors into "land lots" of KIO acres each, and "gold lots" of 
40 acres, which were put up and distributed among the white citizens 
of Georgia by public lottery, each white citizen receiving a ticket. 
Every Cherokee head of a family was. indeed, allowed a reservation 
of 160 acres, but no deed was given, and his contiiuiance depended 
solely on the pleasure of the legislature. Provision was made for the 
settlement of contested lottery claims among the white citizens. ))ut 
by the most stringent enactments, in addition to the sweeping law 
which forbade anyone of Indian blood to bring suit or to testify 
against a white man, it was made impossible for the Indian owner to 
defend his right in any court or to resist the seizure of his homestead, 
or even his own dwelling house, and anyone so resisting was made sub- 
ject to imprisomuent at the discretion of a Georgia coui't. Other laws 
directed to the same end (juickly followed, one of which made invalid 
any contract between a white man and an Indian unless established by 
the testimony of two white witnesses — thus practically canceling all 
debts due from white men to Indians — while another obliged all white 
men residing in the Cherokee country to take a special oath of allegi- 
ance to the state of Georgia, on penalty of four years' imprisonment 
in the peuitentiarj', this act being intended to drive out all the mis- 
sionaries, teachers, and other educators who refused to countenance 
the spoliation. About the same time the Cherokee were forl)idden to 
hold councils, or to assemble for any public purpose," or to dig for 
gold upon their own lands. 

' See Butler letter, quoted in Royce, Cherokee Nation, Fifth Ann. Rep. Bureau of Ethnology, P- 297, 
1888; see also Everett, speech in the House of Representatives on May 31. 1838, pp. 16-17, Xi-SS, 1839. 

-For extracts and synopse.sof tltese acts sec Koycc, op. cit., pp. 2.'J9-2r»4; Drake, Indian.^, pp. 438-150, 
1880; (ircdey, American Confiict, i. pp. 105, 10<">, 18C1; Edward Everett, speccli in the House of Rep- 
resentatives, February 14, 1831 (lottery law). Tlie gold lottery is also noted incidentally by Ijannian, 
Charles, Letters from the Alleghany Mountains, p. 10; New York, 1849, and by Nitze, in his report on 
the Georgia gold fields, in the Twentietli Annual Report of the United States Guological Survey, 
parte ( Mineral Resources), j). 112, 1899. Theautlior has himself seen in a mounUiin village in Georgia 
an old book titled "The Clierokee Land and tJold Lottery," containing maps and plats covering tlie 
whole Cherokee country of Georgia, with eadi lot immbered, and descriptions of the water courses, 
soil, and supposed mineral veins. 

118 MYTHS OF THE CHEROKEE [eth.ann.)9 

The purpose of this legisliitioii was to i-endcr life in their own 
c-ountrj' intolerable to the Cherokee by depriving them of all legal 
protection and friendly counsel, and the effect was precisely as 
intended. In an eloquent address uj)on the subject before the House 
of llepresentatives the distinguished Edward Everett dearly pointed 
out the encouragement which it gave to lawless men: " They have but 
to cross the Cherokee line; they have but to choose the time and the 
place where the eye of no white man can rest upon them, and they 
may burn the dwelling, waste the farm, plunder the property, assault 
the person, nmrder the children of the Cherokee subject of Georgia, 
and though hundreds of the tribe may be looking on, there is not one 
of them that can be permitted to bear witness against the spoiler."' 
Senator Sprague, of Maine, said of the law that it devoted the prop- 
erty of the Cherokee to the cupidity of their neighbors, lea\-ing them 
exposed to every outrage which lawless persons could inflict, so that 
even robbery and murder might be committed with impunity at noon- 
day, if not in the presence of whites who would testify against it." 

The prediction was fulfilled to the letter. Bands of armed men 
invaded the Cherokee country, forcibly seizing horses and cattle, 
taking possession of houses from which thcv had ejected the occu- 
pants, and assaulting the owners who dared to make resistance.^ In 
one instance, near the present Dahlonega, two white men, who had 
been hospitably received and entertained at supper by an educated 
Cherokee citizen of nearly pure white blood, later in the evening, 
during the temporary absence of the parents, drove out the children 
and their nurse and deliberately set tire to the house, whi(.'h was 
burned to the ground with all its contents. They were pursued and 
brought to trial, but the case was dismissed b}' the judge on the 
ground that no Indian could testifj' against a white man.* Cherokee 
miners upon their own ground were arrested, lined, and imprisoned, 
and their tools and machinery destroyed, while thousands of white 
intruders were allowed to dig in the same places umnolested." A 
Cherokee on trial in his own nation for killing another Indian was 
seized by the state authorities, tried and condemned to death, although, 
not understanding English, he was unal>le to speak in his own defense. 
A United States court forbade the execution, but the judge who had 
conducted the trial defied the writ, went to the place of execution, and 
stood beside the sheriff while the Indian was being hanged."' 

1 Speech of May 19, 1830, Washington; printed by Gales & Seaton,1830. 

2 Speech in the Senate of the United States, April 16, 1830'; Wasihington, Peter Force, printer, 1830. 

'See Cherokee Memorial to Congress, January IS, 1831. 

< Personal information from Prof. Clinton Duncan, of Tahlequah, Cherokee Nation, whose father's 
house was the one thus burned. 

"Cherokee Memorial to Congress January 18, 1831. 

»Ibid.; see also speech of Edward Everett in House of Representatives February 14, 1831; report of 
the select committee of the senate of Ma&sjichusctts upon the Georgia resolutions, Boston, 1831; Greeley, 
American Conflict, l, p. lOU, 18H; Abbott, Cherokee Indians in Georgia: Atlanta Constitution, October 
27, 1889. 


liuiiicdiatcly on tlio jiassajiP of tlir first act the Cherokoo apjx'alccl to 
Prt'sick'iit Jaoksoii, but were told that no protection would be allorded 
tlieni. Other efforts were then made — in 1829 — to persuade them to 
nnnox'al. or to ])i'()i'ure i'nothei" cession — this time of all their lands in 
North Carolina — but the Cherokee remained firm. The Georgia law 
was declared in force on June 3, 1830, whereupon the President 
directed that the aniuiity payment due the Cherokee Nation under pre- 
vious treaties should no longer be paid to their national treasurer, as 
hitherto, but distributed per capita by the agent. As a national fund 
it had been ust>d for the maintenance of their schools and national 
press. As a per capita payment it amounted to forty-two cents to each 
individual. Several 3'ears afterward it still remained unpaid. Fed- 
eral troops were also sent into the Cherokee country with orders to 
prevent all mining b\" either whites or Indians unless authorized by the 
state of Georgia. All these measures served only to render the Chero- 
kee more bitter in their determination. In September, 1830. another 
proposition was made for the removal of the tribe, but th(^ national 
council emphatically refused to consider the subject.^ 

In January. 1831, the Cherokee Nation, by John Ross as principal 
chief, l)rought a test suit of injunction against Georgia, in the United 
States Supreme Court. The majority of the court dismissed the suit 
on the sTound that the Cherokee were not a foreign nation within the 
meaning of the Constitution, two justices dissenting from this opinion." 

Shortly afterward, under the law which forbade any white man to 
reside in the Cherokee Nation without taking an oath of allegiance to 
(leorgia, a number of arrests were made, including Wheeler, the 
printer of the Chi-roh'!', I'Jimnii'. and the missionaries, Worcester, But- 
ler. Thompson, and Proc-tor, who, being there In^ permission of the 
agent and feeling that plain American citizenship should hold good in 
any part of the United States, refused to take the oath. Some of 
those arrested took the oath and were released, but Worcester and 
Putler, still refusing, wei'e dressed in prison garb and put at hard 
labor among felons. Worcester had plead in his defense that he was a 
citizen of Vermont, and had entered the Cherokee country by permis- 
sion of the President of the United States and approval of the ("herokee 
Nation; and that as the United States l)y several treaties had acknowl- 
edged the Ch(>rokee to be a nation with a guai'anteed and definite ter- 
I'itory, the state had no right to iiiterfei-e with him. He was sentenced 
to four years in the penitentiary. On March 3, 1832, the matter was 
appealed as a test case to the Supreme Court of the United States, 
which rendered a decision in favor of Worcester and the Cherokee 
Nation and ordered ids release, (ieorgia, however, througli her gov- 
ernor, had defied the sununons with a threat of opposition, even tothe 

' Royeu. Cherokw, Kiflti Ann. Ri-p. BurL-ail <if Kthnology, pp. 2in,2ia, 1S88. 
= Ibid.,p.2r)2. 

120 MYTHS OF THE CHEROKEE [eth.a.nn.19 

anniliihition of the Union, and now ijjnorcd the decision, refusing to 
release the missionary, who remained in prison until set free b}' the 
will of the governor nearly a year later. A remark attributed to 
President Jackson, on hearing of the result in the Supi'enie C^ourt, may 
throw some light on the whole proceeding: ""John Marshall has made 
his decision, now let him enforce it."' 

On the 19th of July. 1833, a public fast was observed throughout 
the Cherokee iS'ation. In the proclamation recommending it, Chief 
Ross observes that "Whereas the crisis in the affairs of the Nation 
exhibits the day of tril>ulation and sorrow, and the time apjieai'S to be 
fast hastening when the destiny of this people must be sealed; whether 
it has been directed by the wonted depravity and wickedness of man, 
or by the unsearchable and mysterious will of an allwise Being, it 
equally becomes us, as a rational and Christian community, humblj- to 
bow in humiliation," etc.~ 

Further attempts were made to induce the Cherokee to remove to 
the West, but met the same firm refusal as ))efore. It was learned that 
in view of the harrassing conditions to which they were subjected the 
Cherokee were now seriously considering the project of emigrating to 
the Pacific Coast, at the mouth of the Columbia, a territorj' then 
claimed bj' England and held by the posts of the British Hudson Bay 
Company. The Secretary of War at once took steps to discourage the 
movement.^ A suggestion from the Cherokee that the government 
satisfy those who had taken possession of Cherokee lands under the 
lottery drawing by giving them instead an equivalent from the unoc- 
cupied goverinnent lands was rejected by the President. 

In the spring of ISS-t the Cherokee submitted a memorial which, 
after asserting that they would never voluntarily consent to abandon 
their homes, proposed to satisfy Georgia l)v ceding to her a portion of 
their territory, they to l)e protected in possession of the remainder 
until the end of a definite period to be fixed by the United States, at 
the expiration of which, after disposing of their surplus lands, they 
should l)ecome citizens of the various states within which they resided. 
They were told that their ditticulties could be remedied only by their 
removal to the west of the jNlississippi. In the meantime a removal 
treaty was being negotiated with a self-styled committee of some fif- 
teen or twenty Cherokee called together at the agency. It was carried 
through in spite of the protest of John Ross and the Cherokee Nation, 
as embodied in a paper said to contain the signatures of 13,000 Chero- 
kee, but failed of ratification.' 

Despairing of any help from the President, the Cherokee delega- 

'Royce, Cherokee Nation, Fifth .inn. Rep. Bureau of Ethnology, pp. 264-266, 1888; Draire, Indians, 
pp. 454-457, 1880; Greeley, American Conflict, i, lOii, 1864. 
- Drake, Indians, p. 458, 1880. 
» Royce, op. cit.. pp. '26ii-2fJ4, '272. 27:i. 
nbid., pp. 274, 27.5. 


tion. hoiidod by .Fohii Koss. a<l(li'('>stMl uiiothcr canu'st ineiiiorial to 
C'oiij^TCs.s on May 17, 1S84. Ito^vce <iuoti's the docununit at length, 
with the remark, "Without attecting to pass judgment on the merits 
of the controversy, tiie writer thinks tiiis memorial well deserving of 
reproduction here as evidencing the devoted and pathetic attachment 
with which the Cherokee clung to the land of their fathers, and, 
remembering the wrongs and humiliations of the past, refused to ))c 
convinced that justice, prosperity, and happiness awaited them beyond 
the Mississippi." ' 

In August of this year another council was held at Red Clay, south- 
eastward from Chattanooga and just within the Georgia line, where 
the question of removal was again debated in what is oiEcialh- 
described as a tumultuous and excited meeting. One of the ])rin- 
cipal advocates of the emigration scheme, a prominent mixed-l)h)od 
named John Walker, jr., was assassinated from ambush while return- 
ing from the council to his home a few miles north of the present 
Cleveland. Tennessee. On account of his superior education and 
influential connections, his wife being a niece of former agent Return 
J. Meigs, the ati'air created intense excitement at the time. The 
assassination has been considered the tirst of the long series of political 
murdei's growing out of the removal agitation, but, according to the 
testimony of old Cherokee acquainted witli the facts, the killing was 
due to a more personal motive. ■ 

The Cherokee were now nearly worn out hy constant battle against 
a fate from which they could see no escape. In February, 1S35, two 
rival delegations arrived in AVashington, One, the national party, 
headed by John Ross, came prepared still to tight to the end for home 
and national existence. The other, headed liy [Major John Ridge, a 
prominent subchief, despairing of further successful resistaiu'e, was 
prepared to negotiate for removal. Re\erend J. F. Schermerhorn 
was appointed commissioner to arrange with the Ridge party a treaty 
to be confirmed hiter l)V the Cherokee people in general council. On 
this basis a ti'eaty was negotiated with the Ridge party by which the 
Cherokee were to cede their whole eastern territory and remove to 
the West in consideration of the sum of $3,250,000 with some addi- 
tional acreage in the West and a small sum for depredations com- 
mitted upon them by the whites. Finding that these negotiations were 
proceeding, the Ross party filed a counter proposition for $20,0(10.000, 
which was rejected by the Senate as excessive. The Schermerhorn 
compact with the Ridge party, with the consideration changed to 
$4..-)<)().00i>, was thereupon completed and signed on March 1-1, 1885, 
but with the express stipulation that it should receive the approval of 

• Royce. Cherokee Xation, Fifth Ann. Report Bureau of Ethnology, p. 276,1888. 
2 Commifisioner Elbert Herrins. November 25. Report of Indian Commissioner, p. 210. 1.S34; author' .-i 
personal information from Major R. C. Jaekson and J. D. VVafford. 


the Cherokee nation in full eouneil a.ssembled before being eonsidercd 
of any liinding- force. This much accomplished, Mr. Sehermerhorn 
departed for the Cherokee country, armed with an address from 
President Jackson in which the great benefits of removal were .set 
forth to the Cherokee. Having exhausted the summer and fall in 
fruitless effort to secure favorable action, the reverend gentleman 
notified the President, proposing either to obtain the signatures of 
the leading Cherokee l)y promising them payment for their impi'ove- 
ments at their own valuation, if in any degree reasonable, or to con- 
clude a treaty with a part of the Nation and compel its acceptance 
hy the rest. He was pi'omptly informed by the Secretary of War, 
Lewis Cass, on behalf of the President, that the treaty, if concluded 
at all, must be procured upon fair and open terms, with no particular 
promise to any individual, high or low, to gain his aid or infiuence, 
and without sacrificing the interest of the whole to the cupidity of a 
few. He was also informed that, as it would probably be contrary to 
his wish, his letter would not be put on file.' 

In October, 1835, the Ridge treaty was rejected by the Cherokee 
Nation in full council at Red Clay, even its main supporters, Ridge 
himself and Elias Boudinot, going over to the majority, most unex- 
pectedly to Sehermerhorn, who reports the result, piously adding, 
"but the Lord is able to overrule all things for good." During the 
session of this council notice was served on the Cherokee to meet 
commissioners at New Echota in December following for the purpose 
of negotiating a treaty. The notice was also printed in the Cherokee 
language and circulated throughout the Nation, with a statement that 
those who failed to attend would be counted as assenting to any treaty 
that might be made." 

The council had authorized the regular delegation, headed by John 
Ross, to conclude a treaty either there or at Washington, but, finding 
that Sehermerhorn had no authority to treat on an_v other basis than 
the one rejected liy the Nation, the delegates proceeded to Washing- 
ton.' Before their departure John Ross, who had removed to Ten- 
nessee to escape persecution in his own state, was arrested at his home 
by the Georgia guard, all his private papers and the proceedings of 
the council being taken at the same time, and conveyed across the line 
into Georgia, where he was held for some time without charge against 
him, and at last released without apology or explanation. The poet, 
John Howard Payne, who was then stopping with Ross, engaged in 
the work of collecting historical and ethnologic material relating to the 
Cherokee, was seized at the .same time, with all his letters and scien- 

1 Royce, Cherokee Nation, Fifth Ann. Rep. Bureau of Ethnologj'. pp. 278-280, 1888; Everett speech 
in House of Representatives, May 31, 1838, pp. 28,29, 1S39, iii wliioh the Secretary's reply is given in 

'Royce, op. cit.i pp. 280-281. Hbid., p. 281. 



titic lUiUiusoripts. Tlio niitioniil pjiper. the Cherokee P/io'ru'.i; hiid Ikmmi 
supprosjsecl iiiid its otlii'i' phiiit soizod by the same guard a few days 
before.' Thus in their greatest need the Cherokee were deprived of 
the help and counsid of tlieii' teachers, their national ])ri'ss. and their 

Although for two months threats and inducements had l)een held 
out to secure a full attendance at the December conference at \cw 
Echota. there were pi'cscnt when the proceedings opened, according 
to the report of Schcrmcrhom himself, only from three hundred to 
five hundred men. women, and children, out of a population of over 
17,000. Notwithstanding the paucity of attendance and the absence 
of the principal officers of the Nation, a committee was appointed to 
arrange the details of a treaty, which was finally drawn up and 
signed on December 2'.i. 1S35.'- 

Briefly stated, by this treaty of New Echota, Georgia, the Cherokee 
Nation ceded to the United States its whole remaining territory east 
of the Mississippi for the sum of five million dollars and a couunon 
joint interest in the territory already occupied by the western Chei'o- 
kee. in what is now Indian Territory, with an additional smaller tract 
adjoining on the northeast, in what is now Kansas. ImproveuuMits 
were to be paid for, and tiie Indians were to be removed at the expense 
of the United States and sul)sisted at the expense of the Government 
for one year after their arrival in the new country. The removal was 
to take place within two years from the ratification of the treaty. 

On the strong representations of the Cherokee signers, who would 
probably not have signed otherwise even then, it was agreed that a 
limited number of Cherokee who should desire to remain l)ehind in 
North Carolina, Tennessee, and Alabama, and become citizens, having 
first been adjudged "qualified or calculated to become useful citizens," 
might so remain, together with a few holding individual reservations 
under former treaties. This provision was allowed by the connuis- 
sioncrs, but was afterward struck out on the announcement by I'resi- 
dent Jackson of his determination ''not to allow any preemptions or 
reservations, his desire being that the whole Cherokee people siiould 
remove together. " 

Provision was made alsd for tiie payment of debts due by th(^ Indians 
out of any moneys coming to tiiem under the treaty; for the reestab- 
lishment of the missions in the ^Vest•, for pensions to Cherok(>e 
wounded in the servi('e of the govei'nmcnt in the war of 1812 and the 
Creek war; for permission to establish in the new country such military 
posts and roads for the use of tlu' I'nited States as should be deemed 
necessary-; for satisfying Osage claims in the western territory and 

'Royce, Cherokee Nation, op. cit. (Ross arrest), p. 281; Drake, Indians (Ross, Payne, Phoenix), 
p. 4.'j9, 1880; see also Everett speeeli of May 31, 1838, op. cit. 
2 Royce, op. cit., pp. 281,282; see also Everett speech, 1838. 

124 MYTHS OF THE CHEROKEE [eth.anx.19 

for l)riiii;ino- iibout :i fripiidly understanding between the two trilics; 
and for the coinmutation of all annuities and other sums due from the 
United States into a permanent national fund, the interest to be placed 
at the disposal of the officers of the Cherokee Nation and by them 
disbursed, according to the will of their own people, for the care of 
schools and orphans, and for general national purposes. 

The western teri'itory assigned the Cherokee under this treaty was 
in two adjoining tracts, viz, (1) a tract of seven million, acres, together 
with a ''perpetual outlet west," alread}^ assigned to the western 
Cherokee under treaty of 1833, as will hereafter be noted,' being 
identical with the present area occupied by the Cherokee Nation in 
Indian Territory, together with the former "Cherokee strip." with 
the exception of a two-mile strip along the northern boundary, now 
included within the limits of Kansas; {'■2) a smaller additional tract of 
eight hundred thousand acres, running fifty miles north and south 
and twenty-fiAC miles east and west, in what is now the southeastern 
corner of Kansas. For this second tract the Cherokoe themselves 
were to paj' the United States five hundred thousand dollars. 

The treat}- of 1S33, assigning the first described tract to the western 
Cherokee, states that the United States agrees to "guaranty it to 
them forever, and that guarantee is hereby pledged." By the same 
treaty, "in addition to the seven millions of acres of land thus pro- 
vided for and bounded, the United States further guaranty to the 
Cherokee nation a perpetual outlet west and a free and unniolested 
use of all the country lying west of the western boundary of said 
seven millions of acres, as far west as the sovereignty of the Ignited 
States and their right of soil extend . . . and letters patent shall be 
issued by the United States as soon as practicable for the land hereby 
guaranteed." All this was reiterated by the present treaty, and made 
to include also the smaller (second) tract, in these words: 

Art. 3. The United States also agree that the lands aljove ceded by the treaty of 
February 14, 1833, including the outlet, and those ceded by this treaty, shall all lie 
included in one patent, executed to the Cherokee nation of Indians by the President 
of the United States, according to the provisions of the act of May 28, 1830. . . . 

Art. 5. The United States hereby covenant and agree that the lands ceded to the 
Cherokee nation in the foregoing article shall in no future time, without their con- 
sent, be included within the territorial limits or jurisdiction of any state or territory. 
But they shall secure to the Cherokee nation the right of their national eoimcils to 
make and carry into effect all such laws as they may deem necessary for the govern- 
ment and jjrotection of the persons and property within their own country belonging 
to tlieir people or such persons as have connected themseh'es witli them: Provided 
always, that they shall not be inconsistent with the Constitution of the United States 
and such acts of Congress as have been or may be passed regulating trade and inter- 
course with the Indians; and also that they shall not be considered as extending to 
such latizens and army of the United States as may travel or reside in the Indian 

1 See Fort Gibson treaty, 1833, p. 142. 



couiilry by permission, accDnlintr to tlic laws ami re^'ulatinns establish(>(l liy the piv- 
erninent of the siame. . . . 

Art. 6. Perpetual peace ami friemlsliip shall exist between the citizens of the 
United States and the Cherokee Indians. The United States agree to protect the 
Cherokee nation from domestic strife and foreign enemies and against inte-stine wars 
between the several tribes. The Cherokee.s shall endeavor to preserve and maintain 
the peace of the country, and not make war upon their neighbors; they shall also be 
jirotected against interruption and intrusion from citizens of the United States who 
may attempt to settle in the country without their consent; and all such persona 
shall be removed from the same by order of the President of the United States. But 
this ia not intended to prevent the residence among them of useful farmers, mechan- 
ics, and teachers for the instruction of the Indians according to treaty stipulations. 

Article 7. The Cherokee nation having already made great progress in civiliza- 
tion, and deeming it important that every proper and laudable inducement should 
be offered to their people to improve their condition, as well as to guard and secure 
in the most effectual manner the rights guaranteed to them in this treaty, and with 
a view to illustrate the liberal and enlarged policy of the government of the United 
States toward the Imlians in their removal Ijeyond the territorial limits of the states, 
it is stii)ulated that they shall l)e entitled to a Delegate in the House of Representa- 
tives of the United States whenever Congress shall make ])rovision for the same. 

The instrument was signed })y (Governor) William Carroll of Ten- 
nessee and (Reverend) J. F. Schermerhorn as commissioners — the 
former, however, having been unable to attend by reason of illness — ■ 
and V)y twenty Cherokee, among- whom the most prominent were Major 
llidge and Elias Boudinot, former editor of the Pha'nix. Neither 
John Ross nor any one of the officers of the Cherokee Nation was present 
or represented. After some changes by the Senate, it was ratitied 
May 23, 1836.' 

I'pon the treaty of New Echota and the treaty previou.sly made with 
the western Cherokee at Fort Gibson in 1833, the united Cherokee 
Nation ba.sed its claim to the present territory held by the tribe in 
Indian Territory and to the Cherokee outlet, and to national self-govern- 
ment, with protection from outside intrusion. 

An official census taken in 183.5 showed the whole number of Chero- 
kee in Georgia, North Carolina, Alabama, and Temiessee to be 16, .512, 
exclusive of 1,592 negro slaves and 201 whites intermarried with 
Cherokee. The (^herokee were distributed as follows: Georgia. S.ltKI; 
North Carolina, 3,()44; Tennessee, 2,528; Alabama, 1,424.- 

Despite the efforts of Ross and the national delegates, who presented 
protests with signatures representing nearly 16,000 Cherokee, the treaty 

iSwNewEchola treaty, lS3.i, and Fort Gibson treaty, 1833, Indian Treaties, pp. 633-G48 and .'ifil-.5G.5, 
1837; also, for full discnssittn of botli trt-alit's, Iloyce, Cherokt-e Nation, Fifth Ann. Rep. Bureau of Kth- 
nology, pp. 2-19-'29S. For a Kuniinary of all the measures of pressure brought to bear upon the ('her- 
okee up to the final removal see also Kverett, speech in the House of Representjitives, ifay 31. 1838; 
the chapters on " Expatriation of the Chcrokees," Drake, Indians, 1880; and the chapter on "Stjvte 
Right.s— N'liUiflealion," in Greeley, American Conflict, i, 18M, The Georgia side of the controversy is 
presented in E.J. Uarden's Life of (Governor) George M. Troup, 18-19. 

sRoyce, op. cit., p. 289. The Indian total is also given in the Report of the Indian Commissioner, 
p. 369, 18:iC. 

126 MYTHS OF THE CHEROKEE [eth.ans.19 

hud hiH'ii nititiod by ;i niiijority of one vote over the necessary nuiul)er, 
and preliminary steps were at once taken to carry it into execution. 
Councils were held in opposition all over the Cherokee Nation, and 
resolutions denounciiifj' the methods used and declaring the treaty 
absolutely null and void were drawn up and submitted to General 
Wool, in command of the troops in the Cherokee country, l)y whom 
they were forwarded to Washington. The President in reply expressed 
his surprise that an officer of the army should have received or trans- 
mitted a paper so disrespectful to the Executive, the Senate, and the 
Amoi'ican people; declared his settled determination that the treaty 
shovdd be carried out without modification and with all consistent 
dispatch, and directed that after a copy of the letter had been delivered 
to Ross, no further communication, by mouth or writing, should be held 
with him concerning the treaty. It was further directed that no coun- 
cil should b(> permitted to assemble to discuss the treaty. Ross bad 
alread}- been informed that the President had ceased to recognize any 
existinof ofovernment among the eastern Cherokee, and that any fur- 
ther effort by him to prevent the consummation of the treaty would be 

Notwithstanding this suppression of opinion, the feeling of the 
Nation was soon made plain through other sources. Before the ratifi- 
cation of the treaty Major W. ]M. Davi.s had been appointed to enroll 
the Cherokee for removal and to appraise the value of their improve- 
ments. He soon learned the true condition of affairs, and, although 
holding his office by the good will of President Jackson, he addressed 
to the Secretai'y of War a strong letter upon the subject, from which 
the following extract is made: 

I conceive that my duty to the Prasident, to yourself, and to my counti-y reluc- 
tantly compels me to make a statement of facts in relation to a meeting of a small 
number of Cherokees at New Echota last December, who were met by Mr. Scher- 
merhorn and articles of a general treaty entered into between them for the whole 
Cherokee nation. . . . Sir, that jiaper, . . . called a treaty, is no treaty at all, 
because not sanctioned by the great body of the Cherokee and made without their 
participation or assent. I solemnly declare to you that upon its reference to the 
Cherokee people it would be instantly rejected by nine-tenths of them, and I believe 
by nineteen-twentieths of them. There were not present at the conclusion of the 
treaty more than one hundred Chei'okee voters, and not more than three hundred, 
including women and children, although the weather was everything that could be 
desired. The Indians had long been notified of the meeting, and blankets were 
promised to all who would come and vote for the treaty. The most cunning and 
artful means were resorted to to conceal the paucity of numbers present at the treaty. 
No enumeration of them was made by Schermerhorn. The liusiness of making the 
treaty was transacted with a committee appointed by the Indians present, so as not 
to exjiose their numbers. The j^ower of attorney under which the connnittee acted 
was signed only by the president and secretary of the meeting, so as not to disclose 
their weakness. . . . Mr. Schermerhorn' s apparent design was to conceal the real 
number present and to impose on the public and the government upon this point. 

1 Royce, Cherokee Nation, op. cit.. pp. 283, '2S4; Report of Indian Commissioner, pp. 2S5, 2Hfl, 1836. 


The delefialion taken to Washiiifrton liy Mr. 8chermerhoru had no more anthority 
to make a treaty than any otiier dozen Cherokee accidentally picked up for the 
liurpose. I now warn you and the President that it this paper of Schermerhorn'i' 
called a treaty is sent to the Senate and ratified you will bring trouble upon the 
government and eventually destroy this [the Cherokee] Nation. The Cherokee are 
a peaceable, hannless pec>i]le, but you may drive them to desperation, and this 
treaty can not be carried into effect except by the strong arm of force.' 

GtMioral Wool, who hud ])ooii phiocd in command of tho troops con- 
centrated in the Cherokee country to prevent opposition to the enforce- 
ment of the treaty, reported on Februarj^ 18, 1837, that he had called 
them together and made them an address, but "it is. however, vain to 
talk to a people almost universally opposed to the treat}' and who 
maintain that they never made such a treaty. So determined are they 
in their opposition that not one of all those who were present and voted 
at the council held l)ut a day or two since, however poor or destitute, 
woidd receive either rations or clothing from the United States lest 
they might compromise themselves in regard to the treaty. These 
same people, as well as those in the mountains of North Carolina, 
during the summer past, preferred living upon the roots and saj) of 
trees rather than receive provisions from the United States, and 
thousands, as I have been informed, had no other food for weeks. 
Many have said they will die before they will leave the country." ' 

Other letters from (Jeneral Wool while engaged in the work of 
disarming and overawing the Cherokee show how very disagreea))le 
that dut}' was to him and how strongly his sympathies were with tlie 
Indians, who were practically luianimous in repudiating the treaty. 
In one letter he says: 

The whole scene since I have been in this country has been nothing lint a heart- 
rending one, and such a one as I would be glad to get rid of as soon as circumstances 
will permit. Because I am firm and decided, do not believe I would be unjust. If 
I could, and I could not do them a greater kindness, I would remove every Indian 
to-morrow beyond the reach of the white men, who, like vultures, are watching, 
ready to pounce upon their prey and strip them of everything they have or expect 
from the government of the United States. Yes, sir, nineteen-twentieths, if not 
ninety-nine out of every hundred, will go penniless to the West.^ 

How it was to be brought about is explained in part by a letter 
addressed to the President by Major Ridge himself, the princi]ial 
signer of the treaty: 

We now come to address you on the subject of our griefs and afflictions from the 
acts of tlie white peoi)Ie. They have got our lands and now they are preparing to 
fleece us of the money accruing from the treaty. We found our plantations taken 
either in whole or in part by the tieorgians — suits instituted against us for back rents 
for our own farms. These suits are commenced in the inferior courts, with the 

' Quoted by Royce, Cherokee Nation, op. cit., pp. 284-285; quoted also, with some verbal differences, 
by Everett, speech in House of Representatives on May 31, 1838. 

^Quoted in Royce, op cit.. p '2st\. 

' Letter of General Wool, September 10. 1836, in Kverett, speech in House o£ RepreM-niatives, May 
31, 1838. 

128 MYTHS OF THE CHEROKEE [eth.ann.19 

evident design that, wlien we are ready to remove, to arrest our people, and on these 
vile cla.inis to induce us to compromise for our own relea,«e, to travel with our families. 
Thus our funds will be filched from our people, and we shall be comjielled to leave 
our country as beggars and in want. 

Even the Georgia laws, which deny us our oaths, are thrown aside, and notwith- 
standing the cries of our people, and protestation of our innocence and peace, the 
lowest classes of the white people are flogging the Cherokees w'ith cowhides, hick- 
ories, and clubs. We are not safe in our houses — our people are assailed by daj' and 
night by the rabble. Even justices of the peace and constables are concerned in this 
business. This barbarous treatment is not confined to men, but the women are 
stripped also and whipped without law or mercy. . . . Send regular troops to protect 
us from these lawless assaults, and to protect our people as they dejiart for the West. 
If it is not done, we shall carry off nothing but the scars of the lash on our backs, and 
our oppressors will get all the money. A\'e talk plainly, as chiefs having property 
and life in danger, and we appeal to you for jirotectiou. . . .' 

General Punhtp. iiicoimiiatul of the Tenne.ssee troops called out to 
prevent the alleged contemplated Cherokee npri.sing, having learned 
for himself the true situation, delivered an indignant address to his 
men in which he declared that he would never dishonor the Tennessee 
arms by aiding to carry into execution at the point of the bayonet a 
treaty made l)y a lean minority the will and authority of the 
Cherokee people. He stated further that he had given the Cherokee 
all the protection in his power, the whites needing none.'^ 

A confidential agent sent to report upon the situation wrote in Sep- 
tember, 1837, that opposition to the treaty was unanimous and irrecon- 
cilable, the Cherokee declaring that it could not bind them because 
they did not make it, that it was the work of a few unauthorized indi 
viduals and that the Nation was not a party to it. They had retained 
the forms of their government, although no election had been held 
since 1830, having continued the officers then in charge until their gov- 
ernment could again be reesttiblished regularly. Under this arrange- 
ment John Ross was principal chief, with iuliuence unbounded and 
unquestioned. '"The whole Nation of eighteen thousand persons is 
with him, the few — alxmt three hundred — whoniiidethe treaty having 
left the country, with the exception of a small niunber of prominent 
individuals — as Ridge, Boudinot. and others — who remained to assist 
in carrying it into execution. It is evident, therefore, that Ross and 
his party are in fact the Cherokee Nation. ... 1 believe that the mass 
of the Nation, particularly the mountain Indians, will stand or fall 
with Ross. . . ." ' 

So intense was public feeling on the subject of this treatj' that it 
became to some extent a part}' question, the Democrats supporting 
President Jackson while the Whigs bitterly opposed him. Among 

1 Letter of June 30, 1836, to President Jaekson, in Everett, speech in the House of Representatives, 
May 31, 1838. 

^Quoted by Everett, ibid.; also by Royce, Cherokee Nation, op. eit.,p.2.s6. 

^Letterof J. M.Mason, jr., to Secretary of War, .September 25, 1837. in Everett, speech in House of 
Representatives, May 31,1838; also quoted in extract by Royce, op. cit., pp. 286-287. 


notiihle leaders of the opposition were Henry Clay, Daniel Webster, 
Kdwaiil Everett, Wise of Virginia, and David Crockett. The speeches 
in Conjiress upon the subject ''were c-haracterized by a depth aiid l)it- 
terness of feeling such as had never been exceeded i^ven on the sla\ery 
question."'' It was considered not simply an Indian question, but an 
issue between state rights on the one hand and federal jurisdiction and 
the Constitution on the other. 

In spite of threats of arrest and punishment, Rcss still continued 
active effort in behalf of his people. Again, in the spring of 1888, two 
months before the time ti.\ed for the removal, he presented to Con- 
gress another protest and memorial, which, like the others, was tabled 
by the Senate. Van Buren had now succeeded Jackson and Mas dis- 
posed to allow the Cherokee a longer time to prepare for emigration, 
but was met by the declaration from Governor Gilmer of Georgia that 
any delay would be a violation of the rights of that state and in oppo- 
sition to the rights of tlta <nrii,-r>< of the soil, and that if trouble came 
from any protection atl'oi'ded by the government troops to the Chero- 
kee a direct collision must ensue between the authorities of the state 
and general government." 

Up to the last moment the Cherokee still belieA'ed that the treaty 
would not lie consunmiated, and with all the pressure brought to bear 
upon them only about 2,00(t of the 17,000 in the eastern Nation had 
removed at the expiration of the time fixed for their departure, ^[ay 
2t), 1838. As it was evident that the removal could only be acconi- 
plished by fori'c. General Wintieid Scott was now appointed to that 
duty with insti'uctions to start the Indians for the AVest at the earliest 
possible moment. l'"(ii- that purpose he was ordered to take command 
of the troops already in the Cherokee country, together with addi- 
tional reenforcements of infantry, cavalry, and artillery, with authority 
to call upon the governors of the adjoining states for as many as 4,000 
militia and \'olunt(>ers. The whole force employed immbered about 
7,000 men — regulars, militia, and volunteers.^ The Indians had already 
been disai-mcd b\ (Jeneral Wool. 

On arri\ ing in the Chei'okee country Scott established headquart(>rs 
at the capital. New Echota. whence, on May 10, he issued a proclaina- 
tiiiM 1(1 ti)c CJK loki'c. wai'niiig them that the emigration must be com- 
nienccd in hasti^ and that before another moon had passed cv(M-y 
Cherokee man, woman, and child must be in motion to join his 
brethren in the far West, according to the determination of the Presi- 
dent, which he, the genend. had come to enforce. The pi'oclamation 
concludes: •' My troops already occupy man\' positions . . . and 

' Royee, Cherokee Nation, op. cit. pp. 287, 289. 
= Ibid., pp. :>89, 290. 

■' n>i(i.. p. 291. The statement of tlie total number of troops employed is from the speech of Everett 
in the House of Representatives, May 31, 1838, covering the whole question of the treaty. 

ly ETH— 01 9 

130 MYTHS OF THE CHEROKEE [eth.ann.19 

thousands and thousands are approaching from every quarter to render 
resistance and escape alike hopeless. . . . Will you. then, by 
resistance compel us to resort to arms ... or will 3'ou by flioht 
seek to hide yourselves in mountains and forests and thus o})lige us to 
hunt you downT' — reminding them that pursuit might result in con- 
tlict and liloodshed. ending in a general war.' 

Even after this Koss endeavored, on btdialf of his people, to secure 
some slight modification of the terms of the treaty, but without avail. ^ 

THE REMOVAL — 1S38-39 

The history of this Cherokee removal of 1838, as gleaned by the 
author from the lips of actors in the tragedy, may well exceed in 
weight of grief and pathos any other passage in American history. 
Even the nnu'h-sung exile of the Acadians falls far ))ehind it in its 
sum of death and miserv. Under Scott's orders the troops wt're dis- 
posed at various points throughout the Cherokee country, where 
stockade forts were erected for gathering in and holding the Indians 
preparatory to removal (-t3). From these, squads of troops were sent 
to search out with riHe and l>ayon(^t every small cal)in hidden away in 
the coves or by the sides of mountain streams, to seize and bring in as 
prisoners all the occupants, however or wherever they might be found. 
Families at dinner were startled by the sudden gleam of bayonets in 
the dooi'way and rose up to be driven with blows and oaths along the 
weary miles of trail that led to the stockade. Men were seized in 
their fields or going along the road, women were taken from their 
wheels and children from theii' play. In many cases, on turning for 
one last look as they crossed the ridge, they saw their homes in flames, 
fired by the lawless rabble that followed on the heels of the soldiers to 
loot and pillage. So keen were these outlaws on the scent that in 
some instances they were driving off the cattle and other stock of the 
Indians almost before the soldiers had fairly started their owners in 
the other direction. S^ystematic hunts were made by the same men 
for Indian graves, to rob them of the silver pendants and other valu- 
ables deposited with the dead. A (leorgia volunteer, afterward a 
colonel in the Confederate service, said: " I fought through the civil 
war and hav^e seen men shot to pieces and slaughtered by thousands, 
but the Cherokee removal was the cruelest work I ever knew." 

To prevent escape the soldiers had been ordered to approach and 
surround each house, so far as possible, so as to come upon the occu- 
pants without warning. One old patriarch, when thus surprised, 
calmly called his children and grandchildren around him, and, kneel- 
ing down. l)id them pray with him in their own language, while the 
astonished soldiers looked on in silence. Then rising he led the way into 

' Royee, Cherokee Nation, op. cit., p. 291, ' Ibid, p. 291. 


exile. A woiiuin. on tiii(lin<^' the house surrounded, went to the door 
and culled up tlie ciiickeTis to ))e fed for the last time, aftei" wiiicli. 
takiny her infant on her back and her two other children by the hand, 
she followed her husband with the soldiers. 

All wei-e not thus submissive. One old man named TsalT, ''Charley," 
was seized with his wife, his brother, his three sons and their families. 
Exasperated at the brutality accorded his wife, who, beinijc unabh^ to 
travel fast, was prodded with bayonets to hasten her steps, li(> ur_<,M'd 
the other men to join with him in a dash for liberty. As he spoke in 
Cherokee the soldiers, although they heard, understood nothing until 
each warrior suddenly sprang upon the one nearest and endeavored to 
wrench his gun from him. The attack was so sudden and unexpected 
that one soldier was killed and the rest tied, while the Indians escaped 
to the mountains. Hundreds of others, some of them from the \arious 
stockades, managed also to escape to the mountains from time to time, 
where those who did not die of starvation subsisted on roots and wild 
berries until the hunt was over. Finding it impractica])le to secure 
these fugitives, General Scott tinally tendered them a proposition, 
through (Colonel) ^V. H. Thomas, their most trusted friend, that if 
they would surrender Charley and his party for punishment, the rest 
would be allowed to remain until their case could be adjusted by the 
government. On hearing of the proposition, Charley voluntarily 
came in with his sons, ottering himself as a sacrifice for his ]ieo])l(\ By 
command of General Scott. Charley, his brother, and the two elder 
.sons were shot near the mouth of Tuckasegee, a detachment of Chero- 
kee prisoners being compelled to do the shooting in order to impress 
upon the Indians the fact of their utter helplessness. From those 
fugitives thus permitted to remain originated the present eastern 
band of Cherokee.' 

"When nearly seventeen thousand Cherokee had thus been gathered 
into the various stockades the work of removal began. Earlv in June 
several parties, aggregating about five thousand persons, were bi-ought 
down ])y the troops to the old agency, on Hiwassee, at the present 
Calhoun, Tennessee, and to Ross's landing (now Chattanooga), and 
Gunter's landing (now Guntersville, Alabama), lower down on the 
Tennessee, where they were put upon steamers and transpoi'ted down 
the Tennessee and Ohio to the farther side of the Mississippi, when 
the journey was continued by land to Indian Territory. This removal, 

' The notes on the Cherokee round-up anrl Uemoval are almost entirely from author's information 
as furnished by actors in the events, both Cherokee and white, among whom may be named tlie 
late Colonel W, 11. Thomas; the late Colonel Z. A. Zile, of Atlanta, of the Georgia volunteers; the 
late James Bryson, of DiUshoro, North CnroHuB, also a volunteer; James D. Wafford, of the western 
Cherokee Nation, who eominauded one of the emigrant detachments; and old Indians, botli east and 
west, who remembered the Removal and had heard the story from their parents. Charley's story is 
a matter of eommon note among the East Cherokee, and was heard in full detail from Colonel Thonnus 
and from Wasitfina ("Wa.shington" l, Charley's youngest son, who alone was .spared by Ceneral Seott 
on aeeount of his youth. The incident is also noted, with some slight inaecuraeics, in Lanman, 
Letters from the .Vlleghany Mountains. See p. 157. 

182 MYTHS OB' THE CHEROKEE [eth.ann.19 

in the hottest part of the year, was attended with so great sickness and 
mortalit}' that, by resohition of tlie Cherokee national conncil, Ross 
and tlie other chiefs submitted to General Scott a proposition that the 
Cherokee be allowed to remove themselves in the fall, after the sickly 
season had ended. This was granted on condition that all should 
have started by the 20th of October, excepting the sick and aged « ho 
might not be able to move so rapidly. Accordingly, officers were 
appointed l)y the Cherokee council to take charge of the emigrjition; 
the Indians being organized into detachments averaging one tiiousand 
each, with two leaders in charge of each detachment, and a sufficient 
number of wagons and horses for the purpose. In this way the 
remainder, enrolled at about 13,000 (including negro slaves), started on 
the long march overland late in the fall (44). 

Those who thus emigrated under the management of their own 
officers assembled at Rattlesnake springs, about two miles south of 
Hiwassee river, near the present Charleston, Tennessee, where a linal 
council was held, in which it was decided to continue their old consti- 
tution and laws in their new home. Then, in Octol)er, 1838, the long 
procession of exiles was set in motion. A very few went by the river 
route; the rest, nearly all of the 13,000, went overland. Cro.ssing to 
the noi'th side of the Hiwa.ssee at a ferry above Gunstocker creek, 
they proceeded down along the river, the sick, the old people, and the 
smaller children, with the blankets, cooking pots, and other l)elong- 
ings in wagons, the rest on foot or on horses. The number of wagons 
was 645. 

It was like the march of an army, regiment after regiment, the 
wagons in the center, the officers along the line and the horsemen on 
the flanks and at the rear. Tennessee river was cros.sed at Tuckers (?) 
ferry, a short distance above Jollys island, at the mouth of Hiwassee. 
Thence the route lay south <jf Pikeville, through McISlininille and 
on to Nashville, where the Cumberland was crossed. Then they went 
on to Hopkinsville, Kentucky, where the noted chief White-path, 
in charge of a detachment, sickened and died. His people buried 
him by the roadside, with a box over the grave and poles with stream- 
ers around it, that the others coming on behind might note the spot 
and remember him. Somewhere also along that march of death — for 
the exiles died by tens and twenties every day of the journey — the 
devoted wife of John Ross sank down, leaving him to go on with the 
bitter pain of bereavement added to heartbreak at the ruin of his 
nation. The Ohio was crossed at a ferry near the mouth of the Cum- 
berland, and the army passed on thi-ough southern Illinois until the 
great Mississippi was reached opposite Cape Girardeau, Missouri. It 
was now the middle of winter, with the river running full of ice, so 
that several detachments were obliged to wait some time on the east- 
ern bank for the channel to become clear. In talking with old men 


and women at Tahlequah the author 1'ouikI that tlie lapse of over lialf a 
cciitiirv liad not sufficed to wipe out the inenioi-y of the miseries of 
that halt beside the frozen river, with hundreds of sick and dying 
25enned up in wagons or stretched upon the ground, with only a blanket 
ovei'liead to keep out the January l)last. The crossing was made at 
last in two divisions, at Cape tiirardeau and at Green's ferry, a siiort 
distance below, whence the march was on through Missouri to Indian 
Territory, the later detachniiMits making a northerly circuit by Spring- 
field, because those who had gone before had killed oil' all the game 
along the direct route. At last their destination was reached. They 
had started in October, 1838, and it was now March, 18Hfl, the journey 
having occupied nearh' six months of the hardest part of the year.' 

It is diiBcult to arrive at any accurate statement of the number of 
Cherokee who died as the result of the Removal. According to the 
official figures those who removi'd under the direction of Ross lost over 
1.600 on the journey.- The proportionate mortality among those 
previously removed under military supervision was probably greater, 
as it was their suti'ering that led to the proposition of the Cherokee 
national officers to take charge of the emigration. Hundreds died in 
the stockades and the waiting camps, chiefly In' reason of the rations 
furnished, which were of flour and other pi'ovisions to which they were 
unaccustomed and which they did not know how to prepare properly. 
Hundreds of others died soon after their arrival in Indian territory, 
from sickness and exposure on the joui'ney. Altogether it is asserted, 
probably with reason, that over 4,000 Cherokee died as the direct 
result of the removal. 

On their arrival in Indian Territory the emigrants at once set about 
building houses and planting crops, the government having agreed 
under the treaty to fui-nish them with rations for one year after arrival. 
They were welcomed by their kindred, the "Arkansas Cherokee" — 
hereafter to be known for distinction as the "Old Settlers" — who 
held the country under previous treaties in 1828 and 1833. These. 
how(>ver, being already regularly organized under a government and 
chiefs of theii- own, were by no means disposed to bo swallowed by 
the goveriuuental authority of the newcomers. Jealousies developed 
in which the minority or treaty paily of the emigrants, headed l)y 
Ridge, took sides with the Old Settlers against the Ross or national 
party, which outnimibcred both the others nearly three to one. 

While these diliVreni'CS wen; at their height the Nation was thrown 
into a fever of excitement by the news that Major Ridge, his son John 
Kidge. and Elias Bf)udinot— all leaders of the treaty party — had been 
killctl t)y adherents of the national party, immediateh' after the close 

' Author's personal information, as Ijeforo cited. 

2 As quoted in Koyce. ClUTokoe Nation, Fiftli Ann. Rep. Bureau of EtlinoloKy. p. 292. 1888, the disburs- 
ing agent inalies the number unaccounted for 1.428; the receiving auiiit, who took charge of them 
on their arrival, makes it l,Ho. 


of a geineral council, which had adjourned after nearly two weel^s of 
debate without having been able to l)ring ahout harmonious action. 
Major Ridge wa.s waylaid and shot close to the Arkansas line, his son 
was taken from bed and cut to pieces with hatchets, while Boudinot 
was treacherously killed at his home at Park Hill, Indian territory', 
all three being killed upon the same day, June •2-2. 1SH1». 

The agent's report to the Secretary of "War, two days later, says of 
the affair: 

The muixier of Boudinot was treacherous and cruel. He was assisting some 
workmen in building a new Three men called upon him and asked for 
medicine. He went off with them in the direction of Wooster's, the missionary, 
who keeps medicine, about three hundred yards from Boudinot's. When they got 
about half way two of the men seized Boudinot and the other stabbed him, after 
which the three cut him to pieces with their knives and tomahawks. This murder 
taking place within two miles of the residence of John Eoss, his friends were appre- 
hensive it might be charged to his connivance; and at this moment I am writing 
there are six hundred armed Cherokee around the dwelling of Ross, assembled for 
his protection. The murderers of the two Ridges and Boudinot are certainly of the 
late Cherokee emigrants, and, of course, adherents of Ross, but I can not yet believe 
that Ross has encouraged the outrage. He is a man of too n]uch good sense to em- 
broil his nation at this critical time; and besides, his character, since I have known 
him, which is now twenty-five years, has been pacific. .' . . Boudinot's wife is a 
white woman, a native of New Jersey, as I imderstand. He has si.x children. The 
wife of John Ridge, jr., is a white woman, but from whence, or what family left, I 
am not informed. Boudinot was in moderate circumstances. The Ridges, both 
father and son, were rich. . . .' 

While all the evidence shows that Ross was in no way a party to the 
affair, there can be no qiiestion that the men were killed in accordance 
with the law of the Nation — three times formulated, and still in exist- 
ence — which made it treason, punishable with death, to cede away 
lands except by act of the general council of the Nation. It was for 
violating a similar law among the Creeks that the chief, Mcintosh, lost 
his life in 1835, and a party led by Major Ridge himself had killed 
Doublehead years before on suspicion of accepting a bribe for his 
part in a treaty. 

On hearing of the death of the Ridges and Boudinot several other 
signers of the repudiated treaty, among whom were John Bell, 
Archilla Smith, and James Starr, fled for safety to the protection of 
the garrison at Fort Gibson. Boudinot's brother. Stand "Watie, 
vowed vengeance against Ross, who was urged to ffee, but refused, 
declaring his entire innocence. His friends rallied to his support, 
stationing a guard around his house until the first excitement had sub- 
.sided. About three weeks afterward the national council passed 
decrees declaring that the men killed and their principal confederates 

' Agent Stoies to Secretary of War, June 24, 1839, in Report Indian Commissioner, p. 355. 1839; 
Royce, Cherokee Nation, Fifth Ann. Rep. Bureau of Ethnology, p. 293, 1888; Drake, Indians, pp. iW-JfiO. 
1880: author's personal information. The agent's report incorrectly makes the killings occur on 
three diSerent days. 


hiid rciuloi'i'd themselves outlaws by their own coiuhul. t>xteiulin<r 
amnesty on certain stringent conditions to their coiit'("iler!it(>s. and 
declarin<i' the slayei's i;'iiiltless of murder and fully I'estored to the con- 
fidence and favor of the comnumity. This was followed in August by 
another council decree declaring tlie New Kchota treaty void and reas- 
serting the title of the Cherokee to their old country, iind three weeks 
later another decree summoned the signers of the treaty to appear and 
anvswer for their conduct under })enalty of outlawry. At this point 
the United States interfered by threatening to ari'est Ross as acces- 
sory to the killing of the Ridges.' In the meantime tlH> national party 
and the Old Settlers had been coming together, and a few of the latter 
who had sided with the Ridge faction and endeavored to ))erpetuate a 
division in th(> Nation w'ere denounced in a council of the Old Settlers, 
which declai'cd that "'in identifying themselves with thos(> individuals 
known as the Ridge party, who l)y their conduct had rendered them- 
selves odious to the Cherokee people, they have acted in opposition to 
the known sentiments and feelings of that portion of this Nation known 
a.s 01<1 Settlers, frequently and variously and pul)licly expressed."' 
The ofiending chiefs were at the same time deposed from all authority. 
Among th(^ names of over two hundred signers attached that of 
"(leorge ("' (Sequoya) comes second as vice-president." 

On July 1'2^ 1889, a general convention of the eastern and western 
Cherokee, held at the Illinois camp ground, Indian territt)ry. passed 
an act of union, l)v which the two were declared "one body politic, 
under the style and title of the Cherokee Nation." On behalf of the 
eastern Cherokee the instrument bears the signature of John Ross, 
principal chief, George Lowrej', president of th(> council, and Going- 
snake (I'iradu-na'i). speaker of the council, with thirteen others. For 
the western Cherokee it was signed by John Looney, acting principal 
chief, George Guess (Secpiova), president of the t'ouncil. and tifteen 
others. On September fi. 1839. a convention comi)osed chiefly of 
eastern Cherokee assembled at Tahlecjuah, Indian territory — then first 
otficially adopted as the national capital — adopted a new constitution, 
which was accepted by a convention of the Old Settlers at Fort (Jib- 
son, Indian 'i'erritory, on June 26, 1840, an act which completed the 
reunion of the Nation.'' 

THE ARKANSAS HAM) — 1817-1888 

Having followed the fortunes of the main body of the Nation to 
their final destination in tli(> West, we now turn to review' briefiy 

'Rnyce. Cherokei' Nation, op. cit.. pp. 'isi. 295. 

■■^Council resohitions. .\ugust 23, ISi'J, in Report Indian Conunis'^iouer, p. 3>7, l.s;S'j: Royce. op. cit., 
p. 294. 

'See "Act of rnion"and "Con.'ititutiim" in Constitution and Laws of tile Cliurokee Nation, 1S75; 
General Arbuekle's letter to the Secretiiry of War, June 28, 1840, in Report of Indian Commissioner, 
p. 40, 1840; also Royce, op. cit., pp. 294, 295. 

18(> MYTHS (IF THE CHEROKEE [eth.ann.W 

the history of the earlier emigrants, the Arkansas or Old Settler 

The events leadiny to the tirst westward iiiig-ration and the subse- 
quent negotiations which resulted in tiie assignment oi' a territory in 
Arkansas to the western Cherokee, by the treaty of 1817. have been 
already noted. The great majority of those thus voluntarily remov- 
ing Ix'longi'd to the conservative hunter element, who desired to rees- 
tablish in the western wilderness the old Indian life from which, 
through tiie influence of schools arid intelligent leadcrsliip, the body 
of th(> Cherokee was rapidh' drifting away. As the lands upon which 
the emigrants had settled belonged to the Osage, whose claim iiad not 
A'et been extinguished l)y the United States, the latter objected to 
their presence, and the Cherokee were compelled to tight to maintain 
tiieir own position, so that for the first twenty years oi' more the his- 
tory of the western band is a mere petty chronicle of Osage raids and 
Cherokee retaliations, emphasized from time to time b}- a massacre on 
a lai'ger scale. By the treaty of ISIT the western Cherokee ac({uired 
title to a definite territory and official standing under Government pro- 
tection and supervision, the lands assigned them ha\'ing been ac(]uired 
by treaty from the Osage. The great body of the Cherokee in the 
East were strongly opposed to any recognition of the western band, 
seeing in such action oidy the beginning of an eti'ort looking toward 
the ultimate removal of the whole tri})e. The Government lent sup- 
port to the scheme, however, and a steady emigration set in until, in 
ISlit, the emigrants w'ere said to number several thousands. Unsuc- 
cessful endeavors were made to increase the mnnber by inducing the 
Shawano and Delawares of ^Missouri and the Oneida of New York to 
join them.' 

In 1818 Tollunteeskee (Ata'lunti'ski), princii)ai cliief of the Arkan- 
sas Cherokee, while on a visit to old friends in the P>ast, iiad become 
ac(|uainted with one of the officers of the American Board of Commis- 
sioners for Foreign Missions, and had a.sked for the establishment of 
amission among his people in the West. In response to the invitation 
the Reverend Cephas Washl)urn and his assistant. Reverend .Vlfred 
Finney, with their families, set out the next year fi-oni the old Nation, 
and after a long and exhausting journey reached the Arkansas country, 
where, in the spring of 1820, they esta))lished Dwight mission, adjoin- 
ing the agency at the mouth of Illinois creek, on the northern bank 
of the Arkansas, in what is now Pope county. Arkansas. The name 
was bestowed in rememl)rance of Timothy Dwight, a Yale president 
and pioneer organizer of the American Board. Tollunteeskee having 
died in the meantime was succeeded as principal chief by his brother, 
John Jolly," the friend and adopted father of Sanmel Houston. Jolly 

1 See ante, pp. 105-106; Nuttall, who was on the ground, gives them only 1,500. 
• Washburn. Cephas, Reminiscences of the Indians, pp. 81, 103; Richmond, 1869. 


had removed from his old homo :it the mouth of Iliwassec. in Ten- 
nosseo. in ISIS.' 

In the .spring of IS Itt Thomas Nnttuli. the naturalist, ascended the 
Arkansas, and he ofives an interesting account of the western Cherokee 
as he found them at the time. I ii going up the stream, "both banks of 
tiie I'iver. as we jjroceeiU'd. wei-e lined with the houses and farms of 
tiie Cherokee, and thougii their dress was a mixture of indigenous 
and European taste, yet in their houses, which are decently furnished, 
and in their farms, which were well fenced and stocked with cattle, we 
peireive a happy approach toward civilization. Their numerous fami- 
lies, also, well fed and clothed, argue a propitious progress in their 
population. Their superior industrv either as hunters or farmers 
]>roves the value of property among them, and they are no longer 
strangers to avarice and the distinctions created by wealth. Some of 
thcni are possessed of property to the amount of many thousands of 
dollars, have houses handsomely and conveniently furnished, and their 
tal)les spread with our dainties and luxuries." He mentions an engage- 
ment some time before l)etween them and the Osage, in which the 
Cherokee had killed nearly one hundred of the Osage. l)esides taking 
a luunber of prisoners. He estimates them at about tifteen hundred, 
being about half the number estimated by the eastern Nation as hav- 
ing (Muigi'ated to the West, and only one-fourth of the official estimate. 
A few Delawares were living with them.' 

The Osage troubles continued in s|)itt> of a treaty of peace between 
the two tribes made at a council held under the direction of Governor 
Clark at St. Louis, in October. ISls.^ Warriors from the eastern 
Cherokee were accustomed to make the long journey to the Arkansas 
to assist their western brethren, and returned with scalps and captives.* 

In the .summer of l.s^n a second ert'ort for peace was made by Gov- 
ernor Miller of Arkansas territory. In reply to his talk the Osage 
complained that the Chei'ok(>e had failed to deliver their Osage cap- 
tives as stii)ulated in the jjrevious agivement at St. Louis. This, it 
appears, was du(> in pai-t to the fact that some of these captives had 
l)een cari'led to the eastern Chei'okee. and a messenger was accordingly 
dispatciied to secure and l)ring them hack. Another peace conference 
was held soon afterward at Fort Smith. l)ut to very little pui'pose, as 
hostilities were soon resumed and continued until the United States 
actively interposed in the fall of 1S22.' 

In this vear also .Se(iuova \isited the western Cherokee to introduce 

' Nuttall, Journal of Travels into the .Vrkansas Territory, etc., p. r29; Philadelphia, 1H21. 

^Ibirl., pp. 123-136. The battle mentioned seems to l>e the s*ime noted somewhat differently by 
Washburn, Reminiscences, p. 120. 1869. 

*Royee, Cherokee Nation, op. cit.. p. 222. 

'Washburn, op. cit,, p. KiO. ami jiersonal information from .1. I>. Waflord. 

'Royce, op. cit., pp. 242, 213; Washburn, op. cit., pp. 112-122 et pa.s.sim; see also sketches of Tahehej 
and Tooantuh or .Spring-froj;, in McKenney and Hall, Indian Tribes, i and ii, 18.%. 

138 MYTHS OF THE CHEKOKKK [eth.anx.19 

to them the knowledge of his great invention, which was at once taken 
up through the influence of Takatoka (Degatii'ga), a proaiincMit chief 
who had hitherto opposed ever}' effort of the missionaries to intro- 
duce their own schools and religion. In consequence perhaps of this 
encouragement Sequoya removed permanently to the West in the fol- 
lowing year and became henceforth a member of the western Nation.' 

Like other Indians, the western Cherokee held a firm belief in witch- 
craft, which led to frequent tragedies of punishment or retaliation. 
In 1824 a step forward was marked by the enactment of a law making 
it murder to kill any one for wit('hcraft, and an offense punishable 
with whipping to accuse another of witchcraft.' This law may have 
been the result of the silent working 6f missionary influence, sup- 
ported by such enlightened men as Secjuoya. 

The treaty which assigned the Arkansas lands to the western Cher- 
okee had stipulated that a census should be made of the eastern and 
western divisions of the Nation, sepai'ately . and an apportionment of the 
national ainiuity forthwith made on that basis. The western line of 
the Arkansas tract had also been left open, luitil according to another 
stipulation of the same treaty, the whole amount of land ceded through it 
to the Ignited States by the Cherokee Nation in the East could be ascer- 
tained in order that an equal quantity might be included within the 
boundaries of the western tract.^ These promises had not yet been 
fullilled, partly because of the efforts of the Government to bring- 
about a larger emigration or a further cession, partly on account of 
delay in the state surveys, and partly also because the Osage objected 
to the running of a line which should make the Cherokee their next 
door neighbors.' With their boundaries unadjusted and their annui- 
ties withheld, distress and dissatisfaction overcame the western Cher- 
okee, many of whom, feeling themselves al)solved from territorial 
restrictions, spread over the country on the southern side of Arkansas 
river,'' while others, under the lead of a chief named The Bowl 
(Diwa''li), crossed Red river into Texas — then a portion of Mexico — in 
a vain attempt to escape American jurisdiction." 

A provisional western boundary having been run. which proved 
unsatisfactory both to the western Cherokee and to the people of 
Arkansas, an effort was made to settle the difficulty by arranging an 
exchange of the Arkansas tract for a new country west of the Arkansas 
line. So strongly opposed, however, were the western Cherokee to 
this project that their council, in 1825, passed a law, as the eastern 
Cherokee and the Creeks had alreadj^ done, fixing the death penalty 

1 Washburn. Reminiscences, p. 178, 1S69; see also ante p. 206. 

2 Ibid, p. 138. 

3 gee Treaty of 1817. Indian Treaties, 1837. 

•I Royce. Cherokee Nation, Fifth Report Biin.-aii of Ethnology, pp. 243, 244, 188.8. 

6 Ibid, p. 243. 

6.\uthor's personal information; see p. 143. 


for iinvone of the tribe who should uiuiertuke to cede or oxehanjji'e land 
t)(doiijiing to the Nation.' 

After a long series of negotiations such pressure was brought to 
beai' upon a delegation vdiich \isited \\'ashington in 1828 that consent 
was at last obtained to an exchange of the Arkansas tract for another 
piece of seven million acres lying fai'thei- west, tog-ether with "a i)er- 
jx'tuai outlet west" of the tr:ict thus assigned, as far west as the 
sovereignty of the I'nited Stati>s might extend.' The boundaries 
given for this seven-million-aci'e tract and the adjoining western 
outlet were modified by treaty at Fort Gibson tive years later so as to 
be practically e({uivalent to the present territory of the Cherokee 
Nation in Indian Territory, with the Cherokee strip recently ceded. 

The preamble of the Washington treaty of ]May 0, 18:28. recites that 
■■ \\'hereas, it being the anxious desire of the Governmentof the L'uited 
States to secui-e to the Cherokee nation of Indians, as well those now 
li\ing within the limits of the territory of Arkansas as those of their 
fi'iends and brothers who reside in states east of the Mississippi, 
and who may wish to join their brothers of the West, a permanent 
honic^ and which shall. ui\der the most solemn guarantee of the United 
States, be and remain theirs forever — a home that shall never, in all 
futui'e time. b(> embarrassed l)v having extended around it tln> lines 
or ])laeed over it the juiisdiction of a territory or state, nor l)e pressed 
upon by the extension in any way of anj- of the limits of any existing 
teri'itory or state; and whereas the present location of the Cherokees 
in Arkansas being unfavoralile to their present repose, and tending, 
as the past demonstrates, to their future degradation and misery, and 
the Cherokees being anxious to avoid such consequences," etc. — there- 
fore, they cede everything confirmed to them in 1817. 

Article 2 defines the boundaries of the new tract and the western 
outlet to be given in exchange, lying immediately west of the present 
Arkansas line, while the next ai'ticle provides for the removal of all 
whites and others residing within the said boundaries, "so that no 
obstacles ai-ising out of the presence of a white population, or any 
l)opidati()n of any othei- sort, shall exist to annoy the Cherokees. and 
also to keep all such from the west of said line in futuri>." 

Other articles provide for payment for improvements left l)ehind; 
for a cash sum of ^50,U()0 to pav for trouble and expense of removal 
and to compensate for the inferior (juality of the lands in the new 
tract: for ^(!, 000 to pay for recovei-ing stock which may stray away 
" in ((uest of the pastures from which they may l)e driven :" $8,7()0 for 
.spoliations committed by Osage and whites; ^500 to (ieorge ( 
{Se(|uoya) — who w'as himself one of the signers — in consideration of 
the beneficial I'csults to his tribe from the alphabet invented l)y him; 
$20,000 in ten annual payments for education; $1,000 for a printing 

> Eoyce, Cherokee Xation, op. fit., p. 24.5. - Ibiti.. pp. 2J7, 24S. 

140 MYTHS OF THE CHEROKEE [eth.ann.19 

press and type to aid in the enlightenment of the people "in their own 
and our language"; a personal indeinnitv for false imprisonment: and 
for the removal and reestablishment of the Dwight mission. 

In article tj "it is moreover agreed by the United States, whenever 
the Cherokee may desire it, to give them a set of plain laws, suited to 
their condition; also, when they wish to lay off their lands and own 
them individually, a surveyor shall be sent to make the surveys at the 
cost of the United States." This article was annulled in 1833 by 
request of the Cherokee. 

Article 9 provides for the Fort (libson military reservation within 
the new tract, while article 7 binds the Cherokee to surrender and 
remove from all their lands in Arkansas within fourteen months. 

Article 8 shows that all this was intended to be only preliminar\' to 
the removal of the whole Cherokee Nation from the east of the Missis- 
sippi, a consummation toward which the Jackson administration and 
the state of Georgia immediately Ijegan to bend every effort. It is as 

Ahticle 8. Tlie Cherokee nation, west of the ^Mississippi, having liythis agreement 
freed themselves from tlie harassing and ruinous effeots consequent upon a location 
amidst a white population, and secured to themselves and their posterity, under the 
solemn sanction of the guarantee of the United States as contained in this agreement, 
a large extent of unembarrassed country; and that their brothers yet remaining in 
the states may be induced to join them and enjoy the repose and blessings of such a 
state in the future, it is further agreed on the i)art of the United States that to each 
head of a Cherokee family now residing within the chartered limits of Georgia, or 
of either of the states east of the Mississippi, who may djsire to remove west, shall 
be given, on enrolling himself for emigration, a good rifle, a blanket, a kettle, and 
five pounds of tobacco; (and to each member of his family one blanket), also a just 
compensation for the property he may aljandon, to be assessed by persons to be 
apiJiiinted by the President of the United States. The cost of the emigration of all 
such shall also be borne by the United States, and good and suitable ways ojiened 
and procured for their comfort, accommodation, and support by the way, and pro- 
visions for twelve months after their arrival at the agency; and to each person, or 
head cif a family, if he take along with him four pei'sons, shall be paid innnediately 
on liis arriving at the agency and reporting himself and his family or followers as 
emigrants or permanent settleri?, in addition to the above, prorliird he and tlieii shall 
liavc niiif/rateil friiiii n-ithin the cltin-tered liiiiitx i/f the Stale of (Jeor(/i(i, the sum of fifty 
dollars, and this sum in proportion to any greater or less number that may accompany 
him from within the aforesaid chartered limits of the State of Georgia. 

A Senate amendment, delining the limits of the western outlet, was 
afterward found to be impracticable in its restrictions and was can- 
celed l)v the treaty made at Fort (Tib.son in 1833. ' 

The Washington treaty was signed by several delegates, including 
Sequoya, four of theni signing in Cherokee charactei's. As the laws 

•Treaty of Washington, May 6, 182S. Indian Treaties, pp. 42:3-428, 1837; treaty of Fort Gibson, 1833, 
ibid., i)p. .iiU-50,"); see also for synopsis, Royee, Cherokee Nation, Fifth Ann. Rep. Bureau of Ethnology, 
pp. 229, 230, 1888. 




Kroiii Ciitliii'w pniiiliTiL' of is:;i 1 

MooNEY] KMIGHATloN To TEXAS 1828 141 

of tlu> western Chciokcc iiiadc it ii eapitiil offense to negotiate any sale 
or exehange of land excepting by authorit}' of council, and the dele- 
gates had acted without such authority, they were .so doubtful as to 
what might happen on their return that the Secretary of War sent 
with them a letter of explanation assuring the Cherokee that their 
representatives had acted with integi'ity and earnest zeal for their 
pe()i)le and had done the best that could be done with regard to the 
treaty. Notwithstanding this, they found the whole tribe so strongly 
opposed to the treaty that their own lives and property were unsafe. 
Th(> national council pronounced them guilty of fraud and deception 
and declared the treaty null and void, as having been made without 
authority, and asked permission to send on a delegation authorized to 
arrange all differences.' In the meantime, however, the treaty had 
been ratified within three weeks of its conclusion, and thus, hardly ten 
years after they had cleared their fields on the Arkansas, the western 
Cherokee were forced to abandon their cabins and plantations and 
move once more into the wilderness. 

A considerable number, refusing to submit to the treaty or to trust 
longer to guarantees and promises, crossed Red river into Texas and 
joined the Cherokee colony already located there by The Bowl, under 
Mexican jurisdiction. Among those thus removing was the noted 
chief Tahchee (Tatsi') or ■"Dutcii," who had l)een one of the earliest 
emigrants to the Arkansas country. After several j'ears in Texas, 
during which he led war parties against the wilder tribes, he recrossed 
Ked I'iver and soon made himself so conspicuous in raids upon tlie 
Osage that a reward of five hundred dollars was offered by General 
Arbuckle for his capture. To show his defiance of the proclamation, 
he deliberately journeyed to Fort Gibson, attacked a party of Osage 
at a trading post near by, and scalped one of them within hearing of 
the drums of the fort. With rifle in one hand and the bleeding seal]) 
in the other, he leaped a precipice and made his escape, although a 
bullet grazed his cheek. On promise of amnesty and the withdrawal 
of the reward, he afterward retui'iied and settled, with his followers, 
on the Canadian, southwest of Fort (iibson. estal)lishing a reputation 
among army otticers as a valuable scout and guide. ' 

By treaties made in ISi't; and ISi^T the Creeks had ceded all their 
remaining lands in Georgia and agreed to remove to Indian Territor}'. 
Some of these emigrants had settled along the noilhein bank of 
the Arkansas and on Verdigris river, on lands later found to be 
within the limits of the teri'itory assigiu'd to the western Cherokee 
by the treaty of 1828. 'I'liis led to jealousies and collisions ))etween 

' Royce, Cherokee Xnti<m. Fifth .\ii!i. Kep. Bureau nf Ethnology, p. 248. 1888. 

»ror a sketch of Tahchee. with piirtruil.s, see McKeuney mid Hall, i, pp. 1S.t8; Catlin, North 
American Imliuus. ii, pp. ril, 122, IMI. Wa.shhurii also meutions rhe emigration Uj Texas cousequent 
upon the treaty of 182S (Reminiscences, j>. 217, 1S69). 

142 MVI'OS OK THE CHEROKEE [etti. ann.19 

the two tribes, and in order to settle the difSeultv the Ignited States 
ct)n\ened a joint eouncil of Creeks and Cherokee at Fort (jibson, with 
the result that separate treaties were concluded with each on Februar\' 
l-i. 1833, defining- their respective bounds to the satisfaction of all 
concerned. By this arrang'ement the up])er Verdii;ris was confirmed 
to the Chei'okee, and the Creeks who had settled along- that portion of 
the stream agreed to remove to Creek territory immediately adjoining 
on the south.' 

By the treatv made on this occasion with the Cherokee the bound- 
aries of the tract of seven million acres granted by the treaty of 1828 
are defined so as to correspond with the present boundaries of the 
Cherokee country in Indian territory, together with a strip two miles 
wide along the northern border, which was afterward annexed to the 
state of Kansas l)y the treaty of 18»i6. A tract in the northeastern 
corner, between Neosho or Grand river and the Missouri line, was set 
apart for the use of the Seneca and several other remnants of tribes 
removed from their original territories. The western outlet estab- 
lished liy the treaty of 1828 was reestablished as a western extension 
from the seven-million-acre tract thus bounded, being what was after- 
ward known as the Cherokee strip or outlet plus the two-mile strip 
extending- westward along the south line of Kansas. 

After describing the boundaries of the main residence tract, the first 
article continues: 

In addition to the seven millions of acres of land tlias pro\'ided for and bounded 
the ITnited States further guarantee to the Cherokee nation a perpetual outlet west 
and a free and unmolested use of all the country lying west of the western boundary 
of said seven millions of acres, as far west as the sovereignty of the United States and 
their right of soil extend — provided, however, that if the saline or salt plain on the 
great western prairie shall fall within said limits prescribed for said outlet the right 
is reserved to the United States to permit other tribes of red men to get salt on said 
plain in common with the Cherokees — and letters patent shall be issued by the 
United States as soon as practicable for the lands hereliy guaranteed. 

The third article cancels, at the particular request of the Cherokee, 
that article of the treaty of 1828 ))v which the government was to give 
to the Cherokee a set of laws and a surveyor to survey lands for indi- 
viduals, when so desired by the Cherokee." 

Their differences with the Creeks having been thus adjusted, the 
Arkansas Cherokee prtjceeded to occupy the territorj- guaranteed to 
them, where they were joined a few years later by their expatriated 
kinsmen from the east. By tacit agreement some of the Creeks who 
had settled within the Cherokee hoiuids were permitted to remain. 
Among these were several families of Uchee — an int'orporated tribe 

' Treaties at Fort Gibson. February 14, 1833, with Creeks and Ctierokee, in Indian Treaties, pp. 
5i;i-S(i9, 1837. 

- Treaty i)f 1833. Indian Treaties, pp. 561^56.5, 1837: Rnyce, Cherokee Nation, Fifth Ann. Rep. Bureau 
of Ethnology, pp. 249-2S3, 1888; see also Treaty of New Eehota, 1835, ante, pp. 123-125. 

Bureau of American ethnology 


(Fnini M.K.iiiK y lui.l Hull's copy ..I llii- i.riuiliiil paililinf; c.f ilIhiuI Is;«I) 


of tho Crook confoderaoy— wlio luid tixed their residence at the spot 
wli('it> the town of Tahleqiuih was afterward established. They 
rcinaiiR'il liorc until swcjit otf liy smallpox- some sixty years ago.' 

TllK TKXAS BAXD — 1817-1900 

As already stated, a hand of western Cherokee under Chief Bowl, 
dissatisfied with the delay in fulfilling- the terms of the treaty of 1S17, 
had left Arkansas and crossed Red river into Texas, then under 
Mexican jurisdictii)n, where tlu'y were joined a few years later by 
Tahchee and others of the western band who were opposed to the 
treaty of 1828. Here they united with other refugee Indians from 
the Cnited States, forming together a loose confederacy known after- 
ward as "'the Cherokee and their associated hands,"" consisting of 
Cherokee, Shawano, Delaware. Kickapoo, Quapaw, Choctaw, Biloxi, 
'"lawanie" (Heyowani. Yowani). "■ rnataqua"" (Nada'ko or Ana- 
darko. another Caddo subtrihe). "Tahookatookie"' (0, Alabama (a 
Creek subtribe), and "Cooshatta"" (Koasa'ti. another Creek subtrihe). 
The Cherokee being the larg(>st and most important })and, their chief. 
Bowl — known to the whites as Colonel Bowles — was regarded as the 
chief and principal man of them all. 

The refugees settled chiefly along Angelina, Neches, and Trinity 
rivers in eastern Texas, where Bowl endeavored to obtain a grant of 
land for their use from the Mexican government. According to the 
Texan historians they were tacitly permitted to occupy the countrv 
and hopes were held out that a grant would be issued, but the papers 
had not been perfected when the Texas revolution began." According 
to the Cherokee statement the grant was actually issued and the Span- 
ish document inclosed in a tin box was on the person of Bowl when he 
was killed.'' On complaint of some of the American colonists in Texas 
President Jackson issued a proclamation forbidding any Indians to 
cross the Sabine river fi'om the United States.* 

In 1826-27 a dissatisfied American colony in eastern Texas, under the 
leadership of Hayden Edwards, organized what was known as the 
"Fredonia rebellion"" against the Mexican government. To secure 
the alliance of the Cherokee and their confederates the Americans 
entered into a treaty by which the Indians were guaranteed the lands 

' Author's personal information, ni 1891 the author opened two I'chee graves on the grounds of 
Cornelius Boudinot, ill Tahlequah. finding with one body a number of Kreneh, Spanish, and .\meri- 
can silver coins wrapped in eloth and dejiosited in two packages on each side of the head. They are 
now in the National Museum at Washington. 

SBonnell, Topographic Description of Te.\as, p. Ill; Austin, 1840; Thrall, History of Texa.s. p. ,58; 
New Vorlc, 187t;. 

^Author's personal information from .1. 1). Wafforcl and otherold Cherokee residents and from recent 
Cherokee delegates. Bancroft agrees with Bonnell and Thrall that no grant was formally issued, 
but states that the fHu'rokee chief established his people in Texas " confiding in promises made to 
him. and a conditional agreement in 1822 " with the Spanish governor (History of the North Mexican 
States ami Texas, ii, p. 10;!, 18891. It is probable that the paper carried by Bowl was the later 
Houston treaty. See next page. *Thrall, op. cit.,s, p. 58. 

144 MYTHS OF THE CHEROKEE [eth.anx.19 

occupied by thein, but without specification as to })Oundaries. The 
Fredonia movement soon collapsed and nothing' tangible seems to have 
come of the negotiations.' 

In the fall of 1835 the Texan revolution began, resulting in the seces- 
sion of Texas from Mexico and her establishment as an independent 
republic until annexed later to the United States. General Samuel 
Houston, a leading member of the revolutionary body, was an old 
friend of the Cherokee, and set forth so strongly the claims of them 
and their confederates that an act was passed by the convention pledg- 
ing to these tribes all the lands which they had held under the Mexican 
government. In accordance with this act General Houston and John 
Forbes were appointed to hold a treaty with the Cherokee and their 
associated bands. They met the chiefs, including Bowl and Big-mush 
(Gatun'wa'li, " Hard-mush"), of the Cherokee, at Bowl's village on Feb- 
ruary '23, 1836, and concluded a formal treaty by which the Cherokee 
and their allies received a fee simple title to all the land lying '• west of 
the San Antonio road and beginning on the west at a point where the 
said road crosses the river Angelina, and running up said river until 
it reaches the mouth of the lirst large creek below the great Shawnee 
village, emptying into the .said river from the northeast, thence run- 
ning with said creek to its main source and from thence a due north 
line to the Sabine and with said river west. Then starting where the 
San Antonio road crosses the Angelina and with said road to where it 
crosses the Nechesand thence running up the east side of said river in 
a northwest direction." The historian remarks that the description is 
somewhat vague, but is a literal transcription from the treaty." The 
territorjf thus assigned was about equivalent to the present Cherokee 
county, Texas. 

The treaty provoked such general dissatisfaction among the Texans 
that it was not presented to the convention for ratification. General 
Houston became President of Texas in November, 1836, but notwith- 
standing all his efforts in behalf of the Cherokee, the treat}' was 
rejected by the Texas senate in secret session on December 16. 1837.^ 
Texas having in the meantime achieved victorious independence was 
now in position to repudiate her engagements with the Indians, which 
she did, not only with the Cherokee, but with the Comanche and 
other wild tribes, which had been induced to remain neutral during 
the struggle on assurance of being secured in possession of their 

In the meantime President Houston was unremitting in his efiort to 
secure the ratification of the Cherokee treaty, but without success. 
On the other hand the Cherokee were accused of various depreda- 
tions, and it was asserted that they had entered into an agreement with 

1 Thrall, Texas, p. 46, 1879. 3 ibid., p. 143, 1840. 

2Bonnell, Texas, pp. 142,143, 1840. 


Mexico by which tliey were to be .socuivd in the territory in ([uestion 
on condition of assisting to dri\'e out the Americans.' The charge 
came rather late in the day. and it was evident that President ITouston 
put no faith in it, as h*^ still continued his efforts in ))ehalf of the 
Cherokee, even so far as to order the boundaiy line to l)t> run. accord- 
ing to the terms of the treat}' (45).- 

In December, 1838, Houston was succeeded as President bj' Mirahcau 
B. Lamar, who at once announc<>d his intention to expel every Indian 
tribe from Texas, declai'ing in ids inaugural message that ''the sword 
should mark the Itoundaries of the repul)lic." At this time the Indians 
in eastern Texas, including the Cherokee and their twelve confederated 
bands and some others, were estimated at 1,8()() warriors, or perhaps 
8,0i:t0 persons.' i 

A small force of troops sent to take possession of the salt springs in 
the Indian country at the head of the Neches was notified by Bowl 
that such action would be resisted. The Indians were then informed 
that they must prepare to leave the country in the fall. l)ut that they 
would be paid for the improvements al)andoned. In the meantime 
the neighboring Mexicans made an effort to free themselves from 
Texan rule and scut overtures to the Indians to make common cause 
with them. This being discovered, the crisis was prec ipitated. and a 
conmiission consisting of General Albert Sidney Johnston (secretary 
of war of the republic), Vice-President Burnet, and some other 
officials, hacked up by several regiments of troops, was sent to the 
Cherokee village on Angelina river to demand of the Indians that they 
remove at once across the liorder. The Indians refused and were 
attacked and defeated on July 1.5, 1839, by the Texan troops under 
command of General Douglas. They were pursued and a second 
engagement took place the next morning, resulting in the death of 
Bowl himself and his assistant ch'wt GatuiTwuli, ■"Ilard-nuish." and the 
dispersion of the Indian forces, with a loss in the two engagements of 
about 55 kill(>d and SO wounded, the Texan loss being comparative]}' ■ 
trifling. The iirst tight took place at a hill close to the main ( 'iierokee 
village on the Angelina, where the Indians made a stand and defended 
their position well for some time. The second occurred at a ravine 
near Neches river, where they were intercejjted in th(>ir n^treat. Says 
Thrall, "After this fight the Indians abandoned Texas, lea\ing their 
fine lands in possession of the whites." ' 

By thcs(; two defeats the forces of the Cherokee and their confeder- 
ates were completely broken up. A part of the Cherokee recrossed 
Red river and rejoined their kinsnuMi in Indian ten-itory. liringing 
with them the blood-stained canister containing the patcuit for their 

'Bonnell, Texas, pp. 143, 144. 

2 Ibid., pp.H4,l.lfi. 

3 Thrall, Texiis. pp. UG-ICS, IS/C. 

< Bonnell, up. cil., pp. llG-150; Tlimll, up- I'it-. pp. ns-12(l. 
19 ETII— 01 10 

146 MYTHS OF THE CHKROKEE [eth.ann.19 

Texas land, which Bowl had carrietl ai)out with him .since the treaty 
with Ilou.stoii and which he had upon his person when shot. It is 
still kept in the Nation.' Others, with the Kickapoo, Delawares, 
and (Jaddo, .scattered in small ])ands alont;- the we.stern Texas frontier, 
where they were occasionally heard from afterward. On Chri-stmas 
day of the same year a fight occurred on Cherokee creek, San Saba 
county, in which .several Indians W(n-t> killed and a number of women 
and children captured, including- the wife and family of the dead chief 
Bowl." Those of the Cherokee who did not retui'nto Indian territory 
g'radually drifted down into Mexico, where .some hundreds of them 
are now permanently and prosperously domiciled far south in the 
neighborhood of Guadalajara and Lake Chapala. communication being- 
still kept up through occasional visits from their kinsmen in the terri- 


With the tinal removal of the Cherokee from their native country 
and their reunion and reorganization under new conditions in Indian 
Territory in 184<> their aboriginal period properly comes to a close 
and the rest may be dismissed in a few paragraphs as of concern rather 
to the local historian than to the ethnologist. Having traced for three 
full centuries their gradual evolution from a savage trilje to a civilized 
Christian nation, with a national constitution and national press printed 
in their own national alphabet, we can afford to leave the rest to 
others, the principal materials ])eing readily accessible in the Cherokee 
national archives at Tahlecjuah, in the tiles of the Chcrohfe Admcate 
and other newspapers published in the Nation, and in the annual 
reports and other documents of the Indian ofiice. 

For many years the hunter and warrior had been giving place to the 
farmer and mechanic, and the forced expatriation made the chang-e 
complete and final. Torn from their native streams and mountains, 
their council tires extinguished and their townhouses burned behind 
them, and transported bodily to a far distant country where every- 
thing Avas new and strange, they were obliged pi>rforce to forego the 
old life and adjust themselves to changed surroundings. The ballplay 
was neglected and the green-c'orn dance pro.scribed, while the heroic 
tradition of former days became a fading memory or a tale to amuse a 
child. Instead of ceremonials and peace councils we hear now of rail- 
I'oad deals and contracts with cattle syndicates, and instead of the old 
warrior chiefs who had made the Cherokee name a terror — Oconostota, 
Hanging-maw, Doublehead, and Pathkiller — we tind the destinies of the 

^ Author's personal information from .T. D. WafEord ami otlier old western Cherokee, and recent 
Cherokee delegates; by some this is snid to hjive been a Mexiean patent, lint it is probably the one 
given by Texas. See ante, p. 143. 

-Thrall, Texas, p. 120, ].S7i;. 

3 Author's personal information fnmi Mexican and Cherokee sources. 


nation jriiidi^d henceforth by shrewd niixed-hlood ))oliticians. hearing 
whitt^ ineifs names and spealving the white uiaii"s hmouage. and fre- 
(jiiently witli liardly enough Indian l)lood to show itself in the features. 
The change was not instantaneous, nor is it even yet eoaiplete, for 
although the tendency is constantly awa}' from the old things, and 
although fre(]uent intermarriages are rapidly bleaching out the brown 
of the Indian skin, there are still several thousand full-l)k)od Chero- 
kee — enough to constitute a large tribe if set oti' by thems(>lves — who 
speak only their native language and in secret bow down to the nature- 
gods of their fathers. Here, as in other lands, the conservsitive 
clement has taken refuge in the mountain districts, while the mixed- 
})lo()ds and the adopted whites ai'c chiefly on the richer low grounds 
an<l in tlic railroad towns. 

On the i-eorganization of the united Nation the council ground at 
Tahlequah was designated as the seat of governnu'iit, and the prcsi>nt 
town was soon afterward laid out upon the spot, taking its name from 
the old Cherokee town of Talikwa', or Tellico. in Tennessee. The 
missions were reestablished, the Adriicnh' was revived, and the work 
of civilization was again taken up, though under great ditticulties. as 
continued removals and persecutions, with the awful suil'eriug and 
mortality of the last great emigration, had impoverished and more 
than decimated the Nation and worn out the courage even of the 
bravest. The bitterness engendered by the New Echota treaty led 
to a .series of murders and assassinations and other acts of outlawry, 
amounting almost to civil war between the Ross and Ridge factions, 
until the Government was at last obliged to interfere. The Old Set- 
tlers also had their grievances and complaints against the newcomers, 
so that the history of the Cherokee Nation for the next twenty years 
is largely a chronicle of factional quarrels, through which civilization 
and everv good work actuallv retrograded l)ehind the condition of a 
generation earlier. 

Sequo3^a, who had occu]iiiMl a prominent position in the atfaii's of 
the Old Settlers and assisted nuich in the reorganization of the Nation, 
had become seized with a desire to make linguistic investigations among 
the remote tribes, very probably with a view of devising a universal 
Indian alphaljct. His mind dwelt also on the old tradition of a lost 
band of Cherokee living somewhere toward the western mountains. 
In lfS41 and 18-1:2. with a few Cherokee companions and with his pro- 
visions and papers loaded in an ox cart, he made several journeys into 
the ^\'est, received everywhere with kindness by even the wildest tribes. 
Disappointed in his })hilologic results, he started out in 184-3 in (juest 
of the lost Cherokee, who were t)elieved to be somewher(> in northern 
Mexico, but. being now an old man and worn out by hardship, he sank 
under the effort and died — alone and unattended, it is .said — near the 

148 MYTHS OF THE CHEROKEE (etii.ann.19 

village of San Fernando. Moxico, in Aug-ust of that year. Ktimors 
having come of hi.s helpless condition, a party bad been sent out from 
the Nation to bring him back, but arrived too late to find him alive. 
A pension of throe Imndred dollars, previously voted to him ))v the 
Nation, was continued to his widow — the (jrd}- literary pension in the 
United States. Besides a wife he left two sons and a daughter.' 
Sequoyah district of the Cherokee Nation was named in his honor, and 
the great trees of California {Sequoia glgantect) also preserve his 

In 1846 a treaty was concluded at Washington by which the con- 
flicting claims of the Old Settlers and later emigrants were adjusted, 
reimbursement was promised for sums unjustly deducted from the 
tive-million-dollar payment guaranteed under the treaty of 1835, and 
a general amnesty was proclaimed for all past ofl'enses within the 
Nation." Final settlement of the treaty claims has not yet been made, 
and the matter is still a subject of litigation, including all the treaties 
and agreements up to the pi(>sent date. 

In 1859 the devoted missionary Samuel Worcester, authoi- of 
numerous translations and first organizer of the Advocate, died at 
Park Hill mission, in the Cherokee Nation, after thirt3'-five years 
spent in the service of the Cherokee, having suffered chains, impris- 
onment, and exile for their sake.' 

The breaking out of the civil war in 18H1 found the Ciierokee 
divided in sentiment. Being slave owners, like the other Indians 
removed from the southei'n states, and surrounded by southei-n influ- 
ences, the agents in charge being themselves southern sympathizers, 
a considerable party in each of the tribes was disposed to take active 
part with the Confederacy. The old Ridge party, headed by Stand 
Watie and supported by the secret secession organization known as 
the Knights of the Golden Circle, declared for the Confederacy. The 
National party, headed l)y .Tolm Ross and supported l)y the patriotic 
organization known as the Kitoowah society — whose members were 
afterward known as Pin Indians — declared for strict neutrality. At 
last, however, the pressure became too strong to lie resisted, and on 
October 7, 1861, a treaty was concluded at Tahlequah, with General 
Albert Pike, commissioner for the Confederate states, by which the 
Cherokee Nation cast its lot with the Confederac^y, as the Creeks, 
Choctaw, Chickasaw, Seminole, Osage, Comanche, and several smaller 
tribes had already done.* 

1 W. A. Phillips, Sequoyah, in Harper's Magazine, September, 1870; Foster, Sequoyah. 1S85: Royee, 
Cherokee Nation, Fifth Ann. Rep. Bureau of Ethnology, p. 302. 188S; letter of William P. Ross, former 
editor of Cherokee Advocate, March 11, 18S9, in archives of Bvireau of American Ethnology: Cherokee 
Advocate, October 19, 1844, November 2, 1844, and March 0, 1845; author's personal information. San 
Fernando seems to have been a small village in Chihuahua, but is not .shown on the maps. 

~ For full discussion see Royce, op. cit., pp. '298-312. 

3 Pilling, Bibliography of thelroquoian Languages (bulletin of the Bureau of Ethnology),p. 174, 1888. 

■•See treaties with Cherokee, October 7,IS(il,and with other tribes, in Confederate States Statutes 
at Large, 18G4; Eoyce, op. cit., pp. 324-328: Greeley, American Conflict, ii, pp. 30-34, 1866; Reports of 
Indian Coninn'ssioncr for Isi'.O to 18(12. 


T^Yo Cherokee j-ejfinient.s were rsiiised for the C-onfederate .service, 
under coiiiiiiand of Stand Watie and Colonel Drew, resjiectively. the 
ft)riiu'r being- eoniniissioned as l)riL;'a(lier-yeneral. 'Phcy ijartieijjated 
in several engagements, diief among them Ijeing the l)attle of Pea 
Kidge, Arkansas, on Mai'ch 7. IM):^.' In the following sunnner the 
Union forces entered the Cherokee country and sent a j)roi)osition to 
Ross, urging him to repudiate the treaty with the Confederate states, 
but the oti'er was indignantly declined. Shortly afterwiird. however, 
the men of Drew's regiment, finding themsehcs unjjaid and generally 
neglected Ity their allies, went over almost in a body to the l^iuon 
side, thus compelling Ross to make an arrangement with tiie I'nion 
coimnauder. Colonel Weir. Leaving the Cherokee country. Ross 
retired to Philadelphia, from which he did not return until the close 
of the war.' In the meantime Indian Territory- was ravaged alter- 
nately by contending factions and arir.ed bodies, and thou.sands of 
loyal fugitives were obliged to take refuge in Kansas, wiici-c thej'^ 
were cared for by the goxernment. Among these, at the close of 18()"2, 
were two thousand Chei-okce. In the following spring they wei'(^ sent 
back to their homes under armed escort to give them an opportunitj- 
to put in a croj). steeds and tools being furnished for the purpose, but 
had hardly begun work when they wei'e forced to retire l)y the 
approach of Stand Watie and his regiment of Confederate Cherokee, 
estimated at seven hundred men. Stand Watie and his men. with the 
CoidVderate Creeks and others, scoured the country at will, destroying 
or carrying oti everything belonging to the loyal Cherokee, who had 
now. to the number of nearly seven thousand, taken refuge at Foi't 
Gibson. Refusing to take sides against a government which was still 
unable to protect them, they were forced to see all the prosperous 
accunudations of twenty years of industry sMept ofl" in this guerrilla 
warfare. In stock alone their losses were estimated at more tiian 
300,000 head.' 

"The events of the war brought to them more of desolation and 
ruin than perhaps to any other comnuuiity. Raided and sacked aller- 
nately. not only by the Confederate and Union forces, but by the vin- 
dictive ferocity and hate of their own factional divisions, their coiuitry 
became a blackened and desolate waste. Dri\-en fi'oni comfortable 
home.s, exposed to want, misery, and (he elemeids, they perished like 
sheep in a .snow storm. Their hou.-^es, fences, and other imi)rove7j 
ments were burned, their orchards destroy(>d. their tiocks and luM-d.s 
slaughtered or driven off, their schools broken up, their schoolhouscs 
given to the flames, and their churches and public buildings sub- 
jected to a similar fate; and that entire portion of their country which 

' In this battle the Confederates were assisted by from 4.000 to .'i.OOO Indians of the southern tribes, 
including the Cherokee, under command of General .\lbcrt Pike. 
- Royce, Clierokec Nation. Fifth .\nn. Rep. Bureau of KtlinoloRV. i)p. ;i2»,:i:iu, LS8S. 
» Ibid, p. 331. 

150 MYTHS OF THE CHEROKEE [kth.ann.19 

had l)een occupied ]>y their setthuiicnts wa.s distinguishsible from the 
virgin priiirie oidy In' the scorclied uiid l)lackeiied chinineys and the 
plowed l)iit now neglected fields."' 

After five years of desolation the Cherokee emerged from the war 
M'ith their numbers reduced from 21,000 to 14,000," and their whole 
country in ashes. On Juh^ 19, 1866, by a treaty concluded at Tahle- 
quah, the nation was received back into the protection of the United 
States, a general amnesty was proclaimed, and all confiscations on 
account of the war prohibited; slavery was abolished without compen- 
sation to former owners, and all negroes residing within the Nation 
were admitted to full Cherokee citizenship. Bj- articles 15 and 16 
permission was given the United States to settle friendly Indians 
within the Cherokee home country or the Cherokee strip by consent 
and )3urchase from the Nation. By article 17 the Cherokee sold the 
800,000-acre tract in Kansas secured by the treaty of 1835, together 
with a two-mile strip running along the southern ))order of Kansas, 
and thereafter to be included within the limits of that state, thus leav- 
ing the Cherokee country as it was before the recent cession of the 
Cherokee stiip. Payment was promised for spoliations by United 
States troops during the war; and $3.00() were to be paid out of the 
Cherokee funds to the Reverend Evan Jones, then disabled and in 
poverty, as a reward for forty years of faithful missionary labors. 
By article 26 "the United States guarantee to the Cherokees the quiet 
and peaceable possession of their country and protection against 
domestic feuds and insurrection as well as hostilities of other tribes. 
They shall also be protected from intrusion bj' all unauthorized citi- 
zens of the United States attempting to settle on their lands or reside 
in their territory."'' 

The missionary. Reverend Evan Jones, who had followed the Cher- 
okee into exile, and his son. John B. Jones, had been admitted to 
Cherokee citizenship the year ])efore by vote of the Nation. The act 
conferring this recognition recites that "we do bear witness that they 
have done their work well.''* 

John Ross, now an old man. had been unable to attend this treaty, 
being present at the time in Washington on business for his people. 
Before its ratification he died in that city on August 1, 1866, at the 
age of seventy-seven years, fifty-seven of which had been given to 
the service of his Nation. No finer panegyric was ever pronounced 
than the memorial resolution passed by the Cherokee Nation on learn- 
ing of his death." Notwithstanding repeated attempts to subvert his 
authoritj', his people had remained steadfast in their fidelity to him, 

^ Royce. Cherokee Nation, op. cit.. p. 376. 

•- Ibid., p. 376. A censu.s of 1867 gives tiiem 13,566 (ibid., p. 351), 

■'See s.vnopsis and full diseus-sion in Royce, op. cit., pp. 334-340. 

■■Act of Citizensliip, November 7, 1.S|>.5, Laws of the Cherokee Niition. p. 119: St. Lo\iis, l.siK. 

'See Resolutions of Honor, ibid., pp, 137-140. 



(Fnim McKiMinry ,111.1 Hull's ropy i.f lln- oriKimil |.ninliii.i; ..I mI.ouI l.-s;t">l 


iind ho died, as he had lived for nearly forty years, the otlieially reeoir- 
nized ehief of the Nation, ^^'itil re])eated opportiuiiti<'s to eiirieh 
himself at the expense of his tribe, he died a poor man. Mis l)ody 
was brought baek and interred in the tei'ritory of tln^ Nation. In 
remembrance of the great ehief one of the nine districts of the (.'hei-o- 
kee Nation has been called by his Indian name, Cooweescoowee (-iti). 

Under the provisions of the late treaty the Delawares in Kansas, to 
the number of 985, removed to Indian teri-itory in IstiT and became 
incorporated as citizens of the Cherokee Nation. 'I'hey were followed 
in 1870 bj' the Shawano, chiefly also from Kansas, to the miml)ei- of 
770.' These immigrants settled chiefly along- the Verdigris, in the 
northwestern pai't of the Nation. Under the same treaty the Osage, 
Kaw. Pawnee, Ponca, Oto and Missouri, and Tonkawa were aft(>r\vard 
settled on the western extension known then as the Cherokee striji. 
The captive Nez Perces of Joseph's band were also temporarily located 
there, but have since been removed to the states of Washington and 

In 1870 the Missouri, Kansas and Texas railway, a branch of the 
Union Pacific system, was constructed through the lands of the C'hei'o- 
kee Nation under an agi-eement ratifled l)y the (Tovermneut, it being 
the first railroad to enter that country." Several othei's iiave since 
l)een constructed or projected. 

The same A'ear saw a Cherokee literary I'evivai. 'Ilic publication of 
the Advocate^ which had been suspended since some 3'ears before the 
war. was resumed, and by authority of the Nation .lohn B. Jones 
began the preparation of a seri(>s of sclioolbooks in the Cherokee 
language and alphabet for the benefit of those children w liu knew no 

In the spring of issl ;i delegation fioui tli(> Cliei'oke(> .Nation \ isitcd 
the East Cherokee still remaining in the mountains of North CJaioiina 
and extended to them a cordial and urgent invitation to remove and 
incorporate upon equal terms with the Cherokee Nation in the Indian 
territory. In consequpnce several parties of East Cherokee. nunil)er- 
ing in all 161 persons, removed during the year to th(> west(>rn Nation, 
the expense being paid l>y the Federal govermuent. Others afterwards 
applied for assistance to remove, but as no further appro[)riati<)n was 
made for the purpose nothing more was done.' In 18S;> the East 
Cherokee l)rought suit for a proportionate division of the Ciierokee 
funds and other intei'ests under previous treaties.' but their riaini was 

• Royce, Cherokee Nation, Fifth Ann. Uep. Bureau of Ethnology, pp. 35(i-3.TS. IXSS; Constitulicm and 
Law.s of the Cherokee Nation, pp. 277-iS-l: St. Louis, IST.'j. 

2 Royce, op. cit., p. 367. 

^Foster, Sequoyah, pp. 147, 148,1885; Pillinj;, IriKiuniun liil>li<)Kraphy, IJvSS, articles" Ciierokee .\ilvo- 
ente" and ".Tolin B. Jones." Theschoolbook .series seems to have ended with the arithnietie— emise, 
a.s the Cherokee national superintendent of schools e.xjilained to the author. '■ loo much white man." 

< Commissioner H. Price, Report of Indian Commissioner, j). l.w, issi.and p. l.\x, ls.*<*J; see also p. 175. 

^Report 01 Indian Commissioner, i>. l,\v, lss:i. 

152 MYTHS OF THE CHEROKEE (kth.ann.19 

tiiiiilly (Icfidi'd iidver.scly three years Inter on appeal to the Supreme 

In IScSy the Cherokee femaU^ .seminary wa.s completed at Tahleqiiah 
at a cost of over $60,000, supplementing the work of the male sem- 
inary, built some years before at a cost of $90,000. The Cherokee 
Nation was now appropriating- annuall_v over $80,000 for school pur- 
poses, including- the support of the two seminaries, an orphan asj'lum, 
and ovpi- one hundred primary .schools, besides which there were a 
nunibci- of mission schools." 

For a number of years the pressure for the opening of Indian terri- 
tory to white .settlement had been growing in strength. Thousands 
of intruders had settled themselves upon the lands of each of the 
five civilized tribes, where they remained upon various pretexts in 
spite of ixrgent and repeated appeals to the government by the 
Indians for their removal. Under treaties with the five civilized 
tribes, the right to decide citizenship or residence claims belonged to 
the tribes concerned, but the intruders had at last become so numerous 
and strong that they had formed an organization among tliemselves to 
pass upon their own claims, and others that might be submitted to 
them, with attorneys and ample funds to defend each claim in outside 
courts against the decision of the tribe. At the same time the G(>\- 
ernment policy was steadily toward the reduction or complete breaking 
up of Indian reservations and the allotment of lands to the Indians in 
severalty, with a view to their final citizenship, and the opening of 
the surplus lands to white settlement. As a part of the same policy 
the jurisdiction of the United States courts was gi'adually being 
extended over the Indian country, taking cognizance of many things 
hitherto considered by the Indian courts under former treaties with 
the United States. Against all this the Cherokee and other civilized 
tri))es protested, but without avail. To add to the irritation, com- 
panies of armed "lummers" were organized for the express purpose 
of invading and .seizing the Cherokee outlet and other unoccupied 
portions of the Indian territory — reserved l»y treaty for future Indian 
settlement — in defiance of the civil and military power of the Gov- 

We come now to what seems the beginning of the end of Indian 
autonomy. In 1889 a commission, afterward known as the Cherokee 
Commission, was appointed, under act of Congress, to ''negotiate 
with the Cherokee Indians, and with all other Indians owning or 
claiming lands lying west of the ninety -sixth degree of longitude in 
tht^ Indian territory, for the cession to the United States of all their 
title, claim, or interest of every kind or character in and to said 
lands." In August of that year the commission made a proposition to 

1 Commissioner J. D. C. Atkins, Report of Indian Commissioner, p. xlv, 1886, and p. l.vxvii. 1887. 
'-.\gent L. E. Bennett, in Report of Indian Commissioner, p, 93, 1890. 



C'liit't'.l. B. Miiycs tortile ^(v-^sioii of all the ("herokcc hinds thus do- 
.scribed, beiii"' that portion known as th(> Chcrokeo outlet or strip. 
Tiie ])roposition was declined on tlie oround that the C^herokee con- 
stitution forbade its considei'ation.' Other tribes were approached for 
a similar purpose, and tiie commission was continued, with chiuigincv 
persotuiel from j'car to year, until aL;reeinents for cession and the 
takino- of allotments had been made with neai'ly all the wilder tribes 
in what is now Oklahoma. 

In the meantime the Attorney-Creneral had rendei'ed a decision deny- 
ing the right of Indian tribes to lease their lands without pennission 
of the Government. At this time the Cherokee were deriving an 
annual income of $il.5(>.(l(>(> from the lease of grazing privileges u])on 
the strip. l)ut by a proclamation of President Harrison on February 
17. 1890, ordering the cattlemen to vacate before the end of the year, 
this iiu-ome was cut off and the strip was rendered practically value- 
less to thcm.^ The Cherokee were now forced to come to tei'm-^, and 
a second pi'oposition for the cession of the Cherokee strip was finally 
accepted by the national council on January 4. IS'.t:^. "It was known 
to the Cherokecs that for some time would-be settlers on the lands of 
the outlet had been encamped in the southern end of Kansas, and by 
every influence at their command had l)een urging the Gov(M'iuii(^nt to 
open the country to settlement and to negotiate with the Cherokees 
afterwards, and that a bill for that purpose had been introduced in 
Congress." The consideration was nearly l|S,ti()(),()()0, or about $1.2.5 
per acre, for something over (),(i()0,000 acres of land. One article of 
the agreement stipulates for "the reaffirmation to the Cherokee Nation 
of the right of local self-government.'"^ The agreement having been 
ratified by Congress, the Cherokee strip was opened by Presidential 
proclamation on September 16, 1893.* 

The movement for the abolition of the Indian governments and tlie 
allotment and opening of the Indian country had now gained such force 
that by act of Congress approved March 3, 1893, the Presid(Mit was 
authorized to appoint a commission of three — known later as the 
Dawes Conunission, from its distinguished chairman. Senator Henry 
L. Dawes of Massachusetts — to negotiate with the live civilized ti'ibes 
of Indian territory, viz, the Cherokee, Choctaw, Chickasaw, Ci-(>ek, 
and Seminole, for "tlie extinguishment of tril)al titles to any lands 
witiiin that territory, now held b\' any and all of such nations and 
tribes, either by cession of the same or some part thereof to the Unit- 
ed States, or by the allotment and division of the same in severalty 
among the Indians of such nations or tribes respectively as may be 

• Report of Indian Commissioner, p. 22, 1889. 

^See proclamution by rresident Harrison and order from Indian ('omnnHsii>iier in Report of Iiuiian 
Commissioner, pp. Ixxii-lxxiii. 421-12'2, 1890. Tlie lease Hgnres are from personal information. 
3 Commissioner T. J. Morgan. Report of Indian Commissioner, pp. 79-80. 1.S92. 
< Commissioner D. M. Browning, Report of Indian Conmiissioner, pp. 'i'S-'M, 1893. ^ 


entitled to the same, or )>y such otlier method as may be agreed upon 
to enabhi the ultimate creation of a state or states of the 
Union, which shall eml)race the land within the said Indian territory.'" 
The commission appointed arrived in the Indian territory in January, 
1894, and at once began negotiations.- 

At this time the noneitizen element in Indian Territory was officially 
reported to number at least 200,000 souls, while those having rights 
as citizens of the live civilized tribes, including full-blood and mixed- 
blood Indians, adopted whites, and negroes, numbered but 70.500.' 
Not all of the noncitizens were intruders, many being there by per- 
mission of the Indian governments or on official or other legitimate 
business, but the great body of them were illegal squatters or unrecog- 
nized claimants to Indian rights, against whose presence the Indians 
themselves had never ceased to protest. A test case brought this year 
in the Cherokee Nation was decided by the Interior Department against 
the (laimants and in favor of the Cherokee. Conmienting upon threats 
made in con.sequence by the rejected claimants, the agent for the five 
tribes remarks: "It is not prol)able that Congress will establish a 
court to nullify and vacate a formal decision of the Interior Depart- 
ment."' A year later he says of these intruders that "so long as they 
have a foothold — a residence, legal or not — in th(^ Indian country they 
will be disturbers of peace and promoters of discord, and while they 
cry aloud, and .spare not, for allotment and statehood, they are but 
stuml)ling l)locks and obstacles to that mutual good will and fraternal 
feeling which must be cultivated and secured before allotment is prac- 
ticable and statehood desirable."^ The removal of the intruders was 
still delayed, and in IS'.m; the decision of citizenship claims was taken 
from the Indian government and relegated to the Dawes Commission.'' 

In 1895 the commission was increased to five members, with enlarged 
powers. In the meantime a survey of Indian Teri'itory had been 
ordered and begun. In September the agent wrote: "The Indians 
now know that a survey of their lands is being made, and whether 
with or without their con.sent. the survey is going on. The meaning 
of such survey is too plain to be disregarded, and it is justly con- 
sidered as the initial step, solemn and authoritative, toward the ovei- 
throw of their present communal holdings. At this writing surveying 
corps are at work in the Ci"eek, Choctaw, and Chickasaw Nations, and 
therefoi'e each one, of these tribes has an ocular demonstration of the 
actual intent and ultimate purpose of the government of the United 

1 Quotation from act, etc., Report of Indian Commissioner for 1894, p. 27, 1895. 

-Report of Agent D. M. Wisdom, ibid., p. IJl. 

=*Ibid.. and statistical tabic, p. ^'0. 

* Report of Agent D. M. Wisdom, ibid., p. 1J5. 

-•Agent D. M. Wisdom, in Report Indian Commissioner for 1S95, p. 15,5, 1896. 

^'Commissioner D. M. Browning, Report of Indian Commissioner, p. 81, 1890. 

"Report of Agent D. M. Wisdom, Report of Indian Commissioner for 1895, pp. 1.59,160, 1896. 


MooxEY] CONDITION IN 1S95 155 

The svnenil ])i'()sp('rity and afhaiu'cuicnt of tlio Clicrokcc Nation at 
this time iiia\' he judf^cd from tlic report of th(> secretary of the Cher- 
okee national board of education to Ayent Wisdom, lie reports -i.SI 10 
children att(Midine- two seminaries, male and fenude, two hiyh schools, 
and one hundred primary sciiools, teachei's h(>in<i' paid from iji:!.") to 
$100 per month for nine montiis in tiie year. Fourteen ]>rimary 
schools were for the use of the neero citi/iMis of the Nation, liesides 
which the}^ had a line high school, kept up, like ail the others, at the 
expense of the Cherokee goverment. Besides tiie national schools 
there were twelve mi.ssion schools helping to do splendid work for 
children of both citizens and noncitizens. Children of noneitizens 
were not allowed to attend the Cherokee national schools, l)ut had 
their own sul)scription schools. The oiphan asylum I'anked as a high 
school, in which 150 orphans were boarded and educated, with gi-adu- 
ates every year. It was a large brick building of three stories. 80 by 
240 feet. The male seminary, acconmiodating 200 pupils, and the 
female seminary, accommodating '2'25 pupils, were also large brick 
structures, three stories in height and 150 by 240 feet on the ground. 
Three members, all Cherokee l)y blood, constituted a board of educa- 
tion. The secretary adds that tiie Cherokee are proud of their schools 
and educational institutions, and that no other country under the sun 
is so blessed with educational advantages at lai'ge.' 

At this time the Cherokee Nation nunil)ered something ovt>r 2r).n()() 
Indian, white, and negro citizens; the total citizen population of the 
three races in the five civilized tribes luunbei-ed about 70,000, while 
the noncitizens had increased to 250,000 and their number was being 
rapidly augmented.' Realizing that the swift, inevitable end nmst l)e 
the destruction of their national governments, the Cherokee began 
once more to consider the question of removal from the United States. 
The scheme is outlined in a letter written by a brother of the principal 
chief of the Cherokee Nation under date of May 31, 1895, from whi<li 
we quote. 

After prefacing that th(> government of tlie United Stali-s seems 
determined to })reak up the tribal autonomy of the five cixiiized 
tribes and to divide their lands, thus bringing about conditions 
under which the Cherokee could not exist, he continues: 

Then for a remedy that will lead us out uf it, ;nviiy froiu it, and one that proinisos 
our preservation as a di.stinct race of people in the enjoyment of customs, social and 
political, that have been handed down tn us fnini remote generations of the past. 
My plan is for the Cherokees to sell their entire landed possessions to the fiiited 
States, divide the proceeds tl^ereof per i-apita, tlu^n such as desire tcj do su unite in 
the formation of an Indian colony, and with their iunds jointly purchase in Mexico 

1 Letter of A. E. Ivy, Secretary of tlie Board of Edue-alion. in Report (>f Indian Commissioner for 
isai, p. 161, 1890. The author can add personal testimony as to the completeness of the seminary 

'- Report of Agent Wisdom, ibid., p. 162. 


or South America a body of land sufficient for all their purposes, to bo f(jrever their 
joint home. ... I believe also that for such ln<iians as did not desire to join 
the colony and leave the country provision should be made for them to re|.iurchase 
their old homes, or such other lands in the country here as they might desire, and 
tliey coulil remain here and meet such fate as awaits them. I believe this presents 
the most feasible and equitable solution <.if the <juestions that we must decide in the 
near future, and will prove absolutely just and fair to all classes and conditions of 
our citizens. I also believe that the same could be acted ujion by any or all of the 
five civilized tribes. . . ' 

The final chapter is nearly written. By suece.ssive enactments 
within the last ten 3'ears the jurisdiction of the Indian courts has 
been steadily narrowed and the authority of the Federal courts pro- 
portionately extended; the right to determine Indian citizenship has 
been talvcn from the Indians and vested in a Government connni.ssion; 
the lands of the five tribes have Ijeen surveyed and sectionized Ity 
Government surveyors; and by the sweeping provisions of the Curtis 
act of June ^8, 1898, "for the protection of the people of the Indian 
Territory," the entire control of tribal revenues is taken from the five 
Indian tribes and vested with a resident supervising inspector, the 
tribal courts are abolished, allotments are made compulsory, and 
authority is given to incorporate white men's towns in the Indian 
trilies.'- By this act the five civilized tribes are reduced to the 
condition of ordinary reservation triVjes under government agents 
with white communities planted in their midst. In the meantime the 
Dawes commission, continued up to the present, has by unremitting 
effort In'oken down the opposition of the Choctaw and Chickasaw, 
who have consented to allotment, while the Creeks and the Seminole 
are now wavering.^ The Cherokee still hold out, the Ketoowah secret 
society (47) especially being strong in its resistance, and when the end 
comes it is possible that the protest will take shape in a wholesale 
emigration to Mexico. Late in 1S!»7 the agent for the five tribes 
reports that "there seems a determined purpose on the part pf many 
fuin)loods ... to emigrate to either Mexico or South America 
and there purchase new homes for themselves and families. Such 
individual action may grow to the proportion of a colony, and it is 
understood that liberal grants of land can be secured from the coun- 
tries mentioned.* Mexican agents are now (1901) among the Cherokee 
advocating the scheme, which may develop to include a large propor- 
tion of the five civilized tribes.^ 

By the census of 1898, the most recent taken, as reported by Agent 

1 Letter ol' Bird Harris, May 31, 1895, in Report of_ Indian Commissioner for 1895, p. 160, 1896. 

-Synopsis of Curtis at't, ]jp. 75-79, and Curtis act In full, p. 425 et seq., in' Report of Indian Commis- 
sioner for 1898; noted also in Report of Indian Commissioner, p. .84 et seq.. 1899. 

^ Commissioner W. A. Jones, ibid., pp. i, 84 et seti. (C'urtis act and Dawes commission). 

^ Report of .\gent D.M. Wisdom, Report of Indian Commissioner, pp. 141-144, 1897. 

■'-.Author's 7icrsonal information; see also House bill No. 1165 " for the relief of certain Indians in 
Indian Territory." etc.. Fifty-sixth Congress, first session, 1900. 


Wisdom, the Cherokee Nation riuiiil)(>red H-i.4t31 persons, as follows: 
Cherokee by blood (including all degrees of admixture), 2t),500; inter- 
married whites, 2,300; negro freedmeii, 4,000; Delaware, 871; Shaw- 
nee, 790. The total acreage of the Nation was r).(;)81.;:!51 acres, wliich, 
if divided per capita under the provisions of the Curtis bill, after 
deducting 60,000 acres reserved for town-site and other purposes, 
would give to eacli Cherok(>e citizen 1-1-4 acres.' It must be noted 
that the official rolls include a large number of persons whose- claims 
are disputed by the Cherokee authorities. 


It remains to speak of the eastern band of Cherokee — the reuuiant 
which still clings to the woods and waters of the old home country. 
As has been .said, a considerable number had eluded the troops in the 
general round-up of 1838 and had Hed to the fastnesses of the high 
mountains. Here they were joined by others who had managed to 
break through the guard at Calhoun and other collecting stations, until 
the whole number of fugitives in hiding amounted to a thousand or 
more, principally of the mountain Cherokee of North Carolina, the 
purest-blooded and most consesrvative of the Nation. About one-half 
the refugee warriors had put themselves under command of a noted 
leader named U'tsala, " Lichen, " who made his headquarters amid the 
lofty peaks at the head of Oconaluftee, from which secure hiding 
place, although reduced to extremity of suii'ering from starvation and 
exposure, they defied every effort to effect their capture. 

The work of running down these fugitives proved to be so difficult 
an undertaking and so well-nigh barren of result that when Charley 
and his sons made their bold stroke for freedom' General Scott eagerly 
seized the incident as an opportunity for To this end he 
engaged the services of William II. Thouias, a trader who for more 
than twenty j^ears had been closely identified with the mountain Cher- 
okee and possessed their full confidence, and authorized him to submit 
to U'tsala a proposition that if the latter wcndd seize Charley and the 
others who had been concerned in the attack upon the soldiers and 
surrender them for punishment, the pursuit would be called off' and 
the fugitives allowed to stay uiuuolested until an effort could be made 
to secure permission from the genei'al government for them tor(Muain. 

Thomas accepted the conunission, and taking with him one or two 
Indians made his way over secret paths to U'tsjlUVs hiding place. He 
presented Scott's proposition and represented to the chief tiiat by 
aiding in bringing Charley's party to punishment according to the 
rules of war he could secure respite for his .sorely pressed followers, 
with the ultimate hope that thej' might be allowed to remain in their 

* Report of .\gent 1). M. Wi.sdom, Report of Indian Conniiissioner, [i. I.'i'J, l.sy8. 
^Seepage 131. 


own couiitrv, whereas if he rejected the oti'er the whol(> force of the 
seven thousand troops which had now completed the work of gather- 
ing up and deporting the rest of the tribe would be set loose upon his 
own suiall })and until the last refugee had been eitlier taken or 

U'tsalii turned the proposition in his mind long and seriously. His 
heart was bitter, for his wife and little son had starved to death on the 
mountain side, but he thought of the thousands who were already on 
their long jnarch into exile and then he looked round upon his little 
band of followers. If only they might stay, even though a few must 
be sacriticed, it was better than that all should die — for the}' had sworn 
never to leave their country. He consented and Thomas returned to 
report to General Scott. 

Now occurred a remarkable incident which shows the character of 
Thomas and the masterly influence which he already had over the 
Indians, although as yet he was hardly more than thirty years old. It 
M'as known that Charley and his party were in hiding in a cave of the 
Great Smokies, at the head of Deep creek, but it was not thought 
likely that he could be taken without bloodshed and a further delay 
which might prejudice the whole undertaking. Thomas determined to 
go to him and try to persuade him to come in and surrender. Declin- 
ing Scott's offer of an escort, he went alone to the cave, and, getting 
between the Indians and their guns as they were sitting around the 
tire near the entrance, he walked up to Charley and announced his 
message. The old man listened in silence and then said simply, "I 
will come in. I don't want to be hunted down ))v ni}' own people." 
They came in voluntarily and were shot, as has been already narrated, 
one only, a mere boy, being spared on account of his youth. This 
boy, now an old man, is still living, Wasitii'na, better known to the 
whites as Wa.shington.' 

A respite having thus Ihh'w ol)tained for the fugitives, Thomas next 
went to Washington to endeavtu' to make some arrangement for their 
permanent settlement. Under the treaty of New Echota, in 1835, the 
Cheiok^'e wei'e entitled, besides the lump sum of tive million dollars 
for the lands ceded, to an additional compensation for the impi'ove- 
ments which they were forced to abandon and for spoliations liy white 
citizens, together with a per capita allowance to cover the cf)st of 
removal and subsistence for one year in the new country. The twelfth 
article had also provided that such Indians as chose to remain in the 
East and become citizens there might do so under certam conditions, 

1 Charley's story as here given is from the author's personal information, derived chiefly from con- 
versations with Colonel Thomas and with WasitiVna and other old Indians. An ornate bnt some- 
what inaccurate account is given also in Lanman's Letters from the Alleghany Mountains, written on 
the griiund ten years after the events described. The leading lacts are noted in General Scott'sofflcial 


oiicli head of a family thus rciiiaiiiiiiii' to Ik' coiitirnuHl in a ijrcciiiptioii 
rit;ht to ItiU acres. In eonseiiuenee of the settled purpose of President 
Jaekson to deport every Indian, this i)erraission was canceled and sup- 
plementary articles substituted hy which some additional comijensation 
was allowed in lieu of the promised preemptions and all indi\i(hial 
reservations o;ranted under previous treaties.' E\'ery Clierokee was 
thus made a landh^ss alien in his original country. 

The last party of emigrant Chei'okee had started foi- the West in 
December, 1838. Nine months afterwards the refugees still scattered 
about in the uiountains of North Carolina and Tennessee were re))oi-ted 
to number l,U4t).'~ I3y persistent etiort at Washington from iSHt! to 
1842, including one continuous stay of three years at the capital city, 
Thomas tinally obtained go\ernmental permission for these to remain, 
and their share of the moneys due for improvements and reservations 
confiscated was placed at his disposal, as their agent and trustee, for the 
purpose of buying lands upon which they could T)e permanently settled. 
Under this authority he bought for them, at various times up to the 
j^ear 1861, a number of contiguous tracts of land upon Oconaluftee 
river and Soco creek, within th(> present Swain and dackson counties 
of North Carolina, together with several detached tracts in the more 
western counties of the same state. The main body, upon the waters 
of Oconaluftee. which was chiefly within the limits of the cession of 
1819, came afterward to be known as the Qualla boundary, or C^ualla 
reservation, taking the name from Thomas' principal trading store 
and agency headquarters. The detached western tracts were within 
the final cession of 1835, but all alike were bought by Thomas from 
white owners. As North Carolina refu.sed to recognize Indians as land- 
owners within the state, and persisted in this refusal until Isdt!,-' 
Thomas, as their authorized agent under the Government, held the 
deeds in his own name. Before it was legally possible under the state 
laws to transfer the title to the Indians, his own atiViirs had b(>com(> 
involved and his health impaired by age and the hardships of military 
service so that his mind gave way, thus leaving the whole cpu^stion of 
the Indian title a subject of litigation until its adjudication l)y the 
United States in 187.5, supplemented by further decisions in 1S!»4. 

To Colonel William Holland Thomas the East Ciierokee of lo-day 
owe their existence as a people, and for half a century he was as inti- 
mately connected with their histoi-y as was John Ross witii thai of the 
main Cherokee Nation. Singulai'ly enough, their coiineclion with 
Cherokee affairs extended over nearly the same period, l)ut while 
Ross participated in their national matters Thomas gave his efi'ort to 

'See New Echota treaty. December '."9, 1835, and supplementary articles, llarch I. 18Hr>. in Indian 
Treaties, pp, 633-6-18, 1837; also full discussion of same treaty ni Itoyce. Cliemkce Nation. Fifth .\nn. 
Rep. Bureau of Ethnology. 18S8. 

'Royee,op.eit..p.292. 'lbid.,p,:iM. 

160 MYTHS OF THE CHEEOKEE [eth.a.nn.19 

a neglected huiid hardly known in the councils of the tribe. In his 
many-sided capacity he strilvingly resembles another white man promi- 
nent in Cherokee history, General Sam Houston. 

Thomas was born in the year 180.5 on Raccoon creek, about two miles 
from Waynesville in North Carolina. His father, who was related to 
President Zachary Taylor, came of a Welsh family which had immi- 
grated to Virginia at an early period, while on his mother's side he 
was descended from a Maryland family of Revolutionary stock. He 
was an only and posthumous child, his father having been accidentally 
drowned a short time l)efore the lioy was born. Being unusually 
bright for his age, he was engaged when only twelve j'ears old to 
tend an Indian trading store on Soco creek, in the present Jackson 
county, owned by Felix Walker, son of the Congressman of the same 
name who made a national reputation by " talking for Buncouibe."' 
The store was on the south side of the creek, about a mile above the 
now abandoned Macedonia mission, within the present reservation, and 
was a branch of a larger establishment which Walker himself kept at 
Waynesville. The trade was chiefly in skins and ginseng, or " sang," 
the latter for shipment to China, where it was said to be worth its 
weight in silver. This trade was very profitable, as the price to the 
Indians was but ten cents per pound in merchandise for the green root, 
whereas it now lirings seventy-five cents in cash upon the reservation, 
the supply steadily dinunishiiig with every year. The contract was 
for three years' service for a total compensation of one hundred dollars 
and expenses, but Walker devoted so much of his attention to law 
studies that the Waynesville store was finally closed for debt, and at 
the end of his contract term .young Thomas was obliged to accept a 
lot of second-hand law books in lieu of other payment. How well he 
made use of them is evident from his subseijucnt service in the state 
senate and in other official capacities. 

Soon after entering upon his duties he attracted the notice of Yon- 
aguska, or Drowning-bear (Ya'na-guii'ski, "' Bear-drowning-him"). the 
acknowledged chief of all the Cherokee then living on the waters of 
Tuckasegee and Oconaluftee — the old Kituhwa country. On learning 
that the boy had neither father nor brother, the old chief formally 
adopted him as his son, and as such he was thenceforth recognized in 
the tribe under the name of Wil-Usdi', or '•Little Will," he being of 
small stature even in mature age. From his Indian friends, particu- 
larly a boy of the same age who was his companion in the store, he 
learned the language as well as a white man has ever learned it, so that 
in his declining years it dwelt in memory more strongly than his 
mother tongue. After the invention of the Cherokee alphabet, he 
learned also to read and write the language. 

In 1819 the lands on Tuckasegee and its branches were sold Ijv the 


(Fnini pliuluKi'iil'li I'f I'vjS kill(ll\' Itunifil )iy (jijil. JaniL'S W. Terrell) 


Iiidiaiis. and Thomas's inotlicM' soon at'tor ivuiovcd from Wayncsvilli' to 
a farm whii-h slic purcliascd on tlic west hank of Oconahiftee. opposite 
tlie mouth of Soco, wlici'e licr son went to live with her. haxinjj;' ni>w 
.set u|) in l)usiness foi' himself at Qualla. Yonaguska and iiis immedi- 
ate connection continued to i-eside on a small reservation in the same 
neio-iit)oriioc)(l. while the rest of the Cherokee retired to the west of 
the Nantaliala mountains, though still visitino- and tradini;' on Soco. 
After several shiftinys Thomas linuUy, soon after thi^ reino\al in is:;s, 
houyht a farm on the nortluM ii li;uik of Tuckaseoee. just alio\<' the 
present town of W'hittiei- in Swain county, and built tliere a home- 
sti'ad which he called Stekt)a. after an Indian town destroyed by 
Rutherford wliich liu<l occupied the same site. .Vt the time of the 
remo\al he was tlu' [)roprietor of five trading- stores in or adjoining the 
Cherokee country, viz. at (^Uiilla town, near the mouth of Soco creek; 
on Scott's creek, near Web.ster; on Cheowa, near the present Kol)})ins- 
ville; at the junction of Valley river and Hiwassee. now Murphy: and 
at the Cherokee agency at Calhoun (now Charleston), Tennessee. 
Besides carrying on a successful trading )) he was also studying 
law and taking an acti\'e interest in local politics. 

In his capacity as agent for the eastern Cherokee ho laid otf the 
lands purchased for them into five districts or ''towns," which he 
named Bird town, Paint town. Wolf town, Yellow hill, and Big cove, 
the names which they still r(>tain, the first three being- those of Chero- 
kee clans.' He also drew up for them a simple form of government, 
the excH'ution of which was in his own and Yonaguska's hands until the 
death of the latter, after which the band knew no other ciiief than 
Thomas until his retirement from active life. In 1848 he was elected 
to the state senate and continued to serve in that capacity until the 
outl)reak of the civil war. As state senator he inaugurated a system of 
road improvements for western North Carolina and was also the father 
of the AVestern North Carolina Railroad (now a part of the Southern 
system), originally projected to develop the eopperuiines of Ducktown. 

With his colleag-U(>s i n the state senate he voted for secession in 1 stl 1 . 
and at once resigned to recruit troops for the Confederacy, to whicii, 
until the of the war, he gave his whole time, thought, and effort. 
In lS(i:> he organized the Thomas Legion, consisting of two rt^giments 
of infantry, a battalion of ca\alry, a company of engineers, and a field 
battery, he himself conmianding as colonel, although then nearly si.xty 
years of age. Four companies wei'e made up principally of his own 
Cherokee. The Thomas Legion operated chiefly as a frontier guard 

1 In the Cherokee language Tsiskwil'hl, " Bird phvce." Ani'-Wil'dihl, •' Paint placed" Wa'ya'hl, •• Wolt 
place," E'lawA'di, "Red earth" (now Cherokee post-ofliee and agency), and Kftlanflfi'vl. •■Raven 
I>hiee." There was also, lor a time, a '- I'retty-woman town " ( .ini'-Gilft'hl?). 

!'.» K-ni— Ul 11 

lt')"i MVTIIS OK THK (HElioKKK [ktii. vsx. 19 

foi' th(> Coni't'dtTucy aloiiy the inoiintiiiii rcjj'ioii soutliwurd from Ctiiii- 
bcrlund gup. 

After the close of the eontliet he returned to his home at Stekoii and 
again took charge. unofEcialh', of the affairs of the Cherokee, whom 
he attended during the smalli)ox epidemic of 1866 and assisted through 
the unsettled conditions of the reconstruction period. His own 
resources had l)een swept away l»v the war. and all his hopes had gone 
down with the lost cause. This, added to the effects of thi-ee years of 
hardship and anxiety in the field when already almost past the age 
limit, soon after brought about a physical and mental collapse, from 
which he never afterward rallied except at intervals, when for a short 
time the old spirit would flash out in all its brightness. He died in 
1893 at the advanced age of nearly ninety, retaining to the last the 
courteous manner of a gentleman by nature and training, with an 
exact memory and the clear-cut statement of a lawj-er and man of 
affairs. To his work in the state senate the people of western North 
Carolina owe more than to that of any other man, while among the 
older Cherokee the name of Wil-l^sdi' is still revered as that of a 
father and a great chief.' 

Yonaguska, properly Ya'nu-giin'ski. the adopted father of Thomas, 
is the most prominent chief in the historj' of the East Cherokee, 
although, singularly enough, his name does not occur in connection 
with any of the early wars or treaties. This is due partly to the fact 
that he was a peace chief and counselor rathei' than a war leader, and 
in part to the fact that the isolated position of the mountain Cherokee 
kept them aloof in a great measure from the tribal councils of those 
living to the west and south. In person he was strikingly handsome, 
being six feet three inches in height and strongly built, with a faint 
tinge of red, due to a slight strain of white blood on his father's side, 
relieving the brown of his cheek. In power of oratory he is said to 
have surpassed any other chief of his day. When the Cherokee lands 
on Tuckasegee were sold bj^ the treaty of 1819, Yonaguska continued 
to reside on a re.servation of 640 acres in a bend of the river a short dis- 
tance above the present Bryson City, on the site of the ancient 
Kituhwa. He afterward moved over to Oconaluftee, and finally, after 
the Removal, gathered his people aliout him and settled with them on 
Soco creek on lands purchased for them by Thomas. 

•The facts concerning Colonel Thomas's career are derived chiefly from the author's conversations 
with Thomas himself, supplemented by information from his former assistant, Capt. James W. 
Terrell, and others who knew him, together with an admirable sketch in the North Carolina Univer- 
sity JIagazine for May 1899. by Mrs. A. C. Avery, his daughter. He is also frequently noticed, in con- 
nection with East Cherokee matters, in the annual reports of the Commissioner of Indian -Affairs; in 
the North Carolina Confederate Roster; in Lanman's Letters from the Alleghany Mountains; and in 
Zciglerand Grosscup's Heart of the Alleghanies, etc. Some manuscript contributions to the library 
of the Georgia Historical Society in Savannah— now unfortunately mislaid— show his interest in 
Cherokee linguistics. 

MiiuNEY) YDNAOl'SKA 1(»3 

TIo M-as a prophi>t and i-cfonncr as woll as a chief. Whoii ahoiit 
sixty years of ajje lie had a severe sickness, terniinatintj in a trance, 
during which liis j)(H)j)i(> mourned him as dead. At the end of twenty- 
four hours, howe\(>r. he awolce to consciousness and ainiounc(Ml that lie 
liad Iieen to the spirit woi'ld. wh(>re he had talked with fricMids who 
had gone before, and with God, who had sent him hack with a message 
to the Indians, promising to call him again at a hiter time. From 
that day until his death his words were listened to as those of one 
inspired. He had been somewhat addicted to liquor, but now, on the 
recommendation of Thomas, not only quit drinking himself, but oigaii- 
ized his tribe into a temperance society. To accomplish this he called 
his people together in council, and. after clearly pointing out to them 
the serious effect of intemperance, in an eloquent speech that nioxed 
some of his audience to tears, he declared that God had jjermifted him 
to return to earth especially that he might thus warn his people and 
banish whisky from among them. He then had Thomas write out a 
pledge, which was signed tirst l)y the chief and then l>y each one of the 
council, and from that time until after his death whisky was uidvuown 
among the East GhiM'okee. 

Although frecpient pressure was brought to bear to induce him and 
his people to remo\-e to tiie \\'est, he tirmly resisted every persuasion, 
declaring that the Indians were safei- from aggression among their 
rocks and mountains than they could ever be in a land which the white 
man could tind profitable, and that the Cherokee coidd l)e lun>py only 
in the country where nature had planted him. While counseling jjcace 
and friendship with the white man, he held always to his Indian faith 
and was extremely suspicious of missionaries. On one occasion, after 
the tirst Bible translation into the Cherokee language and alpliabet, 
some one Itrought a copy of ^latthew from New Echota, but Yona- 
guska would not allow it to be read to his people until it had first been 
I'ead to himself. After listening to one or two chapters the old chief 
dryly remarked: ■A\'ell. it seems to be a good book — strange tiiat the 
white people are not l)etter, after having had it so long." 

He died, aged about eighty, in April, 18311, within a year after the 
Removal. Shortly Ijefore the end he had himself carried into the 
townhouse on Soco, of which he had supervised the building, where, 
extended on a couch, h(> made a last talk to his peoi)le. conunend- 
ing Thomas to them as their chief and again warning them earnestly 
against ever leaving their own country. Then wrapping his blanket 
around him. he (|uietly lay back and died. He was buried beside 
Soco. about a mile below the old Macedonia mission, with a rude 
mound of stones to mark the spot. He left two wives and consid- 
erable ])roperty, including an old n(>gro slave named Cudjo, who was 
devotedly attached to him. One of his daughters, Kata'lsta, still sur- 

HU MYTHS OF THE CHEKoKKE [eth.a.nn.19 

vi\('s, and is the liist consorv'ator of th(^ potter's art aiiioiitjf tlie East 

Yoiiaguska had succeeded in authorit}' to Yane'gwa. "Big-bear," 
who appeal's to have been of considerable lot'al prominence in his time, 
but whose name, even with the oldest of the band, is now but a mem- 
ory. He was among the signers of the treaties of 1798 and 1805, and 
by the treaty of 1819 was confirmed in a reservation of 640 acres as 
one of those living within the ceded territory who were "belic^'ed to 
be persons of industry and capable of managing their property with 
discretion,"' and who had made considerable improvements on the 
tracts reserved. This reservation, still known as the Big-bear farm, 
was on the western bank of Oconaluftee, a few miles above its mouth, 
and appears to have Iteen th(> same afterward occupied by Yonaguska.'^ 

Another of the old notables among the East Cherokee was Tsunu'la- 
huii'ski, corrupted by the whites to Junaluska, a great warrior, from 
whom the ridge west of Waynesville takes its name. In early life he 
was known as CtuT kala'ski.^ On the outbreak of the Creek war 
in 1813 he raised a party of warriors to go down, as he boasted, "to 
e.vterminate the Creeks." Not meeting with complete success, he 
announced the result, according to the Cherokee custom, at the next 
dance after his return in a single woi'd, detsinu'ldhungu! , "I tried, but 
could not," given out as a cue to the song leader, who at once took it 
as the burden of his song. Thenceforth the disappointed warrior was 
known asTsunu'lahuii'ski, "One who tries, butfails." He distinguished 
himself at the Horseshoe bend, where the action of the Cherokee 
decided the battle in favor of Jackson's army, and was often heard to 
say after the removal: "If I had known that Jackson would drive us 
from our homes, I would have killed him that day at the Horseshoe." 
He accompanied the exiles of 1838, liut afterward returned to his old 
home; he was allowed to remain, and in recognition of his serv- 
ices the state legislature, by special act, in 1817 conferred upon 
him the right of citizenship and granted to him a tract of land in fee 
simple, but without power of alienation.* This reservation was in the 
Cheowa Indian settlement, near the present Robbinsville, in Graham 
county, where he died about the year 1858. His grave is still to be 
seen just outside of Robbinsville. 

1 The facts concerning Yoniigiiska are based on the author's personal information obtained from 
Colonel Thomas, supplemented from conversations with old Indians. The date of his death and liis 
approximate age are taken from the Terrell roll. He is also noticed at lengf h in Lanman's Letters from 
the Alleghany Motnitains. 1848, and in Zeigler and Grosscup's Heart of the Alleghanies, 18.S3. The 
trance which, according to Thomas and Lanman, lasted about one day, is stretched by the last-named 
authors to fifteen days, with the whole 1,200 Indians marching and countermarching around the 
sleeping body ! 

- The name in the treaties occurs as Yonahequab (1798), Yohanaqua (180.t), and Y'onah (1819).— 
Indian Treaties, pp. 82, 123, 268; Washington, 1837. 

^ The name refers to something habitually falling from a leaning position. 

* Act quoted in Report of Indian Commissioner for 1895, p. 636, 1896. 


As illustrative of liis shn-wduoss it is told that he onco tracked a 
little Indian ofirl to C'hai'leston, South Carolina, where she had heen 
earrietl l>v l^idnappers and sold as a slave, and regained her freedom hy 
liroviny. from expert mici'oscoj>ic examination, that her hair liad none 
of tiie negro eliaracteristies.' 

( 'hristianity was iidi'odiired among the Kituhwa Ch(>rolv(>e shortly 
before the Removal tiirough \\'on'ester and Boudinot's translation of 
.Matthew, first puhiisiied at New Eehota in lS2i>. in tlie al)sence of 
missionaries the book was read ))y the Indians from house to house. 
After the Removal a Methodist minister. Reverend Ulrieh Keener, 
began to make visits for pn>aehing at irregular intervals, and was fol- 
lowed several j'ears later by Baptist workers." 

In the fall of 18S9 the Conunissioner of Indian Aftairs reported 
that the East Cherokee had recently expressed a desire to join tlieii- 
brethren in the West, hut had been deterred from so doing liy the 
unsettled condition of atlairs in the Territory. He states that " they 
have a right to remain or to go," but that as the interests of others 
are involved in their decision they .should decide without delay.'' 

In 1840 about one hundred Catawba, nearly all that were left of tiie 
tribe. l)cing dissatisfied witii their condition in South Carolina, moved 
up in a l)ody and took up their residence with the Cherokee. Latent 
tril)al jealousies broke out, ho\ve\ei-. and at their own re(|uest nego- 
tiations were begun in 1848. through Thomas and others, for their 
removal to Indian Territory. The etl'ort being without result, they 
soon after began to drift hack to their own homes, until, in 1852, there 
were only about a dozen rt'Uiaining among the Cherokee. In IS'.H) 
only one was left, an old woman, the widow of a Cherokee husband. 
She and her daughter. l)oth (d' wliom s]ioke the language, wei'e expert 
potters according to the Catawba method, which diti'ers markedly from 
that of the Cherokee. There are now two Catawba women, both mar- 
ried to Cherokee husbands, living with th(> tribe, and practicing tlieir 
native ])otter"s ai't. While residing among the Cherokee, the Cataw))a 
ac(|uired a i-eputation as doctors and leaders of the dance.* 

On August 0. i.s4t>. a treaty was concluded at Wasiungton with tiie 
representati\es of the Cherokee Nation west by which the rights of 
the East Cherokee to a participation in t lie benefits of the New Echotii 
treaty of 1.S35 were distinctly recognized, and jirovision was made for 
a final adjustment of all unpaid and pending claims due under tiiat 
treaty. The right claimed liy the East Cherokee to participate in the 

'The tacts concerningjunaluskn are from the author's information obtained from Colonel Thomas, 
Captain .lames Terrell, and Cherokee informants. 

-.\uthor's information fninl C<ilonel Thomas. 

■•Commissioner Crawford. November 2.'), Report of Indian Commissioner, j). 33;J. IHUD. 

* .Vnthor's information from (Colonel Thomas, Captain Terrell, and Indian sourees; Commi.ssioner W. 
Medill, Report of Indian Commi.ssioner, p. 399, 1848; Commissioner Orlando Brown, Report of Indian 
Commissioner for 1849, p. 14, 18.')0. 

iHfi MYTHS OF THE CHEROKEE [eth.ann. in 

beiiotits of the Now Ecliotsi treaty, iilthoiiyh not denied liy the gov- 
ernment, had been held to be conditional upon their removal to the 

In the spring- of l.S-t<S the author, Laiinian. visited the East Chero- 
kee and has left an interesting account of their condition at the time, 
together with a description of their ballplays, dances, and customs 
generally, having been the guest of Colonel Thomas, of whom he 
speaks as the guide, counselor, and friend of the Indians, as well as 
their business agent and ciiief, so that the connection was like that 
existing between a father and his children. He puts the number of 
Indians at about 800 Chei-okee and 100 Catawba on the '"Qualla town" 
reservation — the name being in use thus early — with 200 more Indians 
residing in the more westerly portion of the state. Of their general 
condition he says: 

About three-fourthy of the entire population can read in tlieir own language, and, 
though the majority of them understand English, a very few can speak the language. 
They jjraetice, to a considerable extent, the science of agriculture, and have acquired 
sucli a knowledge of the mechanic arts as answers them for all ordinai'v purposes, 
for they manufacture their own clothing, their own ploughs, and other farming uten- 
sils, their own axes, and even their own guns. Their women are no longer treated as 
slaves, but as equals; the men labor in the fields and their wives are devoted entirely 
to household employments. They keep the same domestic animals that are kept by 
their white neighbors, and cultivate all the common grains of the country. They 
are jirobalily as temperate as any other class of people on the face of the earth, honest 
in their business intercourse, moral in their thoughts, words, and deeds, and distin- 
guished for their faithfulness in jicrforming the duties of religion. They are chiefly 
Methoilists and Baptists, and have ivgularly ordained ministers, who preach ti:)them 
on every Sabbath, and they have also abandoned many of their mere senseless super- 
stitions. They have their own court and try their criminals by a regular jury. 
Their judges and lawyers are chosen from among themselves. They keep in order 
the public roads leading through their .settlement. By a law of the state they have 
a right to vote, l)ut seldom exercise that right, as they <lo not like the idea <.)f being 
identified with any of the political parties. Excepting on festive days, they dress 
after the manner of the white man, Init far more pictures(iuely. They live in small 
log houses of their own construction, and have everything they need or desire in the 
way of food. They are, in fact, the happiest comnnmity that I have yet met with 
in this southern country. - 

Among the other notables Lamnan speak.s thus of Sala'li, "' Squirrel." 
a born mechanic of the band, who died only a few years since: 

He is quite a young man and has a remarkably thoughtful face. He is the black- 
smith of his nation, and with some assistance supplies the whole of Qualla town with 
all their axes and plows; liut what is mcjre, he has manufactured a number of very 
superior rifles and pistols, including stoek, barrel, and lock, and he is also the builder 
of grist mills, which grind all the corn which his people eat. A specimen of his 
workmanship in the way of a rifle may be seen at the Patent Office in Washington, 
where it was deposited by Mr. Thomas; and I believe Salola is the first Indian who 

1 Synopsis of the treaty, etc., in Royce, Cherokee Nation, Fifth .\nn. Rep. Bureau of Ethnology, 
pp. 300-313,1888; see ante, p. US. 
-Lanman, Letters from the .\lU'ghauy Moumitinv, pji. 94-9.^, 1849. 

MuosEY] P;aST CHKKOKEK census 1848 ]()7 

ever iiianufactured an entire gun. I'.nt when it is remembereil tliat lie never received 
a ])article of education in any of ihe nieehanic arts but is entirely self-tauglit, his 
attainments must l)e considered truly remarkable.' 

Oil July 2!t, lS-i8, CongTcss sippi-oved iiii act foi- takiiio- a census of 
all Cherokco who had remained in North Carolina after the 
Removal, and who still rcsidi'd east of the Mi.ssissippi, in order that 
tiieir .share of liie "removal and .subsistence fund" under tli(> New 
Echota treaty niiolit be .set aside for them. A siun e(|ui\alent to 
$53.33i was at the same time appi'opriated for each one. or his repre- 
sentative, to be available for defraying the expenses of his removal to 
the Cherokee Nation west and subsistenc^e there for one year whenever 
he should elect so to remove. Any surplus over such e.\])(>nse was tc 
1)6 paid to him in cash after his arrival in the west. The whole amoiuit 
thus expended was to be reimbursed to the Government from the oen- 
eral fund to the credit of the Cherokee Nation under the terms of the 
treaty of New Echota. In the meantime it was ordered that to each 
individual thus entitled should lie paid the accrued interest on this per 
capita sum from the date of the ratification of the New Echota treaty 
(May 23, 183ti), payment of interest at the .same rate to continue 
annually thereafter.' In accordance with this act a census of the Cher- 
okee then residing in North Carolina. Tennessee, and Georgia, was 
completed in th(> fall of 18-18 by J. C. Mullay, making the whole num- 
l>er 2.133. On the basis of this enrollment several payments were 
made to them by special agents within the next ten 3'ears, one being 
a per-capita payment by Alfred Chapman in 1851-52 of unpaid claims 
arising under the treaty of New Echota and amounting in the aggre- 
gate to $197,534.50, the others being payments of the annual interest 
upon the " removal and subsi.stence fund" set apart to their credit in 
1848. In the accomplishment of these payments two other enrollments 
were made by D. W. Siler in 1851 and by Chapman in 1852, the last 
being simply a corrected revision of the Siler roll, and neither vary- 
ing greatly from the Mullay roU.^ 

Upon the appointment of Chapman to make the per capita payment 
above mentioned, the Cherokee Nation west had tiled a protest against 
the payment, upon the doul)le groimd that the East Cherokee had for- 
feited their right to participation, and furthermore that their census 
was believed to be enormously exaggerated. As a matter of fact the 
numi)er first reported by Mullay was only 1,517, to which so many 

1 Lanman, Letters from the Alleghany Mountains, p. 111. 

2 Sec act quoti'il in "The United Stiite.s of America r. William H. Thomas <t iil."\ also Royee. Clier- 
okee Nation, Fifth Ann. Kep. Bureau of Ethnology, p. 313, 1.S.SK. In the earlier notices the lerm.s " North 
Carolina Cherokee "-and " Eastern Cherokee " are used synonymously, as the original fugitives were 
all in North Carolina. 

■iSee Koyce, of>. eit.. \ip, 313-3H; Commissioner H. Price, Report of Indian Commi.ssioner, p. li, 
lHft4; Kefiort of Indian Commissioner, p. 4y.'i, 1898: also references by (^)mmissioner W. Me<iill, 
Keport of Indian Commissioner, p. 399, 1848; and Report of Indian Commi.ssioner for 18-i5, p. 255, ISoti. 

168 MYTHS OK THE CHP^KOKEE (eth.ann.Ui 

were sulj.seiiuently iidded as to increase the number by more than GOO.' 
A census taki>n by tlieir agent, Colonel Thomas, in 1841, gave the 
number of East Cherokee (possibly only those in North Curoiinn 
intended) as 1.220. ■• while a year later the whole number residintv in 
Noi'th Carolina, 'i'cnnessee. Alabama, and Georgia was officially esti- 
mated at from to 1.20().-' It is not -the only time a per capita 
payment has resulted in a sudden increase of the census population. 

In 1852 (Capt.) James W. Terrell was engaged by Thomas, then in 
the state senate, to take charge of his store at Qualla, and remained 
associated with him and in close contact with the Indians from then until 
after the close of the war. assisting, as special United States agent, in 
the disbursement of the interest payments, and afteiwaixl as a Con- 
federate officer in the organizatit)n of the Indian companies, holdinga 
commission as captain of Company A, Sixty-ninth North Carolina 
Confederate infantry. Being of an investigating bent. Captain Terrell 
was led to give attention to the customs and mythology of the Cher- 
okee, and to accumulate a fund of information on the subject seldom 
possessed by a whiti> man. He still resides at Webster, a few miles 
from the reservation, and is now seventy -one j'ears of age. 

In 1855 Congress directed the per capita payment to the East Cher- 
okee of the remo\al fund established for them in 184S. provided that 
North Carolina should tirst give assurance that they would l)e allowed 
to remain permanently in that state. This assurance, however, was 
not given until 18(it;. and the money was therefore not distributed, 
but remained in the treasury until 1875, when it was made applicable 
to the of lands and the quieting of titles for the benefit of 
the Indians.* 

From 1855 until aftei- the civil war we find no official notice of the 
East Cherokee, and our information must be obtained from other 
sources. It was, however, a most momentous period in their histor}". 
At the outbreak of the war Thomas was serving his seventh consec- 
utive term in the state senate. Being an ardent Confederate sj^m- 
pathizer, he was elected a delegate to the convention which passed the 
secession ordinance, and inunediately after voting in favor of that 
measure resigned from the senate in order to work for the southern 
cause. As he was already well advanced in years it is doubtful if his 
etfort would have gone beyond the raising of funds and other supplies 
but for the fact that at this juncture an eflort was made by the Con- 
federate General Kirby Smith to enlist the East Cherokee for active 

The agent sent for this purpose was Washington Morgan, known to 
the Indians as A'gansta'ta, son of that Colonel Gideon Morgan who 

1 Royee. Cherokee Nation.op. cit.,p.313 and note. 

- Report of tlie Indian Commissioner. ]ip. 459-460. 1S45. 

3 Commissioner Crawford. Rcporl of Indian Commissioner, p. 3, 1842. 

*Royce, op. cit.. p. 314. 

M.">NKY| TIIK TIMMAS LK(;i(>N 1 ()<) 

had coimiuuidcd tlii' ( lii'ioUoi^ at the Tlorso.-ihoe l)oiid. Hy \irtiu' of 
his Indian hh)()d and iiistnric anccstiy lie was diHMiied the most httinif 
(Mnissarv for tlic ])ur|ii)sc. iOarly in isii:^ he arrived anioni;' the 
('heroi<ee. and hy appealing to ohl-tinie memories so aroused the war 
snii'it aiiiono' them that a hiriic numlier declared themselves readv to 
follow wherever he leil. ( '(inceixing the question at issue in the war 
til lie one that did not concei-n the Indians, Thomas had diseouraijed 
I heir participation in it and advised them to remain at home in tjuiet 
nentrality. Now. however, knowing Morgan's i-eputation for reckless 
daring, he became alarmed at the possilde result to them of such 
leadership. Forced eithei' to see them go from his own protection or 
to lead them himself, he chose the latter alternative and proposed to 
them to enlist in the Confederate legion which he was about to organize. 
His object, as he himself has stated, was to keep them out of danger 
so far as possible by utilizing them as scouts and home guards through 
the mountains, away from the path of the large armies. Nothing of 
this was said to the Indians, who might not have been satisfied with 
sucii an arrangement. .Morgan went back alone and the Cherokee 
enrolled under the counnand of their white chief. ' 

The "■ Thomas Legion." i-ecruited in ISt!^ by William H. Tiiomas for 
the Confederate service and conuuanded by him as colonel, consisted 
oi-iginally of one infantry regiment of ten companies (Sixty-ninth 
North Carolina Infanti-y), one infantry battalion of six companies, one 
ca\alrv liattalion of eight companies (First North Carolina Cavalry 
Hattalion), one field battery (Light Rattery) of 103 officers and men. 
and one c(Hnpany of engineers; in all about '2,S00 men. The infanti'v 
battalion was recruited toward the close of the war to a full regiment 
of ten companies. Companies A and li of the Sixty-ninth regiment 
and two other companies of the infantry regiment recruited later 
were composed almost entirely of East Cherokee Indians, most of the 
commissioned officers being white men. The whole numlier of Chero- 
kee tiiiis (>nliste(l was neai'ly foul' hundi'(>d. or about e\"ery able-l)odied 
man in the tribe. ' 

In accordance with Tiiomas's jilan the Indians were emj)loyed chiefly 
as scouts and home guards in the mountain I'egion along the Tennessee- 
Carolina border, where, aecoi'ding to tiie testimony of Colonel String- 

1 Tht' liistory of the events leiKliiig t(i the organization of the "Thomas Legion" is cliieHy from the 
antlior's conversations with ('olonel Tliomas liiinself, corroborated ami snpplemented from other 
^onrces. In tlie words of 'I'lioinas. ■■ H' it liad not tjeen for tlie Indians I would not liave been in the 

-This is believed to be a correct statement of the strength and malie-np of tlie Thomas Legion. 
Owing to the iraperfeetioii of llie records and the absence of reliable memoranda among the surviv- 
ing otVu-ers. no two accounts exactly coincide. The roll given in the Nortli Carolina Confederate 
Roster, handed in by (.'aptaiii Terrell, assistjint quartermaster, was compiled early in the war and 
contains no notice of the engineer company or of the second infantry regiment, whii-h inchidcd two 
other Indian companies. The information therein eontJiincd is supplemented from conversatiotis 
and personal letters ()f Captain Terrell, ami fnau letters and newspaper articles by Lien tenant -Colonel 
siringtield of the Sixty-ninth. .Another statement is given in Mrs Avery's sketch of Colonel Thomas 
in tlu' North Carolina I'niversity Magazine for May. ISiiy. 


Kclil. ■"tlicy (lid yoocl work and .service for the South." The 
important eno-ag(>uient in which they were concerned occurred at gap, Tennessee, September 15, 1862, where Lieutenant Astu'- 
gata'ga, "a splendid specimen of Indian manhood," was killed in a 
charge. The Indians were furious at his death, and before they could 
be restrained they .scalped one or two of the Federal dead. For tliis 
action ample apologies were afterward given by their superioi- officers. 
The war, in fact, brought out all the latent Indian in their natui-e. 
Before starting to the front everj' man consulted an oracle stone to 
learn whether or not he might hope to return in safet\'. The start 
was celebrated with a grand old-time war dance at the townhouse on 
Soco, and the same dance was repeated at frequent intervals there- 
after, the Indians Ijeing "painted and feathered in good old style." 
Thomas himself frequently a.ssisting as master of ceremonies. The 
ballplay, too, was not forgotten, and on one occasion a detachment of 
Cherokee, left to guard a bridge, became so engrossed in the excite- 
ment of the game as to narrowly escape capture by a sudden dash of 
the Federals. Owing to Thomas's care for their welfare, they suffered 
but slightly in actual battle, although a number died of hard.ship and 
disease. When the Confederates evacuated eastern Tennessee, in the 
winter of 18<):^-ti4, .some of the white troops of the legion, with one or 
two of the Cherokee companies, were shifted to western Vii'ginia, and 
by assignment to other regiments a few of the Cherokee were present 
at the final siege and .surrender of Richmond. The main body of the 
Indian.s, with the rest of the Thomas Legion, ci'ossed over into North 
Carolina and did service protecting the western ))order until the close 
of the war, when they surrendered on parole at Waynesville, North 
Carolina, in May, 186.5, all those of the connnand l)eing allowed to 
keep their guns. It is claimed b}' their officers that they were the 
last of the Confederate forces to surrender. About fifty of the Cher- 
okee veterans still survive, nearly half of whom, under conduct of 
Colonel Stringfield, attended the Confederate reunion at Louisville, 
Kentuckj^ in 1900, where they attracted much attention.' 

In 1863, by resolution of February 12, the Confederate House of 
Representatives called for information as to the number and condition 
of the East Cherokee, and their pending relations with the Federal 
goveriuiient at the beginning of the war, with a view to continuing 
these relations under Confederate au.spices. In response to this 
inquiry a report was submitted by the Confederate connuissioner of 
Indian afiairs, S. S. Scott, based on information furnisiied by Colonel 
Thomas and Captain James W. Terrell, their former disbursing agent, 
showing that interest upon the " removal and subsistence fund" estab- 

1 Personal Information from Colonel W. H. Thomas, Lieutenant-Colonel W. W. Stringfield, Captain 
James W. Terrell, Chief N, J. Smith (first sergeant Company B), and others, with other details from 
Moore's (Confederate) Roster of North Carolina Troops, iv: Raleigh, 1882; also list of survivors in 
1890, by Carrington, in Eastern Band of Cherokees, Extra Bulletin of Eleventh Cen.sus, p. £1, 1S92. 


li.shed in 1848 had heoii paid annually up to and including- the yoar 
185it, at tho rato of $8.:i() por capita, or an aoji'i'cyatc. cxcliisi\-(' of 
disbursing' afrcnt'.s commission, of !tv4,88S.40 annually, based upon the 
original Mullay enumeration of 1.517. 

Tpon receipt of this report it was enacted by the Confederate con- 
vrress that the sum of $19,352.36 be paid the East Cherokee to cover 
the interest p(>riod of four years from May 23. 18()0, to May 23, ISti-l. 
In this connection the Confederate conuuissionor suggested that th(> 
payment l)e made in provisions, of -.vhich the Indians were then 
greatly in need, and which, if the payment were made in cash. th(\v 
would 1)1' unable to purchase, on ai'count of the general scarcity. lie 
adds that, according to his information. ahiMist every Cheiokee capable 
of hearing ai'ms was then in the Confe(li>rate service. The roll fur- 
nished by Captain Tei-rell is the original Mullay roll cori'ected to May, 
1860. no r(>ference being made to the later MuIIay enumeration (2,133), 
already alludefl to. There is no record to show that the payment thus 
authorized was made, and as the Confederate government was then in 
hard straits it is probable that nothing further was done in the matter. 

In submitting his statement of previous payments. Colonel Thomas, 
their former agent, adds: 

As the Xorth Carolina CherokeesJ have, like their brethren wes't, taken up arms 
ajrainst the Lincoln government, it i^^ not prolialile that any further advances of 
interest will he made by that jrovernment to any portion of the Cherokee tribe. I 
also enclose a cojiy of the act of ,Iuly 29, 184S, so far as relates to the North Carolina 
Cherokees, and a printed explanation of their rights, prepared by me in 1851, and 
submitted to tlie attorney-general, and his opinion thereon, which may not be alto- 
gether uninteresting to those who feel an interest in knowing something of the 
history of the Cherokee tribe of Indian-s, whose destiny is so closely identified with 
that of the Southern Confederacy.' 

In a skirmish lu'ar Bryson City (then Charleston). .Swain county. 
North Carolina, about a year after enlistment, a small party of 
Cherokee — perhaps a dozen in number — was captured by a detach- 
ment of Cni(^n troops and carried to Knoxville, where, having become 
dissatisfied with their experience in the Confederate service, they 
were easih' persuaded to go over to the Union .side. Through 
the influence of their principal man. Digane'ski. several others were 
induced to desert to the Union army, making about thirty in all. A.s a 
part of the Third North Cai'olina Mounted Volunteer Infantry, they 
served with the Union forces in the same region until the close of the 
war, when they returned to their homes to find their tribesmen so 
bitterly incensed against them that for sonn> tinn' their li\-es wcmc in 
danger. Eight of these are still alive in l!»(Kl.-' 

One of these Union Cherokee had brought back with him the small- 

' Thomas- Terrell manuscript East Cherokee roll, with accompanying letters, 1804 (Bur. Am. Kili. 

'Personal information from Colonel W.H.Thomas, Captain .I.W. Terrell, Chief X.J. Smith, ami 
others; see also Carrington, Eastern Band of Cherokees, Extra Bulletin of Eleventh Census, p. Jl. 1,S92. 

17'J MYTHS OK THE CHKKOKKK (kth ann. I'.i 

pox fi-oni iUi infected eiuiii) near Kiio.willi'. Slioi'tly al'ler liis i-etiini 
he became sick and soon died. As the eliaiii<teristic pustules had not 
a])])earpd. the disease seeming- to woik inwaidiy, tiie nature of his 
sickness was not at tirst suspected — smallpox havini;- h(>en an unknown 
disease among the Cherokee for nearly a century — and his funeral was 
largely attended. A week latei' a number of those who had })een pres- 
ent became sick, and the disease was recognized l)y C'olonel Thomas as 
smallpox in all its virulence. It spread throughout the tribe, this 
being in the early spring of ISfifi, and in spite of all the eliorts of 
Thomas, who bi'ought a doctor fi'om Tennessee to wait upon them, 
more than one hundred of the small community died in conse<(uence. 
The fatal result was largely due to the ignorance of the Indians, who, 
hnding their own remedies of no avail, used the heroic alioriginal 
treatment of the plungi^ bath in the river and the cold-water douche, 
which resulted in death in almost every case. Thus did the war bring 
its harvest of death, misery, and civil feud to the East t'herokee.' 

Shoi'tly after this event Colonel Thomas was comptdled by physical 
and mental intirmity to retire from further active participation in the 
atlairs of the East Cheiokee. aftin- more than half a century spent m 
intimate connection with them, during the greater portion of which 
time he had been their most trusted friend and adviser. Their aHairs 
at once became the prey of confusion and factional strife, which con- 
tinued until the United States stepped in as arbiter. 

In 1868 Congress ordered another census of the East Cherokee, to 
serve as a guide in future payments, the roll to include only those 
persons whose names had appeared upon the Mullay roll of 1848 and 
their legal heirs and i-epr(^sentiitives. The work was com]3l(>ted in the 
following year by S. H. .Swcnitland, and a payment of interest then 
due under former enactment was made by him on this ))asis.- "In 
accordance with their earm^stly expressed d(>sire to be i)rought under 
the immediate charge of the government as its wards," the Congn'ss 
which ordered this last census directed that the Commissioner of Indian 
Afiairs should assimie the same charge over the East Cherokee as over 
other tribes, but as no extra funds were made availal)le for the pur- 
pose the matter was held in abeyance.' An unratified treaty made 
this year with the Cherokee Nation west contained a stipulation that 
any Cherokee east of the Mississippi who should remove to the Chero- 
kee nation within three years should be entitled to full citizenship and 
]irivileges therein, but after that date could be admitted only by act 
of the Cherokee national council.* 

After the retirement of Thomas, in the absence of any active 

1 Author's information from Colonel Thomas and others. Various informants have magnifioil the 
nnmher of deaths to several hundred, but the estimate here given, obtained from Thomas, is proba- 
bly more reliable. 

2Ro.vee. Cherokee Nation. Fifth Ann. Keii. Bureiui of Ethnology, p. 314. 1888. 

J t;^ommissioner F, A. Walker. Report of Indian Commis-iioner. p. 2.5. 1872. 

<Royee, op. cit., p. 3ni. 

MooNEY] AD.irsTMENT (JK TlTl.KS 1873-70 1 7.'{ 

fOVcrniiKMitiil supervision, need \v:is felt of sonio ci'ntrjii autlioritv. 
On nei-t'iiilxT '.•, IStj.S. a ooncnil (•ouiicii of the East Ciicrokcc asst'nil)l('(l 
at Cheowa, in (irahani county. North Carolina, tooiv preliminary stops 
towanl the adoption of a rejrular form of tribal (joveniment under 
a constitution. N. .1. Smitli, afterwai-d princij)ai chief, was ciei-k 
of the council. The new o-overnment was foi'mally inauji'ui'ated on 
December 1, ISTO. It provided for a first and a second chief to 
.serve for a term of two years, iiiinoi' otiicers to serve one year, and 
an annual council representing each Cherokee settlement within the 
state of North Carolina. Ka'lahu'.'"All-bones."comnK)nly known to the 
whites as Flying-squirrel or Sawnook (Sawanu'gl). was elected chief. 
A new con.stitution was adopted five years later, by which the chief's 
term of office was tixed at four years.' 

The status of the lands held Iiy the Indians had now ))ecome a matter 
of .serious concern. As has t)een stated, the deeds had been made out 
by Thomas in his own name, as the state laws at that time forbade Indian 
ownership of real estate. In conse(iuence oi his losses during tlie 
war and his subsequent disability, the Thomas projK'rties, of wliich 
the Cherokee lands were t(H'hnically a part, had become involved, so 
that the entire estate had passed into the hands of creditors, the most 
important of whom, William .lohnston, had obtained slieriti's deeds in 
18t)9 for all of these Indian lands under three several jutlgments against 
Thomas, aggregating 1|8:3,8M7. 11. To adjust the matter so as to secure 
title and possession to the Indians, Congress in 1870 authorized suit to 
be brought in their name for the recovery of their interest. This suit 
was begun in May, 187-S, in the Cnited States circuit court for western 
North Carolina. A year later the matters in dispute were submiltcd 
by agreement to a board of arbitrators, whose award was conhrmed by 
the court in November, 187-1. 

The award finds that Thomas iiad purchased with Indian funds a 
tract estimated to contain 50. ()()() acres on Oconaluftee river and Soco 
creek, and known as the Qualla boundary, together witli a number of 
individual tracts outside the boundary; that the Indians were still 
indebted to Thomas toward the ])urchase of the Qualla boundary 
lands for the sum of $18,250, from which should be deducted i^^('>.500 
paid by them to Johnston to release titles, with interest to date of 
award, making an aggregate of $8,48*), together with a fuither sum 
of $2,-1:78, which had been intrusted to Terndl, the business clerk and 
assistant of Thomas, and by him turned over to Thomas, as creditor of 
the Indians, under power of attorney, this latter sum, with interest to 
date of award, aggregating $2,tj!»7.8it; thus leaving a balance due from 
the Indians to Thomas or his legal creditor. Johnston, of $7,066.11. 
The award declares that oti accouid of the (|uestionabie mannei- in 

'Constitution, etc., ciuoted in Carringlon, liasti'iii liaml of Cliunikous, ivxira Hiillulin V.\<- 
Census, pp. lS-20, 1892; author's pyrsonal inlorniatiDn. 


which the disputed hinds had been bought in by Johnston, he should 
be allowed to hold them only as security for the balance due hiui until 
paid, and that on the payment of the said balance of |7,06ti.ll. with 
interest at 6 per cent from the date of the award, the Indians should 
be entitled to a clear conveyance from him of the legal title to all the 
lands embraced within the Qualhi boundary.' 

To enable the Indians to clear oti' this lien on their lands and for 
other purposes. Congress in 1875 directed that as uuich as remained 
of the ''removal and subsistence fund" set apart for their ben(>tit in 
1848 should be used "in perfecting the titles to the lands awarded to 
them, and to pay the costs, expenses, and liabilities attending their 
recent litigations, also to purchase and extinguish the titles of any 
white persons to lands within the general boundaries allotted to them 
/by the court, and for the education, improvement, and civilization of 
their people." In accordance with this authority the unpaid balance 
and interest due Johnston, amounting to ^7,24-2.76, was paid him in 
the same j'ear, and shortly afterward there was purchased on liehalf of 
the Indians some fifteen thousand acres additional, the Commissioner 
of Indian Affairs being cf)nstituted trustee for the Indians. For the 
better protection of the Indians the lands were made inalienable except 
by assent of the council and upon approval of the President of the 
United States. The deeds for the Qualla boundary and the 15, 000 
acre purchase were executed respectively on October 9, 1876, and 
August ll, 1880.- As the boundaries of the ditierent purchases were 
but vaguely defined, a new survey of the whole Qualla boundar_y and 
adjoining tracts was authorized. The work was intrusted to M. S. 
Temple, deputy United States surveyor, who completed it in 187H, his 
survey maps of the reservation being accepted as the official standard.^ 
The titles and boundaries having been adjusted, the Indian Office 
assumed regular supervision of East Cherokee aflairs, and in June, 
1875, the first agent since the retirement of Thomas was sent out in 
the person of W. C. McCarthy. He found the Indians, according to 
his report, destitute and discouraged, almost without stock or farming 
tools. There were no schools, and very few full-bloods could speak 
English, although to their credit nearly all could read and write their 
own language, the parents teacliing the children. Under his authority 
a distribution was made of stock animals, seed wheat, and farming 
tools, and several schools were started. In the next year, however, 

iSee award of arbitrators, Kuftis Barringer, John H. Dillard, and T. Ruffin, with full statement, in 
Eastern Band of Cherokee Indian-s against W. T. Thomas et al. H. R. Ex. Doe. 128, n'Sd Cong., '2d ses.s., 
1894; summary in Royee, Cherokee Nation, Fifth .\nn. Rep. Bureau of Ethnology, pp. 31.5-318, 1888, 

2See Royee, op. eit., pp. 315-318: Commissioner T. J. Morgan, Report of Indian Commissioner, 
p, xxix, 1890. The tinal settlement, under the laws of North Carolina, was not completed until 1894. 

=* Royee, op. eit., pp. 3].')-31S: Carrington, Eastern Band of Cherokees, with map of Temple survey, 
Extra Bnlletin of Eleventh Census, 1892. 


the ;ii;'oiK'V \v;is (liscoiitiiiiU'd and the cilucatioiial iiiU> rests of the hand 
turned over to tlu> state sehool .superintondeut.' 

In the ni(>antinie Ka'lalnV had been succee(U>d as chief t)y Lloyd R. 
Welch (Da'.si'i>'iya'>;i). an educated mixed-))lood of C'heowa. who served 
about live years, dyino^ shortly after his reelection to a .second term 
(48). He niad(> a jjood record by his work in reconciliu";' the \arious 
faetion.s which had spruni;- up after the withdrawal of the jjuidinii- inllu- 
ence of Thomas, and in defeating the intrigues of fraudulent white 
claimants and misciiief makers. Shortly l)efore his death the (xoverii- 
ment, through Special Agent -lohn A. Silibuld. recognized liis authority 
as principal chief, together with the constitution winch had been 
adopted by the l)and under liis auspices in 1875. N. J. Smith (Tsa'- 
ladihi'). who had previously served as clerk of the council, was electtnl 
to his unexpired term and continued to serve until the fall of 18^*0.~ 

AVe tind no further official notice of the East C'hei-okee until 1881, 
when Comini.ssioner Price reported that they were still without agent 
or superintendent, and that so far as the Indian Office was concerned 
their atiairs were in an anomalous and unsatisfactoi'v condition. \vliil(> 
factional feuds were adding to the difficulties and retarding the i)rog- 
ress of the band. In the spring of that year a visiting delegation from 
the Cherokee Nation west had extended to them an urgent invitation 
to remove to Indian Territory and the Indian Office had encouraged 
the project, with the result that 161 persons of the band removed dur- 
ing the year to Indian Territory, the expense being borne l)y the 
(Jovernment. Others were represented as being desirous to remove, 
and the Commissioner recommended an appropriation for the purpose, 
but as Congress failed to act the matter was dropped.' 

The neglected condition of the East Cherokee having been brought 
to the attention of those old-time friends of the Indian, the Quakers, 
through an appeal made in theii- behalf by members of that society 
residing in North Carolina, the Western Yearly Meeting, of Indiana, 
volunteered to undertake the work of civilization and education. On 
May 31, 1881, representatives of the Friends entered into a contract 
with the Indians, subject to approval by the Government, to establish 
and continue among them for ten j-ears an industrial school and other 
connnon schools, to l)e supported in part from the annutil interest of 
the trust fund held by the (iovernment to the credit of the East Chero- 
kee and in part by funds furnished by the Friends themselves. Through 
the efforts of Barnabas C. Hobbs, of the Western Yearly Meeting, a 
vearly contract to the .same effect was entered into with the Commi.s- 

' Rejiort of Agent W. C. JloCarthy, Report of Indian Commissioner, pp. 343-344, 1875; anri Report of 
Indian r(»inmi.»*sione, pp. 118-11'.). 187t). 

-.\nthor's personal infonnatiiin; wee also Carrington, Ea.stern Band of Cherokees; Zei^der ami 
Grosseup, Heart of the .^llegtiaiiies. pp. 3.5-36, 188;!. 

•'Commissioner H. Priee. Report of Indian Commissioner, pp. l.xiv-l.xv, l.^xi, and Report of Indian 
Commissioner, pp. Ixix-lxx, 18.S2; see also ante, p. 151. 

17(i MYTHS OF THE CHKROKKK ]kth. axn. I'.i 

sioiicr of liuli;iii Atl'uir.s later in the .same year, and wa.s i-eiiewed In- 
successive eoininissioners to cover the period of ten years endiiij;' June 
30, 1892, when the contract system was terminated and the (iovern- 
ment assumed direct control. Under the joint arrangement, with some 
aid at the outset from the North Carolina Meeting, work was begun 
in 1S81 ])V Thomas Brown witii several teachers sent out by the Indiana 
Friends, who established a small training school at the agenc}' head- 
quarters at Cherokee, and several day schools in the outljdng settle- 
ments. He was succeeded three years latei' by H. W. Spray, an expe- 
rienced educator, who, with a corps of ethcient assistants and greatlj' 
enlarged facilities, continued to do good work for the elevation of the 
Indians until the close of the contract system eight years later.' After 
an interregnum, during which the schools suffered from frequent 
changes, he was reappointed as government agent and superintendent 
in 1898, a position which he still holds in 1901. To the work con- 
ducted under his auspices the East Cherokee owe much of what they 
have to-day of civilization and erdightenment. 

From some travelers who visited the reservation about this time we 
have a pleasant account of a trip along Soco and a day with Chief 
Smith at Yellow Hill. They describe the Indians as being so nearly 
like the whites in their manner of living that a stranger could rarelj* 
distinguish an Indian's cabin or little cove farm from that of a white 
man. Their principal crop was corn, which they ground for them- 
selves, and they had also an abundance of apples, peaches, and plums, 
and a few small herds of ponies and cattle. Their M'ants were so tew 
that they had but little ust> for money. Their primitive costume had 
long been obsolete, and their dress was like that of the whites, except- 
ing that moccasins took the place of shoes, and they manufactured 
their own clothing by the aid of spinning-wheels and looms. Finely 
cut j)ipes and well-made baskets were also produced, and the good 
influence of the schools recentl}' established was already manifest in 
the children.^ 

In 1882 the agency was reestablished and provision was made for 
taking a new census of all Cherokee east of the Mississippi, Joseph 
Gr. Hester being appointed to the work.^ The census was submitted 
as complete in June, 1884, and contained the names of 1.881 persons in 
North Carolina, 758 in Georgia, 213 in Tennessee, 71 in Alal)ama. and 
33 scattering, a total of 2,95t).* Although this census received the 
approval and certificate of the East Cherokee council, a large portion 
of the band still refuse to recognize it as authoritative, claiming thiit 
a large number of persons therein enrolled have no Cherokee blood. 

"See Commissioner T.J. Morgan. Report of Indian Commissioner, pp. 141-14.5. 1892; autlior's per- 
sonal information from B. C. Hobbs, chief N. .1. Smitii, and others. For further notice of school 
growth see also Report of Indian Commissioner, pp. 426—127, 1897. 

-Zeigler and Grosscup, Heart of the Alleghanies. pp. 36-42, 1883. 

3 Commis-sioner H. Price, Report of Indian Commis.sioner, pp. Ixix-lxx, 1882. 

^ Report of Indian Commissioner, pp. li-lii, 1884. 


The East Cherokee had ik^vci- coasiMl to contend for a participation 
in the rights and priviieyos; accruiiijjf to the western Nation under 
treaties with tlie (lovernnicnt. In lSS:i a special ayent had ))cen ap- 
pointed to investigate their chiinis, and in the following year, under 
authority of Congress, the eastern ])and of Cherokee brought suit in 
the Court of (Uainis against the rnited States and tlie Cliciokee Nation 
west to determine its rights in the permanent aiimiity fund and other 
trust funds held hy the United States for th(' Clieiokcc Indians.' The 
case was decided adversely to the eastei'n band, first l)y the Court of 
Claims in 188.").' and tinally. on appeal. l)y the Supreme Court on 
March 1, 188f). tliat court holding in its decision that the Cherokee in 
North Carolina had dissolved their connection with the Cherokee 
Nation and ceased to t)e a part of it when they refused to accompany 
the main body at the Removal, and that if Indians in North Carolina or 
in any state east of the Mississippi wished to enjoy tiie benefits of the 
common propertj' of the Cherokee Nation in any form whatever they 
must l)e readmitted to citizenship in the Cherokee Nation and comply 
with its constitution and laws. In accordance with this decision the 
agent in the Indian territory was instructed to Issue no more resi- 
dence jM-rmits to claimants for Cherokee citizenship, and it was 
officially announced that all persons thereafter entering that country 
without consent of the Cherokee authorities would be treated as 
intruders.^ This decision, cutting oil' the East Cherokee from all 
hope of sharing in any of the treat}' benefits enjoj'ed by their western 
kinsmen, was a sore disappointment to them all, especially to Chief 
Smith, who had worked unceasingly in their behalf from the institu- 
tion of tlie proceedings. In view of the result, Commissioner Atkins 
strongly recommended, as the best method of settling them in perma- 
nent homes, secure from white intrusion and from anxiety on account 
of their uncertain tenure and legal status in Nortii Carolina, that 
negotiations be opened through government chaiuicls for their 
readmission to citizenship in the Cherokee Natit)n, to be followed, if 
successful, by the sale of their lands in North Carolina and their 
removal to Indian Territory.* 

In order to acquire a more defiiute legal status, the Ch(>rokee resid- 
ing in North Carolina — being practically all those of the eastern 
band having genuine Indian interests — became a corporate body 
under the laws of the state in 1889. The act. ratified on Mai<li 11, 
declares in its first section "That tlie North Carolina oi' Kast(>rn 
Cherokee Indians, resident or domiciled in the counties of Jackson, 
Swain, Graham, and Cherokee, be and at the same time are hereby 

'Commissioner H. Price, Report of Indian Commissioner, pp. Ixix-lxxi, 1882, also "Indian legisla- 
tion," ibid., p. 214; Commissioner H. Price, Report t)f Indian Coraraissioner, pp. Ixv-lxvi, 188^, 

^Commi.osioner J. D. C. Atliins, Report of Indian Commi.ssioner, p. Ixx, lS8,'j. 

'Same commissioner. Report (if tlie Indian Commissioner, p. xlv, 1880; decision iiuoted l>y .same 
commissioner, Report of Indian (Commi.ssioner, p, ixxvii, 1887. 

<Same commissioner. Report of tlic Indian Commissioner, p. li, 188(i; reiterated by him in Report 
for 1887, p. Ixxvii. 

r.l KTII— 01 12 


created and constituted a bodv politic and corporate under tiie name, 
style, and title of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, with all the 
rights, franchises, privileges and powers incident and belonging to 
corporations under the laws of the state of North Carolina.' 

On August 2, 1893, ex-Chief Smith died at Ch(>rokee, in the tift}'- 
seventh year of his life, more than twenty ot which had been given 
to the service of his ])eople. Nimrod flarrett Smith, known to the 
Cherokee as Tsa'ladihi', was the son of a halfbreed father by an Indian 
mother, and was l)orn near the present Murphy, Cherokee county. 
North Carolina, on January 3, 1S3T. His earliest recollections were 
thus of the miseries that attended the flight of the refugees to the 
mountains during the Removal period. His mother spoke very little 
English, but his father was a man of consideral)le intelligence, having 
acted as interpreter and translator for Reverend Evan Jones at the old 
Valleytown mission. As the ])oy grew to manhood he acquired a fair 
education, which, aided by a conunanding presence, made him a per- 
son of influence among his fellows. At twenty-flve years of age he 
enlisted in the Thomas Legion as first sergeant of Company B, Sixt_y- 
ninth North Carolina (Confederate) Infantry, and served in that capacity 
till the close of the war. He was clerk of the council that drafted the 
first East Cherokee constitution in 1SB8, and on the death of Principal 
Chief Lloyd Welch in 1880 was elected to fill the unexpired term, 
continuing in ottice b}^ successive reelections until the close of IS'Jl, a 
period of about twelve years, the longest term yet filled by an incum- 
bent. As principal chief he signed the contract under which the school 
work was inaugurated in 1881. For several years thereafter his 
duties, particularly in connection with the suit against the western 
Cherokee, recjuired his presence much of the time at A Washington, 
while at home his time was almost as constantlj' occupied in attending 
to the wants of a dependent people. Although he was entitled under 
the constitution of the band to a salar\' of five hundred dollars per year, 
no part of this salary- was ever paid, because of the limited resources of 
his people, and only partial reimbursement was made to him, shortly 
before his death, for expenses incurred in official visits to Washington. 
With frequent opportunities to enrich himself at the expense of his 
people, he maintained his honor and died a poor man. 

In person Chief Smith was a splendid specimen of physical man- 
hood, being six feet four inches in height and l)uilt in proportion, 
erect in figure, with flowing black hair curling down over his shoulders, 
a deep musical voice, and a kindly spirit and natural dignity that 
never failed to impress the stranger. His widow — a white woman — 
and several children survive him.' 

^See act in fviU, Report of Indian Commissioner, vol. i, pp. 080-681, 1891. 

-From author's personal acquaintance; see also Zeigler and Grosscup, Heart of tlie Alleghanies, 
pp. 38-39, 1883; Agent J. L. Holmes, in Report of Indian Commissioner, i>. lliO, 188.5; Commissioner 
T. J. Morgan. Report ot Indian Commissioner, p. 142, 1892; Moore, Roster of the North Carolina 
Troops, IV, 1882. 




111 189-1: the long-stand in<>; litigation between the East Cherokee 
and a nuniher of creditors and claimants to Indian lands within and 
adjoining the Qualla boundary was tinally settled l)v a coniproniise 
by which the several white tenants and claimants within the boundary 
agreed to execute a quitclaim and vacate on payment to them by the 
Indians of sums aggregating ^24, 55:^, while for anotlicr disputed 
adjoining tract of 33,000 acres the United States agreed to pay, for 
the Indians, at the rate of $1.25 per acre. The necessary (iovci'nincnt 
approval having been obtained. Congress appropriated :i suliicient 
amount for carr3'ing into effect the agreement, thus at last completing 
a perfect and unincumbered title to all the lands claimed by the 
Indians, with the exception of a few outlying tracts of comparative 

In 1S95 the Cherokee residing in North Carolina upon the reserva- 
tion and in the outlying settlements were ofBciallj- reported to luunber 
1,479.- A 3-ear later an epidemic of grippe spread through the band, 
with the result that the census of 1897 shows but 1,312,'' among those 
who died at this time being Big-witch (Tskil-e'gwa), the oldest man of 
the band, who distincth' remembered the Creek war, and Wadi'yahi, 
the last old woman who preserved the art of making double-walled 
baskets. In the next year the population had recovered to 1,351. 
The description of the mode of living then common to most of the 
Indians will apply nearly as well to-daj-: 

While they are industrioiLS, these people are not progressive farmers and have 
learned nothing of modern methods. The same crops are raised continuously imtil 
the soil will yield no more or is washed away, when new ground is cleared or broken. 
The value of rotation and fertilizing has not yet been discovered or taught. . . . 

That these people can live at all upon tlie products of tlieir small farms is duo to 
the extreme simplicity of their food, dress, and manner of living. The typical 
house is of logs, is about fourteen by sixteen feet, of one room, just high enough for 
the occupants to stand erect, with perhaps a small loft for the storage of extras. 
The roof is of split shingles or shakes. There is no window, the open door furnish- 
ing what light is required. At one end of the house is the fireplace, with outside 
chimney of stones or sticks chinked with clay. The furniture is simple and cheap. 
An iron pot, a bake kettle, a coffeepot and mill, small table, and a few cups, knives, 
and spoons are all that is needed. These, with one or two bedsteails, homemade, a 
few pillows and quilts, with feather mattresses for winter covering, as well as for the, constitute the i)rincipal house possessions. For outdoor work tliere 
is an ax, hoe, and shov(>l plow. A wagon or (;art may be owned, but is not essen- 
tial. The outfit is inexpensive and answers every purpose. The usual footl is bean 
bread, with coffee. In the fall chestnut bread is also used. Beef is seldom eaten, 
but pork is highly esteemed, and a considerable number of hogs are kept, running 
wild and untended in summer.* 

By the most recent official count, in 1900. the East Cherokee resid- 
ing in North Carolina under direct charge of the agent and included 

■ Coinniis.sioner D.M. Browning, Report of Indian Commissioner for 1894. pp. 81-82, 1895; also Agent 
T. W. Potter, ibid., p. 398. 
2Agent T. W. Potter. Report of Indian Commissioner for 1895. p. 387. 1896. 
^Agent J. C. Hart. Report of Indian Commis.sioner. p. -JOS. 1S97. 
* Agent J. C. Hart, Report of Indian Commissioner, pp. 218-219, 1898. 

180 MYTHS OF THE CHEROKEE [eth.ann.19 

within the act of incorporation number 1,376, of whom about 1.100 
are on the reservation, the rest living farther to the west, on Nanta- 
hahi, Cheowa, and Hiwassee rivers. This does not include mixed- 
bloods in adjoining states and some hundreds of unrecognized claim- 
ants. Those enumerated own approximately 100,000 acres of 
land, of which 83,00(1 arc included within the Qualla reservation 
and a contiguous tract in. Jackson and Swain counties. They receive 
no rations or annuities and are entirely self-supporting, the annual 
interest on their trust fund established in 18-t8, which has dwindled to 
a1)out ^23,000, being applied to the payment of taxes upon their unoc- 
cupied common lands. From time to time they have made leases of 
timber, gold-washing, and grazing privileges, but without any great 
profit to themselves. By special appropriation tlie government sup- 
ports an industrial training school at Cherokee, the agency head- 
quarters, in which 170 pupils are now being boarded, clothed, and 
educated in the practical duties of life. This school, which in its work- 
ings is a model of its kind, owes much of its usefulness and high 
standing to the etEcient management of Pi'of. H. W. Spray (Wilsini'), 
already mentioned, who combines the duties of superintendent and 
agent for the band. His chief clerk, Mr James Blythe (Diskwa'ni, 
"Chestnut-bread''''), a Cherokee by blood, at one time filled the posi- 
tion of agent, being perhaps the only Indian who has ever served in 
such capacity. 

The exact legal status of the East Cherokee is still a matter of dis- 
pute, the}' being at once wards of the government, citizens of the 
United States, and (in North Carolina) a corporate body under state 
laws. They pay real estate taxes and road service, exercise the voting 
privilege,' and are amenable to the local courts, but do not pay poll 
tax or receive any pauper assistance from the counties; neither can 
they make free contracts or alienate their lands (-±9). Under their 
tril)al constitution they are governed by a principal and an assistant 
chief, elected for a term of four 3'ears. with an executive council 
appointed by the chief, and sixteen councilors elected b}' the vai'ious 
settlements for a term of two j'ears. The annual council is held in 
October at Cherokee, on the reservation, the proceedings being in 
the Cherokee language and recorded by their clerk in the Cherokee 
alphabet, as well as in English. The present chief is Jesse Reid 
(Tse'si-Ska'tsi, "Scotch Jesse'"), an intelligent mixed-blood, who fills 
the otBce with dignity and ability. As a people they are peaceable and 
law-altiding, kind and hospitable, providing for their simple wants by 
their own industry without asking or expecting outside assistance. 
Their fields, orchards, and fish traps, with some few domestic animals 
and occasional hunting, supply them with food, while by the sale of 

1 At the recent election in November. 1900, they were debarred by the local polling officers from 
either registering or voting, and the matter is now being contested. 


w-inson<f ;ind other nicdiciiiiil i:)lants o-uthcrpd in th(> iiiountaiiis, with 
fruit and honey of their own raising, they procure what additional 
supplies they need from the traders. The majority are fairly com- 
fortable, far aliove the condition of most Indian trihes. and hut little, 
if any, behind their white neighbors. In literaiy ability ihev may 
even be said to surpass them, as in addition to the result of nearly 
twenty years of school work among- tiie younger people, neaily all the 
men and some of the women can read and write their own languafe. 
All wear civilized costumes, though an occasional pair of moccasins 
is seen, while the women tind means to gratify the racial love of 
color in the wearing of red bandanna kerchiefs in place of bonnets. The 
older people still cling to their ancient rites and sacred traditions, but 
the dance and the ballplaj' wither and the Indian day is nearly spent. 


(1) Tribal synonymy (page 15): Very few Indian tribes are known to us under 
the names by which tliey call themselves. One reason for this is the fact that the 
whites have usually heard of a tribe from its neighbors, speaking other languages, 
before coming upon the tribe itself. Many of the popular tribal names were origi- 
nally nicknames bestowed by neighboring tribes, frequently referring to some peculiar 
custom, and in a large number of cases would be strongly reiiudiated by the people 
designated by them. As a rule each tribe had a different name in every surrounding 
Indian language, besides those given by Spanish, French, Dutch, or English settlers. 

YtiWiviya' — This word is compounded from yunirt (person) and j/tt (real or prin- 
cipal). The assumption of superiority is much in evidence in Indian tribal names; 
thus, the Iroquois, Delawares, and Pawnee call themselves, respectively, Oiiwe- 
honwe, Leni-lenape', and Tsariksi-tsa'riks, all of which may be rendered "men of 
men," "men surpassing other men," or "real men." 

Kitu'hvagl — This word, which can not be analyzed, is derived from KItu'hwii, the 
name of an ancient Cherokee settlement formerly on Tuckasegee river, just aljove 
the present Brysoii City, in Swain county. North Carolina. It is noted in 1730 as 
one of the "seven mother towns" of the tribe. Its inhabitants were called Ani'- 
Kltu'hwagl (people of Kituhwa), and seem to have exercised a controlling influence 
over those of all the towns on the waters of Tuckasegee and the upper part of Little 
Tennessee, the whole body being frequently classed together as Ani'-KItu'hwagl. 
The dialect of these towns held a middle place linguistically between those spoken 
to the east, on the heads of Savannah, and to the west, on Hiwassee, Cheowaih, and 
the lower course of Little Tennessee. In various forms the word was adopted liy 
the Delawares, Shawano, and other northern Algonquian tribes as a synonym for 
Cherokee, probably from the fact that the Kituhwa people guarded the Cherokee 
northern frontier. In the form Cnttawa it appears on the French map of Vaugondy 
in 1755. From a similarity of spelling, Schoolcraft incorrectly makes it a synonym 
for Catawba, while Brinton incorrectly asserts that- it is an Algonquian term, fanci- 
fully rendered, ' ' inhabitants of the great wilderness. ' ' Among the western Cherokee 
it is now the name of a powerful secret .society, which had its origin shortly before the 
War of the Rebellion. 

Cherokee — This name occurs in fully fifty different spellings. In the standard recog- 
nized form, which dates back at least to 1708, it has given name to counties in North 
Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, and Alabama, within the ancient territory of the 
tribe, and to as many as twenty other geographic locations within the ITnited States. 
In the Eastern or Lower dialect, with which the English settlers first became famil- 
iar, the form is Tsa'rSgl', whence we get Cherokee. In the other dialects the form 
is Tsa'litgjf'. It is evidently foreign to the tribe, as is frequently the case in tribal 
names, and in all probability is of Choctaw origin, having come up from the south 
through the medium of the Mobilian trade jargon. It will be noted that De Soto, 
whose chroniclers first use the word, in the form Chalaque, obtained his interpreters 
from the Gulf coast of Florida. Fontanedo, writing about the year 1575, mentions 
other inland triljes known to the natives of Florida under names which seem to be 


of Choctaw origin; for instance, the Canofracole, interprcti'il •wickt-il poople," tlie 
tinal part heiiifr apparently the ('ho('taw won! nkla or ijijiild, "people", which appears 
also in Tascafroula, Huvou <Touhi, and Penaicola. f^hetiinasha, Atakapa,an<l probably 
Biloxi, are also Choutaw names, althongh the triljes themselves are of other origins. 
As the Choctaw held much of the Gulf coast ami were the principal traders of that 
region, it was natural tliat explorers landing among them should adopt their names 
for tlie more remote tribes. 

The name seems to refer to the fact that the tril)e inriiiiied a cave country. Jn the 
"Choctaw Leksikon" of Allen Wright, 1S80, page S7, we lind rliaUik, a noun, signify- 
ing a hole, cavity, pit, chasm, etc., and as an adjective signifying hollow. In the man- 
uscript Choctaw dictionary of Cyrus Byington, in the library of the Bureau of 
American Ethnology, we find chilulc, noun, a hole, cavity, hollow, pit, etc., with a 
statement that in its usual application it means a cavity or hollow, and not a hole 
through anything. As an adjective, the same form is given as signifying hollow, 
having a hole, as Hi ckUuk, a hollow tree; ahoha chiluk, an empty house; cliHuk 
chukoii, to enter a hole. Other noun forms given are cimluk and nrliiliik in the singu- 
lar and chilukoa in the plural, all signifying hole, pit, or cavity. Verbal forms are 
chilukikhi, to make a hole, and chUukha, to open and form a fissure. 

In agreement with the genius of the Cherokee language the root form of the tril)al 
name takes nominal or verbal prefixes according to its connection with the rest of 
the sentence, and is declined, or rather conjugated, as follows: Singulak — first per- 
son, Im-Tsa'Ugt, I (am) a Cherokee; second person, hi-Tna'ldg't., thou art a Chero- 
kee; third person, a-Tm'la(Jl, he is a Cherokee. Dual — first person, dsti-Tm'li'ujl, 
we two are Cherokee; second jierson, di-Tm'lagI, you two are Cherokee; third 
person, iiiii'-Tsa'Irnjl, they two are Cherokee. Pu'ral — first person, dtii-Tm'lftg'i, 
we (several) are Cherokee; se<'ond person, liitKi-Tm'ldgl, you (several) are Chero- 
kee; third penson, iiid'-Tm'Irig'i, they (several) are Cherokee. It will lie noticed 
that the third person dual and plural are alike. 

Oyata'ge'ronoil', etc. — ^The Iroquois (Mohawk) form is given by Hewitt as 0-yata'- 
ge'ronon', of which the root is ycila, cave, o is the assertive prefix, ge is the locative at, 
and ronon' is the tribal suffix, equivalent to ( English ) -ites or people. The word, which 
has several dialectic forms, signifies "inhabitants of the cave country," or "cave- 
country people," rather than "people who dwell in caves," as rendered by Schoolcraft. 
The same radix yatd occurs also in the Iroquois name for the opossum, which is a 
burrowing animal. As is well known, the Allegheny region is ]ieculiarly a cave coim- 
try, the caves having been used by the Indians for burial and shelter jiurjioses, as is 
proved by numerous remains found in them. It is probable that the Iroquois simply 
translated the name (Chalaque) current in the South, as we find is the case in the 
West, where the principal plains tribes are known under translations of the same 
names in all the different languages. The Wyandot name for the Cherokee, 
Wataiyo-rouiiiV, and their Catawba name, MaiTteraiT, both seem to refer to coming 
out of the ground, and may have been originally intended to convey the same idea 
of cave ijeople. 

Rickahorkan — This name is used by the (Jerman explorer, bederer, in l(i70, as the 
name of the people inhabiting the moimtains to the southwest of the Virginia .settle- 
ments. On his map he puts them in the mountains on the southern head streams 
of Roanoke river, in western North Carolina. He states that, acconling to his Indian 
informants, the Rickahockan lived lieyond the mountains in a laud of great waves, 
which he interpreted to mean the .sea shore (!), but it is more likely that the Indians 
were trying to convey, by means of the sign languag<'. the idea of a succession of 
mountain ridges. The name was ]irobably of I'owhatan origin, and is evidently 
identical with Rechahecrian of the Virginia chronicles of about the same period, the 
)• in the latter form l>eing perhaps a misiirint. It maybe connected with Kigbka- 
hauk, iMdi<'ated on Smitli's nia|i of VirL'inia, in Hi07. as the name of a town within tlie 


Powliataii territiirv, ami still |jrfserveil in Rui'kaliock, the naiuiMii an Cfitate on Iowit 
Paniunkey river. AVe have tuo little material of the Powhatan language t() hazard 
an interpretation, but it may possibly eontain the root of the word for saml, which 
appears as lekamt, nikaiva, negaw, rigaii'ii, rekina, etc, in various eastern Algoncjuian 
dialects, whence Rockaway (sand), and Recgawawank (sandy place) . The Pow- 
hatan form, as given by Strachey, isracawh (sand). Hegives aXsorocoyhook (otter), 
reihcahahcoik, hidden under a cloud, overcast, rickahone or reihcoan (a comb) , and 
rickewJi (to divide in halves) . 

Talligeui — As Brinton well says: "No name in the Lenape' legends has given rise to 
more extensive discussion than this." On Colden's map in his "History of the Five 
Nations," 1727, we find the "Alleghens" indicated upon Allegheny river. Heckewel- 
der, who recorded the Delaware tradition in 1819, says: "Those people, as I was told, 
called themselves Talligeu or Talligewi. Colonel John Gibson, however, a gentleman 
whi.> has a thorough knowleilge of the Indians, and speaks several of their languages, 
is of the opinion that they were not called Talligewi, but Alligewi; and it would 
seem that he is right from the traces of their name which still remain in the country, 
the Allegheny river and mountains having indubitably been named after them. The 
Delawares still call the former Alligewi Sipu (the river of the Alligewi)" — Indian 
Nations, p. 48, ed. 1876. Loskiel, writing on the authority of Zeisberger, says that 
the Delawares knew the whole country drained by the Ohio under the name of 
Alligewinengk, meaning "the land in which they arrived from distant places," basing 
his interpretation upon an etymology compounded from kdii or alii, there, ick-u, to 
that place, and ewak, they go, with a locative final. Kttwein, another Moravian 
writer, says the Delawares called "the western country" AUigewenork, meaning a 
warpath, and called the river Alligewi Sipo. This definition w<5uld make the word 
come from palliton or alliton, to fight, to make war, ewak, thej'go, and a locative, i. e., 
"they go there to fight." Trumbull, an authority on Algonquian languages, derives 
the river name from vulik, good, best, hanne, rapid stream, and sipu, river, of which 
rendering its Iroquois name, Ohiv, is nearly an equivalent. Rafinesque renders Tal- 
ligewi as "there found," from talli, there, and some other root, not given (Brinton, 
Walam Olum, pp. 229-230, 1885). 

It must be noted that the names Ohio and Alligewi (or Allegheny) were not 
ajiplied by the Indians, as with us, to different parts of the same river, but to the 
whole stream, or at least the greater portion of it from its head downward. Although 
Brinton sees no necessary connection between the river name and the traditional 
tribal name, the statement of Heckewelder, generally a competent authority on Dela- 
ware matters, makes them identical. 

In the traditional tribal name, Talligewi or Alligewi, v.i is an assertive verbal suf- 
fix, so that the form properly means "he is a Tallige," or "they are Tallige." This 
comes very near to Tsa'lilgl', the name by which the Cherokee call themselves, and 
it may have been an early corruption of that name. In Zeisberger's Delaware dic- 
tionary, however, we find waloh or icalok, signifying a cave or hole, while in the 
"Walam Olum" we ha,\'e oligonunk rendered "at the place of caves," the region 
being further described as a buffalo land on a pleasant plain, where the Lenape', 
advancing seaward from a less abundant northern region, at last found food ( Walam 
Olum, i)p. 194-195). Unfortunately, like other aboriginal productions of its kind 
among the northern tribes, the Lenape chronicle is suggestive rather than complete 
and connected. With more light it may be that seeming discrepancies would disap- 
pear and we should find at last that the Cherokee, in ancient times as in the historic 
period, were always the southern vanguard o{ the Iroqiioian race, always primarily 
a mountain people, but with their flank resting upon the Ohio and its great tribu- 
taries, following the trend of the Blue ridge and the Cumberland as they slowly 
gave way before the pressure from the north until they were finally cut off from the 
parent stock by the wedge of Algonquian invasion, but always, whether in the north 


or in the south, kw'iiinjj; their distinctive title aim iiifr the tribes as tlie "))e()))le <ii the, 
cave country." 

As the Cherokee have occupied a prominent |)laee in history for so ion); a period 
their name appears in many synonyms and diverse spellings. The following are 
among the principal of these: 


TsA'L.\Gi' (plural, Am'-Tm'ldcfl') . Pro])er form in the Middle and Western (!!ierokee 

Tsa'ragi'. Proper form in tlie Eastern or Lower Cherokee dialect. 
AchalaquK. Schoolcraft, Notes on Iroquois, 1847 (incorrectly quoting Garcilaso). 
Clmlakee. Nuttall, Travels, 124, 1821. 

Chalaque. Gentleman of Elvas, 1.5.57; I'ulilications of Hakluyt Society, IX, (iO, 18,51. 
Chalarjuiex. Barcia, Ensayo, 33.5, 1723. 
Charakeys. Homann heirs' map, about 1730. 

Charikees. Document of 1718, ,ri(/c Rivers, South Carolina, 5.5, 18.56. 
Cliarokee». Governor .Johnson, 1720, fide Rivers, Early History South Carolina, 93, 

Cheelake. Barton, New Views, xliv, 1798. 
Cheerake. Adair, American Indians, 226, 1775. 
Cheerakee. Ibid., 137. 

Cheemque's. Moore, 1704, in Carroll, Hist. Colls. South Carolina, ii, 576, 1836. 
Cheerokee. Ross (?), 1776, in Historical Magazine, 2d series, ii, 218, 1867. 
Chel-a-ke. Long, Expedition to Rocky Mountains, ii, Ixx, 1823. 
Chekikees. Gallatin, Trans. Am. Antiq. Soc, ii, 90, 1836. 
Chelaqim. Nuttall, Travels, 247, 1821. 
Chelekee. Keane, in Stanford's ('Ompen<lium, .506, 1878. 
Chdlokee. Schoolcraft, Intlian Tribes, ii, 204, 1852. 
Cheloculgee. White, Statistics of Georgia, 28, 1849 (given as plural form of Creek 

Chelokees. Gallatin, Trans. Am. Antiq. Soc, ii, 104, 1836. 
Cheokees. Johnson, 1772, in New York Doc. Col. Hist., viii, 314, 1857 (misprint 

for Cherokees). 
Cheraguees. Coxe, Carolina, ii, 1741. 
Cherakees. Ibid., map, 1741. 

Cherakis. Chauvignerie, 1 736, fide Schoolcraft, Indian Tribes, iir, 555, 1853. 
Clieraqiiees. Coxe, Carolana, 13, 1741. 
Cheraquis. Penicaut, 1699, in Margry, v, 404, 1883. 
a>erickees. Clarke, 1739, in New York Doc. Col. Hist., vi, 148, 1855. 
Cherikee. Albany conference, 1742, ibid., 218. 

Cherokee. Governor Johason, 1708, in Rivers, South Carolina, 238, 18.56. 
Cherookees. Croghan, 1760, in Mass. Hist. Soc. Colls., 4th series, ix, 372, 1871. 
Clieroquees. Campbell, 1761, ibid., 416. 
Cherrackeen. Evans, 1755, in Gregg, Old Cheraws, 15, 1867. 
Cherrokeen. Treaty of 1722, fide Drake, Book of Indians, bk. 4, 32, 1848. 
Cherrykees. Weiser, 1748, fide Kauffman, Western Pennsylvania, appendix, 18, 1851. 
Chirakices. Randolph, 1699, in Rivers, South Carolina, 449, 1856. 
Chirokys. Writer about 1825, Annales de la Prop, de la Foi, ii, 384, 1841. 
Chorai-is. Document of 1748, New York Doc. Col. Hist., x, 143, 1858. 
Clireokees. Pike, Travels, 173, 1811 (misprint, transposed). 
Shanak-i. Gatschet, Caddo MS, Bureau Am. Etlin., 1882 (Caddo name). 
Shan-nack. Marcy, Red River, 273, 1854 (Wichita name). 
Shannah. Gatschet, Fox MS, Bureau .\m. Ethn., 1882 (Fox name: plural form, 

Shannakiak) . 
Shayage. Gatschet, Kaw MS. Bur. .\m. Ethn., 1878 (Kaw name). 

■ i Rafinesque, in Marshall, Kentucky, i, 23, 1824. 

186 MYTHS OF THE CHEROKEE [eth.ann.19 

SHlhii/p'ii'.i. Coxe, Carnlana, 22, 1741. 

TcuUc. Gatschet, Tniikawa MS, Bur. .\in. Ethn., 1882 (Tcmknwa. name, Chal-kr). 

Tceroldec. Gatschet, Wichita M.S, Bur. Am. Ethn., 1882 (Wichita name, Cherokish). 

Tchatakes. La Salle, 1682, in Margry, ii, 197, 1877 (misprint). 

Tsalakies. Gallatin, Trans. Am. Antiq. Soc, ii, 90, 1836. 

Tsallakee. Schoolcraft, Notes on Iroquois, 310, 1847. 

Tsd-l6-kee. Morgan, Ancient Society, 113, 1878. 

Tschirokexen. Wrangell, Ethn. Nachrichten, xiii, 1839 (German form). 

TsAlahk'i. Grayson, Creek MS, Bur. Am. Ethn., 188.5 (Creek name; plural form, 

TstUgill'gi or TsfilgfiViji — Mooney). 
Tzn-rickeij. Urlsperger, fide Gatschet, Creek Migration Legend, i, 26, 1884. 
Tzuhikis. Rafinesque, Am. Nations, i, 123, 1836. 
Zohimns. ) 

Talligeu. 1 jjgpii.y^y(^,i,igr, 1819,. Indian Nations, 48, reprint of 1876 (traditional Dela- 
ALLiGEWT. •> \yare name; singular, TalUge' or Allige' (see preceding explanation). 

Alligewi. > 

AUeg. Schoolcraft, In<lian Trilies, v, 133, 18.5.5. 

AUegans. Colden, map, 1727, fide Schoolcraft, ibi<l., in, 525, 18.53. 

Allegewi. Schoolcraft, ibid., v, 133, 1855. 

Allegham. Colden, 1727, quoted in Schoolcraft, Notes on Iroquois, 147, 1847. 

Alleglianys. Rafinesque, in Marshall, Kentucky, i, 34, 1824. 

Alkghens. Colden, map, 1727, fide Schoolcraft, Notes on Iroquois, 305, 1847. 

Allegwi. Squier, in Beach, Indian Miscellany, 26, 1877. 

AUi. Schoolcraft, Indian Tribes, v, 133, 185.5. 

AUighems. Keane, in Stanford's Compendium, 500, 1878. 

Talagam. Rafinesque, in Marshall, Kentucky, :, 28, 1824. 

Talega. Brinton, Walam Olum, 201, 1885. 

TaUageimj. Schoolcraft, Indian Trilaes, ii, 36, 1852. 

Tallegwi. Rafinesque, fide Mercer, Lenape Stone, 90, 1885. 

Talligwee. Schoolcraft, Notes on Iroquois, 310, 1847. 

Tallike. Brinton, Walam Olum, 230, 1885. 

Kitu'hwagi (plural, Ani'-Kllu'hwagl.. See preceding explanation). 

CuUawa. Vaugondy, map, Partie de I'Am^rique, Septentrionale 1755. 

Gatohua. i 

Oattodma. \ Gatschet, Creek Migration Legend, i, 28, 1884. 

Kaiowa (plural, Katowagi). I 

Keiawaugas. Haywood, Natural and Aboriginal Tennessee, 233, 1823. 

KMuvn. Brinton, Walam Olum, 16, 1885 ( Delaware name) . 

Kuttoowauw. Aupaumut, 1791, fide Brinton, ibid., 16 (Mahican name). 

OvATA'ciE'ROXoS'. Hcwltt, oral information (Iroquois (Mohawk) name. See preced- 
ing explanation) . 

Ojadagochroene. Livingston, 1720, in New York Doc. Col. Kist., v, 567, 1855. 

Ondadeonwag. Sleeker, 1701, ibid., iv, 918, 1854. 

Oyadackuchraono. Weiser, 1753, ibid., vi, 795, 1855. 

Oi/adagahroenes. Letter of 1713, ibid., v, 386, 1855 (incorrectly stated to be the Flat- 
heads, i. e., either Catawbas or Choctaws) . 

Ogadage'ono. Gatschet, Seneca MS, 1882, Bur. Am. Ethn. (Seneca name) . 

O-ya-da'-go-o-no. Morgan, League of Iroquois, 337, 1851. 

Oyaudali. Schoolcraft, Notes on Iroquois, 448, 1847 (Seneca name). 

Uivata'-yo-ro'-no. Gatschet, Creek Migration Legend, 28, 1884 (Wyandot name). 

Vyada. Ibid. (Seneca name). 

Wr-ydu-ddJi. Schoolcraft, Notes on Iroquois, 2.53, 1847. 

Wii-tiii-yo-ni-nori''. Hewitt, Wyandot MS, 1893, Buf. .\iii. Ethn. (Wyandot name). 


RiCKAHocKAXS. Lederer, W72, DisfoviTies, 2(5, reprint of ISfll ("st'c jin'rciliiig 

Rickohockam. Map, ibid. 
Reclidhecriatix. Drake, Biiok of Indian>i, hocik 4, 22, 1848 (from old Virginia docu- 

ment.s ) . 
Rechchecriaiix. Rafinesque, in Marsihall, Kentucky, i, 36, 1824. 
M.\STEh.\.<v'. Gatschet, Catawba MS, 1881, Bnr. Am. Ethn. (Oatawba name. Pee 

preceding explanation). 
„ fPotier, Racines Huronnes et Grammaire, MS, 1751 (Wvandot 

EnTARIRONNON. rru c t T i XJ Vt • • i" . i 

_ , { names. The nrst, aecordmg to Hewitt, i.« ciiuivalent to 

OCHIE TARIRONNON. ,, . , ^ . , ,,, 

I ridge, or mountain, people ) . 
T'k\ve°-tah-e-u-h.\-ne. Reauehamp, in Journal Am. Folklore, v, 225, 1<S92 (given ai? 

the Onondaga name and rendered, "people of a beautiful red color"). 
C ugacole(?). Fontanedo, about 1575, Memoir, translated in French Hist. Colls., 

II, 257, 1875 (rendered "wicked people"). 

(2) MoBiLiAN TRADE LANGUAGE (page 1(5): This trade jargon, liased upon Choctaw, 
but borrowing also from all the neighboring dialects and even from the more north- 
ern Algonquian languages, was spoken and understood among all the tribes of the t iulf 
states, probat)ly as far west as Matagorda bay and northward along both banks of 
the Mississipin to the Algonquian frontier alxjut the entrance of the Ohio. It was 
called Mobilienne by the French, from Mobile, the great trading center of the (iulf 
region. Along the Mississippi it was sometimes known also as the Chickasaw trade 
language, the Chickasaw being a dialect of the Choctaw language proper. Jeffreys, 
in 17(51, compares this jargon in its uses to the lingua franca of the Levant, and it 
was evidently ]>y the aid of this intertrilial me<lium that De Soto's interpreter from 
Tam])a bay could converse with all the tribes they met until they reached the Missis- 
sippi. Some of the names used by Fontanedo about 1575 for the tribes northward 
from Appalachee bay seem to be derived from this source, as in later times were the 
names of the other tribes of the Gulf region, without regard to linguistic affinities, 
including among others the Taensa, Tunica, Atakapa, and Shetimasha, representing 
as many different linguistic stocks. In his report upon the southwestern trilies in 
1805, Sibley says that the "Mobilian" was spoken in addition to their native lan- 
guages by all the Indians who had come from the east side of the Mississi|ipi. 
Among those so using it he names the Alabama, Apalachi, Biloxi, Chactoo, Pacana, 
Pa.scagula, Taensa, and Tunica. Woodward, writing from Louisiana more than fifty 
years later, says: "There is yet a language the Texas Indians call the Mobilian 
tongue, that has been the trading language of almost all the tribes that have inliali- 
ited the country. I know white men that now speak it. There is a man now livin<r 
near me that is fifty years of age, raised in Texas, that speaks the language well. It 
is a mixture of Creek, Choctaw, Chickasay, Netches [Natchez], and Ai)elash [.\jia- 
lachi] " — Reminiscences, 79. For further information see also (Tat.schet, Creek 
^Migration Legend, and Sibley, Report. 

The Mobilian trade jargon was not uniijue of its kind. In America, as in other 
parts of the world, the common necessities of intercommunication have resulted in 
the formation of several such mongrel dialects, prevailing sometimes over wide 
areas. In some cases, also, the language of a predominant tribe serves as the com- 
mon medium for all the tribes of a particular region. In South America w'e find the 
lingoa geral, based upon the Tiipi' language, understood for everyday purposes by 
all the tribes of the immense central region from Guiana to Paraguay, including 
almost the whole Amazon basin. On the northwest coast we find the well-known 
"Chinook jargon," which takes its name from a small tribe formerly residing at the 
mouth of t\n: Columbia, in common use anioug all the tribes fi-oni Cabfornia far up 



[ETH. ANN. 19 

into Alaska, ami eastward to the great divide (if the Ru<-ky muuntains. In the 
southwest the Xavaho-Apache language is understood by nearly all the Indians of 
Arizona and New Mexico, while on the plains the Sioux language in the north and 
the Comanche in the south hold almost the same position. In addition to these we 
have also the noted "sign language," a gesture system used and perfectly understood 
as a fluent means of communication among all the hunting tribes of the plains from 
the Saskatchewan to the Rio Grande. 

(3) Dialects (page 17): The linguistic affinity of the Cherokee and northern 
Iroquoian dialects, although now well estal)lished, is not usually obvious on the 
surface, but requires a close analysis of wonls, with a knowledge of the laws of pho- 
netic changes, to make it appear. The superficial agreement is perhaps most apparent 
between the Mohawk and the Eastern (Lower) Cherokee dialects, as both of these 
lack the labials entirely and use r instead of /. In the short table given below the 
Iroquois words are taken, with slight changes in the alphabet used, from Hewitt's 
manuscripts, the Cherokee from those of the author: 


Cherokee (East- 






atsi'ra (atsi'la) 



awft' (ftmS') 










hand (arm) 










[tcarhfl", Tusearora] 

tsftrCl (tsaifl) 










Comparison of Cherokee dialects 



( Upper) 





































martin (bird) 
















how much? 








I pick it up (long) 




my father 




my mother 




my father's father 




my mother's father 




Ontario, Canada. 

Iroquow, or Five Nations, New York. 


It will be noted that the Eastern and Middle dialect.? are about the same, except- 
ing for the change of / to r, and the entire absence of the labial m from the Eastern 
dialect, while the Western differs considerably from the othcre, particularly in the 
greater frequency of the li([uid I and the softening of the guttural g, the changes tend- 
ing to render it the most mu.'-ical of all the Cherokee dialects. It is also the stand- 
ard literary dialect. In addition to these three principal dialects there are some 
peculiar forms and expressions in use by a few individuals which indicate the former 
existence of one or more other dialects now too far extinct to be reconstructed. As 
in most other tribes, the ceremonial forms ii.sed by the priesthood are so filled with 
archaic and figurative, expressions as to be almost unintelligible to the laity. 

(4) lROQroi.\x TRIBES .\Nn .MiGR.-vTioxs (p. 17): The Iroquoian stock, taking its 
name from the celebrated Iro(|Uois confederacy, consisted formerly of from fifteen 
to twenty tribes, speaking nearly as many different dialects, and iucludiug, among 
others, the following: 

Wyandot, or Huron. 

Tionontati, or Tobacco nation. 

Attiwan'daron, or Neutral nation. 








Erie. Northern Ohio, etc. 

Conestoga, or Susquehanna. Southern Pennsylvania and Maryland. 

Nottowav. ■) ... 


Tuscarora. Eastern North Carolina. 

Cherokee. Western Carolina, etc. 

Tradition and history alike p<jint to the St. Lawrence region as the early home 
of this stock. Upon this point all authorities concur. Says Hale, in his paper on 
Indian Migrations (p. 4): "The constant tradition of the Iroquois represents their 
ancestors as emigrants from the region north of the Great lakes, where they dwelt in 
early times with their Huron brethren. This tradition is recorded with much par- 
ticularity by Cadwallader Colden, surveyor-general of New York, who in the early 
part of the last century composed his well known ' History of the Five Nations.' It 
is told in a somewhat different form by David Cusick, the Tuscamra historian, in his 
'Sketches of Ancient History of the Six Nations,' and it is repeated by Mr. L. H. 
Morgan in his now classical work, 'The League of the Iroquois,' for which he pro- 
cured his information chiefly among the Senecas. Finally, as we learn from the 
narrative of the Wyandot Indian, Peter Clarke, in his book entitled 'Origin and Tra- 
ditional History of the Wyandotts,' the belief of the Hurons accords in this respect 
with that of the Iroquois. Both point alike to the country immediately north of the 
St.' Lawrence, and especially to that portion of it lying east of Lake Ontario, as the 
early home of the Huroii-Ir<i(iuiiis nations." Nothing is known of the traditions of 
the Conestoga or the Nottuway, but the tradition of the Tuscarora, as given by Cusick 
and iitlH'r authorities, makes them a direct offshoot from the northern Iroquois, with 
whom they afterward reunited. The traditions of the ('herokee also, as we liave 
seen, bring them from the north, thus completing the cycle. "The striking fact has 
become evident that the course of migration of the Huron-Cherokee family has been 
from the northeast to the southwest — that is, from eastern Canada, on the Lower St. 
Lawrence, to the nmuntains nf northern .Vlabama." — Hale, Indian Migrations, p. 11. 

The retirement of the northern Irotjuoian tribes from the St. Lawrence region was 

190 MYTHS OF THE CHEKOKKE [eth.axn.19 

due to the hostility of their Algonquian neighbors, !iy whom the Hurons and their 
allies were forced to take refuge about Georgian bay and the liead of Lake Ontario, 
while the Iroquois proper retreated to central New York. In 15:55 C'artier found the 
shores of the river from Quebec to Montreal oceuiiied by an IrcHjuoian people, but on 
the settlement of the country seventy years later the same region was found in pos- 
session of Algonquian tribes. The confederation of the five Iroquc lis nations, proliably 
about the year 1540, enabled them to check the Algonquian invasion and to assume 
the offensive. Linguistic and other evidence shows that the separation of the Chero- 
kee from the parent stock must have far antedated this period. 

(5) Olum (p. 18): The name signifies "red .score," from the Delaware 
ivalain, "painted," more particularly "painted red," and otum, "a score, tally- 
mark." The Walam Olum was first published in 1836 in a work entitled "The 
American Nations," by C(.instantine Samuel Raflnesque, a versatile and voluminous, 
but very erratic, French scholar, who spent the latter half of his life in this country, 
dying in Philadelphia in 1840. He asserted that it was a translation of a manuscript 
in the Delaware language, which was an interpretation of an ancient sacred metrical 
legend of the Delawares, recorded in pictographs cut upon wood, obtained in 1820 by 
a medical friend of his among the Delawares then living in central Indiana. He 
says himself: "These actual olum were first obtained in 1820 as a reward for a 
medical cure, deemed a curiosity, and were unexplicable. In 1822 were obtained 
from another individual the songs annexed thereto in the original language, but no 
one could be found l)y me able to translate them. I had therefore to learn the 
language since, by the help of Zeisberger, Heckewelder, and a manuscript diction- 
ary, on jiurpose to translate them, which I only at'complisheil in 1833." On account 
of the unique character of the alleged Indian record and Ratinesque's own lack of 
standing among his scientific contemporaries, but little attention was paid to the 
discovery until Brinton took up the subject a few years ago. After a critical sifting 
of the evidence from every point of view he arrived at the conclusion that the 
work is a genuine native production, although the manuscript rendering is faulty, 
partly from the white scribe's ignorance of the language and partly from the Indian 
narrator's ignorance of the meaning of the archaic forms. Brinton's edition (q. v.), 
published from Rafinesque's manuscript, gives the legend in triplicate form — picto- 
graph, Delaware, and English translation, with notes and glossary, and a valuable 
ethnologic introduction by Brinton himself. 

It is not known that any of the original woodcut pictographs of the Walam Olum 
are now in existence, although a statement of Rafinesque implies that he had seen 
them. As evidence of the truth of his statement, however, we have the fact that 
precisely similar pictographic series cut upon birch bark, each jiictograph represent- 
ing a line or couplet of a sacred metrical recitation, are now known to be common 
among the Ojibwa, Menomini, and other northern tribes. In 1762 a Delaware 
prophet recorded his visions in hieroglyphics cut upon a wooden .stick, and aliout 
the year 1827 a Kickapoo reformer adopted the same method to propagate a new 
religion among the tribes. One of these "prayer sticks" is now in the National 
Museum, being all that remains of a large basketful delivered to a missionary in 
Indiana by a party of Kickapoo Indians in 1830 (see plate and description, pp. 665, 
697 et seq. in the author's Ghost-dance Religion, Fourteenth Annual Report of the 
Bureau of Ethnology). 

(6) Fish river (p. 18) : Namsesi Sipu (Heckewelder, Indian Nations, 49), or Namas- 
sipi (Walam Olum, p. 198). Deceived by a slight similarity of sound, Heckewelder 
makes this river identical with the Mississippi, but as Schoolcraft shows (Notes on 
Iroquois, p. 316) the true name of the Mississippi is simply :Misi-sipi, "great river," 
and "fish river" would be a most inappropriate name for such a turbulent current, 
where only the coarser species can live. The mere fact that there can he a question 
of identity among experts familiar with ludian nomenclature would indicate that it 


was not one of the larger streams. Although Ileckeweliler makes the Alligewi, as ne 
])refers to eall them, flee down the ^lississippi after their final ilefeat, the Walain 
Ohnn chronicle says only "all the Talega go south." It was prohalily a graihial 
withdrawal, rather tlian a sudden and concerted flight (see Hale, Indian Migra- 
tions, jjp. 19-22) . 

(7) First ai>pe.\u.\xce ok whites (ji. 19): It is possible that this may refer to one 
of the earlier adventurers who coasted along the Xorth Atlantic in the first decades 
after the discovery of America, among whom were Seba.stian Cabot, in 1498; Verra- 
zano, in 1524; and Gomez, in 1525. As these voyages were not followed up by per- 
manent occupation of the country it is doubtful if the)- made any lasting impression 
upon Indian tradition. The author has chosen to a.ssume, with Brinton and Ra(i- 
ne.s(]ue, that the Walam Oluni reference is to the settlement of the Dutch at New 
York an<l the English in Virginia soon after 1600. 

(S) I)e Soto's roi'TE (p. 26): On May 30, 15S9, Hernando de Soto, of Spain, with 
600 armed men and 213 horses, landed at Tampa bay, on the west coast of Florida, in 
search of gold. After more than four years of hardship and disappointed wandering 
from Florida to the great plains of the West and back again to the ^Mississippi, where 
De Soto died and his body was consigned to the great river, 311 men, all that were 
left of the expedition, arrived finally at Piinuco, in Mexico, on September 10, 1543. 

For the history of this expedition, the most important ever undertaken by Spain 
within eastern Uniterl States, w(> have four original authorities. First is the very 
brief, but evidently truthful (Spanish) report of Biedma, an otlicer of the exjiedi- 
tion, presented to the King in 1544, immediately after the return to Spain. Next 
in order, but of fii-st importance for detail and general appearance of reliability, is 
the narrative of an anonymous Portuguese cavalier of the expedition, commonly 
known as the Gentleman, of Elvas, originally published in the Portuguese language 
in 1557. Next comes the (Spanish) narrative of Garcilaso, written, but not pub- 
lished, in 1587. Unlike the others, the author was not an eyewitness of what he 
describes, but made up his accf)unt chiefly from the oral recollections of an old 
soldier of the expedition more than forty yeai-s after the event, this information 
being sujiplementcd from ]>a|)ers written by two other soldiers of DeSoto. As might 
be expected, the tiarcilaso narrative, although written in flowery style, abounds in 
exaggeration and trivial incident, and compares unfavorably with the other accounts, 
while probably giving more of the minor happenings. The fourth original account 
is an unfinished (Spanish) rej)ort by Ranjel, secretary of the expedition, written 
soon after reaching Mexico, and afterward incorporated with considerable change l)y 
C»vieilo, in his "Historia natural y general de las Indias." As this fourth narrative 
remained unpubli.«hed until 1S51 and has never been translated, it has hitherto liccii 
entirely overlooked by the commentators, excepting Winsor, who notes it inciden- 
tally. In general it agrees well with the Elvas narrative and throws valuable light 
upon the history of the expedition. 

The principal authorities, while preserving a general unity of narrati\c, differ 
greatly in detail, especially in estimates of numbers and distances, frequently to such 
an extent that it is useless to attempt to reconcile their different statements. In gen- 
eral the Gentleman of Elvas is most moderate in his expression, while Biedma takes 
a middle ground and (iarcilaso exaggerates greatly. Thus the first named gives 
De Soto 600 men, Biedma makes the number 620, while Ciarcila-xo says 1,000. At a 
certain stage of the journey the Portuguese Gentleman gives De Soto 700 Indians as 
escort, Biedma says 800, while Garcilaso makes it 8,000. At the battle of Mavilla the 
Elvas account gives 18 Spaniards and 2,500 Indians kille<l, Biedma says 20 Spaniards 
killed, without giving an estimate of the Indians, while Garcilaso has 82 Spaniards 
and over 11,000 Indians killed. In distances there is as great discrepancy. Thus 
Bie<Ima makes the distance frcmi Guaxule to Chiaha four days, Garcilaso has it six 
days, and Elvas seven days. As to the length of an average day's march we find it 

192 MYTHS OF THE CHEROKEE [eth.a.nn.19 

estimated all the way from "four leagues, more or less" (Gareilaso) to " every day 
seven or eight leagues" (Elvas). In another place the Elvas chronicler states that 
they usually made five or six leagues a day through inhabited territories, but that in 
crossing uninhabited regions — as that between Canasagua anil (!hiaha, they marched 
every day as far as possible for fear of running out of provisions. One of the most 
glaring discrepancies appears in regard to the tlistance between Chiaha and Coste. 
Both the Portuguese writer and Garcilaso put Ohiaha upon an island — a statement 
which in itself is at variance with any present conditions, — but while the former 
makes the island a fraction over a league in length the latter says that it was five 
leagues long. The next town was Coste, which Garcilaso puts immediately at the 
lower end of the same island while the Portuguese Gentleman represents it as seven 
days distant, although he himself has given the island the shorter length. 

Notwithstanding a deceptive appearance of exactness, especially in the Elvas and 
Ranjel narratives, which have the form of a daily journal, tlie conclusion is irresist- 
ible that much of the record was made after dates had been forgotten, and the 
sequence of e\ents had become confused. Considering all the difficulties, dangers, 
and uncertainties that constantly beset the expedition, it would be too uuicii to expect 
the regularity of a ledger, and it is more probable that the entries were made, not 
from day to day, but at irregular intervals as opportunity presented at the several 
resting places. The story must be interpreted in the light of our later knowledge of 
the geography and ethnology of the country traversed. 

Each of the three princiiial narratives has passed through translations and later 
editions of more or less doubtful fidelity to the original, the English edition in some 
cases being itself a translation from an earlier French or Dutch translation. English 
speaking historians of the expedition have usually drawn their material from one or 
the other of these translations, without knowledge of the original language, of the 
etymologies of the Indian names or the relations of- the various tribes mentioned, or 
of the general system of Indian geographic nomenclature. One of the greatest errors 
has been the attempt to give in every case a fixed local habitation to a name which 
in some instances is not a proper name at all, and in others is merely a descriptive 
term or a duplicate name occurring at several places in the same tribal territory. 
Thus Tali is simply the Creek word tnliia, town, and not a definite place name as 
represented by a mistake natural in dealing through interpreters \vith an unknown 
Indian language. Tallise and Tallimuchase are respectively "Old town" and "New 
town" in Creek, and there can be no certainty that the same names were applied to 
the same places a century later. Canasagua is a corruption of a Cherokee name 
which occurs in at least three other places in the old Cherokee country in addition 
to the one mentioned in the narrative, and almost every old Indian local name 
was thus repeated several times, as in the case of such common names as Short 
creek, AVhitewater, Richmond, or Lexington among ourselves. The fact that only 
one name of the set has been retained on the map does not prove its identity with the 
town of the old chronicle. Again such loose terms as "a large river," "a beautiful 
valley," have been assumed to mean something more definitely localized tluui the 
wording warrants. The most common error in translation has been the rendering 
of the Spanish "despoblado" as "desert." There are no deserts in the Gulf states, 
and the word means simply an uninhabited region, usually the debatable strip 
between two tribes. 

There have been many attempts to trace De Soto's route. As nearly every historian 
who has written of the southern states has given attention to this subject it is 
unnecessary to enumerate them all. Of some thirty works consulted l:)y the author, 
in addition to the original narratives already mentioned, not more than two or three 
can be considered as speaking with any authority, the rest simply copying from these 
without investigation. The first attempt to locate the route definitely was made 
by Meek (Romantic Passages, etc.) in 1839 (reprinted in 1857), his conclusi(jns being 


hascil upon lli^< j;i'iu'ral kiiuwleilj^i- of the gfotrraphy of the region. In IS.'il I'ii'kftl 
tried to loeate the route, eliiefly, he assertti, from Indian tradition as rehited hy 
niixed-bloods!. How nnu'li dependence can be placed upon Indian tradition as thus 
interpreted tliree centuries after the event it is unnecessary to say. Both these 
writers liave brought De Soto down the (^oosa river, in wliieli they liave l>een 
followed without investigation liy Irving, Shea and others, but none of these was 
aware of the existence of a Suwali trilx' or correctly acquainteil with the In<lian 
nomenclature of the upper country, or of the Creek country a.s so well .sununarizcd 
by (xatschet in his Creek Migration Legend. They are also mistaken in assuming 
that oidy De Soto passed through the country, whereas we now know that ,se\eral 
Spanish explorers and numerous French adventurers traversed the same territoi'y, 
the latest expeditions of course being freshest in Indian memory. Jones in his 
"De Soto's March Through Georgia" simply dresses up the earlier statements in 
more literary style, sometimes cluvnging surmises to positive assertions, without 
mentioning his authorities. JMaps of the suj)po.sed route, all bringing De Soto down 
the Coo.-ia instead of the Chattahoochee, have been pul)lished in Irving's Con(iuest of 
Florida, the Ilakluyt Society's eilition of the Gentleman of Elva's account, and in 
Buckingham Smith's translation of the .same narrative, as well as in several other 
works. For the eastern portion, with which we have to deal, all of these are ])ra(;- 
tically duplicates of one another. On several old and French maps the 
names mentionefl in tlie narrative seem to have been set down merely to fill sjuvce, 
without much reference to the text of the chronicle. For a list and notices of prin- 
cipal writers who have touched upon this subject see the appendix to Shea's chajiter 
on "Ancient Florida" in Win.sor's Narrative and Critical History of America, n; Bos- 
ton, 188(i. W'c sliall sjieak only of that jiart of thi' route which lay near the Cheri>kee 

The first location whicii concerns us in the narrative is Cofitachiqui, th(^ town 
from whicli De Soto set out for the Cherokee country. Tlie name apjiears variously 
as Cofitachequi (Ranjel), Cofitachique (Biedma), Cofachiqui (Garcilaso), Cutifa- 
Chiqui (by transposition, Elvas), Cofeta^que (Vandera), Catafachique (Williams) . 
and Cosatachiqui (misprint, Brooks MSS), and the Spaniards first heard of the 
region as Yupaha from a tribe farther to the south. The correct form appears to be 
that first given, whicli Gatsehet, from later information than that (juoted in his 
Creek Migration Legend, makes a Ilitchitee word about equivalent to " Dogwood 
town," iromcofi, "dogwood," rnfitii, "dogwood thicket," andc/i/A-/, "house," orcol- 
Icctively "town." McCulloch puts the town upon the headwaters of tin; ()i-nmlgee; 
Williams locates it on the Chattahoochee; Gallatin on the Oconee or the Savannah; 
Meek and Monette, following him, probably in the fork of the Savannah and the 
Broad; Pickett, with .Tones and others following him, at Silver bluff on tlie east 
(north) bank of the Savannah, in Barnwell county. South Carolina, about L'.'i miles by 
water below the present Augusta. It will thus be seen that at the very outset of our 
in(|uiry the commentators differ by a <listance equal to more than half the width of 
the state of Georgia. It will suffice here to say, without going into the argument, that 
the author is inclined to believe that the Indian town was on or near Silvi'r bluff, 
which was noted for its extensive ancient remains as far back as Bartram's time 
.(Travels, 313), and where the noted George tialphin established a trading post in 
1736. The original site has since been almost entirely worn away by the river. 
According to the Indians of Cofitachiqui, the town, which w'as on the farther (north) 
bank of the stream, was two day's journey from the sea, probably by canoe, and the 
sailors with the expedition believed the river to be the same one that entered at St. 
Helena, wliich wa-s a very close guess. The Spaniards were shown here Kuropean 
articles which they were told had been obtained from white men who had entered the 
river's mouth many years before. These they conjectured to have been the men 
W'ith Ayllon, who had landed on that coast in \WiO and again in 1524. The town was 
probably the ancient capital of the Uchee Indians, who, before their absorption by 

19 ETH— 01 13 

1\)4 MYTHS OF THE CHEKOKEE [ktii. an.nM9 

till' Creeks, heUl cjr i-luiined umiJt of the territory uii both lianks of Savannah river 
from the Cherokee border to within about forty miles of Savannah and westward to 
the Ogeechee and Cannouchee rivers (see Gatschet, Creek Migration Legend, r, 17-24). 
The lOiintry was already on the decline in 1540 from a recent fatal epidemic, but 
was yet populous and wealthy, and was ruled by a woman chief whose authority 
extended for a considerable distance. The town was visited also by Pardo in 1567 and 
again by Torres in 1628, when it was still a principal settlement, as rich in pearls as in 
De .Soto's time ( Brooks MSS, in the archives of the Bureau of American Ethnology) . 

Somewhere in southern Georgia De Soto had been told of a rich province called 
Coi;a (Coosa, the Creek country) toward the northwest. At Cofitachi<iui he again 
hearil of it and of one of its principal towns called Chiaha (Chehaw) as being twelve 
days inland. Although on first hearing of it he had kept on in the other direction 
in order to reach Gofitachiqui, he now determined to go there, and made the 
queen a prisoner to comi)el her to accompany him a part of the way as guide. Co^a 
province was, though he did not know it, almost due west, and he was in haste to 
reach it in order to obtain corn, as his men and horses were almost worn out from 
hunger. It is apparent, however, that the unwilling queen, afraid of being carried 
beyond her own territories, led the Spaniards by a roundabout route in the hope of 
making her escape, as she finally ditl, or perhaps of leaving them to starve and die in 
the mountains, precisely the trick attempted by the Indians upon another Spanish 
adventurer, Coronado, entering the great plains from the Pacific coast in search of 
golden treasure in the same year. 

Instead therefore of recrossing the river to the westward, the Spaniards, guided 
by the captive queen, took the direction of the north ("la vuelta del norte" — 
Biedma), and, after passing through several towns subject to the queen, came in 
seven days to "the province of Chalaque" (Elvas). Elvas, Garcilaso, and Ranjel 
agree upon the spelling, but the last named makes the distance only two days from 
Gofitachiqui. Biedma does not mention the country at all. The trifling difference 
in statement of five days in seven need not trouble us, as Biedma makes the whole 
distance from Gofitachiqui to Xuala eight days, and from Guaxule to Chiaha four days, 
where Elvas makes it, respectively, twelve and seven days. Chalaque is, of course, 
Cherokee, as all writers agree, and De Soto was now probably on the waters of 
Keowee river, the eastern head stream of Savannah river, where the Lower Chero- 
kee had their towns. Finding the country bare of corn, he made no stay. 

Proceeding six days farther they came next to Guaquili, where they were kindly 
received. This name occurs only in the Ranjel narrative, the other three being 
entirely silent in regard to such a halting place. The name has a Cherokee sound 
(Wakili), but if we allow for a dialectic substitution of I for r it may be connected 
with such Catawba names as Congaree, Wateree, and Sugeree. It was probably a 
village of minor importance. 

They came next to the province of Xuala, or Xualla, as the Elvas narrative more 
often has it. In a French edition it appears as Ghouala. Ranjel makes it three 
days from Guaquili or five from Chalaque. Elvas also makes it five days from 
Chalaque, while Biedma makes it eiglit days from Gofitachiqui, a total discrepancy 
of four days from the last-named place. Biedma describes it as a rough mountain 
country, thinly populated, but with a few Indian houses, and thinks that in these 
mountains the great river of Espiritu Santo (the Mississippi) had its birth. Ranjel 
describes the town as situated in a plain in the vicinity of rivers and in a country 
with greater appearance of gold mines than any they had yet seen. The Portuguese 
gentleman describes it as having very little corn, and says that they reached it from 
Gofitachiqui over a hilly country. In his final chapter he states that the course 
from Gofitachiqui to this place was from south to north, thus agreeing with Biedma. 
According to Garcilaso (pp. 136-137) it was fifty leagues by the roail along which the 
Spaniards had couje from Cofitachi(iai to the first valley of the i)r(ivince of Xuala, 

MoosEY] DE SOTo's ROUTE 195 

with hut few mountains on the way, and the town itself watii s^ituaterl close niiiier a 
mountain { "a la falda de una sierra" ) beside a small but rapid stream whieh formed 
the boundary of the territory of Colitaehiqui in tliis direction. From lianjel we 
learn that on the same ilay after leavinf; this place for the next "province" the 
Spaniards crossed a very high mountain ridge ("una sierra umy alta"). 

Without mentioning the name, Pickett (1851) refers to Xuala as "a town in the 
present Habersham county, Georgia," but gives no reason for this opinion. Rye 
and Irving, of the same date, arguing from a slight similarity of name, think it may 
have been on the site of a former Cherokee town, Qualatchee, on the head of (jhat- 
tahoochee river in (ieorgia. The resemblance, however, is rather farfetche<l, and 
moreover this same name is found on Keowee river in South Carolina. Jones 
(De Soto in (ieorgia, ISSO) interprets Garcilaso's description to refer to " Nacoochee 
valley, Habersham county" — vvhicli should be White county — and the neighboring 
Momit Yonah, overlooking the fact that the same description of mountain, valley, 
and swift flowing stream might apply equally well to any one of twenty other 
localities in this southern mountain country. With direct contradiction Garcila,so 
says that the Spaniards rested here fifteen days because they found provisions plenti- 
ful, while the Portuguese Gentleman says that they stopped Init two days because 
they found so little corn! Ranjel makes them stop four days and says they found 
abundant provisions and assistance. 

However that may have been, there can be no question of the identity of the 
name. As the province of Chalaque is the country of the Cherokee, .so the province 
of Xuala is the territory of the Suwali or Sara Indians, better known later as 
Cheraw, who lived in early times in the piedmont country about the head of Broad 
river in North Carolina, adjoining the Cherokee, who still remember them imder 
the name of Ani'-Suwa'li. A principal trail to their country from the west led up 
Swannanoa river and across the gap which, for this reason, was known to the 
Cherokee as Suwa'li-nunna, "Suwali trail," corrupted by the whites to Swannanoa. 
Lederer, who found them in the same general region in 1670, calls this gaj) the 
" Suala pass" and the neighboring mountains the Sara mountains, "which," he 
.says, "The Spaniards make Suala." They afterward shifted to the north and 
finally returned and were incorporate!! with the Catawba (see Mooney, Siouan Tribes 
of the East, bulletin of the Bureau of Ethnology, 1894). 

Up to this point the Spaniards had followed a north course from Cofitachiqui 
(Biedma and Elvas), but they now turned to the west (Elvas, final chajjter). On 
the same day on which they left Xuala they crossed "a very high mountain ridge," 
and descended the ne.xt day to a wide meadow bottom ("savana"), through wliich 
flowed a river which they concluded was a [jart of the Espiritu Santo, the Mississippi 
(Ranjel). Biedma speaks of cros.sing a mountain country and mentions the river, 
which he says they thought to be a tributary of the Mississippi. 
says that this portion of their route was through a mountain country without inhabi- 
tants ( " despoblado" ) and the Portuguese gentleman describes it as being over "very 
rough and high ridges." In five days of such travel — for here, for a wonder, all the 
narratives agree — they came to Guaxule. This is the form given by Garcilaso and 
the Gentleman of Elvas; Biedma has Guasula, and Hanjel Guasili or Guasuli. The 
translators and commentators have given us such forms as Guachoule, l^uaxule, 
Quaxulla, and Quexale. According to the Spanish method of writing In<lian words 
the name was pronounced Washiile or Wasuli, which ha.s a Cherokee sound, although 
it can not be translated. Buckingham Smith (Narratives, p. 222) hints that the Span- 
iards may have changed (juasili to Guasule, because of the similarity of the latter 
form to a town name in southern Spain. Such corruptions of Indian names are of 
frequent occurrence. Garcilaso speaks of it as a "province and town," while Biedma 
and Ranjel call it simply a town ("jjueblo"). Before reaching this place the Indian 
queen had managed to make her escape. All the chroniclers tell of the kind recei> 

ion MYTHS OF THK ('HKRI)KKE [eth. an.s.19 

tiua whiel] tlie Spaniards met here, but the only deseriptioii of the town itseU" is from 
Garcilaso, who sa.ys that it was situated in the midst of many small streams which 
came down from the mountains round about, tliat it consisted of three hundred 
houses, which is probably an exaggeration, though it goes to sliov\' that tlic; \illage 
was of considerable size, and that the chief's house, in which the principal officers 
were lodgeil, was upon a high hill ("un cerro alto"), around which was a roadway 
( " paseadero" ) wide enough for six men to walk abreast. By the "chief's house" 
we are to understand the tijwn-house, while from various similar references in other 
parts of the narrative there can be nodoubt that the "hill" upon which it stood was 
an artificial mound. In modern Spanish writing such artificial elevations are more 
often called lomas, but these early adventurers may be excused for not noting the 
distinction. Issuing from the mountains round about the town were numerous small 
streams, which united to form the river which the Spaniards lienceforth followed 
from here down to Cliiaha, where it was as large as the Guadalipiivir at Scvilla 

Deceived by the occurrence, in the Portuguese narrative, of the name C'anasagua, 
which they assumed could belong in l)ut one plai'e, earlier commentators have 
identified this river with the Coosa, Pickett putting Guaxule somewliere upon its 
upper waters, wliile Jones improves upon this by making the site "identical, or very 
nearly so, with Coosa wattee Old town, in the southeastern corner of Murray county," 
Georgia. As M-e shall show, however, the name in question was duplicated in several 
states, and a careful study of the narratives, in the light of present knowledge of the 
country, makes it evident that the river was not the Coosa, but the Chattahoochee. 

Turning our attention once more to Xuala, the most northern ]joint reached liy 
lie Soto, we have seen that this was the territory of the Suwala or Sara Indians, in 
the eastern foothills of the Alleghenies, about the head waters of Broad and Catawl>a 
rivers, in North Carolina. As the Spaniards turned here to the west they ])rol)alily 
did not penetrate far beyond the present South Carolina boundary. The "very high 
mountain ridge" which they crossed immediately after leaving the town was in all 
probability the main chain of the Blue ridge, while the river which they found after 
descending to the savanna on the other side, and which they guessed to be a l)ranch 
of the Mississi])pi, was almost as certainly the upper part of the French Broad, the 
first stream flowing in an opposite direction from those which they had previously 
encountered. They may have struck it in the neighborhood of Hendersonville or 
Brevard, there being two gaps, passable for vehicles, in the main ridge eastward 
from the first-named town. The uninhabited mountains through which they strug- 
gled for several days on their way to Chiaha and Coi,-a (the Creek country) in the 
southwest were the broken ridges in which the Savannah and the Little Tennessee 
have their sources, and if they followed an Indian trail they may have passed through 
the Rabun gap, near the present Clayton, Georgia. Guaxule, and not Xuala, as Jones 
supposes, was in Nacoochee valley, in the present White county, (reorgia, and the 
small streams which united to form the river down which the Spaniards ])roceeded 
to Chiaha were the headwaters of the Chattahoochee. The hill upon which the 
townhouse was built must have been the great Nacoochee mound, the most promi- 
nent landmark in the valley, on the east bank of Sautee creek, in White county, 
about twelve miles northwest of Clarkesville. This is the largest mound in upjjer 
Georgia, with the exception of the noted Etowah mound near Cartersville, and is the 
only one which can fill the requirements of the case. There are but tw'o consider- 
able mounds in western North Carolina, that at Franklin and a smaller one on Ocona- 
luftee river, on the present East Cherokee reser\'ation, and as both of these are on 
streams flowing away from the Creek country, this fact alone would bar them from 
consideration. The only large mounds in upper Creorgia are this one at Nacoochee 
and the group fin the Etowah river, near Cartersville. The largest of tlie Etowah 
group is some fifty feet in height and is ascended on one side by means of a roadway 

MooNEY] DE SOTo's ROUTE 197 

aliouf fifty feet wiile at the l)asp and narrowing frradually to tlie top. Had tliis l)een 
the mound of tlie narrative it is hardly jHWsilile tliat the ehronieler would have failed 
to notice also the two other mounds of the group or the other one on the oi)posite 
side of the river, eaeh of these heing from twenty to twenty-five feet in height, to say 
nothing of the great diteh a ouarter of a mile in length which encircles the group. 
Moreover, Cartersville is at some distance from the mountains, and the Etowah river 
at this point does not answer the description of a small rushing mountain stream. 
There is no considerable mound at Coosawatee or in any of the three counties 

Tlie Xacoochee mound has been cleared and cultivated for many years and does 
not now show any appearance of a roadway up the side, hut from its great height 
we may be reasonably sure that some such means of easy ascent existed in ancient 
tinie.s. In other respects it is the only mound in the whole upper country which 
fills the conditions. The valley is one of the most fertile spots in Georgia and 
numerous ancient remains give evidence that it was a favorite center of settlement in 
early days. At the beginning of the modern hi.storic period it was held by the 
Cherokee, who had there a town called Nacoochee, but their claim was disputed by 
the Creeks. The Gentleman of Elvas states that Guaxule was .subject to the queen 
of Cotitachiqui, but this may mean only that the people of the two towns or tribes 
were in friendly alliance. The modern name is pronounced ya(/iit.<<T by the Chero- 
kee, who say, however, that it is not of their language. The terminal may be the 
Creek ndshi, "small," or it may have a connection with the name of the Uchee 

From Guaxule the Spaniards advanced to Canasoga (Ranjel) or Canasagua (Elvas), 
one or two daj's' march from Guaxule, according to one or the other authority. 
Garcilaso and Biedma do not mention the name. As Garcilaso states that from 
Guaxule to Chiaha the march was down the bank of the same river, which we 
identify with the Chattahoochee, the town may have been in the neighborhood of 
the present (iainesville. As we have seen, however, it is unsafe to trust the e.stiiuates 
of distance. Arguing from the name, Meek infers that the town was al)OUt Cona- 
sanga river in Murray (-(junty, and that the river down which they marched to reach 
it was " no doubt the Etowah," although to reach the first named river from the 
Etowah it would be necessary -to make another sharp turn to the north. From the 
same coincidence Pickett puts it on the Conasauga, "in the modern county of Mur- 
ray, Georgia," w-hile Jones, on the same theory, locates it "at or near the junction 
of the Connasauga and Coosawattee rivers, in originally Cass, now (iordon county." 
Here his modern geography as well as his ancient is at fault, as the original Cass 
county is now Bartow, the name having been changed in consequence of a local dis- 
like for General Cass. The whole theory of a march down the Coosa river re.«ts 
upon this coinci<lence of the name. The same name however, pronounced (lanxiVcjl 
by the Cherokee, was applied by them to at least three different locations within 
their old territory, while the one mentioned in the narrative would make the fourth. 
The others were (1) on Oostanaula river, opposite the mouth of the Conasauga, where 
afterward was Xew Echota, in (iordon county, (ieorgia: (2) on Cana.sauga creek, in 
McMinn county, Tennessee; (?>) on Tuckasegee river, about two miles above Web- 
ster, in .lackson county. North Carolina. At each of these places are remains of 
ancient settlement. It is possible that the name of Kenesaw mountain, near .Mari- 
etta, in Cobb county, Georgia, may be a corruption of (iftnsagi, and if so, the Canasagua 
of the narrative may have been somewhere in this vicinity on the Chattahoochee. 
The meaning of the name is lost. 

On leaving Cana.sagua they continued down the same river which they had fol- 
lowed from (iuaxule (, and after traveling several days through an unin- 
habited ("despoblado") country (Elvas) arrived at Chiaha. which was subject to the 
gi'eat chief of Coi,'a (Elvas). The name is si«3lled Chiaha by Kanjel and the Gentle- 

198 MYTHS OF THE CHEROKEE Ieth.ann.19 

man of Elvas, Chiha by Biedma in the Documentos, China l)y a misprint in an 
English rendering, ami Ychiaha byOarcilaso. It appears as Chiha on an English map 
of 1762 reproduced in Winsor, Westward Movement, page 31, 1897. Gallatin spells 
it Ichiaha, while Williams and Fairbanks, by misprint, make it Chiapa. According 
to both Ranjel and Elvas the army entered it on the 5th of June, although the 
former makes it four days from Canasagua, while the other makes it five. Biedma 
says it was four days from Guaxule, and, finally, Garcilaso says it was six days and 
thirty leagues from Guaxule and on the same river, which was, here at Chiaha, as 
large as the Guadalquivir at Sevilla. As we have seen, there is a great discrepancy 
in the statements of the distance from Cotitachiqui to this point. All four authorities 
agree that the town was on an island in the river, along which they had been 
marching for some time (Garcilaso, Ranjel), but while the Elvas narrative makes 
the island "two crossbow shot" in length above the town and one league in length 
below it, Garcilaso calls it a "great island more than five leagues long." On both 
sides of the island the stream was very broad and easily waded (Elvas). Finding 
welcome and food for men and horses the Spaniards rested here nearly a month 
(June 5-28, Ranjel; twenty-six or twenty-seven days, Biedma; thirty days, Elvas). 
In spite of the danger from attack De Soto allowed his men to sleep under trees in 
the open air, "because it was very hot and the people should have suffered great 
extremity if it had not been so" (Elvas). This in itself is evidence that the place 
was pretty far to the scjuth, as it was yet only the first week in June. The town was 
subject to the chief of the great province of Cofa, farther to the west. From here 
onward they began to meet palisaded towns. 

On the theory that the march was down Coosa river, every commentator hitherto 
has located Chiaha at some point upon this stream, either in Alabama or Georgia. 
Gallatin (1836) says that it "must have been on the Coosa, probably some distance 
below the site of New Echota." He notesa similarity of soimd between Ichiaha and 
"Echoy" (Itseyl), a Cherokee town name. Williams (1837) says that it was on 
Mobile (i. e., the Alabama or lower Coosa river). Meek (1839) says "there can be 
little doubt that Chiaha was situated but a short distance above the junction of the 
Coosa and Chattooga rivers," i. e., not far within the Alabama line. He notes the 
occurrence of a "Chiaha" (Chehawhaw) creek near Talladega, Alabama. In regard 
to the island upon which the town was said to have been situated he says: "There 
is no such island now in the Coosa. It is probable that the Spaniards either mistook 
the peninsula formed Ijy the junction of two rivers, the Coosa and Chattooga, for an 
island, or that those two rivers were originally luiited so as to form an island neai' 
their present confluence. We have heard this latter supposition asserted by per- 
sons well acquainted with the country." — Romantic Passages, p. 222, 1857. Monette 
(1846) puts it on Etowah Ijranch of the Coosa, probably in Floyd county, Georgia. 
Pickett (1851), followed in turn by Irving, Jones, and Shea, locates it at "the site of 
the modern Rome." The "island" is interpreted to mean the space between the 
two streams above the confluence. 

Pickett, as has been stated, bases his statements chiefly or entirely upon Indian 
traditions as obtained from halfbreeds or traders. How much information can be 
gathered from such sources in regard to events that transpired three centuries before 
mav be estimated by considering how much an illiterate mountaineer of the same 
region might lie able to tell concerning the founding of the Georgia colony. Pickett 
himself seems to have been entirely unaware of the later Spanish expeditions of 
Pardo and De Luna through the same country, as he makes no mention of them 
in his history of Alabama, but ascribes everything to De Soto. Concerning Chiaha 
he says: 

"The ancient Cherokee Indians, whose tradition has been handed down to 
us through old Indian traders, disagree as to the precise place [!] where De Soto 
crossed the Oostanaula to get over into the town of Chiaha— some asserting that he 

MooXEY] DE SOTo's ROUTE lit',) 

passed over that river seven iniles above its junction with tlie Etowah, and that 
he marched from thonco down to Chiaha, wliich, all contend, lay immediately at the 
confluence of the two rivers; while other ancient Indians asserted that ho cn)sse<l, 
with his army, immediately opposite the town. But this is not very important. 
C'liupling the Indian traditions with the account by (Jarccllasso and tliat liy the Por- 
tug\icse eyewitness, we are inclined to believe the latter tradition that the expedition 
continued to advance down the western side of the Oostanaula until they halted in 
view of the mouth of the Etowah. De Soto, having arrived inunediately opposite 
the great town of Chiaha, now the site of Rome, crossed the Oostanaula," etc. (His- 
tory of Alabama, p. 2o, reprint, 1896) . He overlooks the fact that (chiaha wius not a 
Cherokee town, but belonged to the province of Co^a — i. e., the territory of the 
Creek Indians. 

A careful study of the four original narratives makes it plain that the expedition 
did not descend either the Ocistananla or the Etowah, and that conseciuently Chiaha 
could not have been at their junction, the present site of Kome. On the oilier han<l 
the conclusion is irresistible that the march was down the Chattahoochee from its 
extreme head springs in the mountains, and that the Chiaha of the narrative was 
the Lower Creek town of the same name, more commonly known as Ohehaw, for- 
merly on this river in the neighborhood of the modern city of Columbus, Georgia, 
while Coste, in the narrative the next adjacent town, was Kasi'ta, or Cusseta, of the 
same group of villages. The falls at this point mark the geologic break line where 
the river changes from a clear, swift current to a broad, slow-moving stream of the 
lower country. Attracted by the fisheries and the fertile bottom lands the Lower 
Creeks established here their settlement nucleus, and here, up to the beginidng of 
the present century, they liad within easy distance of each other on both sides of 
the river .some fifteen towns, among which were Chiaha (Chehaw), Chiahudshi 
(Little Chehaw) 1 'H"' Kasi'ta (Cusseta). Most of these settlements were within 
what are now Muscogee and Chattahoochee counties, Georgia, and Lee and Russell 
counties, Alabama (see town list and map in Gatschet, Creek iligration Legend). 
Large mounds and other earthwi:>rks on both sides of the river in the vicinity of 
Cohmdius attest the importance of the site in ancient days, while the general apjiear- 
ance indicates that at times the adjacent low grounds were submerged or cut off by 
overflows from the main stream. A principal trail crossed here from the Ocnudgee, 
pa.ssing by Tuskegee to the Upper Creek towns about the junction of the Coosa and 
Tallapoosa in Alabama. At the beginning of the present century this trail was 
known to the traders as " De Soto's trace" (Woodward, Reminiscences, ji. 7(5). As 
the Indian towns freipiently shift their position within a limited range on account 
of epidemics, freshets, nr impoverishment of the soil, it is not necessary to assume 
that they occupied exactly the same sites in l.")40 as in 1800, but only that as a group 
they were in the same general vicinity. Thus Kasi'ta it.^elf was at one ]>eriod above 
the falls and at a later period .some eight miles below them. Both Kasi'ta and ( 'hiaha 
were principal towns, with several branch villages. 

The time given as occupied on the march from Canasagua to Chiaha would seem 
too little for the actual distance, but aa we have seen, the chroniclers do not agree 
among themselves. We can easily believe that the Spaniards, buoyed up by the 
certainty of finding food and rest at their next halting jilace, made better progress 
along the smooth river trail than while blundering helplessly through the mountains 
at the direction of a most unwilling guide. If Caiuisagua was any wdiere in the neigh- 
borhood of Kenesaw, in Cobb county, the time mentioned in the Elvas or (iarcihuso 
narrative would probably have been sufficient for reaching Chiaha at the falls. The 
uninhabited country between the two towns was the neutral ground bctw-een tlie 
two hostile tribes, the Cherokee and the Creeks, and it is worth noting that Kene- 
saw mountain was made a jtoint on the boundary line afterward established bctwcin 
the two tribes through the mediation of the United States government. 

200 MYTHS OF THE CHEROKEE [eth.ann. 1 

There is no large island in either tlie Coosa or the Chattahoochee, and we are 
forced to the conclusion that what the chronicle describes as an island was really a 
portion of the bottom land temporarily i:ut off l>y Imck water from a freshet. In a 
similar way "The Slue," east of Flint river in Mitchell county, may have been 
formed l>y a shifting of the river cliannel. Two months later, in Alabama, the 
Spaniards reached a river so swollen by rains that they were obliged to wait six 
days before they could cross (Elvas). Lederer, while iTossing South Carolina in 
1G70, found his fartlier progress barred by a "great lake," which he puts on his map 
as "Ushery lake," although there is no such lake in tlie state; but the mystery is 
explained by Lawson, who, in going over tlie same ground thirty years later, found 
all the bottom lands mider water from a great flood, the Santee in particular being 
3(i feet above its normal level. As Lawson was a surveyor his figures may lie con- 
sidered reliable. The "Ushery lake" of Lederer was simply an overflow of Catawba 
river. Flood water in the streams of upper Georgia and Alabama would (jnickly be 
carried off, but would be apt to remain for some time on the more level country 
below the falls. 

According to information supplied liy Mr Thomas Robinson, an expert engineering 
authority familiar with the lower Chattahoocliee, there was formerly a large mound, 
now almost entirely washed away, on the eastern bank of the river, about nine miles 
below Columlius, while on the western or Alabama bank, a mile or two farther <lown, 
there is still to be seen another of nearly equal size. "At extreme freshets both of 
these mounds were partly submerged. To the east of the former, known as the 
Indian momid, the flood plain is a jiiile or two wide, and along the eastern side of 
the plain stretches a series of swamps or wooded sloughs, indicating an old river bed. 
All the plain between the present ri\'er and the sloughs is river-made laud. The 
river bluff along by the mound on the Georgia side is from twenty to thirty feet above 
the present low-water .surface of the stream. About a mile above the mound are the 
remains of what was known as Jennies island. At ordinary stages of the ri\er no 
island is there. The eastern channel was blocked by government works some 
years ago, and the whole is tille<l up and now used as a cornfield. The island 
remains can be traced now, I think, for a length of half a mile, with a possible 
extreme width of 300 feet. . . . This whole country, on both sides of the river, 
is full of Indian lore. I have mentioned both mounds simply to indicate that this 
portion of the river was an Indian locality, and have also stated the facts about the 
remainsof Jennies island in order togive a po.ssible clew to a professional who might 
study the ground. "—Letter, April 22, 1900. 

Chiaha was the first town of the " province of Cofa," the territory of the Coosa or 
Creek Indians. The next town mentioned, C!oste (Elvas and Ranjel), Costehe 
(Biedma) or Acosfe (Garcilaso), was Kasi'ta, or Cusseta, as it was afterward known 
to the whites. While Garcilaso puts it at the lower end of the same island upon 
which Chiaha was situated, the Elvas narrative makes it seven days distant! The 
modern towns of Chehaw and Cusseta were within a few miles of each other on the 
Chattahoochee, the former being on the western or Alabama side, while Cusseta, in 
1799, was on the east or Georgia side about eight nriles below the falls at Columlius, 
and in Chattahoochee county, which has given its capital the same name, Cusseta. 
From the general tone of the narrative it is evident tliat the two towns were near 
together in De Soto's time, and it may be that the Elvas chronicle confounded Kasi'ta 
with Koasati, a principal Upper Creek town, a short distance below the junction of 
the Coosa and Tallapoosa. At Coste they crossed the river and continued westward 
"through many towns subject to the cacique of Co^a" (Elvas) until they came to the 
great town of Cofa itself. This was Kusa or Coosa, the ancient capital of the Upper 
Creeks. There were two towns of this name at different periods. One, described by 
Adair in 1775 as "the great and old lieloved town of refuge, Koosah," was on the east 
bank of Coosa river, a few miles southwest of the present Talladega, .Mabania. The 


other, known as " Old Coosa," and probal)ly of more ancient origin, was on the west 
side of Alabama river, near the present site of Jlontfjomery (see Gatschet, Creek 
Mi-rration Legend). It was probably the latter whieh was visited by Be Soto, and later 
on by De Lnna, in 1559. Beyond Coi;a they ])assed tbrovigh another Creek town, ap- 
parently lower down on the .-Vlabama, the name of wliieh is variously spelle<l Ytaua 
(Elvas, Foree translation), Ytava (Elvas, Ilaklnyt Society translation), or Itaba 
(Kanjel), and which may be connected with I'tSwi', Etowah or "Hightower," tlie 
name of a former Cherokee settlement near the head of Etowah river in (Georgia. 
■ The Cherokee regard this as a foreign name, and its occurrence in upper tieorgia, as 
well as in central Alabama, may help to support the traditifin that the snutliern 
Cherokee border was formerly held by the Creeks. 

De Soto's route beyond the Cherokee country does not concern us excejit a.s it 
throws light upon his previous progress. In the seventeenth chapter the Elvas nar- 
rative sununarizes that portion from the landing at Tampa bay to a point in southern 
Alabama as follows: " From the Port de Spirito Saiito to Apalache, which is about an 
hundreil leagues, the governor went from east to west; and from Apalache to Cutifa- 
ehiqui, which are 430 leagues, from tlie southwest to the northeast; and from Cutifa- 
chiqui to Xualla, which are aljout 250 leagues, from the .south to the north; and from 
Xualla to Tascaluca, which are 250 leagues more, an hundred and ninety of them he 
trax'ck'd from to west, to wit, to the province of Co^a; and the other 60, from 
Co(;a to Tascaluca, from the north to the south." 

C'hisca (Elvas and Kanjel), the mountainous northern region in search of wliicli 
men were sent from Chiaha to look for copper and gold, was somewhere in the 
Cherokee country of upper Georgia or Alabama. The precise location is not material, 
as it is now known that native copper, in such condition as to have been easily work- 
able by the Indians, occurs throughout the whole southern Allegheny region from 
about Anniston, Alabama, into Virginia. Notable finds of native copper have been 
made on the upper Tallapoosa, in Cleburne county, Alabama; about Ducktown, in 
Polk county, Tennessee, and in southwestern Virginia, one nugget from A'irginia 
weighing several pounds. From the appearance of ancient soapstone vessels which 
have been found in the same region there is even a possibility that the Indians had 
some knowledge of smelting, as the Spanish explorers sumii.sed (oral information 
from ^Ir W. H. Weed, U. S. Geological Survey). We hear again of this "province" 
after De Soto had reached the Mississippi, and in one place Garcila-so seems to 
confound it with another province called Quizqui (Ranjel) or Quizquiz (Elvas 
and Biednia). The name has some resemblance to the Cherokee word txishra, 

(9) I)K LcXA AND RooEL (p. 27): Jones, in his De Soto's ^Slarcli through (icorgia, 
incorrectly ascribes certain traces of ancient mining operations in the Cherokee 
country, jiarticularly on Valley river in North Carolina, to the followers of De Luna, 
"who, in 15t)0 . . . came with 300 Spanish .soldiers into this region, and spent 
the sununer in eager and laborious search for gold." Don Tristan de Luna, with 
fifteen hundred men, landed somewhere about Mobile bay in 1559 with the design of 
establishing a permanent Spanish settlement in the interior, but owing to a succes- 
sion of unfortunate hap|)enings the attempt was abandoned the next year. In the 
course of his wanderings he traversed the country of the Choctaw, Chicka.«aw, and 
L'pjier Creeks, as is shown by the names and other data in the narrative, but 
returned without entering the mountains or doing any <liggiug (see Barcia, Ensayo 
Cronologico, pp. 32—11, 1723; Winsor, Xarraliveand Critical History, ii, pp. 257-2.')9). 

In 1569 the Jesuit Rogel — called Father .b.hii linu'ci- by Shea — began mission work 
among the South Carolina tribes inland from Santa Elena (about Port Royal). 
The mission, which at lirst promi.sed well, was abaiidoneil next year, owing to the 
unwillingness of the Inilians to give up their old habits and beliefs. Shea, in bis 
"Catholic ^lissions," supposes that these Indians were i)r(ibably a jiart nf the 


Cherokee, but a study of the Spanish record in Barcia (Ensayo, jiji. 1.'>S-141 | i^huvvs 
t)iat Rogel penetrated only a short distance from the coast. 

(10) Davies' History op the Carribby Islands (p. 29) : The fraudulent char- 
acter of this work, which is itself an altered translation of a fictitiousi liistory by 
Rochefort, is noted by Buckingham Smith (Letter of Hernando dc Soto, p. .'!(), 1854), 
Winsor (Narrative and Critical History, ii, ji. 2S9) , and Field (Indian Biljliography, 
p. 95). Says Field: "This book is an example of the most uiil)liishing effrontery. 
The pseudo author assumes the credit of the jierformancc, witli but the faintest 
allusion to its previous existence. It is a nearly faithful translation of Rochefort's 
'Histoire des Antilles.' There is, however, a gratifying retribution in Davies' treat- 
ment of Rochefort, for the work of the latter was fictitious in every part which was 
not ptirloined from authors whose knowledge furnished him with all in his treatise 
which was true." 

(11) Ancient Spanish Mines (pp. 29, 31): As the existence of the precious metals 
in the southern Alleghenies was known to the Spaniards from a very early period, it 
is probalile that more thorough exploration of tliat region will bring to light many 
evidences of their mining operations. In his "Antiquities of the Southern Indians," 
Jones describes a sort of subterranean village discovered in 1834 on Dukes creek. 
White county, Georgia, consisting of a row of small log cabins extending along the 
creek, but imbedded several feet below the surface of the ground, upon which large 
trees were growing, the inference being that the houses had teen thus covered by suc- 
cessive freshets. The logs had been notched and shaped apparently with sharp metal- 
lic tools. Shafts liave been discovered on A'alley river. North Carolina, at the bottom 
of one of which was found, in 1854, a well-preserved windlass of hewn oak timbers, 
showing traces of having once been banded with iron. Another sliaft, passing through 
hard rock, showed the marks of shai'p tools used in the boring. The casing and 
other timbers were still sound (Jones, pp. 48, 49). Similar ancient shafts have been 
found in other places in upper Georgia and western North Carolina, together with 
some remarkable stone-built fortifications or corrals, notably at Fort mountain, in 
Murray county, Georgia, and on Silver creek, a few miles from Rome, Georgia. 

Very recently remains of an early white settlement, traditionally ascribed to the 
S])aniards, have been reported from Lincolnton, North Carolina, on the edge of the 
ancient country of the Sara, among whom the Spaniards built a fort in 1566. The 
works include a dam of cut stone, a series of low pillars of cut stone, arranged in 
squares as tliough intended for foundations, a stone-walled well, a quarry from which 
the stone had been procured, a fire pit, and a series of sinks, extending along the 
stream, in which were found remains of timbers suggesting the subterranean cabins 
on Dukes creek. All these antedated the first settlement of that region, about the 
year 1750. Ancient mining indications are also reported from Kings mountain, 
about twenty miles distant (Reinhardt MS, 1900, in Bureau of American Ethnology 
archives). The Spanish miners of whom Lederer heard in 1670 and Moore in 1690 
were probably at work in this neighborhooil. 

(12) Sir William Johnson (p. 38): This great soldier, wliose history is so insep- 
arably connected with that of the Six Nations, was born in the county ileath, Ireland, 
in 1715, and died at Johnstown, New York, in 1774. The younger son of an Irish 
gentleman, he left his native country in 1738 in consequence of a disappointment in 
love, and emigrated to America, where he undertook the settlement of a large tract 
of wild land belonging to his uncle, which lay along the south side of the Mohawk 
river in what was then the wilderness of New York. This brought him into close 
contact with tlie Six Nations, particularly tlie Mohawks, in whom he became so much 
interested as to learn their language and in some degree to accommodate himself to 
their customs, sometimes even to the wearing of the native costume. This interest, 
together with his natural kindness and dignity, completely won tlie hearts of the Six 


Nations, over whom he acquireil a greater iiifliieiu-e than lias ever been exercised 
by any other white man before or since. He was formally adopted as a chief by the 
Mohawk trilie. In 1744, lieing still a very yoiwif; man, he was placed in charge of 
Britisli affairs with the »Six Nations, and in 17.")5 was regnlarly commissioned at 
their own urgent request as superintendent for the Six Nations and their dependent 
and allied tribes, a position which he held for the rest of his life. In 1748 he was 
also placed in command of the New York colonial forces, and two years later was 
appointed to the governor's council. At the beginning of the French anil Indian war 
he was commissioned a major-general. He defeated Dieskau at the battle of Lake 
George, where he was severely wounded early in the action, hut refused to leave the 
field. For this service he received the thanks of Parliament, a grant of £5,000, and 
a haronetcv. He also distinguished himself at Ticonderoga and Fort Niagara, taking 
the latter after routing the French army sent to its relief. At the head of his Indian 
and colonial forces he took part in other actions and expeditions, and was present at 
the surrender of Montreal. For his services throughout the war he received a grant 
of 100,000 acres of land north of the Mohawk river. Here he built ".Tohnson 
Hall," which still stands, near the village of Johnstown, which was laid out by him 
with stores, church, and other buildings, at his own expense. At Johnson Hall he 
lived in the style of an old country baron, dividing his attention between Indian 
affairs and the raising of blooded stock, and dispensing a princely hospitality to all 
comers. His influence alone prevented the Six Nations joining Pontiac's great con- 
federacy against the English. In 17(58 he concluded the treaty of Fort Stanwix, 
which fixed the Ohio as the boundary between the northern colonies and the western 
tribes, the boundary for which the Indians afterward contended against the Ameri- 
cans until 1795. In 1739 he married a German girl of the Mohawk valley, who died 
after bearing him three children. Later in life he formed a connection with the 
sister of Brant, the iSIohawk chief. He died from over-exertion at an Indian council. 
His son. Sir John Johnson, succeeded to his title and estates, and on the breaking out 
of the Revolution espoused the British side, drawing with him the Jlohawks and 
a great part of the other Six Nations, who abandoned their homes and fled with 
him to Canada (see W. L. Stone, Life of Sir William Johnson). 

(LSI C.\PTAix John Stu.vbt (p. 44): This distinguished officer was contem])oraneou.s 
with Sir William Johnson, and sprang from the same adventurous Keltic stock 
■which has furnished so many men conspicuous in our early Indian history. Born in 
Scotland about the year 1700, he came to America in 1733, was appointed to a 
subordinate command in the British service, and soon became a favorite with the 
Indians. When Fort Loudon was taken by the Cherokee in 1780, he was second in 
command, and his rescue by Ata-kullakulla is one of the romantic episodes of that 
period. In 1763 he was appointed superintendent for the southern tribes, a ]>osition 
which he continued to hold until his death. In 1768 he negotiated with the Chero- 
kee the treaty of Hard Labor by which the Kanawha was fixed as the western 
boundary of Virginia, Sir William Johnson at the same time concluding a treaty with 
the northerii tribes by which the boundary was continued northward along the Ohio. 
At the outbreak of the Revolution he organized the Cherokee and other southern 
tribes, with the white loyalists, against the Americans, and wa,s largely responsible 
for the Indian outrages along the .southern border. He planned a general inviusion 
by the southern tribes along the whole frontier, in cooperation with a British force 
to be landed in western Florida, while a British fleet should occupy the attention of 
the Americans on the coast side and the Tories should rise in the interior. On the 
discovery of the plot and the subsequent defeat of the Cherokee by the .Vmericans, 
he fled to Florida and soon afterward sailed for England, where he died in 1 779. 

(14) Nancy Ward (p. 47): A noted halfbreed Cherokee woman, the date and 
place of whose birth and death are alike unkiiown. It is said that her father was a 

204 MYTHS OF THE CHER0KP:E (eth.ann.19 

British officer namc'd Ward and lier mother a sister of Ata-kullakulla, principal 
chief of the Nation at the time of the first Cherokee war. She was probaVjly related 
to Brian Ward, an oldtime trader among the C^herokee, mentioned elsewhere in con- 
nection with the battle nf Tali'wil. Dnring the Revolutionary period she reside<l at 
Echota, the national capital, where she held the office of "Beloved Woman," or 
"Pretty Woman," by virtue of which she was entitled to sjieak in conncils and to 
decide the fate of captives. 8he distinguislied herself by her constant friendship 
for the Americans, always using her best effort to bring about peace lietween them 
and her own people, and frequently giving timely warning of projected Indian raids, 
notably on the occasion of the great invasion of the Watauga and Holston settle- 
ments in 1776. A Mrs Bean, captured during this incursion, was saved by her inter- 
position after having been condemned to death and already bound to the stake. In 
1780, on occasion of another Cherokee outlireak, she assisted a miml^er of traders to 
escape, and the next year was sent by the chiefs to make peace with Sevier and 
Campbell, who were advancing against the Cherokee towns. Campbell speaks of 
her in his report as "the famous Indian woman, Nancy AVard." Although peace 
was not then granted, her relatives, when brought in later with other prisoners, 
were treated with the consideration due in return for her good offices. She ia 
described by Robertson, who visited her about this time, as "queenly and com- 
manding" in appearance and manner, and her house as furnished in accordance with 
her high dignity. When among the Arkansas Cherokee in 1819, Nuttall was told 
that she had introduced the first cows into the Nation, and that by her own and her 
children's influence the condition of the Cherokee had been greatly elevated. He was 
tol<l also that her advice and counsel bordered on supreme, and that her interference 
was allowed to be decisive even in affairs of life and death. Althnugh he speaks 
in the present tense, it is hardly proliable that she was then still alive, and he does 
not claim to have tnet lier. Her descendants are still found in the Nation. See 
Haywood, Natural and Aboriginal Tennessee; Ramsey, Tennessee; Nuttall, Travels, 
p. 130, 1821; Campbell letter, 1781, and Springstone deposition, 1781, in Virginia 
State Papers i, ;)p. 435, 436, 447, 1875; Appleton's Cyclopi^dia of American Biography. 
(15) Gener.^l James Robertson (p. 48): This distinguished pioneer and founder 
of Nashville was born in Brunswick county, Virginia, in 1742, and died at the Cliick- 
asaw agency in west Tennessee in 1814. Like most of the men prominent in the 
early hi.story of Tennessee, he was of Scotch-Irish ancestry. His fatln'r having 
removed about 1750 to western North Carolina, the boy grew up without education, 
but with a strong love for adventure, which he gratified by making exploring expe- 
ditions across the mountains. After his marriage his wife taught him to read and 
write. In 1771 he led a colony to the Watauga river and established the settlement 
which became the nucleus of the future state of Tennessee. He took a leading part 
in the organization (jf the Watauga Association, the earliest organized government 
within the state, and afterward served in Punmfire's war, taking ]iart in the liloody 
battle of Point Pleasant in 1774, He participated in the earlier Revolutionary cam- 
paigns against the Cherokee, and in 1777 was a])pointe<l agent to reside at their cap- 
ital, Echota, and act as a medium in their correspondence with the state governments 
of North Carolina (including Tennes.see) and Virginia. In this capacity he gave 
timely warning of a contemplated invasion by the hostile portion of the tribe early 
in 1 7711. Soon after in the same year he led a preliminary exploration from Watauga 
to the Cumberland. He brought out a larger party late in the fall, and in the spring 
of 1780 built the first stockades on the site which he named Nashboi'ough, now Nash- 
ville. Cnly his force of character was able to hold the infant settlement together in 
the face of hardships and Indian hostilities, but by his tact and firmness he W'aa 
finally able to make peace with the surrounding tribes, and establisheil the Cumber- 
land settlement up(jn a secure basis. The Spanish government at time unsuc- 
cessfully attempted to engage him in a i>lot to cut off the western territory from the 


United States, but met a patriotic refusal, llaviiif; been (•i>niniissi()ue(l a lirifjailier- 
fieneral in ITiU), he eontinued to oriranize canipaisns, resist invasions, anil nej^otiate 
treaties until the final elose of the Indian wars in Tennessee, lleafterward heldtlie 
appointment of Indian eonnnissioner to the Chickasaw and Choctaw. See Kamsey, 
Tennessee; Roosevelt, Winniut; of Ihe West; .\ppli'ton'h Cvclopiedia of .Vmeriian 

(16) General Griffith Rutiiekfori) (p. 4.S): Althoufih this Revolutionary offi- 
cer commanded the greatest expedition ever sent afiainst the Cherokee, with such 
distinguished success that f)Oth North Carolina and Tennessee have nauied cMuiities 
in his honor, little appears to be definitely known of his history. He was born in 
Irelanil about 17.31, and, enngrating to America, settled near Salisbury, North Caro- 
lina. On the opening of the Revolutionary struggle he became a meml)er of the 
Provincial Congress an<l Council of Safety. In June, 1776, he was comnussioncd a 
brigadier-general in the American army, and a few months later led his celebrated 
ex])edition against the Cherokee, as elsewhere narrated. He rendered other impor- 
tant service in the Revolution, in one battle being taken prisoner by the British and 
held by them nearly a year. He afterward served in the state senate of North Caro- 
lina, and, subsequently removing to Tennessee, W"as for some time a member of its 
territorial council. He died in Tennessee about 1800. 

(17) Rctherford's route (p. 49): The various Nortli Carolina deluchmcnts 
which combined to form Rutherford's expedition against the Cherokee in the 
autumn of 1776 organized at different points about the upper t'atawl)a an<l probably 
concentrated at Davidson's fort, now Old fort, in McDowell county. Thence, 
advancing westward closely upon the line of the present Southern railroad and its 
Western North Carolina branch, the army crossed the Blue ridge over the Swanna- 
noa gap and went down the Swannanoa to its junction with the French Broad, 
crossing the latter at the Warrior ford, below the present Asheville; thence up 
Hominy creek and across the ridge to Pigeon river, crossing it a few miles below the 
junction of the East and West forks; thence to Richland creek, crossing it just above 
the present Waynesville; and over the dividing ridge between the pre.sent Haywood 
and .lackson counties to the head of Scott's creek; thence down that creek liy "a 
blind path through a very mountainous bail way," as Moore's old narrative has il, 
to its junction with the Tnckasegee river just below the present Webster; thence, 
crossing to the west (south) side of the river, the troops followed a main trail down 
the stream for a few miles until they came to the first Cherokee town, Stekoa, on 
the site of the farm formerly owned by Colonel William H. Thomas, just above the 
present railroad village of Whittier, Swain county. North Carolina. After destroying 
the town a detachment left the main body and pursued the fugitives northward on 
the other side of the river to Oconaluftee river and Soco creek, getting back afterwan I 
to the settlements by .steering an easterly course across the mountains to Richland 
creek (Moore narrative). The main army, under Rutherford, crossed the diviiling 
ridge to the southward of Whittier and descended Cowee creek to the waters of Little 
Tennessee, in the present Macon county. After destroying the towns in this vicinity 
the army ascended Cartoogaja creek, west from the present Franklin, and crossed the 
Nantahala mountains at Waya gap — where a tight took place — to Nantahala river, 
probably at the town of the same name, about the pre.sent Jarretts station. From 
here the march was west across the mountain into the present Cherokee county and 
down Valley river to its junction with the lliwassee, at the present Mm-phy. 
Authoritii's: Moore narrative and Wilson letter in North Carolina University Maga- 
zine, February, 1888; Ramsey, Tennessee, p. 164; Roosevelt, Winning of the West, 
I, pp. 300-302; Royce, Cherokee map; personal infornuition from Colonel William 
H. Thomas, Major James Bryson, whose grandf;ithcr was with Kuthcrford. and 
Cherokee informants. 

(18) Colonel Willi.vm Christh.v (p. 50): Colonel William Christian, some- 


times inporrectly called Christy, was boru in Berkeley county, \'ir(j;inia, in 1732. 
Accustomed to frontier warfare almost from lioyhood, he served in the Frencli and 
Indian war with the rank of captain, and was afterward in command of the Ten- 
nessee and North Carolina forces which participated in the great battle of Point 
Pleasant in 1774, although he himself arrived too late for the fight. He organized 
a regiment at the opening of the Revolutionary war, and in 1776 led an expedition 
from Virginia against the Upper Cherokee and compelled them to sue for peace. 
In 1782, while upon an expedition against the Ohio tribes, he was captured and 
burned at the stake. 

(19) The gre.^t Indun w.\r p.\th (p. 50): This noted Indian thoroughfare from 
Virginia through Kentucky and Tennessee to the Creek country in Alabama and 
Georgia is frequently mentioned in the early narrative of that .section, and is indi- 
cated on the maps accompanying Ramsey's .A_nnals of Tennessee and Royce's Chero- 
kee Nation, in the Fifth Annual Report of the Puireau of Ethnology. Royce's map 
shows it in more correct detail. It was the great tra<ling and war path between the 
northern and southern tribes, and along the same path Christian, Sevier, and others 
of the old Indian fighters led their men to the destruction of the towns on Little 
Tennessee, Hiwassee, and southward. 

According to Ramsey (p. 88), one branch of it ran nearly on the line of the 
later stage road from Harpers ferry to Knoxville, passing the Big lick in Bote- 
tourt county, Virginia, crossing New river near old Fort Chiswell (which stood on 
the south l)ank of Reed creek of New river, about nine miles east from Wytheville, 
Virginia) crcssing Holston at the Seven-mile ford, thence to the left of the stage road 
near the river to the north fork of Holston, "crossing as at present" ; thence to Big 
creek, and, crossing the Holston at Dodson'sford, to the Grassy springs nearthe former 
residence of Micajah Lea; thence down the Nolifhucky to Long creek, up it to its 
head, and down Dumplin creek nearly to its mouth, where the path bent to the left 
and crossed French Broad near Buckinghams island. Here a branch left it and went 
up the West fork of Little Pigeon and across the mountains to the Middle towns on 
Tuckasegee and the upper Little Tennessee. The main trail continued up Boyd's 
creek to its head, and down Ellejoy creek to Little river, crossing near Henry's place; 
thence b}' the present Marj'ville to the mouth of Tellico, and, passing through the 
Cherokee towns of Tellico, Ec'hota, and Hiwassee, down the Coosa, connecting with 
the great war path of the Creeks. Near the Wolf hills, now Abingdon, Virginia, 
another path came in from Kentucky, passing through the Cumberland gap. It was 
along this latter road that the early explorers entered Kentucky, and along it also 
the Shawano and other Ohio tribes often penetrated to raid upon the Holston and 
New river settlements. 

On Royce's map the trail is indicated from Virginia southward. Starting from 
the junction of Moccasin creek with the North fork of Holston, just above the 
Tennessee state line, it crosses the latter river from the east side at its mouth or 
junction with the South fork, just below Kingsport or the Long island; then follows 
down along the west side of the Holston, crossing Big creek at its mouth, and crtissing 
to the south (east) side of Holston at Dodson's cree'k; thence up along the east side of 
Dodson's creek and across Big Gap creek, following it for a short distance and con- 
tinuing southwest, just touching Nolichucky, passing up the west side of Long creek 
of that stream and down the same side of Dumplin creek, and crossing French Broad 
just below the mouth of the creek; thence up along the west side <;)f Boyd's creek to 
its head and d<.)wn the west side of Ellejoy creek to and across Little river; thence 
through the present Maryville to cross Little Tennessee at the entrance of Tellico 
river, where old Fort Loudon was built; thence turning up along the south side of 
Little Tennessee river to Echota, the ancient capital, and then southwest across 
Tellico river along the ridge between Chestua and Canasauga creeks, and crossing 
the latter near its mouth to strike Hiwassee river at the town of the same name; 


thence, crossing Ocoee river near it.s niDUtli, i)aiising south of Clevelaml, 
through the present Ooltewah and across Chickaniauga creek into Georgia and 

According to Timberlake (Memoirs, with iii;i]i, ]7i>5), tlie trail crossed I, iltle Ten- 
nessee from Echota, northward, in two places, just al)ove and below Four-mile 
creek, the first camping place lieing at the jun<-tion of Ellejoy creek an<l Little river, 
at the old town site. It crossed Holston within a nule of Fort Robinson. 

According to Hutchins (Topographical Description of America, p. 24, 177S), the 
road which w'ent thniugh Cumberland gap was the one taken by the northern 
Indians in their incursions into the "Cuttawa!' country, and went from Sandusky, 
on I.,ake Erie, by a direct path to the mouth of Scioto (where Portsmouth now is) 
and thence across Kentucky to the gap. 

(20) Peace towns and towxs of refit.e (p. 51): Towns of refuge existed among 
the Cherokee, the Creeks, and probably other Indian trilies, as well as among the 
ancient Hebrews, the institution being a merciful ])rovision for softening the harsh- 
ness of the primitive law", which recjuired a life for a life. We learn from Deuteron- 
omy that Moses appointed three cities on the east side of Jordan "that the slayer 
might flee thither which should kill his neighbor unawares and hated him not in 
times past, and that fleeing into one of these cities he might live." It was also 
ordained that as more territory was conquered from the heathen three ad<Iitional 
cities should be thus set aside as havens of refuge for those who should accidentally 
take human life, and where they should be .safe until the matter could be adjusteil. 
The wilful murderer, however, wa.s not to be sheltered, but delivered up to punish- 
ment without pity (Deut. iv, 41-43, and xi.x, 1-11). 

Echota, the ancient Cherokee capital near the mouth of Little Tenne.ssee, was the 
Cherokee town of refuge, connnonly de.signated as the "white town" or "peace 
town." According to Adair, the Cherokee in his time, although extremely degen- 
erate in other things, still observed the law so strictly in this regard that even a 
wilful murderer who might succeed in making his escape to that town was safe so 
long as he remained there, although, unless the matter was compounded in the 
meantime, the friends of the slain person would .seldom allow him to reach home 
alive after leaving it. He tells how a trader who had killed an Indian to protect hit 
own property took refuge in F'chota, and after having been there for some months 
prepared to return to his trading store, which was but a short distance away, but was 
assured by the chiefs that he would be killed if he ventured outside the town. He 
was accordingly obliged to stay a longer time until the tears of the bereaved relatives 
had been wiped away with presents. In another place the same author tells how a 
Cherokee, having killed a trader, was pursued and attempted to take refuge in the 
town, but was driven off into the river as soon as he came in sight by th(^ inhabit- 
ants, who feared either to have their town polluted by the shedding of blood or to 
provoke the F^nglish liy giving him sanctuary (Adair, American Indians,]). 158, 177o). 
In 1768 Oconostota, speaking on behalf of the Cherokee delegates who had come to 
Johnson Hall to make peace with the Iroquois, said: " We come from ('hotte, where the 
wise [white?] house, the house of peace is erected" (treaty record, 1768, New York 
Colonial Documents, viii, p. 42, 1857). In 1786 the friendly Cherokee made " Chota" 
the watchword by which the ^Vmericans might be able to distinguish them from the 
hostile Creeks (Ramsey, Tennessee, p. 343). From conversation with old Cherokee It 
.seems probable that in where no satisfaction was made by the relatives of the 
man-slayer he continued to reside close within the limits of the town until the next 
recurrence of the annual (^ireen-corn dance, when a general amnesty was jiro- 

Among the Creeks the ancient town of Kusa or Coosa, on river in Alabama, 
was a town of refuge. In Adair's time, although then almost deserted and in ruins, it 
was still a place of safety for one who had taken human life without design. Certain 

208 MYTHS OF THE CHEROKEE [ktii. ann.19 

towns were also known as jjeacu towns-, from their prominenre in peace cereinnnials 
and treaty making. Upon this Adair says: " In almost every Indian nation there 
are several pcaccnhle toinns, which are called 'old beloved, ancient, holy, or white 
towns.' They seem to have been formerly towns of refuge, for it is not in the 
memory of their oldest people that ever human blood was shed in them, although 
they often force persons from thence and put them to death elsewhere." — .\dair, 
American Indians, 159. A closely parallel institution seems to have existed among 
the Seneca. "The Seneca nation, ever the largest, and guarding the western door 
of the 'long house,' which was threatened alike from the north, west, and south, 
had traditions peculiarly their own, besides those common to the otlier members of 
the confederacy. The stronghold or fort, Gau-stra-yea, on the mountain ridge, four 
miles east of Lewiston, had a peculiar character as the residence of a virgin queen 
known as the 'Peacemaker.' When the Iroquois confederacy was first formed the 
prime factors were mutual protection and domestic peace, and this fort was designed 
to afford comfort and relieve the distress incident to war. It w-as a true ' city of 
refuge,' to which fugitives from battle, whate\'er their nationality, might flee for 
safety and find generous entertainment. Curtains of deerskin separated pursuer and 
pursued while they were being lodged and fed. At parting, the curtains were with- 
drawn, and the hostile parties, having shared the hospitality of the queen, could 
neither renew hostility or pursuit without the queen's consent. According to tra- 
dition, no virgin had for many generations been counted worthy to fill the place or 
possessed the genius and gifts to honor the position. In 1878 the Tonawanda band 
proposed to revive the office and conferred upon Caroline Parker the title." — Car- 
rington, in Six Nations of New York, Extra Bulletin Eleventh Census, p. 73, 1892. 

(21) Scalping by whites (p. 53) : To the student, aware how easily the civilized 
man reverts to his original savagery when brought in close contact with its condi- 
tions, it will be no surprise to learn that every barbarous practice of Indian warfare 
was (juickly adopted by the w'hite pioneer and soldier and frequently legalized and 
encouraged by local authority. Scalping, while the most common, was probably 
the least savage and cruel of them all, being usually performed after the victim was 
already dead, with the primary purpose of securing a trophy of the victory. The 
tortures, mutilations, and nameless deviltries inflicted upon Indians by their white 
conquerors in the early days could hardly be paralleled even in civilized Europe, 
when burning at the stake was the imnishment for holding original opinions and 
sawing into two pieces the penalty for desertion. Actual torture of Indians by legal 
sanction was rare within the English colonies, but mutilation was common and 
scalping was the rule down to the end of the war of 1812, and has been practiced 
more or less in almost every Indian war down to the latest. Captain Church, who 
commanded in King Philip's war in 1676, states that his men received thirty shil- 
lings a head for every Indian killed or taken, and Philip's head, after it was cut off, 
" went at the same price." When the chief was killed one of his hands was cut off 
and given to his Indian slayer, " to show to such gentlemen as would bestow gratui- 
ties upon him, and accordingly he got many a penny by it." His other hand was 
chopped off and sent to Boston for exhibition, his head was sent to Plymouth and 
exposed upon a scaffold there for twenty years, while the rest of his l)ody was 
quartered and the pieces left hanging upon four trees. Fifty years later Massachu- 
setts offered a bounty of one hundred pounds for every Indian scalp, and scalj) 
hunting thus became a regular and usually a profitable business. On one occasion a 
certain Lovewell, having recruited a company of forty men for this purpose, dis- 
covered ten Indians lying asleep by their fire and killed the whole party.' After 
scalping them they stretched the scalps upon hoops and marched thus into Boston, 
where the scalps were paraded and the bounty of one thousand pounds paid for 
them. By a few other scalps sold from time to time at the regular market rate, 
Lovewell was gradually ai-quiring a competency when in ilay, 1725, his company 


met disaster. He discovered and shot a solitary luinter, wlio was afterward seali>e<l 
by the chaplain of the party, but tlie Indian manajred to kill Lovewell before 
beina overpowered, on which the whites withdrew, but were pursueil bv the tribe.s- 
men of the slain hunter, with the result that but sixteen of them fjot home alive. 
A famous old lialUid of the time tells liow 

■"Our worthy Captain Lovewell anions; them there did die. 
They killed l.,ieutenant Kobbins and wounded good young Frye, 
Who was our F.uglish chaplain; he many Indians slew, 
And some of them lie scalped when bullets round liiui flew." 

When the mission village of Norridgewoek was attacked by the New England men 
aViout the same time, women and children were made to suffer the fate of the war- 
riors. Tile scholarly missionary, Kasle.s, author of the Abnaki Dictionary, was shot 
do«ii at the foot of the cross, where he was afterward found with his bodx- riddled 
with balls, his skull crushed and scalped, his mouth and eyes filled with earth, his 
limlis broken, and all his members mutilated — and this by white men. The border 
men of the Revnlutionar}' pi-riod and later invariably scalped slain Indians as often 
as opportunity permitted, and, a.s has already been shown, both British and American 
officials encouraged the practice by offers of bounties and rew'ards, even, in the case 
of the former, when the scalps were those of white people. Our difficulties with the 
Apache date from a treacherous massacre of them in 1836 by a party of American 
scalp hunters in the pay of the governor of Sonora. The bounty offered was one 
ounce of gold per scalp. In 1864 the Colorado .militia under Colonel Chivington 
attacked a party of Cheyennes camped inider the protection of the I'uited States 
flag, and killed, mutilated, and scalped 170 men, women, and children, bringing the 
scalps into Denver, where they were paraded in a pul)lic hall. One Lieutenant 
Richmond killed and scalped three women and five children. Scalps were taken by 
American troops in the Modoc war of 1873, and there is now living in the Comanche 
tribe a woman who was scalped, though not mortally wounded, by white soldiers in 
one of the later Indian encounters in Texa-s. Authorities: Drake, Indians (f<ir New 
England wai-s); Roosevelt, Virginia State Papers, etc. (Revolution, etch Bancroft, 
Pacific States (Apache); Official Report on the Condition of the Indian Trilie.s, 
1867 (for Chivington episode ); author's pensonal information. 

(22) LowKR Cherokek heki(;ees (p. .1.5): "In every hut I have visited I find the 
children exceedingly alarmed at the sight of white men, and here [at Willstown] a 
little boy of eight years old was excessively alarmed and could not be kejit from 
screaming out until he got out of the door, and then he ran and hid himself; but as 
soon as I can converse with them and they are informed who I am they execute any 
order I givc^ them with eagerness. I ini|uired particularly of the mothers what could 
be the rea.son for this. They said, this town was the remains of several towns who 
[.?(■(■] formerly resided on Tugalo and Keowee, and had been much harassed by the 
whites; that the old peo[)le remembered their former situation and suffering, and fre- 
(juently spoke of them; that these tales were listened to by the children, and made an 
impression which showed it.self in the maimer I had observed. The w'omen told 
me, who I saw gathering nuts, that they had sensations upon my coming to the 
camp, in the highest degree alarming to theui, and when I lit from my horse, took 
them by the hand, and spoke to them, they at first could not reply, although one of 
them understood and spoke English very well." — Hawkins, manuscriiit journal, 
1796, in library of tieorgia Historical Society. 

(23) Genek.vl ALEXAsnEK McCiii.i.iVH.w (p. 56): This famous Creek chieftain, 
like so many distinguished men of the southern tribes, wasof mixed blood, being the 
son of a Scotch trader, Lachlan Mc( iillivray, by a halfbreed woman of influential 
family, whose father was a French officer of Fort Toulouse. The future chief was 
born in the Creek Nation about 174(), and died at Pensacola, Florida, in 1793. He 

19 ETH— 01- — 14 


was educateil at Charleston, studying Latin in additiim to the ordinary branches, and 
after leaving sehool was placed by his father with a mercantile (irni in Savannah. 
He remained but a short time, when he returned to the Creek country, where he soon 
began to attract attention, becoming a partner in the lirm of Panton, Forbes & Leslie, 
of Pensacola, which had almost a monopoly of the Creek trade. He .succeeded to 
the chieftainship on the death of his mother, who came of ruling stock, but refused 
to accept the position until called to it by a formal council, when he assumed the title 
of emperor of the Creek Nation. His paternal estates having been confiscated by 
(ieorgia at the outbreak of the Revolution, he joined the British side with all his 
warriors, and continued to be a leading instigator in the border hostilities until 1790, 
when he visited New York with a large retinue and made a treat}' of peace with the 
Ihiited States on behalf of his people. President Washington's instructions to the 
treaty commissioners, in anticipation of this visit, state that he was said to possess 
great abilities and an unlimited influence over the Creeks and part of the Cherokee, 
and that it was an object worthy of considerable effort totittach him warmly to the 
United States. In pursuance of this policy the Creek chiefs were entertained by 
the Tammany society, all the members being in full Indian dress, at which the vis- 
itors were much delighted and responded with an Indian dance, while McGillivray 
was induced to resign his conunission as colonel in the Spanish service for a commis- 
sion of higher grade in the service of the United States. Soon afterward, on accoimt 
of some opposition, excited by Bowles, a renegade white man, he al>sented himself 
from his tribe for a time, but was soon recalled, and contimied to rule over the Xatii m 
until his death. 

McGillivray appears to have had a curious mixture of Scotch shrewdness, French 
love of display, and Indian secretiveness. He fixed his residence at Little Talassee, 
on the Coosa, a few miles above the present Wetumpka, Alabama, where he lived in 
a handsome house with extensive quarters for his negro slaves, so that his place had 
the appearance of a small town. He entertained with magnificence and traveled 
always in state, as became one who styled himself emperor. Throughout the Indian 
wars he strove, so far as possible, to prevent unnecessary cruelties, lieing noted for 
his kindness to captives; and his last years were spent in an effort to luring teachers 
among his people. On the other hand, he conformed much to the Indian customs; 
and he managed his negotiations with England, Spain, and the United States with 
such adroitness that he was able to play off one against the other, holding commis- 
sions by tuni in the service of all three. Woodward, who knew of him by later 
reputation, asserts positively that Jlctiillivray's mother was of pure Indian lilood and 
that he himself was without education, his letters having lieen written for him by 
Leslie, of the trading firm with which he was connected. The balanc'e of testimony, 
however, seems to leave no doul:)t that he was an educated as well as an able man, 
whatever' may liave been his origin. Jiilliiii-it>ci<: Drake, American Indians; docu- 
ments in American State Papers, Indian Affairs, i, l.S:i2; Pickett, Alabama, 1896; 
Appleton's Cyclopsedia of American Biography; "Woodward, Reminiscences, p. 59 et 
passim, 1859. 

(24) Governor John Sevier (p. 57): This noted leader and statesman in the 
pioneer history of Tennessee was born in Rockingham county, Virginia, in 1745, and 
died at the Creek town of Tukabatchee, in Alabama, in 1815. His father was a French 
immigrant of good liirth and education, the original name of the family being Xavier. 
The son received a good education, and being naturally remarkably handsome and 
of jiolished manner, fine courage, and generous temperament, soon acquired a remark- 
able influence over the rough border men with whom his lot was cast and among 
whom he was afterward affectionately known as "Chucky Jack." To the Cherokee 
he was known as Tsan-usdi', "Little John." After some service against the Indians 
on the Virginia frontier he removed to the new Watauga settlement in Tennessee, 
in 1772, and at once became pnmiinently identified with its affairs. He took 


part in Dunmore's war in 1774 and, afterward, from the opening of tlie Revolution 
in 1775 until the close of the Indian wars in Tennessee — a period extending over 
nearly twenty years — was the acknowledged leader or organizer in every impor- 
tant Indian campaign along the Tennessee border. His sc;rvices in this connection 
have been already noted. He also commanded one wing of the American forces 
at the battle of King's mountain in 17.S0, and in 1783 led a body of mountain men to 
the assistance of the patriots under Marion. At one time (hiring the Revolution a 
Tory plot to assassinate him was revealed by the wife of the principal consjiirator. 
In 1779 he had been commissioned as commander of the militia of Washington 
cnnnty. North Carolina — the nucleus of the present state of Tennessei — a position 
which he hail already held by common consent. Shortly after the close of the Revo- 
lution he held for a short time the office of governor of the seceding "state of 
Franklin," for which he was arrested and brought to trial by the government of 
North Carolina, but made his escape, when the matter wa.s allowed to drop. The 
(|uestion of jurisdiction was finally settled in 1790, when North Carolina ceded tlie 
disputeil territory to the general government. Before this Sevier had been connni.s- 
sioneil as brigadier-general. When Tennessee was admitted as a state in 179t) he was 
elected its first (state) governor, serving three terms, or six years. In 1803 he was 
again reelected, serving three more terms. In 1811 he was elected to Congress, where 
he served two terms and was reelected to a third, but died before he could take his 
seat, having contracted a fever while on duty as a boundary commissioner among the 
Creeks, being then in his seventy-first year. For more than forty years he had been 
continuously in the service of his country, and no man of his .state was ever more 
loved and respected. In the prime of his manhood he was reputed the handsomest 
man and the best Indian fighter in Tennessee. 

(2rt) Hopewell, South C.\ (p. (il) : This place, designated in early treaties 
and also in Hawkins's manuscript journal as "Hopewell on the Keowee," was the 
plantation seat of General Andrew Pickens, who resided there from the close of the 
Revolution until his death in 1817. It was situated on the northern edge of tlie 
pre.sent Anderson county, on the east side of Keowee river, opposite and a short 
tlistance below the entrance of Little river, and about three miles from the present 
Pendleton. In sight of it, on the opposite side of Keowee, was the oUi Cherokee 
town of Seneca, destroyed by the .Americans in 177(). Important treaties were made 
here with the Cherokee in 1785, and with the Chickasaw in 1786. 

(2H) Colonel Benm.^mix H.\wki.ns (p. til ): This distinguished soldier, statesman, 
and author, was liorn in Warren county. North Carolina, in 17.54, and ilied at Haw- 
kinsville, (ieorgia, in 1816. His father. Colonel Philemon Hawkins, organized and 
commanded a regiment in the Revolutionary war, and was a member of the conven- 
tion that ratified the national constitution. At the outbreak of the Revolution young 
Hawkins was a student at Princeton, liut offered his services to the American cause, 
and on ac('ount of his knowledge of French and other modern languages was 
appointed by Washington his staff interpreter for conmiunicating with the French 
officers cooperating « ith the .\nierican army. He took [lart in se\eral engagements 
and was afterward appointe<l commissioner for |)rocuring war supplii-sal)road. .\fter 
the close of the war he was elected to Congress, and in 1785 was ai)pointed on the 
commission which negotiated at Hopewell the first federal treaty with the Cherokee. 
He served a second term in the and another in the Senate, and in 1796 was 
appointed superintendent for all the Indians .south of the Ohio. lie tliereujHin 
removed to the Creek country and established himself in the wilderness at what is 
now Hawkinsville, (ieorgia, where he remained in the continuance of his office 
until his death. As Senator he signe<l the <leed by which .North Carolina ceded 
Tennessee to the United States in 1790, and as Indian superintendent lieli)ed to nego- 
tiate seven different treaties with the southern tribes. He had an extensive knowl- 
edge of the custimis and language of the Creeks, and his "Sketch of the Creek 

212 MYTHS OF THE CHEROKEE (eth.asn.I9 

Country," written in 1799 and publislied by the Historical Society of (ieorgia in 
1848, remains a standard. His journal and other manuscripts are in possession of 
the same society, while a manuscript Cherokee vocabulary is in possession of the 
American Philosojihical Society in Philadelphia. -I nthoritieii: Hawkins's manuscripts, 
with Georgia Historical Society; Indian Treaties, 1837; American State Papers: 
Indian Affairs, i, 1832; ii, 1834; Gatschet, Creek Migration Legend; Appleton, C'yclo- 
p;edia of American Biography. 

(27) Governor Willi.\m Blount (p. (iS): "William Blount, territorial governor of 
Tennessee, was born in North Carolina in 1744 and died at Knoxville, Tennessee, 
in 1800. He held several important offices in his native state, including two terms in 
the assembly and two others as delegate to the old congress, in which latter capacity 
he was one of the signers of the Federal constitution in 1787. On the organizatiim 
of a territorial government for Tennessee in 1790, he was appointed territorial 
governor and also sujoerintendent for the southern tribes, fixing his headtpiarters 
at Knoxville. In 1791 he negotiated an important treaty with the Cherokee, and 
had much to do with directing the operations against the Indians until the close 
of the Indian war. He was president of the convention which organized the state of 
Tennessee in 1796, and was elected to the national senate, but was expelled on the 
charge of having entered into a treasonable conspiracy to assist the British in con- 
quering Louisiana from Spain. A United States officer was sent to arrest him, but 
returned without executing his mission on being warned by Blount's friends that 
tliey would not allow him to be taken from the state. The impeachment jiroceedings 
against him were afterward dismissed on technical grounds. In tiie meantime the 
people of his own state had shown their confidence in him by electing him to the 
state senate, (if which he was chosen president. He died at the early age nf fifty- 
tliree, tlie most popular man in the state next to Sevier. His younger lirother, 
AVillie Blount, who had been his secretary, was afterward governor of Tennessee, 

(28) St Clair's defe.vt, 1791 (p. 72): Early in 1791 Major-General Arthur St 
Clair, a veteran officer in two wars and governor of the Northwestern Territory, was 
appointed to the chief command of the army operating against the Ohio tribes. ()n 
November 4 of that year, while advancing upon the Miami villages with an army of 
1,400 men, he was surprised liy an Indian force of about the same number under 
little-turtle, the Miami chief, in what is now southwestern ilercer county, Ohio, 
adji lining the Indiana line. Because of the cowardly conduct of the militia he was 
totally defeated, with the loss of 632 officers and men killed and missing, anti 263 
wounded, many of whom afterward died. The artillery was abandoned, not a horse 
being left alive to draw it off, and so great was the panic that the men threw away 
their arms and fled for miles, even after the pursuit had ceased. It was afterward 
learned that the Indians lost 150 killed, besides many wounded. Two years later 
(Teneral Wayne built Fort Recovery upon the same spot. The detachment sent to 
do the work fouml within a space of 350 yards 500 skulls, while for several miles 
along the line of pursuit the woods were strewn with skeletons and muskets. The 
two cannon lost were found in the adjacent stream. Anthoriticn: St Clair's report 
and related documents, 1791; American State Pajiers, Indian Affaii's, i, 1832; Drake, 
Indians 570, 571, 1880; Appleton's C.vclopjedia of American Biography. 

(29) Cherokee cl.^ns, (p. 74): The Cherokee have seven clans, viz: Ani'-Wa'S-a, 
Wolf; Ani'-Kawl', Deer; Ani'-Tsi'skwa, Bird; Ani'-WA'dl, Paint; Ani'-Saha'nl; 
Ani'-Ga'tAge'wI; Ani'-Gilil'hl. The names of the last three can not be translated 
with certainty. The Wolf clan is the largest and most important in the tribe. It. 
is probable that, in accordance with the general system in other tribes, each clan 
had formerly certain hereditary duties and privileges, but no trace of these now 
remains. Children belong to the clan of the mother, and the law forbidding mar- 
riage between persons of the same chin is still enforced among the conservative 


fii!l-l)loofl.«. The "seven clans" are frequently mentioned in the pacred formulas, 
and even in some of the tribal laws promul^ateii within the century. There is evi- 
dence that originally there were fourteen, which by extinction or absorption have 
been reduced to seven; thus, the ancient Turtle-dove and Raven clans now constitute 
a single Bird clan. The subject will be discu.ssed more fully in a future Cherokee 

(30) Wayne's victory, 1794 (p. 78): After the successive failures of Harmar and 
St Olair in their efforts against the Ohio tribes the ehief command was assigned, in 
1793, to Major-General Anthony Wayne, who had already distinguished himself by 
his fighting qualities during the Revolution. Having built Fort Recovery on the 
site of St Clair's defeat, he made that post his headquarters through the winter 
of 179.3-94. In the summer of 1794 he advanced down the ^Maumee with an anny 
of 3,000 men, two-thirds of whom were regulars. On August 20 be encountered the 
confederated Indian forces near the head of the ]Maumee rajiids at a point known as 
the Fallen Timbers and defeated them with great slaughter, the pursuit being fol- 
lowed up by the cavalry until the Indians took refuge under the guns of the 
British garrison at Fort Miami, just below the rapids. His own loss was only 33 
killed and 100 wounded, of whom 11 afterward died of their wounds. The loss of the 
Indians and their white auxiliaries was believed to be more than double this. The 
Indian force was supposed to number 2,000, while, on account of the impetuosity of 
Wayne's charge, the nundjer of his troops actually engaged did not exceed 900. On 
account of this defeat and the sulisequent devastation of their towns and fields l)y 
the victori(ius army the Indians were comjielled to sue for peace, which was granted 
by the treaty concluded at (ireenville, Ohio, August 3, 179.5, by which the tribes 
represented ceded away nearly their whole territory in Ohio. Aulhoritieg; Wayne's 
report and related documents, 1794, American State Papers: Indian Affairs, i, 1832; 
Drake, Indians, 571-577, 1880 ; Greenville treaty, in Indian Treaties, 1837 ; Applet<jn's 
Cyclopsedia of American Biography. 

(31) FinsT THINGS OF civii.iz.\Tiox (p. 83): We usually find that the lirst things 
adopted by the Indian from his white neighbor are improved weapons and cutting 
tools, with trinkets and articles of per.'Jonal adornment. After a regular trade has 
been established certain traders marry Indian wives, and, taking up tlieir permanent 
residence in the Indian country, engage in farming and stock raising according to 
civilized methods, thus, even without intention, constituting themselves in<lustrial 
teachers for the tribe. 

From data furnished by Haywood, guns appear to have been lirst introdu<ed 
among the Cherokee about the year 1700 or 1710, although he himself jiuts the date 
much earlier. Horses were probably not owned in any great nund)er before the 
marking out of the horse-path for trailers from Augusta about 1740. The Cherokee, 
however, took kindly to the animal, and before the beginning of the war of 17(50 
had a ''prodigious numlter." In spite of their great losses at that time they had so 
far recovered in 1775 that almost every man then had from two to a dozen (Adair, 
p. 2.31). In the border wars following the Revolution companies of hundreds of 
mounted Cherokee and Creeks sometimes invaded the settlements. The cow is 
called wa'kd by the Cherokee and witga by the Creeks, indicating that their first 
knowledge of it came through the Spaniards. Nuttall states that it was lirst intro- 
duced among the Cherokee by the celebrated Xancy Ward (Travels, p. 130). It was 
not in such favor as the horse, being valuable c-hieHy for food, of which at that time 
there was an aliundaut sup[>ly from the wild game. A potent rea.son for its avoid- 
ance was the Indian belief that the eating of the flesh of a slow-moving animal breeds 
a corresponding sluggishne.^s in the eater. The same argument applied even more 
strongly to the hog, and to this day a few of the old conservatives among the East 
Cherokee will have nothing to do with beef, pork, milk, or butter. Nevertheless, 
Bartram tells of a trader in the Cherokee countrv as earlv as 1775 who had a stock 

214 MYTHS OF THE CHEROKEE [eth.anx.19 

of c-attle, and wliose Indian wife had learned tci inakebntter and cheese (Travels, p. 
347). In 17Hti Hawkins mentions meeting two Cherokee women driving ten very 
fat cattle tu market in the white settlements (manuscript journal, 1796). Bees, if 
not native, as the Indians claim, were introduced at so early a period that the 
Indians have forgotten their foreign origin. The De Soto narrative mentions the 
finding of a pot of honey in an Indian village in Georgia in 1540. The peach wa>s 
cultivated in orchards a t'entury before the Revolution, and one variety, known as 
early as 1700 as the Indian jieach, the Indians claimed as their own, asserting that 
they had had it before the whites came to America (Lawson, Carolina, p. 182, ed. 1860). 
Potatoes were introiluced early and were so much esteemed that, according to one 
old informant, the Indians in Georgia, before the Removal, "lived on them." Coffee 
came later, and the same informant remembered when the full-bloods still consid- 
ered it poison, in spite of the efforts of the chief, Charles Hicks, to introduce it 
among them. 

Spinning wheels and looms were introduced shortly before the Revolution. 
According to the Wahnenauhi manuscript the first among the Cherokee were brought 
over from England by an Knglishman named Edward Graves, who taught his 
Cherokee wife to spin and weave. The anonymous writer may have confounded 
this early civilizer with a young Englishman who was employe<I by .\gent Hawkins 
in 1801 to make wheels and looms for the Creeks ( Hawkins, 1801, in .\merican State 
Papers: Indian Affairs, i, p. 647). Wafford, in his lioyhood, say about 1815, knew an 
old man named Tsi'nawi on Young-cane creek of Nottel}' river, in upper (Teorgia, 
who was known as a wheelwright and wa.s reputed to have made the first spinning 
wheel and loom ever made among the mountain Cherokee, or perhaps in the Nation, 
long before Watford's time, or "about the time the Cherokee began to drop their 
silver ornaments and go to work." In 1785 the commissioners for the Hopewell 
treaty reported that some of the Cherokee women had lately leartied to spin, andmany 
were very desirous of instruction in the raising, spinning, and weaving of flax, cotton, 
and wool (Hopewell Commissioners' Report, 1785, American State Pajjers: Indian 
Affairs, i, p. 39). In accordance with their recommendation the next treaty made with 
the tribe, in 1791, contained a provision for supplying the Cherokee with farming 
tools (Holston treaty, 1791, Indian Treaties, p. 36, 1837), and this civilizing policy 
wa.s continued and broadened until, in 1801, their agent reported that at the Chero- 
kee agency the wheel, the loom, and the plow were in pretty general use, and farm- 
ing, manufacturing, and stock raising were the principal topics of conversatioli among 
men and women (Hawkins manuscripts. Treaty Commission of 1801). 

(32) Colonel Return J. j\Iek;s (p. 84): Return .Jonathan Jleigs was born in Mid- 
dletown, Connecticut, December 17, 1734, and died at the Cherokee agency in Ten- 
nessee, .January 28, 1823. He was the first-born son of his parents, who gave him 
the somewhat jieculiar name of Return Jonathan to commemorate a romantic 
incident in their own courtship, when his mother, a young Quakeress, called back 
her lover as he was mounting his horse to leave the house forever after what he 
had supposed was a final refusal. The name has been handed down through five 
generations, every one of which has produced some man distinguished in the pub- 
lic service. The subject of this sketch volunteered immediately after the open- 
ing engagement of the Revolution at Lexington, and was assigned to duty under 
.\rnold, with rank of major. He accompanied .\rnold in the disastrous march 
through the wilderness against Quebec, and was captured in the assault upon the 
citadel and held until exchanged the next year. In 1777 he raised a regiment and 
was promoted to the rank of colonel. For a gallant and successful attack upon the 
enemy at Sag harbor, Long island, he received a sword and a vote of thanks from 
Congress, and by his conduct at the head of his regiment at Stony point won the favor- 
alile notice of Washington. After the close of the Revolution he removed to Ohio, 
where, as a mendjerof the territorial legislature, he drew up the earliest code of regula- 


tions for the [lioneer ^I'ltlorc. In ISOI he w;is appointoil agent I'or the Cherokee and 
took up hisresideneeat theajreney at Telhio hloekhonse, opjiosite the mouth of TelHeo 
river, in Tennessee, continuing to serve in that eapaeity until his deatli. He was 
succeeded a^ agent l>y Governor McMinn, of Tennessee. In the course of twenty-two 
years he negotiated several treaties with tlu' Cherokee and did much to further the 
work of civiHzation among tin'm and to defend them against unjust aggression. He 
also wrote a journal of the expedition to (2uel)ec. His grand.son of the same name 
was special agent for the Cherokee and Creeks in 1834. afterward achieving a repu- 
tation in the legal profe.-'sion Ixjth in Teunesssee and in the District of Cohunliia. 
Authvriliiv: Appleton, Cyclopiedia of American Biogra]>hy, 1894; Royce, Cherokee 
Nation, in Fifth Annual Report Bureau of Ethnology, 1888; docmuents in American 
State Papers, Indian Affairs, i and ii. 

(33) TEcrMTH.\ (p. 87): Tliis great chief of the Shawano and c(imman<lcr of the 
allied northern tribes in the British service was born near the present Chillicotlie, in 
western Ohio, about 1770, and fell in the liattle of the Thames, in Ontario, October 
5, 1813. Mis name signifies a "Hying panther" — i. e., a meteor. He came of light- 
ing stock good even in a trilie distinguished for its warlike qualities, his father and 
elder brother having been killed in battle with the whites. His mother is said to have 
died among the Cherokee. Tecumtha is first heard of as taking part in an engagement 
with the Kentuckians when about twenty years old, and in a few ye^rs he had secured, 
recognition a.s the ablest leader among the allied triVjes. It is said that he took jwrt 
in every inijiortant engagement witli the Americans from the time of Harmar's defeat 
in 1790 until the battle in which he lost his life. When about thirty years of age he 
conceived the idea of uniting the tribes northwest of the Oiiio, as Pontiac had united 
them before, in a great confederacy to re.sist the further ailvance of the Americans, 
taking the stand that the whole territory between the Ohio and the Mi.'^sissippi 
belonged to all these tribes in common and that no one tribe had the right to sell 
any portion of it w ithout the consent of the others. The refusal of the government 
to admit thi.s principle led him to take active steps to unite the tribes upon that 
basis, in which he was seconded by his brother, the Prophet, who supplemented 
Tecumtha's eloquence with his own claims to supernatural revelation. In the 
summer of 1810 Tecumtha held a conference with Governor Harrison at \'inceimes 
to protest against a recent treaty cession, and finding after exhausting his arguments 
that the effort was fruitle.*s, he closed the debate with the words: "The President is 
far off and may sit in his town and drink his wine, but you and I will have to fight 
it out." Both sides at once prepared for war, Tecumtha going south to enlist the 
aid of the Creek, Choctaw-, and other southern tribes, while Harrison took advan- 
tage of his absence to force the issue by marching against the Prophet's town on the 
Tippecancje river, where the hostile warriors from a dozen tribes had gathereil. \ 
battle fought before daybreak of Novend)er ti, 1811, resulte<l in the defeat of the 
Indians and the scattering of their forces. Tecumtha returned to find his plans 
brought to naught for the time, but the opening of the war between the I'nited 
States and England a few months later enabled him to rally the confederated tribes 
once more to the support of the British against the Americans. As a commissioned 
brigadier-general in the British service he commanded 2,000 warriors in the war of 
1812, distinguishing himself no less by his bravery than by his humanity in pre- 
venting outrages ami protecting prisoners from massacre, at one tiiue saving the 
lives of four hundred .\merican prisoners who had been taken in aud)usli near Eort 
Meigs and were unable to make longer resistance. He was wounded at Maguagua, 
where nearly four hundred were killed and wounded on both sides. He covered 
the British retreat after the battle of Lake Erie, and, refusing to retreat farther, 
compelled the British ( ieneral Proctor to make a stand at the Thames river. .Vlmost 
the whole force of the American attack fell on Tecumtha's division. Early in the 

216 MYTHS OF THE CHEROKEE [eth.anx.19 

engagement lie was sliot thioutrli the arm, tnit eontimiec! to tiglit desperately until 
he reeeived a bullet in the head and fell dead, surrounded by the bodies of 120 of 
his slain warriors. The services of Tecumtha and his Indians to the British cause 
have been recognized by an English historian, who says, "but for them it is proba- 
ble we .should not now have a Canada." Authorities: Drake, Indiana, ed. 1880; 
Appleton's Cyclopaedia of American Biography, 1894; Eggleston, Tecumseh and the 
Shawnee Prophet. 

(34) Fort Mims M.\ss.\cre, 1813 (p. 89): Fort Jlims, so ealle<l from an old Indian 
trader on whose lands it was built, was a stocka<le fort erected in the summer of 1813 
for the protection of the settlers in what was known as the Tensaw district, and was 
situated on Tensaw lake, Alabama, one mile east of Alabama river and about forty 
miles above Mobile. It was garrisoned by about 200 volunteer troops under Major 
Daniel Beasley, with refugees from the neighboring settlement, making a total at 
the time of its destruction of 553 men, women, and children. Being carelessly 
guarded, it was surprised on the morning of August 30 by about 1,000 Creek war- 
riors led by tlie mixed-blood chief, William Weatherford, wlio rushed in at the 
open gate, and, after a stout but hopeless resistance liy the garrison, massacred all 
within, with the exception of the few negroes and halfbreeds, whom they spared, 
and about a dozen whites wlio made their escape. The Indian loss is unknown, l)ut 
was very heavy, as the tight continued at close quaiters until the liuildings were 
tired over the lieads of the defenders. The unfortunate tragedy was due entirely to 
the carelessness of the commanding officer, who had been repeatedly warned that 
the Indians were about, and at the very moment of the attack a negro was tied up 
waiting to be flogged for reporting that he had the day before seen a number of 
painted warriors lurking a short distance outside the stockade. Authorities: Pickett, 
Alabama, ed. 1896; Hamilton and Owen, note, p. 170, in Transactions AlaVjama His- 
torical Society, ii, 1898; Agent Hawkins's report, 1813, American State Papers: Indian 
Affairs, i, p. 853; Drake, Indians, ed. 1880. The figures given are those <if Pickett, 
which in tliis instance seem most correct, while Drake's are evidently exaggerated. 
' (35) General Willi.\m McIn'tosh (p. 98): This noted halfbreed chief of the 
Lower Creeks was the son of a Scotch officer in the British army by an Indian 
mother, and was born at the Creek town of Coweta in Alabama, on the lower Chat- 
tahoochee, nearly opposite the present city of Columbus, Georgia, and killed at 
the same place Ijy order of the Creek national council on April 30, 1825. Having 
sufficient education to keep up an official correspondence, he iirought himself to 
public notice and came to be regarded as the principal chief bf the Lower Creeks. 
In the Creek war of 1813-14 he led his warriors to the supjjort of the Americans 
against his lirethren of the Upper towns, and acted a leading part in the terrible 
slaughters at Autossee and the Horseshoe bend. In 1817 he again headed his war- 
riors on the government side against the Seminole and was commissioned as major. 
His common title of general belonged to him only by courtesy. In 1821 he was the 
principal supporter of the treaty of Indian springs, by wliich a large tract between 
the Flint and Chattahoochee rivers was ceded. The treaty was repudiated by the 
Creek Nation as being the act of a small faction. Two other attempts were made to 
carry through the treaty, in which the interested motives of Mcintosh became so 
aiJjiarent that he was liranded as a traitor to his Nation and condemned to deat'i, 
together with his principal underlings, in accordance with a Creek law making 
death the penalty for undertaking to sell lands without the consent of the national 
council. About the same time he was pulilicly exposed and denounced in the 
Cherokee council for an attempt to bribe John Ross and other chiefs of the Cherokee 
in the same fashion. At daylight of April 30, 1825, a hundred or more warriors 
sent by tlie Creek national council surrounded his house and, after allowing the 
women and children to come out, set fire to it and sliot Mcintosh and another chief 


as they tricil to escajif. He left tliree wives, uiie of wliom was a Cherokee. Authori- 
ties: Drake, Indians, ed. 1880; Letters from Jlclntosh's son and widows, 1825, in 
American State Papers: Indian Affairs, ii, pp. 7H4 and 76H. 

(36) WiLLi.vM Weatheufori) ( p. 89 ) : This leader of tlie liostiles in the Creek 
war was the son of a white father and a halfbreed woman of Tuskejiee town whose 
father had been a Scotchman. Weatherford was born in the Creek Nation abont 
17S0 and died on Little river, in Monroe county. .Uabama. in 1S2H. He came first 
into prominence by leadinfj the attack npoii Fort Minis, August 80, 1818, wliich 
resulted in the destruction of the fort and the massacre of over five hundred inmates. 
It is maintained, with apparent truth, that he did his best to prevent the excesses 
which followed the victory, and left the scene rather than witness the atrocities 
when he found that he could not restrain his followers. The fact that .Tackson 
allowed him to go home unmolested after the final surrender is evidence that he 
believed Weatherford guiltless. At the battle of the Holy Ground, in the following 
December, he was defeated and narrowly escaped capture by the troops under (rcn- 
eral Claiborne. When the last hope of the Creeks had been destroyed and their 
power of resistance broken by the bloody battle of the Horseshoe ber-d, March 27, 
1814, Weatherford voluntarily walked into (ieneral .Jackson's headquarti'rs and sur- 
rendered, creating such an impression by his straightforward and fearless manner 
that the general, after a friendly interview, allowed him to go back alone to gather 
up his people prelijninarj' to arranging terms of peace. After the treaty he retired 
to a iilantation in ^lonroe county, where he lived in comfort and was greatly respected 
by his white neighbors until his death. As an illustration of his courage it is told how 
he once, single-handed, arrested two murderers immediately after the crime, when the 
local justice and a large crowd of bystanders were afraid to approach them. Jackson 
declared him to be as high toned and fearless as any man he had ever met. In person 
he was tall, straight, and well proportioned, with features indicating intelligetice, 
bravery, and enterprise. Authorities: Pickett, Alabama, ed. 1896; Drake, Indians, 
ed. 1880; Woodward, Reminiscences, 1859. 

(37) Reverend D.wid Br.\inerd (p. 104): The pioneer American missionary 
from whom the noted Cherokee mission took its name was born at Hadilam, Con- 
necticut, April 20, 1718, and died at Northampton, Massachusetts, October 9, 1747. 
He entered Yale college in 1739, but was expelled on account of his religious opinions. 
In 1742 he was licensed as a preacher and the next year Ijegan work as missionary to 
the Mahican Indians of the village of Kamiameek, twenty miles from Stockbridge, 
Massachusetts. He persuaded them to remove to Stockbridge, where he i>ut them 
in charge of a resident minister, after which he took up work with good result among 
the Delaware and other trilies on the Delaware and Susquehanna rivers. In 1747 
his health failed and he was forced to retire to Northampton, where he died a 
few months later. He wrote a journal and an account of his missionary laliors at 
Kaunameek. His later mission work was taken up and continued by his brother. 
Authority: Appleton's Cyclopjpdia of Amei'ican Biograijhy, 1S94. 

(88) Reverend S.^muei. AfsTix Worcester (p. 105): This noted missionary and 
philologist, the son of a Congregational minister who was als(3 a printer, was 
born at Worcester, Massachusetts, January 19, 1798, and died at Park Hill, in the 
Cherokee Nation west, April 20, 1859. Having removed to Vermont with his father 
while still a child, he graduated with the honors of his class at the state university 
at Burlington in 1819, and after finishing a course at the theological seminary at 
Andover was ordained to the ministry in 1825. A week later, with his newly wedded 
bride, he left Boston to begin mission work among the Cherokee, ami arrived in 
October at the mission of the American board, at Brainerd, Tennessee, where he 
remained until the end of 1827. He then, with his wife, removed to New Kchota, in 
Georgia, the capital of the Cherokee Nation, where he was the principal worker in the 
establishment of the Cherokee. Phoenix, the first new'spaper jirinted in the Cherokee 


language and alphabet. In this labor his inherited printer's instinct came into play, 
for he himself supervised the casting of the new types and the systematic arrangement 
of them in the case. In March, 1831, he was arrested by the Georgia authorities for 
refusing to take a special oath of allegiance to the state. He was released, but was rear- 
rested soon afterward, confined in the state penitentiary, and forced to wear prison 
garb, until January, 1833, notwithstanding a decision by the Supreme Court of the 
United States, nearly a year before, that his imprisonment wa.« a violation of the law 
of the land. The Cherokfi' Flidinr liaving been suspended and the Cherokee Xation 
brought into disorder by the extension over it of the state laws, he then returned to 
Brainertl, which was beyond the limits of ( jeorgia. In 1835 he removed to the Indian 
Territory, whither the Arkansas Cherokee had already gone, and after short sojourns 
at Dwight and Union missions took up his final residence at Park Hill in December, 
1836. He had already set up his mission press at Union, printing botli in the Chero- 
kee and the Creek languages, and on establishing himself at Park Hill he began a 
regular series of puVjlications in the Cherokee language. In 1843 he states that "at 
Park Hill, besides the preaching of the gospel, a leading object of attention is the prep- 
aration and puV)lication of books in the Cherokee language" (Letter in Report of 
Indian Commissioner, p. 356, 1843). The list of his Cherokee pulilications (first edi- 
tions) under his own name in Pilling's Bibliography comprises about twenty titles, 
including the Bible, hymn books, tracts, and almanacs in addition to the Phmiix 
and large number of anonymous works. Says Pilling: "It is very probable that he 
was the translator of a number of books for which he is not given credit here, espe- 
cially those portions of the Scripture which are herein not assigned to any name. 
Indeed it is safe to say that during the thirty-four years of his connection with the 
Cherokee Ijut little was done in the way of translating in which he had not a share." 
He also began a Cherokee geography and had both a grammar and a dictionary of 
the language under way when his work was interrupted by his arrest. The manu- 
scripts, with all his personal effects, afterward went down with a sinking steamer on 
the Arkansas. His daughter, Mrs A. E. W. Robertson, Viecame a missionary among 
the Creeks an<l has published a number of works in their language. AiilIioritte)i: 
Pilling, Bibliography of the Iroijuoian languages (articles Worcester, Cherokee 
Phoenix, etc.), 1888; Drake, Indians, ed. 1880: Report of Indian Commissioner, 1843 
(Worcester letter). 

(39) De.\th penalty for sellini; lands (p. 107): In 1820 the Cherokee Xation 
enacted a law making it treason punishable with death to enter into any negotiation 
for the sale of tribal lands without the consent of the national council. A similar 
law was enacted by the Creeks at about the same time. It was for violating these laws 
that Mcintosh and Ridge suffered death in their respective tribes. The principal 
parts of the Cherokee law, as reenacted by the united Xation in the West in 1842, 
appear as follows in the compilation authorized in 1866: 

"x\n act against sale op land, etc.: Whereas, The peace and prosperity of 
Indian nations are frequently sacrificed or placed in jeopardy by the unrestrained 
cupidity of their own individual citizens; mid mhereas, we ourselves are liable to suffer 
from the same cause, and be sulijected to future removal and disturbances: There- 
fore, . . . 

"Be it further enacted, That any person or persons who shall, contrary to the will 
and consent of the legislative council of this nation, in general council convened, 
enter into a treaty with any commissioner or commissioners of the United States, or 
any officer or officers instructed for the purpose, and agree to cede, exchange, or dis- 
pose in any way any part or portion of the lands belonging to or claimed by the 
Cherokees, west of the Mississippi, he or they so offending, upon conviction before 
any judge of the circuit or supreme courts, shall safer death, and any of the afore- 
said judges are authorized to call a court for the trial of any person or persons 
so transgressing. 


" Hi il fiirlln'r i')i(ivtr<l, Tliiit any person or jjersons who nliiill violate tlu' [irovi^ioiiH 
of the second section of this act, an<l shall resist or refuse to appear at the place 
designated for trial, or ahscond, are hereby rlei'lared to be outlaws; and any person 
or persons, citizens of this nation, may kill him or them so offending at any time 
an<i in any manner most convenient, within the limits of this nation, and shall not 
lie held accountable to the laws for tlic same. . . . 

" Hi' il fiirllicr fiKfiii'il, That no treaty shall be binding upon this nation whi<-h aJiall 
not be ratified by the general council, and approved by the principal chief of the 
nation. DecemWr 2, 1842." — Laws of the Cherokee Nation, ISliS. 

(40) The Chekokee syll.\h.\rv {p. 110): In the various schemes of syml>olic 
thought representation, from the simple pictograi)h of the primitive man to the lin- 
ished alphabet of the civilized nations, our own system, altln>ugh not yet i>erfecl, 
stands at the head of the list, the result of three thousand years of development by 
Egyptian, Phienician, an<l (ireek. Sequoya's syllaliary, the unaided w<irk of an 
uneducated Indian reared auiid semisavage surroundings, stands second. 

Twelve years of his life are said to have been given to his great work. Being entirely 
without instruction and having no knowleilge of the jihilosophy of language, being not 
even aci|uainted with English, his first attempts were naturally enough in the direc- 
tion of the crude Indian jiictograph. He set out to devise a syndjol for each word of 
the language, and after .several yeans of experiment, finding this an utterly liopeless 
task, he threw aside the thousands of characters which he had carved or scratched 
upon pieces of bark, and started in anew to study the construction of the language 
itself. Hy attentive observation for another long period he finally discovered that 
the sounds in the words used by the Cherokee in their daily conversation and their 
public speeches coidd be analyzed and i-lassifie<l, and that the tliousands of possible 
words were all formed from varying condnnations of hardly more than a hundred 
distinct syllables. Having thoroughly tested his discovery until satisfied of its cor- 
rectne8.s, he next proceeded to formulate a symbol for each syllable. For this purpose 
he made use of a number of characters which he found in an old English spelling 
book, picking out capitals, lower-case, italics, and figures, and placing them right .side 
up or upside down, without any idea of their sound or significance a,s used in English 
(see ])late v) . Having thus utilized some thirty-five ready-made characters, ti i which 
must be added a dozen or more produced by mollification of the same originals, lie 
designed from his own imagination a.s many more as were necessary to his iiuri>ose, 
making eighty-five in all. The complete syllabary, as first elaborated, would have 
reijuired someone hundred and fifteen characters, but after nnich hard study over 
the hissing sound in its various combinations, he hit upon the expedient of re|ire- 
senting the sound by means of a distinct character — the exact eipiivalent of our letter 
s — whenever it formed the initial of a syllable. Says Gallatin, " It wanted but one 
step more, and to have also given a distinct chara<'ter to each consonant, to reduce 
the whole number to sixteen, and to have had an al|ihabet similar to ours. In prac- 
tice, however, and as applied to his own language, the superiority of (xuess's alphabet 
is manifest, and has been fully proved by experience. You nmst in<leed learn and 
remember eighty-five characters instea<l of twenty-five [•'-"ic]. Hut this once acconi- 
]>lished, the education of the pupil is completed; he can read and he is perfect in his 
orthography without making it the subject of a distinct study. The boy learns in a 
few weeks that which occupies two years of the time of ours." Says Pliilli|)s: " In 
my own observation Indian children will take one or two, at times several, years to 
master the English printetl and written language, but in a few days can read and 
write in Cherokee. They do the latter, in fact, as soon as they learn to shape letters. 
As soon as they ma.ster the alphabet they have got rid of all the perplexing ipiestions 
in orthography that puzzle the brains of our children. It is not too much to say 
that a child will learn in a month, by the same effort, as thoroughly in the lanL'uai;e 


of yoquoyal], that which in ours consumes the time of n\i\- cliildren for at least two 

Although in theory the written Cherokee word has one letter for each syllaljle, the 
rule does not always hold good in practice, owing to the frequent elision of vowel 
sounds. Thus the word for "soul" is written with four letters as a-da-tiAn-ta , but 
pronounced in three syllables, udanla. In the same way tM-luu-i-yn-sti ("like 
tobacco," the cardinal flower) is pronounced tmlii/ndl. There are also, as in other 
languages, a number of minute sound \ariations not indicated in the written word, 
so that it is necessary to have heard the language spoken in order to read with cor- 
rect pronunciation. The old Upper dialect is the standard to which the aljihabet 
has been adapted. There is no provision for the r of the Lower or the sh of the 
Middle dialect, each speaker usually making his own dialectic change in the reading. 
The letters of a word are not connected, and there is no difference between the written 
and the printed character. Anthoritii'K: Gallatin, Synop.sis of the Indian Tribes, in 
Trans. Am. Antiq. Soc., ii, 1836; Phillips, Sequoyah, in Harper's Magazine, Septem- 
ber, 1S70; Pilling, Bibliography of Iroquoian Languages (article on Guess and i)late 
of syllabary), 1888; author's personal information. 

(41) Southern gold fields (p. 116): Almost every valuable mineral and crystal 
known to the manufacturer or the lapidary is found in the southern Alleghenies, 
although, so far as present knowledge goes, but few of these occur in paying (juanti- 
ties. It is probable, however, that this estimate may change with improved methods 
and enlarged railroad facilities. Leaving out of account the earlier operations by the 
Spanish, French, and English adventurers, of which mention has already been made, 
the first authentic account of gold finding in any of the states south of Mason and 
Dixon's line within what may be called the American period appears to lie that 
given by .Jefferson, writing in 1781, of a lump of ore found in Virginia, which yielded 
seventeen pennyweights <:if gold. This was probably not the earliest, however, as 
we find doubtful references to gold discoveries in both Carolinas before the Revolu- 
tion. The first mint returns of gold were made from North Carcjlina in 1793, and 
from South Carolina in 1829, although gold is certainly known to have been found in 
the latter state some years earlier. The earliest gold records for the other sotithern 
states are, approximately, Georgia (near Dahlonega), 1815-1820; Alabama, 1830; 
Tennessee (Coco creek, Monroe county), 1831; Maryland (Montgomery county), 
1849. Systematic tracing of gold belts southward from North Carolina began in 1829, 
and speedily resulted in the forcible eviction of the Cherokee from the gold-bearing 
region. Most of the precious metal was procured from placers or alluvial deposits 
bj' a simple process of digging and washing. Very little quartz mining has yet been 
attempte<l, and that usually by the crudest methods. In fact, for a long period gold 
working was followed as a sort of side issue to farming between crop seasons. In 
North Carolina prospectors obtained permission from the owners of the land to wash 
or dig on shares, varying from one-fourth to one-half, and the proprietor was accus- 
tomed to put his slaves to work in the same way along the creek bottoms after the 
crops had been safely gathered. " The dust became a considerable medium of circu- 
lation, and miners were accustomed to carry about with them quills rilleii with gold, 
and a ])air of small hand scales, on which they weighed out gold at regular rates; for 
instance, 'M grains <.>f gold was the customary equivalent of a pint of whisky." For 
a number of years, about 1830 and later, a man named Bechtler coined gold (.)n his 
own account in North Carolina, and these coins, with ^Mexican silver, are said to have 
constituted the chief currency over a large region. A regular mint was established 
at Dahlonega in 1838 and maintained for some years. From 1804 to 1827 all the gold 
produced in the United States came from North Carolina, although the total amounted 
to l)ut §110,000. The discovery of the rich deposits in California checked mining 
operations in the south, and the civil war brought about an almost complete suspen- 


sion, from uliicli tliere i.s hardly yet a revival. Accordiiif: to the best olficial esti- 
mates the gold production of the southern Allegheny region for the century from 1799 
to 1898, inclusive, has been something over $46,000,000, disti-ibuted as follows: 

North Carolina $21 , 926, 376 

Georgia 16, 658, 630 

South Carolina 3, 961 , .S63 

Virginia, slightly in excess of 3, 216, 343 

Alaliama, slightly in excess of 437, 927 

Tennessee, slightly in excess of 167, 405 

Maryland 47, 068 

Total, slightly in excess of 46, 415, 612 

Authorities: Becker, Gold Fields of the Southern Appalachians, in the Sixteenth 
Annual Report United States Geological Survey, 1895; Day, Jlineral Resources of 
the United States, Seventeenth Annual Report United States Geological Survey, 
part 3, 1896; Nitze, Gold Mining and Metallurgy in the Southern States, in North 
Carolina Geological Survey Report, republished in Mineral Resources of the United 
States, Twentieth Annual Report United States Geological Survey, part 6, 1899; 
Lanman, Letters from the Alleghany Mountains, 1849. 

(42) Extension of Georcia laws, 1830 (p. 117): "It is hereby ordained that all 
the laws of Georgia are extended o\-er the Cherokee country; that after the tirst day of 
June, 1830, all Indians then and at that time residing in said territory, shall be lialile 
and subject to such laws and regulations sis the legislature may hereafter prescribe; 
that all laws, usages, and customs made and established and enforced in the said terri- 
tory, by the said Cherokee Indians, be, and the same are hereby, on and after the 
1st day of June, 1830, declared null and void; and no Indian, or descendant of an 
Indian, residing within the Creek or Cherokee nations of Indians, shall be <leemed 
a competent witness or party to any suit in any court where a white man is a defend- 
ant." — Extract from the act passed by the Georgia legislature on December 20, 1828, 
"to add the territory within this state and occupied by the Cherokee Indians to 
the counties of DeKalb et al., and to extend the laws of this state over the same." 
Aullurritifx: Drake, Indians, p. 439, ed. 1880; Royce, Cherokee Nation of Indians, in 
Fifth Ann. Rep. Bureau of Ethnology, p. 260, 1888. 

(43) Removal forts, 1838 (p. 130): For collecting the Cherokee preparatory to 
the Removal, the following stockade forts were built: In North Carolina, Fort Liml- 
say, on the south side of the Tennessee river at the junction of Nantahala, in Swain 
county; Fort Scott, at .\quone, farther up Nantahala river, in Macon county; Fort 
Montgomery, at Robbinsville, in (frahain county; Fort Hembrie, at Hayesville, in 
Clay county; Fort Delaney, at Valleytown, in Cherokee county; Fort Butler, at 
Murphy, in the same county. In (ieorgia. Fort Scudder, on Frogtow'n creek, north 
of Dahlonega, in Lumpkin county; Fort Ciilmer, near EUijay, in Ciilnier county; 
Fort Coosa watee, in Murray county; Fort Talking-rock, near Jasper, in Pickens 
county; Fort Buffington, near Canton, in Cherokee county. In Tennessee, Fort 
Cass, at Calhoun, on Hiwassee river, in McMinn county. In Alabama, Fort Turkey- 
town, on Coosa river, at Center, in Cherokee county. Aitllmritii: .\utlior's personal 

(44) McNair's (Jrave, (p. 132): Just inside the Tennessee line, where the Cona- 
sauga river bends again into Georgia, is a stone-walled grave, with a slab, on which 
is an epitaph which tells its own story of the Removal heartbreak. McNair was a 
white man, prominent in the Cherokee Nation, whose wife was a daughter of the 
chief, Vann, who welcomed the Moravian missionaries and gave his own house for 
their use. The date shows that sIk; filed while the Removal was in progress, possibly 

222 MYTHS OF THK CHERoKKK [eth.axn.IU 

wliilt.' waiting in the stofkade caniii. The inscription, with details, is given from 
nil'orniation kindly furnished liy Mr D. K. Dunn of Gonasauga, Tennessee, in a 
letti-r dated August 16, 1890: 

"Saered to tlie memory of David and Delilah A. McXair, who departed this life, the 
former on the 15th of August, 1836, and the latter on the ;iOth of November, 183S. 
Their children, being members of the Cherokee Nation and having to go with their 
people to theAVest, <lo leave this monument, not only to show their regard for their 
parents, but toguard their sacred ashes against the unhallowed intrusion of the white 

(45) President Sam I'EL HorsTox, (p. 145) : This remarkable man was born in Kock- 
bridge county, Virginia, March 2, 1793, and died at Huntsville, Texas, July 25, 1863. 
Of strangely versatile, but forceful, character, he occuiiies a unique position in Ameri- 
can history, condjining in a wonderful degree the rough manhood of the pioneer, 
the eccentric vanity of the Indian, the stern dignity of the soldier, the genius of the 
statesman, and withal the high cliivalry of a knight of the olden time. His erratic 
career has been the subject of nuich cheap romancing, lint the simple facts are of 
sufficient interest in themselves without the aid of fictitious embellishment. To the 
Cherokee, whom he loved so well, he was known as Ka'lanii, "The Raven," an old 
war title in the tribe. 

His father having died when the bo)' was nine years old, his widowed mother re- 
moved with him to Tennessee, opposite the territory of the Cherokee, whose boundary 
was then the Tenne.?see river. Here he worked on the farm, attending school at 
intervals; but, being of adventurous disposition, he left home when sixteen years old, 
and, crossing over the river, joined the Cherokee, among whom he soon became a 
great favorite, being adopted into the family of Chief .Tolly, from whom the island at 
the mouth of Hiwassee takes its name. After three years of this life, during which 
time he wore the Indian dress and learned the Indian language, he returned to civili- 
zation and enlisted as a private soldier under .Tackson in the Creek war. He soon 
attracted favorable notice and was promoted to the rank of ensign. By striking 
bravery at the bloody battle of Horseshoe bend, where he scaled the breastworks with 
an arrow in his thigh and led his men into the thick of the enemy, he won the last- 
ing friendship of .Tackson, who made him a lieutenant, although he was then barely 
twenty-one. He continued in the army after the war, serving for a time as subagent 
for the Cherokee at .Tackson's request, until the summer of 1818, when he resigned 
on accomit of some criticism liy Calhoun, then Secretary of War. An <ifiicial investi- 
gation, held at his demand, resulted in his exoneration. 

Removing to Nashville, he began the study of law, and, being shortly afterward 
admitted to the bar, set up in practice at Lebanon. Within five years he was succes- 
sively district attorney and adjutant-general and major-general of state troops. In 
1823 he was elected to Congress, serving two terms, at the end of which, in 1827, he 
was elected governor of Tennessee by an overwhelming majority, being then thirty- 
four years of age. Shortly before this time he had fought and wounded (Tcneral White 
in a duel. In January, 1829, he married a young lady residing near Nashville, but 
two months later, without a word of explanation to any outsider, he left her, resigned 
his governorshiji and other official dignities, and left the state forever, to rejoin his 
old friends, the CUierokee, in the West. For years the reason for this strange conduct 
was a secret, and Houston himself always refused to talk of it, but it is now under- 
stood to have been due to the fact that his wife admitted to him that she loved 
anothei' and hail only been induced to marry him by the over-persuasions of her 

From Tennessee he went to Indian Territory, whither a large part of the Cher- 
okee had already removed, and once more took up his residence near Chief Jolly, 
who was now the principal chief of the western Cherokee. The great disap- 
pointment which seemed to ha\e l)lighted his life at its l)rightest was heavy at his 


iR'iut, ami he .sought fdrsjetfuhu'ssi in drinli to such an oxtent tluit for a tinit- his 
manhood seemed to liave dei)aited. nntwitli;rtandinir which, sucli was liis force of 
cliaracter and his past reputation, he retained his liold upon the affections of the 
Cherokeeand his .stan<iing with the ofiicer.s and their families at the neighboring posts 
of Fort Smith, Fort ( iilison, and Fort Coffee. In the meantime his former wife in Ten- 
nessee had ol)taine<l a divorce, and Hou.«ton being thus free once more soon after 
married Talihina, tlie youngest (laughter of a prominent mixed-l)lood (jherokee 
named Rogers, who resided near Fort Gibson. She was tlie niece of Houston's 
adopted father, Cliief Jolly, and he had known her when a boy in the old Nation. 
Being a beautiful girl, and cilucated above her surroundings, she became a welcome 
guest wherever her husband was received. He started a trading store near Webbers 
Falls, but continued in his dissipated hal)its until recalled to his senses by the out- 
come of a drunken affray in which he assaulted liis a<lopted father, the old chief, 
and was himself felled to the ground unconscious. Upon recovery from bis injuries 
he made a publicapology for his conduct and thenceforward led a. sober life. 

In 18:!2 he visited Washington in tlie interest of the we.stern Clierokec. calling in 
Indian costume ujion President Jackson, who received him with old-time friendship. 
Being accused while there of connection with a frauilulent Indian cnntract, he 
administered a sevt>re Ideating to his accuser, a member of Congress. For this he 
was fined §500 and reprimanded by the bar of the House, but Jackson remitted the 
fine. Soon after his return to the West he removed to Texas to take part in the 
agitation just started against Mexican rule. He was a member of the convention 
which adopted a separate constitution for Texas in IBS.'?, and two years later aided in 
forming a provisional government, and was elected commander-in-chief to organize 
the new militia. In 183f> he was a member of the convention which declared the- 
independence of Texas. At the battle of San Jacinto in Ai)ril of that year he defeated 
with 750 men Santa Ana's army of 1,800, inflicting upon the Mexicans the terrible 
loss of 630 killed and 7'M prisoners, among w hom was Santa Ana himself. Houston 
received a severe wound in the engagement. In the autumn of the same year he 
was elected first president of the republic of Texas, receiving more than four-fifths 
of the votes cast. He served two years and retired at the end of his term, leaving 
the country on good terms with both Mexico and the Indian tril)es, and with its 
notes at par. He was immediately elected to the Texas congress and served in that 
capacity until 1S41, when he was reelected president. It was during these years that 
he made his steadfast tight in liebalf (jf the Texas Cherokee, as is narrated elsewhere, 
supporting their cause without wavering, at the of his own i)o|)ularity and posi- 
tion. He frequently declared that no treaty made and carried out in good faith had 
ever been violated by Indians. His Cherokee wife liaving died some time before, he 
was again married in 1840, this time to a lady from Alabama, who exercised over 
him a restraining and ennobling influence through the st<jrmy vicissitudes of liis 
eventful life. In June, 1842, he vetoed a bill making him dictator for the i)urpose of 
resisting a threatened invasion from Jlexico. 

On December 29, 1.S45, Texas was adinitted to the Union, and in the following 
March Houston was elected to the Senate, where he served continuously until 1859, 
when he resigned to take his seat as governor, to which |)osition he had just been 
elected. From 1852 to 18(i0 his name was three times presented before national 
presidential nominating conventions, the last time receiving 57 votes. He had taken 
issue with the Democratic majority thronghoiit his term in the Senate, and when 
Texas pas.sed the .secession ordinance in February, 1861, being an uncompromising 
Union man, he refused to take the oath of allegiance to the Confederacy and was 
accordingly deposed from the uthce of governor, declining the proffered aid of federal 
troops to keep him in his seat. Unwilling either to fight against the Union or to 
take sides against his friends, be held alnof from the great struggle, and remained in 
silent retirement until his death, two years later. No other man in American history 


has left, such a roconl cif rdiitinncms electimi to liifjli cillirc wliilo stoadily holiHng to 
hiaown convictiDiis in the face of HtnuiK popular oiipn.sitidii. AiitlKjriticx: Appluton's 
Cyclopicilia uf American BiiiKraphy, 1894; Bunnell, Texas, 1.S40; Thrall, Texas, ISTfi; 
Lossinjr, Field Book of the War of 1812, 1869; author's |)ersonal information; various 
periodical and newspajier articles. 

(46) Chief JoriN Ross (p. 151): This great chief of the Cherokee, whose name is 
inseparable from their history, was himself bnt one-eighth of Indian blood and showed 
little of the Indian features, his father, Daniel Ross, having emigrated from Scotland 
iM'fore the Revolution and married a quarter-blood Cherokee woman whose father, .John 
McDonald, was also from Scotland. He was born at or near the family residence at 
Rossville, (xeorgia just the line from ('hattanooga, Tennessee. As a boy, he 
was known among the Cherokee as T.san-usdi', " Little ,Tohn," but after arriving at 
manhood was called (iuwi'sguwl', the name of a rare migratory bird, of large size 
and white or grayish plumage, .«aid to have appeared formerly at long intervals in 
the old Cherokee country. It may have been the egret or the swan. He was 
educated at Kingston, Tennessee, and began his public career when barely nineteen 
years of age. His first wife, a full-blood Cherokee woman, died in consequence of 
the hardships of the Removal wdiikt on the western march and was buried at Little 
Rock, .\rkansas. Some years later he married again, this time to a Miss Stapler of 
Wilmington, Delaware, the marriage taking place in Philadelphia (author's per- 
sonal information from Mr Allen Ross, son of John; see Meredith, 
"The Cherokees," in the Five (!ivili/,ed Tribes, Extra Bulletin Eleventh Census, 
1894.) Cooweescoowee district of the Cherokee Nation west has been named in liis 
hoiuir. The following biographic facts are taken from the panegyric in his honor, 
passed by the national council of the Cherokee, on hearing of his death, "as feebly 
expressive of the loss they have sustained." 

,Iohn Ross was born October 3, 1790, and died in the city of Washington, August 
1, 180(3, in the seventy-sixth year of his age. His othcial career began in 1809, when 
he was intrusted by .Vgent Return Meigs with an important mission to the Arkansas 
Cherokee. From that time until the close of his life, with the exception of two or 
three years in the earlier part, lie was in the constant service of liis people, "furnish- 
ing an instance of confidence on their part and lidelity on his which has never been 
surpassed in the annals of history." In the war of 18IH- 14 against the Creeks he 
was adjutant of the Cherokee regiment which cooperated w'ith GeneralJackson, and 
was present at the battle of the Horseshoe, where the Cherokee, under Colonel 
Morgan, of Tennessee, rendered distinguished service. In 1817 he was elected a 
member of the national committee of the Cherokee council. The first duty assigned 
him was to pre])are a re])ly to the United States commissioners who were present 
for the purpose of negotiating with the Cherokee for their lands east of the Mississippi, 
in firm resistance to which he was destined, a few yi'ars later, to test the power of 
truth and to attain a reputation of no ordinary character. In 1819, October 26, bis 
name first appears on the statute book of the Cherokee Nation as president of the 
national committee, and is attached to an ordinance whicli looked to the improve- 
ment of the Cherokee people, providing for the introduction into the Nation of school- 
masters, blacksmiths, mechanics, and others. He continued to occupy that position 
till 1826. 1 n 1827 he was a,ssociate chief with William Hicks, and president of the con- 
vention which adojited the constitution of that yiar. That constitution, it is believed, 
is the fir.«t effort at a regular government, with distinct braiu'hes and powers defined, 
ever made and carried into effect by any of the Indians of North America. From 1828 
until the remoxal west, he was principal chief of the esistern Cherokee, and from 
1839 to the time of his death, principal chief of the united C'berokee Nation. 

In regard to the long contest which culminated in the Removal, the resolutions 
declare that "The Cherokees, with John Ross at their head, alone with their 
treaties, achieved a recognition of their rights, but they were powerless to enforce 


them. They woiv c-diiipelli'd to yield, but not until the strus^le had developed the 
highest qualities of i>atieuce. fortitude, and tenaeity of ri'jht and purpose on their 
part, as well as that of their chief. The same may he said of their icmrse after their 
removal to this country, and which resulted in the reunion of the eastern and west- 
ern Cherokees as one people and in the adoption of the pre.sent constitution." 

Concerning the events of the civil war and the oflicial attempt to depose Ross from 
his authority, they state that these occurrences, with many others in their trying 
history as a people, are confidently committed to the future page of the historian. 
"It is enoufih to know that the treaty negotiated at Washington in 1866 bore the 
full anil just recognition of ,Iohn Ross' name as principal chief of the Cherokee 

The sunuiiing up of the [tanegyric is a splendid tribute to a splendid manhood: 

"Blessed with a fine I'onstitution and a vigorous mind, John Ross liad the phvsi- 
eal ability to follow the path of duty wherever it led. No danger apjialled him. 
lie never faltered in supporting what he believed to te right, but clung to it with a 
steadiness of purpose w'hieh alone could have sprung from the clearest convictions 
of rectitude. He never sacrificed the intere.sts of his nation to expediency. He 
never lost sight of tin' welfare of the people. For them he labored daily for a long 
life, and upon them he bestowed his last expressed thoughts. A friend of law, he 
obeyed it; a friend of education, he faithfully encouraged schools throughout the 
country, and spent liberally his means in conferring it upon others, (iiven to hos- 
pitality, none ever hungered around his door. A professor of the Christian religion, 
he practiced its prei'epts. His works are inseparable from the history of the (^her- 
okee people for nearly half a century, while his example in the daily walks of life 
will linger in the future and whisper words of hope, temperance, and charity in the 
years of posterity." 

Resolutions were also passed for bringing his Ixuly from Wasliington at the expense 
of the (^herokee Nation and i>roviding for suitaljle obsequies, in order "that his 
remains should rest among those he so long served" ( Re.-olutions in honor of .Tohn 
Ross, in Laws of the Cherokee Nation, lK(i9). 

(47) The Ketoow.\h Sociktv (p. 156): This Cherokee secret society, which has 
recently achieved some newspaper prominence by its championship of Cherokee 
autonomy, derives its name— properly Kitu'hwil, hut commonly sjielled Ketoowah 
in English print — from the ancient town in the old Nation which formed the nucleus of 
the most conservative element of the tribe and sometimes gave a name to the Nation 
it-^elf (."ee Kllii'lnidf/I, under Tribal Synonyms). A strong band of comradeship, if 
not a regular society organization, appears to have existed among the warriors and 
lea<ling men of the various settlements of the Kituhwa district from a remote period, 
.«o that the name is even now used in councils as indicative of genuine Cherokee 
feeling in its highest i)atriotic form. When, some years ago, delegates from the 
western Nation visited the Kast Cherokee to invite them to join their more pros- 
perous brethren beyond the Mississijipi, the speaker for the delegates expressed 
their fraternal feeling for their separated kinsmen by saying in his opening speetrh, 
"We are all Kituhwa people" (.Vtii'-KItn'hwagl). The Ketoowah society in the 
Cherokee Nation west was organized shortly before the civil war by John B.Jones, 
son of the missionary, Evan Jones, and an adojjted citizen of the Nation, as a secret 
society for the ostensible |)urpo.''e of cultivating a national feeling among the full- 
bloods, in o])po!sition to the innovating tendencies of the mixed-blood element. The 
real purpose was to counteract the influence of the "Blue Lodge" and other .secret 
secessionist organizations among the wealthier slave-holding classes, made up chiefly 
of mixed-bloods and whites. It extended to the Creeks, and its memliers in both 
tribes rendered good servi<'e to the Union cause throughout the war. They were 
frequently known as "I'in Indians," for a rea-son explained below. Since the close 
of the great struggle the society has distinguished it.<elf by its determined opposition 

!!• KTH— Ul 15 


t<) every scheme looking to'tlie cnrtailnient or destruetion of Cherokee national self- 

The following aeeonnt of the si_>eiety was w ritten shortly after the elose of the civil 

"Those Cherokees who were loyal to the I'nion comljined in a secret organization 
for self-protection, assnming the designation of the Ketoowha society, which name 
was soon merge<l in that of "Pins." The Pins were so styled because of a i)eculiar 
manner they adopted of wearing a pin. The symbol was discovered by their ene- 
mies, who applied the term in derision; bnt it was accepted by this loyal league, and 
has almost superseded the designation which its members first assumed. The Pin 
organization originated among the members of the Baptist congregation at Peavine, 
Going-snake district, in the Cherokee nation. In a short time the society counted 
nearly three thousand members, and had commenced proselytizing the Creeks, 
W'hen the rebellion, against which it was arming, preventing its further extension, 
the por)r Creeks having been driven into Kansas by the rebels of the Golden Circle. 
During the war the Pins rendered services to the Union cause in many bloody 
encounters, as lias been acknowledged by our generals. It was distinctly an anti- 
slavery organization. The slave-holding Cherokees, who constituted the wealthy 
and more intelligent class, naturally allied themselves with the South, while loyal 
Cherokees became more and more opposed to slavery. This was shown very clearly 
when the loyalists first met in convention, in February, 186.3. They not only abol- 
ished slavery unconditionally and forever, before any slave state made a movement 
toward emancipation, but made any attempts at ensla\ing a grave misdemeanor. 

The secret signs of the Pins were a peculiar way of touching the hat as a salutation, 
particularly when they were too far apart for recognition in other ways. They ha<l 
a peculiar mode of taking hold of the lapel of the coat, first drawing it away from 
the body, and then giving it a motion as though wrapping it around the heart. 
During the war a portion of them were forced into the rebellion, but quickly rebelled 
against General Cooper, who was placed over them, and when they fought against 
that general, at Bird Creek, they wore a bit of corn-husk, split into strips, tied in 
their hair. In the night when two Pins met, and one asked the other, 'Who are 
you?' the reply or pass was, 'Tahlequah — who are you?' The resjionse was, 'I 
am Ketoowha's son.' " — Dr D. J. MacGowan, Indian .Secret Societies, in Historical 
Magazine, x, -1866. 

(48) F.VREWELL .VDDRESS OF Llovi) "Welch (p. 1 7.T ) : In thesad and eventful history 
of the Cherokee their gifted leaders, frequently of white ancestry, have oftentimes 
spoken to the world with eloquent words of appeal, of protest, or of acknowledgment, 
but never more eloquently than in the last farewell of Chief Lloyd Welch to the 
eastern band, as he felt the end draw near (leaflet, MacGowan, Chattanooga [n. d., 

" To the Chairtiian and Council (ifllie Eastern Band of Cherokee.':: 

"My Brothers: It Ijecomes my imperative duty to bid you an affectionate farewell, 
and resign into your hands the trust you so generously confided to my keeping, prin- 
cipal chief of the Eastern Band. It is with great solicitude and anxiety for your 
welfare that I am constrained to take this course. But the inexorable laws of 
nature, and the rapi<I decline of my health, admonish me that soon, very soon, I 
will have passed from earth, my body consigne<l to the tomb, my spirit to God who 
gave it, in that happy home in the beyond, where there is no sickness, no sorrow, 
no jjain, no death, but one eternal joy and hajJiiiness forever more. 

"The only regret that I feel for thus being so soon called from among you, at the 
meridian of manhood, when hope is sweet, is the great anxiety I have to serve and 
benefit my race. For this I have studied and labored for the past ten years of my 
life, to secure to my lirothers equal justice from their brothers of the west and the 
United States, and that vmi would no longer lie hewers of wood and drawers of 


water, but assume tliat proud position among the civilized nations of the eartli 
inte/ided by the Creator that we should occupy, and which in the near future you 
will take or be exterminated. When you become educated, as a natural consecjucnce 
you will become more intelligent, sober, industrious, and prosperous. 

"It has l)een the aim of my life, the chief object, to serve my race faithfully, hon- 
estly, and to the best of my auility. How well I have succeeded I will leave to his- 
tory and yom- magnanimity to decide, trusting an all-wise and just God to guide and 
protect you in the future, as He will do all things well. We may fail when on earth 
to see the goodness and wisdom of God in removing from us our best and most use- 
ful men, but when we have crossed over on the other shore to our happy and eternal 
home in the far beyond then our eyes will be opened and we will be enabled to see 
and realize the goodness and mercy of (jod in thus afflicting us while here on earth, 
and will be enabled more fully to praise God, from whom all blessings come. 

"I hope that «hen you come to select one from among you to take the responsible 
position of principal chief of your band you will lay aside all personal considerations 
and select one in every respect competent, without stain on his fair fame, a pure, 
noble, honest, man — one who loves God and all that is pure — with intellect suHicient 
to know your rights, independence and nerve to defend them. Should you be thus 
fortunate in making your choice, all will be well. It has been truthfully said that 
' when the righteous rule the people rejoice, but when the wicked rule the people 

"I am satisfied that you have among you many who are fully competent of the 
task. If I was satisfied it was your wish and for the good of my brothers 1 might 
mention some of them, but think it Ijest to leave you in the hands of an all-wise ( iod, 
who does all things right, to guide and direct you aright. 

"And now, my brothers, in taking perhaps my last farewell on earth I ilo pray 
God that you may so conduct yourselves while here on earth that when the last sad 
rite is performed by loved friends we may compose one unbroken family above in 
that celestial city from whose bourne no traveler has ever returned to describe the 
beauty, grandeur, and happiness of the heaven prepared for the faithful by Gotl him- 
self beyond the sky. And again, my brothers, permit me to bid you a fond, but 
perhaps a last, farewell on earth, until we meet again where parting is never known 
and friends meet to part no more forever. 

"L. R. Welch, 
"Principal Chief Eastern Band Cherokee 7ndian.s. 


"Samuel W. D.wiuson. 
"B. B. Mekonv." 

(49) Status of eastern baxd (p. 180): For some reason all authorities who have 
hitherto discussed the status of the eastern band of Cherokee seem to have been 
entirely unaware of the enactment of the supplementary articles to the treaty of New 
Echota, by which all preemption and reservation rights granted under the twelfth 
article wore canceled. Thus, in the C-herokee case of "The United States ct nl against 
I). T. Boyd et al," we find the United States circuit judge quoting the twelfth article 
in its original form as a basis for argument, while his as.sociate judge says: "Their 
forefathers availed themselves of a provision in the treaty of New Echota and 
remained in the state of North Carolina," etc. (Report of Indian Connnissioner for 
1895, pp. 633-635, 1896) . The truth is that the treaty as ratified with its supplemen- 
tary articles canceled the residence right of every Cherokee east of tlie Mississippi, 
and it was not until thirty years afterwards that North Carolina finally gave assurance 
that the eastern band would be permitted to remain within her borders. 

The twelfth article of the new Echota treaty of December 29, 1835, provides for a 
pro rata ai>portionment to such Cherokee as desire to remain in the East, and con- 

228 MYTHS OF THE CHEROKEE [eth.ann.19 

tinues: "Such heads of Cherokee famiUes as are desirous to reside within the states 
of North Carohna, Tennessee, and Alabama, subject to the laws of the same, and 
who are qualified or calculated to become useful citizens, shall be entitled, on the 
certificate of the commissioners, to a preemption right to one hundred and sixty 
acres of land, or one ijuarter section, at the minimum Congress price, so as to include 
the present buildings or improvements of those who now reside there; and such as 
do not live there at present shall be permitted to locate within two years any lands 
not already occupied Ijy persons entitled to preemption privilege under this treaty," 
etc. Article 13 defines terms with reference to indi\idual reservations granted under 
former treaties. The preamble to the supplementary articles agreed upon on March 
1, 1836, recites that, "Whereas the President of the United States has expressed his 
determination not to allow any preemptions or reservations, his desire being that the 
whole Cherokee people should I'emove together and establish themselves in the 
country provided for them west of the Mississippi river (article 1) : It is therefore 
agreed that all preemption rights and reservations provided for in articles 12 and 13 
shall Ije, and are hereby, relinquished and declared void." The treaty, in this shape, 
was ratified on May 23, 1836 (see Indian Treaties, pp. 633-648, 1837). 





Cherokee myths may be roughly classified as sacred myths, animal 
st()ri(>s, local leo-ends. and historical traditions. To the first class 
belong the g'enesis stories, dealing with the creation of the world, the 
nature of the heavenly bodies and elemental forces, the origin of life 
and death, the spirit Morld and the invisible beings, the ancient mon- 
sters, and the hero-gods. It is almost certain that most of the myths 
of this class are but disjointed fragments of an original complete gen- 
esis and migration legend, which is now lost. With nearly every tribe 
that has been studied we find such a sacred legend, preserved b}- the 
priests of the tradition, who alone are privileged to recite and explain 
it. and dealing with the origin and wanderings of the ])eople from the, 
beginning of the world to the tinal settlement of the tril)e in its home 
territory. Among the best examples of such genesis traditions are 
those recorded in the Walam Olum of the Delawares and Matthews' 
Navaho Origin Legend. Others may be found in Cusick's History 
of the Six Nations, Gatschet's Creek Migration Legend, and the 
author's Jicarilla (renesis.' The Cheyenne, Arapaho, and other plains 
tribes are known to have similar genesis uwths. 

The former existence of such a national legend among the Cherokee 
is confirmed by Haywood, writing in 18:^;'). who states on information 
obtained from a principal man in the tribe that they had once a long 
oi'ation, then nearly forgotten, which recounted the history of their 
wanderings from the time when they had been first placed u\Hm tiie 
earth by some superior power from above. Up to about the middle 
of the last century this tradition was still recited at the annual Green- 
corn dance." Unlike most Indians the Cherokee are not conservative, 
and even before the Revolution had so far lost their primitive customs 
from contact with the whites that Adair, in 1775, calls them a nest of 
apostate hornets who for more than thirty years had been fast degen- 
erating.'' Whatever it may have been, their national legend is now lost 
forever. The secret orgiinizations that nmst have existed formerly 
among the priesthood havt( also disappeared, and each man now works 
independently according to his individual gifts and knowledge. 

The sacred myths were not for every one, but only those might hear 
who observed the proper form and ceremony. When John Ax and 

' Amerionn Anthropologist, vol. xi.Jiily, 18»8. » Adair, Aim'rioiin Indians, p. 81,1775. 

2 See page 2U. 



other old men were bo_ys, now some eighty years ago, the myth-keepers 
and priests were accustomed to meet together at night in the asi, 
or low-built log sleeping house, to recite the traditions and discuss 
their secret knowledge. At times those who desired instruction from 
an adept in the sacred lore of the tribe met him l)y appointment in the 
asi, where they sat up all night talking, with only the light of a small 
fire ])urning in the middle of the floor. At daj^break the whole party 
went down to the running stream, where the pupils or hearers of the 
myths stripped themselves, and were scratched upon their naked skin 
with a bone-tooth comb in the hands of the priest, after which they 
waded out, facing the rising sun, and dipped seven times under the 
water, while the priest recited prayers upon the bank. This purifica- 
tory rite, observed more than a century ago by Adair, is also a part of 
the ceremonial of the ballplay, the Green-corn dance, and, in fact, 
every important ritual performance. Before beginning one of the 
stories of the sacred class the informant would sometimes suggest 
jokingly that the author first submit to being scratched and "goto 

As a special privilege a boy was sometimes admitted to the asi on 
such occasions, to tend the fire, and thus had the opportunity to 
listen to the stories and learn something of the secret rites. In this way 
John Ax gained much of his knowledge, although he does not claim 
to be an adept. As he describes it, the fii'e intended to heat the room — 
for the nights are cold in the Cherokee mountains — was built upon the 
ground in the center of the small house, which was not high enough 
to permit a standing position, while the occupants sat in a circle around 
it. In front of the fire was placed a large fiat rock, and near it a pile 
of pine knots or splints. When the fire had burned down to a bed of 
coals, the boy lighted one or two of the pine knots and laid them upon 
the rock, where they blazed with a bright light until nearly consumed, 
when others were laid upon them, and so on until daybreak. 

Sometimes the pine splints were set up crosswise, thus, XXXX, in a 
circle around the fire, with a break at the eastern side. They were 
then lighted from one end and burned gradually around the circle, 
fresh splints being set up behind as those in front were consumed. 
Lawson describes this identical custom as witnessed at a dance among 
the Waxhaw, on Catawba river, in ITOl: 

Now, to return to our state house, wliither we were invited by the grandees. As 
soon as we came into it, they placed our Englishmen near the king, it being my for- 
tune to sit next him, having his great general or war captain on my (jther hand. 
The house is as dark as a dungeon, and as hot as one of the Dutch stoves in Holland. 
They had made a circular fire of split canes in the middle of the house, it was one 
man's employment to add more split reeds to the one end as it consumed at the 
other, there being a small vacancy left to supply it with fuel.' 

1 Lawson, Carolina, G7-68, reprint 1860. 


To the socond class hclonir the shorter animal myths. wIi'mIi ha\e 
lost whatever saereil charaeter thev may once have had, and are lold 
now mei'tdy as humorous e.\j)laiiations of certain animal })cculiarities. 
AN'hile the sacnnl myths have a constant hearing upon I'ormidistic 
prayers and observances, it is oidy in rare instances that any rite or 
custom is based upon an animal myth. Moreover. th(> sacred myths 
are known as a rule only to the professional priests or conjurers, while 
the shorter animal stories are more or less familiar to nearly every- 
one and are found in almost identical form among' Cherokee. Creeks, 
and other southern tribes. 

The animals of the Cherokee mvths, like the traditional hero-gods, 
were larger and of more perfect type than their jjiesent representa- 
tives. They had chiefs, councils, and townhouses, mingled with 
human kind upon terms of perfect equality and spoke the same 
language. In some unexplained manner they tinaUy left this lower 
world and ascended to Galiin'liiti, the world above, where they still 
exist. The removal was not simultaneous, but each animal chose his 
own time. The animals that we know, small in size and poor in intel- 
lect, came upon the earth later, and are not the descendants of the 
mythic animals, but onh- weak imitations. In one or two special ciises, 
however, the present creature is the descendant of a former monster. 
Trees and plants also were alive and could talk in the old days, and 
had their place in council, but do not figure prominently in the myths. 

Each animal had his appointed station and duty. Thus, the ^\'ala'si 
frog was the marshal and leader in the council, while thc^ Iial)l)it was 
the messenger to carry all public announcements, and usually led the 
dance besides. He was also the great trickster and mischief maker, a 
character which he bears in eastern and southern Indian myth gener- 
ally, as well as in the southern negro stories. The bear figures as 
having been originally a man, with human form and nature. 

As with other tribes and countries, almost every prominent rock and 
mountain, every deep bend in the river, in the old Cherokee country 
has its accompanying legend. It may be a little stoiy that can be 
told in a paragraph, to account for some natural feature, or it may be 
one chapter of a myth that has its secjuel in a mountain a hundred 
miles away. As is usual when a people has lived for a long time in 
the same country, nearly every important myth is localized, tlius 
assuming more definite character. 

There is the usual niunber of anecdotes and stories of personal 
adventure, some of them irredeemably vulgar, but historical traditions 
are strangely wanting. The authentic records of unlettered peoples 
are short at best, seldom going l)ack much farther than the memories 
of their oldest men; and although th(> Cherokee have been the most 
important of the southern tribes, making wars and treaties for three 
centuries with Spanish, English, French, and .Vmcricans, Iroquois, 

2;?'2 MYTHS OF THE CHEROKEE [eth.ann.1U 

Shawano. Catawba, and Creeks, there is little evidence of the fact in 
their traditions. This condition may be due in pai't to the temper of 
the Cherokee mind, which, as has been already stated, is accustomed 
to look forward to new tilings rather than to dwell upon the past. 
The tirst Cherokee war, with its stories of Agansta'ta and Ata-giirkalu', 
is absolutely forgotten. Of the long Revolutionary struggle they 
have hardly a recollection, although thej' were constantly fighting 
throughout the whole period and for several years after, and at one 
time were brought to the verge of ruin by four concerted expeditions, 
which ravaged their country simultaneously from different directions 
and destroyed almost every one of their towns. Even the Creek war, 
in which many of their warriors took a prominent part, was already 
nearly forgotten some years ago. Beyond a few stories of encounters 
with the Shawano and Iroquois there is hardty anything that can be 
called history until well within the present century. 

With some tribes the winter season and the night are the time for 
telling stories, but to the Cherokee all times are alike. As our grand- 
mothers begin, "Once upon a time," so the Cherokee story-teller 
introduces his narrative by saying: "This is what the old men told 
me when I was a boy." 

Not all tell the same stories, for in tribal lore, as in all other sorts 
of knowledge, we tind specialists. Some common minds take note 
only of common things — little stories of the rabbit, the terrapin, and 
the others, told to point a joke or amuse a child. Others dwell upon 
the wonderful and supernatural — Tsulkrilu', Tsuwe'nahi, and the 
Thunderers — and sacred things to be told only with prayer 
and purification. Then, again, there are still a few old warriors who 
live in the memory of heroic days when thei'e were wars with the 
Seneca and the Shawano, and these men are the historians of the 
tribe and the conservators of its antiquities. 

The question of the origin of myths is one which affords abundant 
opportunity for ingenious theories in the absence of any possibility 
of proof. Those of the Cherokee are too far broken down ever to be 
woven together again into any long-connected origin legend, such as 
we tind with some tribes, although a few still exhibit a certain sequence 
which indicates that they once formed component parts of a cycle. 
From the prominence of the ralibit in the animal stories, as well as in 
those found among the southern negroes, an effort has been made to 
establish for them a negro origin, regardless of the fact that the rab- 
bit — the Great White Rabbit — is the hero-god, trickster, and wonder- 
worker of all the tribes east of the Mississippi from Hudson bay to 
the Gulf. In European folklore also the rabbit is regarded as some- 
thing uncanny and half-supernatural, and even in far-off Korea he is 
the central figure in the animal myths. Just why this should be so 
is a (juestion that may be left to the theorist to decide. Among the 


Algoiiquiiiii tribes tlu> iiiune, induM, .seems to have boon confounded 
with thiit of the dawn, vahaiu so that the (xreat White Rabbit is 
really the incarnation of the eastern dawn that l)rin<is iiy-ht and life and 
drives awa}' the dark shadows which have held the world in chains. 
The animal itself seems to be regarded by the Indians as the fitting 
type of d(>fenseless weakness protected and made safe by constantly 
alert vigilance, and with a disposition, moreover, for turning up at 
unexpected moments. The same characteristics would appeal as 
strongly to the primitive mind of the negro. The very expression 
which Harris puts into the mouth of Uncle Remus, "In dem days 
Brer Rabbit en his fambly wuz at the head er de gang w'en enny 
racket wus en hand,"' was paraphrased in the Cherokee language by 
Suyeta in introducing his tirst rabbit story: " T^ti'stti irHlign'ndtCdi'tn' 
une'gutsdtu' ge«e'i — the Rabbit was the leader of them all in mischief." 
The expression struck the author so forcibly that the words were 
recorded as spoken. 

In regard to the contact between the two races, h\ which such stories 
coidd be borrowed from one by the other, it is not commonly known 
that in all the southern colonies Indian slaves were bought and sold and 
kept in servitude and worked in the fields side by side with negroes up 
to the time of the Revolution. Not to go back to the Spanish period, 
when such things were the order of the day, we find the Cherokee as 
early as 1693 complaining that their people were being kidnaped by 
slave hunters. Hundreds of captured Tuscarora and nearly the whole 
tribe of the Appalachee were distributed as slaves among the Carolina 
colonists in the early part of the eighteenth century, while the Natciiez 
and others shared a similar fate in Louisiana, and as late at least as 
1776 Cherokee prisoners of war were still sold to the highest l)idder 
for the same purpose. At one time it was charged against the gi)v- 
eriior of South Carolina that he was provoking a general Indian war 
by his encouragement of slave hunts. Furthermore, as the coast tril)es 
dwindled they were compelled to associate and intermarry with the 
negroes until they finally lost their identity and were classed with 
that race, so that a considerable proportion of the 1)lo()d of the south- 
ern negroes is unquestional)ly Indian. 

The negro, with his genius for imitation and his love for stories, 
especially of the comic variety, must undoubtedly have al)sorb(>d much 
from the Indian in this way, while on the other hand tin' Indian, with 
his pride of conservatism and iiis contempt for a subject race, would 
have taken but little froiu the negro, and that little could not easily 
have found its way back to the free ti-ibes. Some of these animal 
stories are common to widely separated tribes among whom there 
can be no suspicion of negro influiMices. Thus the famous "'tar l)abv" 
storv has variants, not onlv anioiii>- the Chei'okee, but also in New 

' Harris, J. C, Uncle Remus, His Songs and liis Sayings, p. 29; New York, 1886. 


Mexico, Washington, and soutliern Alaska — whereviT, in fact, the 
pinon or the pine supplies enough gum to be molded into a bail for 
Indian uses — while the incident of the Rabbit dining the Bear is found 
with nearl}^ every tribe from Nova Scotia to the Pacitic. The idea that 
such stories are necessarily of negro origin is due largely to the com- 
mon but mistaken notion that the Indian has no sense of humor. 

In many cases it is not necessary to assuuie borrowing from either 
side, the myths being such as would naturally spring up in any part of 
the world among primitive people accustomed to observe the charac- 
teristics of animals, which their religious sj'stem regarded as differing 
in no essential from human kind, save only in outward form. Thus 
in Europe and America the terrapin has been accepted as the type of 
plodding slowness, while the rabbit, with his sudden dash, or the deer 
with his bounding stride, is the type of speed. What more natural 
than that the story-teller should set one to race against the other, with 
the victory in favor of the patient striver against the self-contident 
boaster? The idea of a hungry wolf or other beast of prey luring 
his victims by the promise of a new song or dance, during which they 
must close their eyes, is also one that would easilj- occur among any 
primitive people whose chief pastime is dancing.' 

On the other hand, such a conception as that of Flint and the Rabbit 
could only be the outgrowth of a special cosmogonic theology, though 
now indeed broken and degraded, and it is probable that many myths 
told now only for amusement are really worn down fragments of 
ancient sacred traditions. Thus the story just noted appears in a dif- 
ferent dress among the Iroquois as a part of their great creation myth. 
The Cherokee being a detached tribe of the Iroquois, we may expect to 
tind among the latter, if it be not alreadj- too late, the explanation and 
more perfect statement of some things which are obscure in the Cher- 
okee myths. It must not be forgotten, however, that the Indian, like 
other men, does some things for simple amusement, and it is useless 
to look for occult meanings where none exist. 

Except as to the local traditions and a few others which are obviously 
the direct outgrowth of Cherokee conditions, it is impossible to tix a 
definite starting point for the myths. It would be unwise to assert 
that even the majority of them originated within the tribe. The 
Cherokee have strains of Creek, Catawba, Uchee, Natchez, Iroquois, 
Osage, and Shawano blood, and such admixture implies contact more 
or less intimate and continued. Indians are g'reat wanderers, and a 

1 For a presentation of the African and European argument see Harris, Nights with Uncle Remus, 
introduction, 18,s3: and Uncle Remus, His Songs and His Sayings, introduction, IXHB; Gerber, 
Uncle Renins Traced to the Old World, in .Journal of .American Folklore, vi, p. 23, October, Isa3. In 
regard to tribal dissemination of mytlis see Boas, Dissemination of Tales among the Natives of North 
America, in .Tournal of American Folklore, iv, p. 12, January, 1891; The Growth of Indian Mythologies, 
in the same journal, ix, p. 32, January 1896; Northern Elements in the Mythology of the Navaho, in 
American Anthropologist, x, p. 11, November, 1897; introduction to Teit's Traditions of the Thompson 
River Indians, 1898. Dr Boas has probably devoted more study to the subject than any other anthro- 
pologist, and his personal observations include tribes from the Arctic regions to the Columbia. 


myth oiin travol as far as a rodstoiu' pipe or a string of waiiipuin. It 
was customary, as it still is to a liiiiiti'd extent in thc^ West, for largo 
pai'tics. sometimes even a whole band or village, to make long visits 
to oth(>r tribes, dancing, feasting, trading, and exchanging stories with 
their friends for weeks or months at a time, with the expi!ctation that 
their hosts would return the visit within the next sunnner. Regular 
trade routes crossed the continent from east to west and from north to 
south, and when the subject has been fully investigated it will be found 
that this intertribal commerce was as constant and well recognized a 
part of Indian life as is our own railroad traffic today. The verv 
existence of a trade jargon or a sign language is proof of intcrtril)al 
relations over wide areas. Their political alliances also were often 
far-reaching, for Pontiac welded into a warlike confederacy all the 
tribes from the Atlantic border to the head of the Mississippi, while 
the emissaries of the Shawano prophet carried the story of his rev- 
elations throughout the whole region from the Florida coast to the 

In view of these facts it is as useless to attempt to trace the origin 
of every mj-th as to claim a Cherokee authorship for them all. From 
what we know of the character of the Shawano, their tendency toward 
the ceremonial and the mystic, and their close relations with the 
Cherokee, it may be inferred that some of the myths originated with 
that tribe. We should naturally' expect also to find close correspond- 
ence with the myths of the Creeks and other southern tribes within 
the former area of the Mobilian trade language. The localization at 
home of all the more important myths indicates a long residence in 
the country. As the majority of here given belong to the half 
dozen counties still familiar to the East Cherokee, we ma}' guess how 
many attached to the ancient territory of the tribe are now irrecov- 
erably lost. 

Contact with the white race seems to have produced very little 
impression on the tribal mythology, and not more than three or four 
stories current among the Cherokee can be assigned to a Caucasian 
source. These have not been reproduced here, for the reason that 
they are plainly P^uropean, and the author has chosen not to follow the 
example of some collectors who have assumed that every tale told in an 
Indina language is necessarily an Indian storj'. Scores recoi'dcd in col- 
lections from the North and West are nothing more than variants from 
the celebrated Hausmiirchen, as t(^ld by French ti-appcrsand voyageurs 
to their Indian campmates and halfbi'eed children. It might pei-haps 
be thought that missionary influence would be evident in the genesis 
tradition, but such is not the case. The Bible story kills the Indian 
tradition, and there is no amalgamation. It is hardly necessary to say 
that stories of a irreat lish which swallows a man and of a great flood 

236 MYTHS OF THE CHEROKEE [eth.ann.19 

which destroyti a people are found the world over. The supposed 
Cherokee hero-god, Wasi, described by one writer as so remarkably 
reseinblino- the great Hebrew lawgiver is in fact that great teacher 
himself, Wasi being the Cherokee approximate for Moses, and the 
good missionary who first recorded the story was simply listening to 
a chapter taken by his convert from the Cherokee testament. The 
whole primitive pantheon of the Cherokee is still preserved in their 
sacred formulas. 

As compared with those from some other ti'ibes the Cherokee myths 
are clean. For picturesque imagination and wealth of detail they 
rank high, and some of the wonder stories may challenge those of 
Europe and India. The numerous parallels furnished will serve to 
indicate their relation to the general Indian system. Unless otherwise 
noted, every myth here given has been obtained directly from the 
Indians, and in nearly every case has been verified from several 


"I know not how the truth may be, 
I tell the tale as 'twas told to me." 

First and chief in the list of story tellers comes A'yuii'ini, " Swim- 
mer," from whom nearly three-fourths of the whole number were 
originally obtained, together with nearly as large a proportion of the 
whole body of Cherokee material now in possession of the author. 
The collection could not have been made without his help, and now 
that he is gone it can never be duplicated. Born about 1835, shortly 
before the Removal, he grew up under the instruction of masters to be 
a priest, doctor, and keeper of tradition, so that he was recognized as 
an authority throughout the ])and and by such a competent outside 
judge as Colonel Thomas. He served through the war as second 
sergeant of the Cherokee Company A, Sixty-ninth North Carolina 
Confederate Infantry, Thomas Legion. He was prominent in the 
local affairs of the band, and no Green-corn dance, ballplay, or other 
tribal function was ever considered complete without his presence and 
active assistance. A genuine aboriginal antiquarian and patriot, 
proud of his people and their ancient system, he took delight in 
recording in his native alphabet the songs and sacred formulas of 
priests and dancers and the names of medicinal plants and the pre- 
scriptions with which they were couipounded, while his mind was a 
storehouse of Indian tradition. To a happy descriptive style he added 
a nuisical voice for the songs and a peculiar faculty for imitating 
the characteristic cry of bird or beast, so that to listen to one of his 
recitals was often a plea.sure in itself, even to one who understood not a 
word of the language. He spoke no E)nglish, and to tlie day of his death 
chuig to the moccasin and turljan, together with the rattle, his badge 
of authority. He died in March, 1899, aged about sixty-five, and was 


buried like a true Cherokee on the slope of a forest-chid iiiouiitaiii. 
Peace to his ashes and sorrow for his going, for with him perished half 
the tradition of a people. 

Next in order eomes the name of Itagu'niihi, better known as .John 
Ax, born about 1800 and now consequently just touching the century 
mark, being th(> oldest man of the band. He has a distinct recollec- 
tion of the Creek war, at which time he was about twelve years of age, 
and was already married and a father when the lands east of Nantahala 
were sold by the treaty of 1S19. Although not a professional priest 
or doctor, he was recognized, before age had dulled his faculties, as 
an authority upon all relating to tribal custom, and was an expert in 
the making of rattles, wands, and other ceremonial parajihernalia. Of 
a poetic and imaginative temperament, he cared most for the wonder 
stories, of the giant Tsulkalu', of the great Uktena or of the invisible 
spirit people. l)ut he had also a keen appreciation of the humorous 
animal stories. He speaks no English, and with his erect spare tigure 
and piercing eye is a tine specimen of the old-time Indian. Notwith- 
standing his great age he walked without other assistance than his 
stick to the last ball game, where he watched ever)- run with the closest 
interest, and would have attended the dance the night before but for 
the interposition of friends. 

Suyeta, "The Chosen One," who preaches regularly as a Baptist 
minister to an Indian congregation, does not deal much with the Indian 
supernatural, perhaps through deference to his clerical obligations, 
but has a good memory and liking for rabbit stories and others of the 
same class. He served in the Confederate army during the war as 
fourth sergeant in Companj' A, of the Sixty-ninth North Carolina, 
and is now a well-preserved man of about sixty-two. He speaks no 
English, but by an ingenious .system of his own has learned to use a 
concordance for verifying references in his Cherokee bible. He is 
also a first-class carpenter and ma.son. 

Another principal informant was Ta'gwadihi', "Catawba-kilhM," of 
Cheowa, who died a few years ago, aged about seventy. He was a 
doctor and made no claim to special knowledge of myths or ceremonials, 
but was able to furnish .several valuable stories, Ijesides confirmatory 
evidence for a large number obtained from othei- .sourct^s. 

Besides these may be named, among the East Cherokee, the late 
Chief N. J. Smith; Sala'li, mentioned elsewhere, who died about 18!>5;'ni or Jes.san, who. also .served in the war; Ayii'sta, one of the 
principal conservatives among the women; and James and David 
Blythe, j'ounger men of mixed blood, with an English education, but 
inheritors of a large share of Indian lore from their father, who was 
a I'ecognized leader of ceremony. 

Among infoi'mants in the western Cherokee Nation the i)rincipal was 
James D. Watford, kiu)wn to the Indians as TsuskwilmuTnawa'ta, 


"Worn-out-blanket," a mixed-blood speaking and writing both ian- 
guages, born in the old Cherokee Niition near the site of the pi-es- 
ent Clarkesville, Georgia, in iSOti, and dying when about ninety 
years of age at his home in the eastern part of the Cherokee Nation, 
adjoining the Seneca reservation. The name figures prominently in 
the early history of North Carolina and Georgia. His grandfather, 
Colonel Wafford, was an officer in the American Revolutionary army, 
and shortly after the treaty of Hopewell, in 1785, established a colony 
known as '* Wafl'ord's settlement," in upper Georgia, on territory which 
was afterward found to be within the Indian boundary and was acquired 
by special treaty purchase in 1804. His name is appended, as witness 
for the state of Georgia, to the treaty of Holston, in 1791:.' On his 
mother's side Mr Wafford was of mixed Cherokee, Natchez, and white 
blood, she being a cousin of Sequoya. He was also remotely con- 
nected with Cornelius Dougherty, the first trader established among 
the Cherokee. In the course of his long life he filled manj- positions 
of trust and honor among his people. In his youth he attended 
the mission school at Valleytown under Reverend Evan Jones, and 
just before the adoption of the Cherokee alphabet he finished the 
translation into phonetic Cherokee spelling of a Sundaj' school speller 
noted in Filling's Iroquoin Bibliography. In 1821 he was the census 
enumerator for that district of the Cherokee Nation embracing upper 
Hiwassee river, in North Carolina, with Nottely and Toccoa in the 
adjoining portion of Georgia. His fund of Cherokee geographic 
information thus acquired was found to be invaluable. He was one of 
the two commanders of the largest detachment of emigrants at the 
time of the removal, and his name appears as a councilor for the western 
Nation in the Cherokee Almanac for 1816. When employed by the 
author at Tahlequah in 1891 his mind was still clear and his memory 
keen. Being of practical lient. he was concerned chiefiy with tribal 
history, geography, linguistics, and every-day life and cu.stom, on all 
of which subjects his knowledge was exact and detailed, but there were 
few myths for which he was not able to furnish confirmatory testi- 
mony. Despite his education he was a firm believer in the Nuiine'hi, 
and several of the best legends connected with them were obtained 
from him. His death takes from the Cherokee one of the last connect- 
ing links between the present and the past. 

1 See contemporary notice in the Historical Sketch. 







The earth is ;i g-reat island fiDating- in a sea of water, and suspended 
at each of the four I'ardinal j)()ints by a cord hanging down from 
the sky vault, which is of solid rock. When the woi'ld grows old and 
worn out, the people will die and the cords will bi'eak and let the earth 
.sink down into the ocean, and all will be water again. The Indians 
are afraid of this. 

When all was water, the animals were above in Galun'lati, beyond 
the arch; but it was very unich crowded, and they wi>re wanting more 
room. They wondered what was below the water, and at last Dayu- 
ni'si, ''Beaver's Grandchild." the little Water-beetle, ofl'ered to go and 
see if it could learn. It darted in every direction over the surface of 
the water, but could tind no firm place to rest. Then it dived to the 
bottom and came up with some soft nuid. which began to grow and 
spread on every side until it became the island which we call tiie 
earth. It was afterward fastened to the sky with four cords, but no 
one remembei's who did this. 

At tirst the earth was tlat and very soft and wet. The animals were 
anxious to get down, and sent out different birds to see if it was yet 
drj', but they found no place to alight and came 1)ack again to Galun'- 
lati. At last it seemed to be time, and they sent out the Buzzard and 
told him to go and make ready for them. This was the Great Buz- 
zard, the father of all the })uzzards we see now. He flew all over the 
earth, low down near the ground, and it was still soft. When he 
reached the Cherokee country, he was very tired, and his wings began 
to flap and strike the ground, and wherever they struck the earth 
there was a valley, and where they turned up again there was a 
mountain. When the animals above saw this, they were afraid that 
the whole world would be mountains, so they called him back, but the 
Cherokee country remains full of moiuitains to this day. 

When the earth was dry and the animals came down, it was still 
dark, so they got the sun and set it in a track to go every day across 
the island from east to west, just overhead. It was too hot this way, 
and Tsiska'giir, the Red Crawtish, had his shell scorched a bright red, 
so that his meat was spoiled: and the Cherokee do not cat it. The 

240 MYTHS OF THE CHEROKEE [eth. an-.n. I'.i 

conjurers put the sun another hand-breadth higher in the air, but it was 
still too hot. They i"aised it another time, and another, until it was 
seven handbreadths high and just under the sky arch. Then it was 
right, and they left it so. This is why the conjurers call the highest 
place (Tillkwa'gine Di'galun'latiyufi', "the seventh height," because it is 
seven hand-breadths above the earth. Every day the sun goes along 
under this arch, and returns at night on the upper side to the starting 

There is another world under this, and it is like ours in every- 
thing — animals, plants, and people — save that the seasons are different. 
The streams that come down from the mountains are the trails by 
which we reach this underworld, and the springs at their heads are 
the doorways by which we enter it, but to do this one must fast and 
go to water and have one of the underground people for a guide. We 
know that the seasons in the underworld are different from ours, 
because the water in the. springs is always warmer in winter and 
cooler in summer than the outer air. 

When the animals and plants were first made — we do not know by 
whom — they were told to watch and keep awake for seven nights, 
just as young men now fast and keep awake when they pray to their 
medicine. They tried to do this, and nearly- all were awake through 
the first night, but the next night several dropped off to sleep, and the 
third night others were asleep, and then others, until, on the seventh 
night, of all the animals only the owl, the panther, and one or two 
more were still awake. To these were given the power to see and to 
go about in the dark, and to make prey of the birds and animals which 
must sleep at night. Of the trees only the cedar, the pine, the spruce, 
the holly, and the laurel were awake to the end, and to them it was 
given to l)e always green and to be greatest for medicine, but to the 
others it was said: "Because you have not endured to the end you 
shall lose your hair eveiy winter." 

Men came after the animals and plants. At first there were only a 
brother and sister until he struck her with a fish and told her to mul- 
tiply, and so it was. In seven days a child was born to her, and 
thereafter every seven days another, and they increased very fast until 
there was danger that the world could not keep them. Then it was 
made that a woman should have only one child in a year, and it has 
been so ever since. 


In the beginning there was no fire, and the world was cold, until the 
Thunders (Ani'-Hyun'tikwiila'ski), who lived up in GilluiTlati. sent their 
lightning and put fire into the bottom of a hollow .sycamore tree which 
grew on an island. The animals knew it was there, because they could 
see the smoke coming out at the top, l)ut they could not get to it on 

MiHiNEY] thp: first fire 241 

account of the water, so they ho\d :i council to decide what to do. This 
was a long time ago. 

Eveiy animal that could fly or swim was anxious to go after the tire. 
The Raven oiTered, and because he was so large and strong they thought 
he could surelj' do the work, so he was sent first. He flew high and 
far across the water and alighted on the s^'camore tree, but whiles he 
was wondering what to do next, the heat had scorched all his feathers 
black, and he was frightened and came back without the fire. The 
little Screech-owl ( Wa'huhi/') volunteered to go, and reached the place 
safely, but while he was looking down into the hollow tree a blast of 
hot air came up and nearly burned out his eyes. He managed to fly 
home as best he could, but it was a long time before he could see well, 
and his eyes are red to this day. Then the Hooting Owl ( rj'gul'u') and 
the Horned Owl {Tskill') went, but by the time thej' got to the hollow 
tree the tire was burning so fiercely that the smoke nearly ])lin(lcd 
them, and the ashes carried up by the wind made white rings about 
their eyes. They had to come home again without the fire, but with 
all their rubbing they were never able to get rid of the white rings. 

Now no more of the birds would venture, and so the little Uksu'hi 
snake, the black racer, said he would go through the water and bring 
back some fire. He swam across to the island and crawled through 
the grass to the tree, and went in by a small hole at the bottom. The 
heat and smoke were too nuich for him, too, and after dodging about 
blindh' over the hot ashes until he was almost on fire himself he man- 
aged by good luck to get out again at the same hole, but his body had 
been scorched black, and he has ever since had the habit of darting 
and doui)ling on his track as if trying to escape from close quarters. 
He came back, and the great blacksnake, Gule'gi, "The Climber," 
oiiered to go for fire. He swam over to the island and climbed up the 
tree on the outside, as the blacksnake always does, but when he put 
his head down into the hole the smoke <-hoked him so that he fell into 
the burning stump, and before he could climlj out again he was as 
black as the Uksu'hi. 

Now they held another council, for still there was no fire, and the 
world was cold. l)ut birds, snakes, and four-footed animals, all had 
some excuse for not going, because fchey were all afraid to venture 
near the l)urning sycamore, until at last Kanane'ski Amai'yehi (the 
Water Spider) said she would go. This is not the water spider that 
looks like a mosquito, but the other one. witli black downy hair and 
red strip(>s on her liody. She can run on top of the water or dive to 
the bottom, so thi^re would be no trouble to get over to the island, but 
the question was, How could she })ring l)ack the fire? "I'll manage 
that," said the Water Spider; so she spun a tliread from her body and 
wove it into a f}(.sti bowl, which she fastened on hci- back. Then she 
cros.sed over to the island and through the grass to where th(! tire was 

lit ETH— 01 16 


.still burning. She put one little coal of lire into her howl, and came 
hack with it, and ever .since wehavehad tire, and the Water Spider .still 
keeps her tusti bowl. 


When I M'as a boj' thi.s is what the old men told me the}' had heard 
when they were l)oys. 

Long years ago, soon after the world was made, a hunter and his 
wife lived at Pilot knob with their only child, a little boy. The 
father's name was Kana'ti (The Lucky Hunter), and his wife was 
called Selu (Corn). No matter when Kana'ti went into the wood, he 
never failed to bring back a load of game, which his wife would cut 
up and prepare, washing oti' the blood from the meat in the river near 
the house. The little boy used to play down by the river every day, 
and one morning the old people thought they heard laughing and talk- 
ino- in the liushes as thout!h there were two children there. When the 
boy came home at night his parents asked him who had been playing 
with him all day. '"He comes out of the water," said the boy, "'and 
he calls himself my elder l)rother. He .says his mother was cruel to 
him and threw him into the river." Then they knew that the strange 
boy had sprung from the blood of the game which Selu had washed 
oS at the river's edge. 

Every day when the little boy went out to plaj^ the other would join 
him, but as he always went back again into the water the old pt^ople 
never had a chance to see him. At last one evening Kana'ti said to his 
son, "Tomori'ow, when the other hoy comes to play, get him to wrestle 
with you, and when you have your arms around him hold on to him 
and call for us." The boy promised to do as he was told, so the next 
day as soon as his plajanate appeared he challenged him to a wrestling 
match. The other agreed at once, Init as soon as they had their arms 
around each other. Kana'ti's boy began to scream for his father. The 
old folks at once came lunning down, and as soon as the Wild Boy saw 
them he struggled to free himself and cried out, "Let me go; you 
threw me away!" but his brother held on until the parents reached the 
spot, when they seized the Wild Boy and took him home with them. 
They kept him in the house until they had tamed him, but he was 
always wild and artful in his disposition, and was the leader of his 
brother in every mischief. It was not long until the old people dis- 
covered that he had magic powers, and thev called him Tnage-utasuii'hi 

Whenever Kana'ti went into the mountains he always brought back 
a fat buck or doe, or maybe a couple of turkeys. One day the ^Vild 
Boy .said to his brother, "1 wonder where our father gets all that 
game; let's follow him next time and find out." A few days afterward 
Kana'ti took a 1)ow and some feathers in his hand and started ofl 

MoosEY] kana'tI and selu 243 

toward tho Tho Ijoys wiiitod a little while and then went after 
hiin. keepiiio- out of siylit until tliey saw him go into a .swamp where 
there were a great many of tlie small reeds that hunters use to make 
arrowshafts. Then tlie Wild Boy changed himself into a pufT of 
))ird"s down, whicli the wiiid took up and eaiTied until it alighted upon 
Kana'tfs shoulder just as he (>ntered the swamp, but Kana'ti knew 
notiiing about it. Tlieold man cut reeds, fittedthe feathers to them and 
made some arrows, and tlie \\'ild Boy — in his other shape — thought, 
"1 wonder what those things are for?" When Kana'ti had his arrows 
finished he came out of tlie swamp and went on again. The wind blew 
the down from his siuiulder. and it fell in the woods, when the Wild 
Boy took his right shape again and went back and told his brother 
what he had seen. Keeping out of sight of their father, they followed 
him up the mountain until lie stopped at a certain phice and lifted a 
large rock. At once thei-e ran out a buck, which Kana'ti shot, and 
then lifting it upon his back lie started for home again. "Oliol" 
exclaimed the boys, "he keeps all the deer shut up in tliat hole, and 
whenever he wants meat he just lets one out and kills it with 
things he made in the swamp." They hunried and reached home liefore 
their father, who had the heavy deer to carry, and he never knew that 
they had followed. 

A few days later the ))oys went back to the swamp, cut some reeds, 
and made seven arrows, and tlien started up the mountain to where 
their father kept the game. When they got to the place, they raised 
the rock and a deer ciinie running out. Just as they drew back to shoot 
it, iuiother came out, and then :iiii)tli(>r and another, until the boys got 
confased and forgot what they were ahout. In those days all the deer 
had their tails hanging down like other animals, but as a buck was 
running past the Wild Boy struck its tail with his arrow so that it 
pointed upward. The boys thought this good .sport, and when the 
next one ran past the Wild Boy struck its tail so that it .stood striiight 
up, and his brother struck tlie next one so hard with his arrow that 
the deer's tail was almost curled o\i'r his liack. The deer carries his 
tail this way ever since. The deer came running past until the last 
one had come out of the hole and escaped into the forest. Then came 
droves of raccoons, iiil)bits, and all the oilier four-footed animals — all 
but the bear, because there was no bear then. Last cam(> great ilocks 
of turkeys, pigeons, and partridges that darkened the air like a cloud 
and made such a noise with their wings that Kana'ti, sitting at home, 
heard the sound like distant fliunder on the mountains and said to liini- 
self, " My bad boys have got into trouble: 1 must go and si'C what they 
are doing." 

So he went up the mountain, and when he came to the place where 
he kept the game he found tlii' two boys standing In' the rock, and all 
the birds and animals were gone. Kana'ti was furious, but without 

244 MYTHS OF THE CHEROKEE [eth.ann.19 

saying II woi'd ho went down into the ciU'e and kicked the covers oil 
four jars in one corner, when out swarmed bedbugs, fleas, lice, and 
gnats, and got all over the boys. They screamed with pain and fright 
and tried to beat otf the insects, but the thousands of vermin crawled 
over them and hit and stung theui until both dropped down nearly 
dead. Kana'ti stood looking on until he thought they had been pun- 
ished enough, when he knocked oti' the vermin antl made tlie boys a 
talk. "Now, you i-ascals," said he, "you have always had plenty to 
eat and never had to work for it. Whenever you were hungry all I 
had to do was to come up here and get a deer or a turkey and bring it 
home for your mother to cook; but now you hiive let out all the ani- 
mals, and after this when you want a deer to cat vou will have to luuit 
all over the woods for it, and then maybe not tind one. Go home now 
to your mother, while I see if I can tind soiuething to eat for supper." 

When the boys got home again they were ver_v tired and hungry and 
asked their mother for something to eat. "There is no meat," said 
Selu, "but wait a little while and I'll get you something." So she 
took a basket and started out to the storehouse. This storehouse was 
built upon poles high up from the ground, to keep it out of the reach 
of animals, and there was a ladder to climb up by, and one door, but 
no other opening. Every day when Selu got ready to cook the diimer 
she would go out to the storehouse with a basket and bring it back 
full of corn and beans. The boys had never been inside the storehouse, 
so wondered where all the corn and beans could come fi'om, as the 
house was not a very large one; so as soon as Selu went out of the 
door the Wild Boy said to his brother, "Let's go and see what she 
does." They ran around and climbed up at the back of the storehouse 
and pulled out a piece of claj' from between the logs, so that they 
could look in. There they saw Selu standing in the middle of the room 
with the basket in front of her on the floor. Leaning over the basket, 
she rubbed her stomach — so — and the basket was half full of corn. 
Then she rublied imder her armpits — so — and the basket was full to 
the top with beans. The boys looked at each other and said, "'This 
will never do; our mother is a witch. If we eat any of that it will 
poison us. We must kill her." 

When the boys came back into the house, she knew their thoughts 
before they spoke. " So you are going to kill mei " said Selu. " Yes," 
said the boys, "you are a witch." "Well," said their mother, "when 
you have killed me, clear a large piece of ground in front of the house 
and drag my l)ody seven times around the circle. Tlien drag me seven 
times over the ground inside the circle, and stay up all night and watch, 
and in the morning you will have plenty of corn." The boys killed 
her with their clubs, and cut ott' her head and put it up on the roof of 
the house with her face turned to the west, and told Inu- to look for her 
husband. Then they set to work to clear the ground in front of the 

MoosEYj KANA'li AND SELU 245 

house, but instoiid of cloui'lny tlio whole piece they eleared only seven 
little spots. This is why corn now grows only in ii few pliices instead 
of over the whole world. They dragged the body of Selu around the 
circle, and wherever her l)h)o<l fell on tii(> ground tlie corn s])raiig up. 
Hut instead of dragging her body seviMi times across the grt)und they 
dragged it over only twice, which is the reason tlie Indians still work 
their crop Vmt twice. The two brothers sat up and watched theii-corn 
all night, and in the morning it was full grown and ripe. 

When Kana'ti came home at last, he looked around, but could not see 
Selu anywhere, and asked the l)ovs where was their mother. "She was 
a witch, and we killed her." said the l)oys; "there is her head up there 
on top of the house." "When he saw his wife's head on the roof, he 
was very angry, and said, "1 won't stay with you any longer; T am 
going to the "Wolf people." So he started oil', but l)efore he had gone 
far the "Wild Boy changed himself again to a tuft of down, which fell 
on Kana'ti's shoidder. When Kana'ti reached the settlement of the 
Wolf people, they were holding a council in the townhouse. He went 
in and sat down with the tuft of bird's down on his shoulder, but he 
never noticed it. When the Wolf chief asked him his business, he 
said: "I have two bad boys at home, and I want you to go in seven 
days from now and play ball against them." Although Kana'ti spoke 
as tiiough he wanted them to play a game of ball, the Wolves knew 
that he meant for them to go and kill the two boj's. . They promised to 
go. Then the bird's down blew off from Kana'ti's shoulder, and the 
smoke carried it up through the hole in the roof of the townhouse. 
"When it came down on the ground outside, the Wild Boy took his right 
shape again and went home and told his brother all that he had heard 
in the townhouse. But when Kana'ti left the "Wolf people, he did not 
returu home, but went on farther. 

The boys then began to get ready for the Wolves, and the "\^^ild 
Boy — the magician — told his brother what to do. They ran aroiuid 
the house in a wide circle until they had made a trail all around it 
excepting on the side from which the Wolves would come, where they 
left a small open space. Th(>n they made four large l)undles of arrows 
and placed them at four different points on the outside of tlu- circle, 
after which they hid themselves in the woods and waitcnl for the 
Wolves. In a day or two a wholi> pai'ty of Wolves came and sur- 
rounded the house to kill the boys. The AVolvcs did not notice the 
trail ai'ound the house, because they came in where the boys had left 
the opening. l)ut the moment they went inside the circle the trail 
changed to a high brush feui-e and shut them in. Then the boys on 
the outside took their arrows and began shooting them down, and as 
the Wolves could not jump over the fence they were all killed, excepting 
a few that escaped through the opening into a great swamp close liy. 
The boys ran around the swamp, and a circle of lire sprang up in their 

246 MYTHS OF THE CHEROKEE [eth.ann.19 

tracks and set tire to tlie grass and bushes and burned up nearly all 
the other Wolves. Only two or three gotawa}% and from these have 
come all the wolves that are now in the world. 

Soon afterward some strangers from a distance, who had heard that 
the brothers had a wonderful grain from which they made bread, came 
to ask for some, for none but Selu and her family had ever known 
corn before. The boys gave them seven grains of corn, which they 
told them to plant the next night on their way home, sitting up all 
night to watch the corn, which would have .seven ripe ears in the 
morning. These they were to plant the next night and watch in 
the same way, and so on every night until they reached home, when 
they would have corn enough to supply the whole people. The 
strangers lived .seven days" journey away. They took the seven grains 
and watched all through the darkness until morning, when they saw 
seven tall stalks, each stalk bearing a ripened ear. They gath(>red the 
ears and went on their way. The next night the}' planted all their 
corn, and guarded it as before until daybreak, when they found an 
abundant increase. But the way was long and the sun was hot, and 
the people grew tired. On the last night before reaching home they 
fell a.sleep, and in the morning the corn they had planted had not even 
sprouted. They brought with them to their settlement what corn 
they had left and planted it, and with cai'c and attention were able to 
raise a crop. But ever since the corn must be watched and tended 
through half the year, which liefore would grow and ripen in a night. 

As Kana'ti did not return, the boj's at last con'cluded to go and find 
him. The Wild Boy took a gaming wheel and rolled it toward the 
Darkening land. In a little while the wheel came rolling back, and 
the boys knew their father was not there. He rolled it to the south 
and to the north, and each time the wheel came back to him, and they 
knew their father was not there. Then he rolled it toward the Sun- 
land, and it did not return. "Our father is there," said the Wild 
Boy, "let us go and find him." So the two brothers .set off toward 
the east, and after traveling a long time they came upon Kana'ti walk- 
ing along with a little dog by his side. "You bad boys," said their 
father, " have you come here? " "Yes," they answered, " we always 
acconiplisli what we start out to do — we are men." "This dog over- 
took me four daj's ago," then said Kana'ti, Init the boys knew that the 
dog was the wheel which thej' had sent after him to find him. "Well," 
said Kana'ti, " as you have found me, we may as well travel together, 
but 1 shall take the lead." 

Soon they came to a swamp, and Kana'ti told tliem there was some- 
thing dangerous there and they nuist keej) away from it. He went 
on ahead, )mt as soon as he was out of sight the Wild Boy said to 
his brother, "Come and let us see what is in the swamp." They 
went in together, and in the middle of the swamp they found a large 

MooNEY) kana'ti and selu 247 

jiaiitlKT iislfcp. TIk' Wild Bo}- got out an arrow and shot tho panther 
ill till' side of the head. The panther turned liis head and the other 
Ijoy shot iiim on that side. He turned his head away aj^aiii and the 
two l)rothers sliot together —, fuxt, tiixf/ But the ijantlicr was not 
luirt liy thi' arrows and ;)ai(l no more attention to tlie hovs. Thev 
came out of the swamp and soon overtooiv Kana'ti. waiting for them. 
"Did you tiiid it'" aslvcd Kana'ti. "Yes," said the l)oys, '"we found 
it, hut it nexcr liurt us. ^\'e are men." Kana'ti was sur])rised. liut 
saiil notliing. and tliey went on again. 

After a wliile he turned to tliem and said, "Now you must he careful. 
We are coming to a tribe called the Anada'dufitaski ("Roasters,"' i. e., 
canniijals), and if they get you they will put you into apotand fcastoii 
j^ou."' Then he went on ahead. Soon the hoys came to a tree which 
had been struck by lightning, and the Wild Boy directed his brother to 
gather some of the splinters from the tree and told him what to do 
with them. In a little while they came to the settlement of the can- 
nibals, who, as soon as they .saw the boys, came running out, crying, 
"Good, here are two nice fat strangers. Now we'll have a grand 
feast!" They caught the boj's and dragged them into the townhouse, 
and .sent word to all the people of the settlement to come to the feast. 
They made up a great fire, put water into a large pot and set it to 
ijoiling, and then seized the Wild Boy and put liim down into it. His 
brother was not in the least frightened and made no attempt to escape, 
but quietly knelt down and began putting the splinters into the tire, 
as if to make it burn better. When the cannibals thought the meat 
was about i-eady they lifted the pot from the fire, and that instant a 
blinding light tilled the townhouse, and the lightning l)egaii to dart 
from one side to the other, striking down the cannibals until not one 
of them was left alive. Then the lightning went up through the smoke- 
hole, and the next moment there were the two boys standing outside 
the townhouse as tliough nothing had happened. They went on and 
soon met Kana'ti, who seemed much surprised to see tlinn. and said, 
"What! are you here again?" "O, yes, we never gi\c u]i. We are 
great men!"' "What did the cannibals do to youT' •" Wc met them 
and they brought us to theii- townhouse, ))ut they nc\cr Imrt us."' 
Kana'ti said nothing niori', and they went on. 

* » * S -A- x- -x- 

He soon got out of sight of the hoys, hut they kept on until they 
came to the end of the world, where the sun comes out. Tin' sky was coming down when they got there, hut they waited until it went 
up again, and then they went through and climbed up on the other 
side. Ther(> they found Kana'ti and Seln sitting together. Th(> old 
folk received them kindly and W(>re glad to see them, telling them 
tliey might stay there a while, hut then they must go to liv i' where the 
Mill goes down. The hoys stayed with their parents seven days and 

248 MYTHS OF THK CHKROKEE Lkth. an.n. 19 

then went on toward the Darkening land, where they are now. We 
call them Anisga'ya T.sunsdi' (The Little Men), and when they talk 
to each other we hear low rolling thunder in the west. 

* * ?. -x- * * * 

After Kana'tfs boys had let the deer out from the cave whei-e their 
father used to keep them, the hunters tramped about in the woods for 
a long time without linding any game, so that the people were very 
hungry. At last they heard that the Thunder Boys were now living 
in the far west, beyond the sun door, and that if they were sent for 
they could bring back the game. So they sent messengers for them, 
and the boys came and sat down in the middle of the townhouse and 
began to sing. 

At the tirst song there was a roaring sound like a strong wind in 
the northwest, and it grew louder and nearer as the boys sang on, 
until at the seventh song a whole herd of deer, led by a large buck, 
came out from the woods. The boys had told the people to be readj^ 
with their bows and arrows, and when the song was ended and all the 
deer were close around the townhouse, the hunters shot into them and 
killed as many as they needed before the herd could get back into 
the timljer. 

Then the Thunder Boys went back to the Darkening land, but 
before they left they taught the people the seven songs with which to 
call up the deer. It all happened so long ago that the songs are now 
forgotten — all but two, which the hunters still sing whenever they go 
after deer. 


After the world had been brought up from under the water, "They 
then made a man and a woman and led them around the edge of the 
island. On arriving at the starting place they planted some corn, and 
then told the man and woman to go around the way they had l)een 
led. This they did, and on returning they found the corn up and 
growing nicely. They were then told to continue the circuit. Each 
trip consumed more time. At last the corn was ripe and ready for use." 

* ■>;■ * -x- * •» * 

Another story is told of how sin came into the world. A man and 
a woman reared a large family of children in comfort and plenty, with 
very little trouble about providing food for them. Every morning 
the father went forth and very soon returned bringing with him a 
deer, or a turkey, or some other animal or fowl. At the same time 
the mother went out and soon returned with a large basket tilled with 
ears of corn which she shelled and pounded in a mortar, tlius making 
meal for bread. 

When the children grew up, seeing with wliat apparent ease food 
was provided for them, they talked to each other aliuul it. wondering 
that they never saw such things as their parents brougiit in. At last 


MooNEY) kana'ti and selu 249 

one proposed to wuteh wlicii theii' pari'iits went out iiiid to follow 

Acroi'ding-ly next moniinj;- the plan was carried out. Those who 
followed tht> father saw hiui stop at a short distance from the cabin 
and turn o\-ei- a large stone that appeared