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LittleClarkie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-14-08 08:25 PM
Original message
Am I a "twinkie"?
I just posted to a native american group on myspace. They seem quite hostile. They were even more so when I identified myself as having Cherokee blood. Sort of got an internet eye roll.

Is "Cherokee" the wrong word? Am I to ignore the Cherokee great, great, great, grandma as if she weren't as much a part of my heritage as the Norweigian?

How do you feel about the use of that word to describe me?
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yellerpup Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Apr-15-08 11:31 AM
Response to Original message
1. Cherokee is not a wrong word.
Edited on Tue Apr-15-08 11:39 AM by yellerpup
There are more mixed-blood Cherokee survivors from the genocide in this country than from any other tribe (because of a targeted program of integration). If you have information on your ggg-grandmother here is a link that you can plow through (if you have the patience) to see if you can find your line. "Twinkie", "Wannabe", and "White Trash" are sometimes used by those whose blood is less dilute to describe those who have been cut off from their heritage. The anthropologist, James Mooney ("Myths of the Cherokee") said in 1803 that the Cherokee were not worth studying from an anthropological point of view because they were already so acculturated to European ways. Don't let it get you down. It's the same thing as some saying that Obama is not 'black enough'--for what? It is a frustrating attitude, but if you learn the history you can get some pride back, I promise. The Cherokee Nation website is a wonderful, accepting place to explore and you can sign up for free lessons in the Cherokee language. Cherokee BTW in Cherokee is Tsalagi. You've set the first foot on the path of an interesting adventure. Good luck to you in your quest.
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LittleClarkie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Apr-15-08 01:32 PM
Response to Reply #1
2. Thanks. I suppose on Myspace they get all kinds. Probably wasn't the place to go first.
Edited on Tue Apr-15-08 02:00 PM by LittleClarkie
All I know is that the German Great, Great Grandfather married a Cherokee woman. That wasn't Cherokee enough for the folks on Myspace. My sister has been doing our geneology. So I think I have a name. I could start there. Thanks again.
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yellerpup Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Apr-15-08 02:47 PM
Response to Reply #2
3. If they didn't get transported/driven to Indian Territory (Oklahoma)
you may have a harder time finding her. There are two Cherokee Nations; one is the East in North Carolina and one is the West in what is now Oklahoma. Records of Native Americans started being kept in 1777 with the final rolls (Western) closed in 1907 (May, I believe). White administrators decided who was/was not Cherokee and how much/how little degree of 'blood' they were. For instance, my gg-grandmother is on the rolls but her paternal uncle who was 1/2 Cherokee was denied. I have read his testimony before the Dawes commissioners and can only presume that they found him too threatening and decided he wasn't going to get anything because of his behavior and so denied him his birthright. There is an organization called Cherokee Cousins that can be helpful in tracking down individuals depending on how much information you have. Be prepared to get angry, though. Be prepared to cry.
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LittleClarkie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Apr-15-08 06:06 PM
Response to Reply #3
4. That part of the family appears to be from the East. And I think I just hit my first snag
as of right now, near as I can tell, I only have her first name, assuming I've got the right name in the family tree my sister is doing. Andromeda C. is all I have. Not much to go on. And we're not even sure about her birth and death dates. I'll dig and see what I can find anyway.

Thank you for your kindness.
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yellerpup Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Apr-15-08 07:34 PM
Response to Reply #4
5. ..
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CountAllVotes Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-16-08 11:55 AM
Response to Original message
6. hey I am one too!
Osiyo (hello),

I rather recently discovered this information. The name of my grandmother appears on the Dawes rolls. She was Cherokee and I believe my grandfather was part Choctaw.

There are for the most part NO full-blooded Cherokees left. This has been the case for almost 200 years now. Even the famous "Sequoyah" who invented the Cherokee alphabet was only a 1/2 blood.

You will find you have many ancestors if you begin to research your info.

FYI, the Cherokee follow(ed) the matrilineal (the mother's line). That is actually how I found my own adopted mother. Her given middle name was in fact the surname of her real mother which is a well-known Cherokee surname.

It is a very long process to seek out who your ancestor is. Many (if not all) changed their names and you will find just about all of them identified as "white" in census records.

I hope this helps and welcome to the club! :D


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yellerpup Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-16-08 01:42 PM
Response to Reply #6
7. Osiyo!
Right you are about Sequoya being half. John Ross, the Principal Chief during the Trail of Tears, whose wife Quatie died on the march was only 1/8 (in 1838). I have uncovered so much fascinating, untold history in researching this geneaolgy that began when I asked myself, "Why is it that so many generations of bright, beautiful people who were in America at least a century before Ellis Island was established ended up dispossessed in Oklahoma?" As with African Americans, even one drop of native blood made all your possessions forfeit to any white who was willing to kill you for it or use the courts to take it from you--unless of course, you could "pass". That's why many mixed bloods show up 'white' on census records. Here are two snapshots in time.

Newspaper account:
The steam-boat Industry, Capt. Johnson, arrived at this place, about noon, on Wednesday last, having on board about 100 cabin and deck passengers, principally emigrants to the Territory, and about 200 emigrating Cherokee Indians, from the old nation, who are on their way to the Cherokee country up the Arkansas. A few of these Cherokees have a little of the appearance of the Indian, but the principal part of them show no signs of retaining in their veins any portion of the aboriginal blood.
Arkansas Gazette, January 19, 1830

I fought through the Civil War and have seen men shot to pieces and slaughtered by the thousands, but the Cherokee Removal was the cruelest work I ever knew.
Anonymous Georgia Volunteer, later
A Colonel in the Confederacy

Wado, CountAllVotes.

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CountAllVotes Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-18-08 11:52 AM
Response to Reply #7
10. Osiyo to you too yellerpup!
and yes, it seems that you too know the history of our people (well part of it anyway, does anyone know all of it?).

I have zero respect for most anthropologists. I believe they have only assisted in the genocide of our people which is strongly evidenced by the statement you provide from Moody. What a fool is all I can say about him.

I knew that John Ross was only 1/8th blood Cherokee but you'd think the way history has him portrayed he was a full-blood or something. Fact is, there were few to be found at this time sans Elias Boudinot as I mention in my post below.

I have yet to see a census record that states that any of these people that I know were indeed Indian and ID'd themselves as such. It was a matter of sheer survival and also a lot of DENIAL went with it as being Indian was considered to be one of the worst things one could be, especially around the turn-of-the last century which is where the records I am looking at are all from for the most part.

You are very right about the Western v. Eastern Cherokee. They are all the same folks, just they left the aboriginal lands they owned at different times in the 1800s.

It is a shockingly sad story alright. I guess we should be glad we and our kinfolk even exist at all. I know they did the best they could and I've heard all of those other names and words before too, like white trash, wannabes, etc.

To me the real wannabe is someone that has NO Indian blood in them and runs around wearing traditional items of clothing/jewelry and may go so far as to dye their hair a dark color to "blend" in and may even attend pow-wows and Sun Dances, etc. That is where I draw the line really, when they attend sacred rituals that belong to our people. These people do sicken me and if you pin them down they'll sometimes admit they have no real connection to being Native American at all, they just like the idea of being "Indian".

I don't let it drag me down personally. I easily pass as "white" and being I have a very strong Irish surname, I tend to tell people I am Irish and a few other things besides and just leave it at that. They do not deserve any explanations from me is how I feel about it as it is very personal indeed.

I appreciate the quotes you have provided very much. They provide some thoughts and ideas and historical direction for those that are seeking.

Many thanks for your kind comments towards me.


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yellerpup Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Apr-22-08 02:08 PM
Response to Reply #10
13. Osiyo, CAV!
Nice to feel the kind of pride I feel coming from you. One of my grandfathers was born in Cowlington, I.T. (near the Arkansas border) which was also the line between the Cherokee & Choctaw Nations. My father's surname is represented also in the Choctaw Dawes Rolls by a FB man but I cannot find a direct link. Because that part of the family originated in Mississippi I suspect that there is a Choctaw element in there,too. I didn't know until recently about the Muskogee (Creek) bloodlines, but these are people who were driven and driven (and possibly mixed with AA) but had a dominant blue-eye gene, so they never admitted anything about being from any tribe nor did they apply for any restitution. I have read that the Missouri River is named for the Missouri tribe who came from along the Missouri River in Nebraska but I had not heard that Missouri was a word from the Choctaw language. Choctaws were known as the best looking tribe and the tribe with the finest artists. Lucky devil you!
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CountAllVotes Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-23-08 11:15 AM
Response to Reply #13
15. I think this might be them (?)
Edited on Wed Apr-23-08 11:19 AM by CountAllVotes

I asked my foster aunt as to who were these people. My mother thought they were perhaps her real parents. My aunt thought that it might have been one of her mom's sisters. However, the sisters she mentions did not resemble the woman standing 2nd from the left, one was very tall and looked very "Indian" having dark hair and eyes, the others were not quite as dark, more fair skinned and a couple had lighter hair. All were mixed bloods.

My mother said the kids from this marriage were "all mixed up - having not the same mother and father". My mother said that she never knew anyone that kept company with the foster parents oddly. In fact, the very tall man did all of the shopping for the family, even clothing in fact. Quite an odd fact I've always thought.

On a larger version of this photo (which I haven't been able to find again since my mom died)), it appears that said woman in this picture is pregnant (you can sort of tell if you look closely). I am assuming that the man to the left of her is the father of the child she is carrying.

The other two people in the photo are the people that adopted her. The woman second from the right was my mom's Cherokee/Choctaw foster mother. She was the oldest of all of the children born (there were 6 total - 4 girls and 2 boys (perhaps a 3rd one that died as a young child)).

These people all had roots in Arkansas as well btw (both the foster parents and my mother's parents).

I do not believe that the first woman I discuss resembles the other woman at all (my mother's foster mom).

This picture was taken in Louisiana c. 1925 or so. As you can tell, the women are most certainly not "white". I rather think the man in the picture that is rather short looks somewhat Indian too. I found my real grandfather's WWI registration card and he is described as being "stout" with dark hair.

What do you think? Could this be a picture of my real grandparents? *sigh*

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yellerpup Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-23-08 04:58 PM
Response to Reply #15
16. I got out my magnifying glass
Edited on Wed Apr-23-08 05:02 PM by yellerpup
but I couldn't really make out sorry. But, I think that it would make sense for folks of Choctaw lineage to gravitate back towards Louisiana. A lot of native mercenaries (Cherokee, Creek, Choctaw & other variations) migrated to the western slope of the Ozarks in several waves. Thos. Jefferson tried to get the Cherokee (& allied Southern tribes) to move west of the Mississippi because he could see the building waves of immigration coming and feared that they would be wiped out completely if they tried to stay and fight for their lands in the east. Sequoyah (so named because he had a club foot) went west to the western slope of the Ozark Mts. at roughtly the same time as the Lewis & Clark expedition . Many more who fought with Andrew Jackson (and found out what a chicken-sh** he was) went to Ark/Missouri area after the battle of 1814 (Battle of New Orleans-- which the native mercenaries won for him) because they knew that he would (and did) sell them out at a moment's notice. The Cherokee Old Settlers arrived in the same area (Indian Territory) in the 1820's. Sorry, I digress... It makes sense to me that if you had Choctaw/Cherokee family who had lived in the Arkansas/Oklahoma area that they might have wanted to get further back down South. You can drive yourself crazy if you try to figure out "going on looks". My grandmother looked 90% Creek with black hair, flat thin nose, high cheekbones and almond shaped eyes but all of her children were blonde. I think the photo could very well have be of your grandparents because you just can't tell by looking. Until the 1850's the boundaries between states on the western edges of the continent didn't matter much, but once they started to face off over the states rights (slavery) debates, the natives who settled in Western Missouri and W. Arkansas were again dispossessed of the farms they had worked to build and driven over the border into Indian Territory. I. T., which became the state of Oklahoma in 1907, was supposed to be the American equivalent of Soweto. The few survivors of the native genocide from all tribes were forced to go there and later, the government advertised after the Civil War trying to get former slaves to go there voluntarily so that all the nation's free undesirables could be found in the same place. If your people could pass for white and save themselves by drifting back toward redbone country, I would not be the least bit surprised that they took that route. My grandfather who was born near Choctaw country in I.T. was named Bee. I have another great grandfather whose name was Weep. The names are another clue if you can find that information. I never met any other white man named either Bee or Weep! Wish I could help. Good thoughts for you, though... :hug:

Edit for spelling
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CountAllVotes Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-24-08 01:35 PM
Response to Reply #16
17. wow, thanks for this reply!
I did not know when Arkansas (which was known as "Indian Territory" as you mention) ended up not being Indian Territory any longer.

The time frame you mention is the exact time frame that these people were there. On the foster mother's side, one of her sisters ended up in Oklahoma and died there as well. I thought the reason she ended up in Oklahoma was because the father and mother had supposedly left the family (this seems extremely odd to me) and apparently a few of the children ended up in Oklahoma alright. Maybe they were driven there as you suggest. It also offers an explanation as to why the apparent "white" father pictured (the tall man) did all of the shopping and never let my foster grandma out of the house. My mom said he referred to her as "his squaw", I know that much. :(

As I said, I have no idea who these people were but it has always been a theory that my mom had. It sure is difficult not knowing who you are. My poor mom died not knowing and it sure messed her up in ways I won't bother going into.

Thanks so much for all of the great info. re: this whole scenario c. 1900 or so.

I never did know why they ended up in Louisiana. They were married in Arkansas around 1915 or so (the foster parents that is). My foster aunt actually went to where they were married and there were NO RECORDS to be found (several births were there as well - no records again).

My mom didn't know why Louisiana either, but that is where she herself was born but all of the papers I have are apparent forgeries the Cherokee tribe has told me (they looked all of this over and told me that they thought it was a big scam from the beginning to the end, right down to the Notaries that signed off of the documents I do have).

It is all so damn sad to say the very least.

Many thanks again!

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yellerpup Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-24-08 03:05 PM
Response to Reply #17
18. The GOOD thing about Oklahoma
is that the decendants of the tribes are not ashamed of being Indian or Native American. There are not reservations there and never have been. When I read of your mother's parents both "leaving" I think that it may be possible that they may have left the children with friends or family members while they went off together to try to get something new started. People remarried (sometimes quite informally without papers) because of being widowed. Women died in childbirth more often and their husbands would "remarry" to have someone to help them raise the children left behind so it is not unusual from that time to find a whole raft of step-brothers/sisters by different mothers andn/or fathers just because life was so much more precarious. There were waves of influenza epidemics in the early part of the 20th century and native people were very susceptible to it. I have a letter from one family member who was going off to try to find gold in "the Oregon country" and were trying to get a family member to take their children temporarily while they struck out on this long and dangerous adventure with no guarantees. Oklahoma (even after statehood) was where bank robbers & other criminals would go to hide out because law enforcement (US) did not have a strong presence there. Their world was dangerous and we cannot fully know what challenges they faced. I found one branch of my family whose 15 children were split up and parcelled out to different relatives and/or people who wanted or needed nannies, young farm workers, etc. in three different regions of the country (Maryland, Indiana, Georgia). One of my great grandfathers was "picked up at the end of the Appalachian trail in Georgia" and driven to Oklahoma on the Trail of Tears and no one ever knew who he "belonged" to. People died resisting transportation, people were killed by their own relatives because they went to Indian Territory before the last forced migration on the Trail of Tears. (Elias Boudinot whose real name was Buck Waitie, for instance). If your foster family had false documents made up for your mother, they must have done so to protect her for some reason. It is a sad story, a tragedy to be sure. I feel sad that your mother suffered because of being lost to her blood family. But, you are here and you are loved and you are not alone. We are of the same blood.

The Cherokee response to wado (Thank you) is: "galilega" or "gadugi" which roughly means "Everybody paddles".
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CountAllVotes Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-27-08 03:16 PM
Response to Reply #18
19. you nailed it
The parents were still alive. They both went their separate ways. I found the mother of my foster aunt living with one of her daughters that had a disability living in Kansas several years later oddly. As for the father, he was back in Tennessee and was "married" to another woman.

That said, much of this was actually the tradition of the various tribes - for the woman to leave the man and take children with her I found out.

As for my own mother, I know that both of her real parents lived for quite some time. If my grandmother is the woman I have indeed found, she died only 2 years before my own mom did and was about 95 years old! No wonder we could not find her. She was busy traveling around it seems and was following my own mother's footsteps.

I'll likely never know why my mom was taken in by these people but I figure it must have been for a very good reason. What the reason is, I don't know but I will mention that I found the brother of the foster father living a few doors away from my mom's real grandparents in 1900. They were in Missouri at that time.

My Choctaw great grandmother was born in Mississippi. I found a record that my mother had that stated that my foster grandma was also born in Mississippi rather than Arkansas as stated in the records, so ? again.

I know that they did what they had to do - be is change their name or move every few years around this time. It is unforgivable to me personally as I am nothing but a remnant of the past with no history that I can define, at least on one side of my own self.

I noted that the people that adopted her had also come from homes that stated that they had "adopted" children with them so it must have been quite common at the time and yes, the various pandemics, etc. only add to the whole dilemma.

Do you happen to know of any books worth reading that discuss the Indian removals from Arkansas to Oklahoma around the time you have mentioned? I am quite curious about this and it most certainly does explain why there were no records to be found when my foster aunt went to Arkansas to search for the records of her family.

I do remember my mom talking about going to visit said sister living in Oklahoma. It sounds like it was a pretty difficult situation as this other sister had married a man that was a widower and he had a few young children of his own. His father appears on the Dawes rolls.

As for my other foster aunt (the sister), she too had a baby at one point in time. Apparently the baby was stolen from her and died before the age of 18 years. She tried to get the baby back but never was able to do so. She lived a life filled with feelings of revenge from what I know about her. :(

To say that this angers me is an understatement. It would anger anyone in their right mind. :argh:

Wado & yep, everyone sure does paddle don't they?

Don't think I've forgotten you. I'm having major computer problems and I don't know when I'll be able to get back online again.

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yellerpup Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-28-08 04:52 PM
Response to Reply #19
20. Here is a link to really good information about the Arkansas Cherokees

I also found this quote by Dragging Canoe (so named because he was an incredibly motivated individual--so much in a hurry that he would get out and drag the canoe rather than letting it float downstream) from just before the Revolutionary War.

"Where are our grandfathers, the Delawares?

We had hoped the white men would not be willing to travel beyond the mountains. Now that hope is gone. They have passed the mountains, and have settled upon Cherokee land. They wish to have that usurpation sanctioned by treaty. When that is gained, the same encroaching spirit will lead them upon other land of the Cherokees. New cessions will be asked. Finally the whole country, which the Cherokees and their fathers have so long occupied, will be demanded, and the remnant of the Ani-Yunwiya, The Real People, once so great and formidable, will be compelled to seek refuge in some distant wilderness. There they will be permitted to stay only a short while, until they again behold the advancing banners of the same greedy host. Not being able to point out any further retreat for the miserable Cherokees, the extinction of the whole race will be proclaimed. Should we not therefore run all risks, and incur all consequences, rather than submit to further laceration of our country? Such treaties may be all right for men who are too old to hunt or fight. As for me, I have my young warriors about me. We will have our lands."

Dragging Canoe
Sycamore Shoals
March, 1775

Osiyo! :hi:

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CountAllVotes Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-12-08 07:06 PM
Response to Reply #20
21. that is a great link!

Thanks for sharing it with all of us. :)

I'm sort of back (will get getting a new/used computer soon). :D

I found "grandma" (seems she was born/died in Texas). I'll have to get her death cert. I suppose. She lived to be very old. :wow:

See you again soon!!

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yellerpup Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-13-08 04:24 PM
Response to Reply #21
23. Osiyo, CAV!
Glad to hear you are making progress in finding your kin AND and in getting a new computer. Interesting turn that your research is taking you into Texas. Many Tsalagi fled I.T. for Mexico during the Civil War to escape the looting, robbing, etc. that always accompanies occupation. A large part of Texas WAS Mexico during the Civil War. Glad you enjoyed the link.
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mikekohr Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Feb-24-09 11:08 AM
Response to Reply #7
29. Soldiers account from the Cherokee Removal
from the page "Heroes History Forgot"

JOHN G. BURNETT: an interpreter for the U.S. Army on the "Trail of Tears, the removal of the Cherokee, Burnett recorded these words, "Murder is murder and someone must answer, someone must explain the streams of blood that flowed in the Indian country in 1838. Someone must explain the four-thousand silent graves that mark the trail of the Cherokees to their exile. I wish I could forget it all, but the picture of six-hundred and forty-five wagons lumbering over the frozen ground with their Cargo of suffering humanity still lingers in my memory.
Let the Historian of a future day tell the sad story with its sighs, its tears and dying groans. Let the great Judge of all the earth weigh our actions and reward us according to our actions." -Recorded 1890- 77).

International Brotherhood Days

mike kohr

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LittleClarkie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-17-08 02:08 PM
Response to Reply #6
8. Osiyo! And thanks. It does help.
I have to say I like it here much better than MySpace. I just got called a new name over there. Now I'm a Generokee.

Considering how many Cherokees are scattered to the four winds, it's a damn shame that even other Cherokees are so cynical about them. It's like trying to get into a clique or something. Or maybe, once again, it's just the group I've encountered over at MySpace who's like a clique.

I mean people don't choose where they're born and who's going to raise them. If only those who are born and raised with the tradition are true native, then I would think that would become an increasingly small, yet pure, group. The group on MS talks alot about extinction. It seems like that would be a good way to become extinct, not to be accepting of those who might be seeking their heritage but who were not raised anywhere near native traditions.

Forgive me if I'm not understanding something fundamental. I'm just trying to get my head wrapped around the attitudes of some.

Anyway, good to hear that the Cherokees followed a matriarchal line, since the only ancestor I have a name for so far is a woman.
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CountAllVotes Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-18-08 11:12 AM
Response to Reply #8
9. that sounds like a really awful place to go (MySpace)
Edited on Fri Apr-18-08 11:33 AM by CountAllVotes
Osiyo! :hi:

Admittedly, I've never been to "MySpace" but it sounds like hell to me.

Yes, there are plenty of us Cherokees still around and no, we aren't about to go anywhere. That also was part of the plan. You might try looking for a couple of books by Elias Boudinot, he was in on the deals that were cut. To make a long story short, he was killed for treason by the Cherokees once they were driven into Oklahoma after the Trial of Tears. He was way ahead of his time and he was a full-blood and his wife was named Harriet Gold and was a Jewish white woman (who died before he did) and had several children by him.

It was my great great grandmother who was born in Arkansas (this line of the Cherokees are no more nor less Cherokee than the rest, they just left before the Trail of Tears happened). They ended up in Arkansas after having cut a deal with the government and left Georgia in the early 1800s before the Trail of Tears. Today they are known as the "Keetoowah" or Western Cherokee. Mine were in a place called "Yell, Arkansas" which was basically a large Indian trading post around 1870 and many Cherokee and Choctaw were living there and I'm sure there still are many living there today.

I never say anything much to anyone about being part Cherokee/Choctaw. It is enough for me to know and that has been a huge piece of info. to have discovered for me being my own mother was adopted by the tribe and she was told she was "white" of course which was not exactly the case I found once I was able to ID her real parents.

As for the names, ah yes, the names. I think they are a big clue as to who our ancestors were. I have a bunch of people I recently found with strange first names too, like Seer, Rutiller(a?), Louvain (Louvenia, aka Lovey and also aka "Rosinda" :wtf: , as well as people named after states or particular towns. I have a woman named "Missouri", another named "America", another I found named "Louisiana Missouri". Missouri was a Choctaw word, I know that much but I do not know what it means. As for men, I found a man born in Kentucky that was also Cherokee and his name was "Lexington". I wonder where he was born? }(

As you see, our ancestors did leave us plenty of clues, it is a matter of deciphering the "clues" left behind. It is indeed a very sad history and it is amazing to me at times that the Cherokee and the Choctaw and other tribes have managed to survive at all given the one time Federal policy of genocide towards all Native Americans.

Many of my relations (the folks that adopted my mom) hid out in the caves of Tennessee during the Trail of Tears and I've found others that apparently did mention it to their children. One of these "children" is still alive and is close to 80 years old now (my foster aunt). She recently sent me a whole bunch of things about her (my mother's foster family) family and in fact they are somehow related to my own mother yet never knew it. I have to give her grandfather credit, he actually stated in the 1900 census that his mother was born in "Indian Territory" (wherever that was at the time) and said his Indian father was born in "Ireland" which was not the case (his father was born in Tennessee as was his mother as I found a record of his tragic death online believe it or not!). I wrote to Tennessee and they found his death certificate in the old records and sent me a copy of it.

Oddly, my foster aunt wrote me a few weeks ago and was talking about having cooked up a big pot of those same damn beans my mom used to cook. God I hated them. They are white "navy" beans as they call them and I found out that this was a traditional food to the Hopi which is where they ended up living in the 1930s. Her mother died and was cremated with her ashes sprinkled in a sacred lake to the Paiute Indians in Nevada. They sure traveled around a lot I have found out of sheer necessity it seems (survival).

So yes, the clues are there, you just have to learn to really look and look twice if not three times.

I hope you find you ancestor. Being you have a first name that is a start. I had a grandmother and her name was "America" which was an American Indian name I have since found out. I've yet to discover her maiden name.

I will continue to search and will not stop as this is a huge piece of me that I never knew about.

Don't let the idiots get you down and I think Cherokee-L is a good list to be on as well as Cherokee Surnames too. There are plenty of people in the exact same boat. They have been most kind and helpful towards me and never once have I been called a "wannabe" by them thank god for that. Who needs this kind of negative crap when trying to find out who you are? I do not and I cannot think of one single Cherokee that does.

We are all related to one another, be it the Western or the Eastern Cherokee (the Eastern Cherokee are the ones now living in Oklahoma for the most part). You must keep in mind that the Cherokee held vast lands from Virginia to Tennessee and even lands in Texas. I'm figuring it to be close to 1/4 of the entire United States in fact (how is that for a WOW moment?). No wonder there are so many of us!

I'd strongly recommend the video (can be bought on called "Trail of Tears" made quite recently. It explains quite a bit and there is some fine Cherokee spoken in that film. :)

Keep coming back here to post. This, be assured, is a safe place and I hope this info. helps. :D

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LittleClarkie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-18-08 12:57 PM
Response to Reply #9
11. Funny you should mention Arkansas. I think I just found Andromeda there.
Edited on Fri Apr-18-08 12:58 PM by LittleClarkie
I was just typing various names into google from the family tree yesterday when I decided to type in Andromeda. Nothing, just a bunch of astronomy stuff. Tried typing in Andromeda paired with the name of her husband, which is also a fairly unique name, at least by 2008 standards.

Bingo. There they were, side by side, with a variation on my last name. Sure looks like it to me, anyway.

She's buried in a cemetery in Arkansas. I now have a birth and a death date, and I just called today to see if that will get me a death certificate. I hope they can find her, but our family name gets spelled every which way from Sunday, so the spelling I have from her tombstone might not be the way they spelled it on the certificate. But I guess that's typical when you're doing your family line, that you have to include variations on your name.

She was born too late for the Trail of Tears, in the 1860's, so maybe she's from the next generation after that. I would never have looked for her in that state, because I don't see any other family on the tree who lived in Arkansas. But I guess it makes sense that she would have been there if what my parents said was correct and she's Cherokee.

So I'm on the road even a little faster than I thought I would be. I thought she'd be a dead end. Not to mention that there are two more names buried next to them that look like family as well.

I'll let you guys know if I get that death certificate.
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CountAllVotes Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-18-08 01:06 PM
Response to Reply #11
12. I hope they find her death cert.
I'm glad you believe you have found them considering the matches. It sounds like it could be them alright! Let us know your findings.

If she was born in Arkansas, she could also have been Keetoowah.

Congratulations on this road you are on. Hopefully you'll discover many more things from the other graves you have found. :)

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yellerpup Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Apr-22-08 02:12 PM
Response to Reply #11
14. Congratulations, LittleClarkie!
What great news that you were able to find a starting place! I am so happy to know you are on a path to discovering your roots in this country. I am thrilled for you!
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Waya Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-13-08 12:18 PM
Response to Original message
22. LittleClarkie.......
Sorry about the experience you had over at Myspace. This reaction is not uncommon. It comes from so many people, newagers and others, wanting to be of Native American ancestry.They think it's romantic and mysterious. I cannot tell you how many times I have heard the phrase 'my great great.....grandmother was a Cherokee Princess'. Strangely those who we call 'wannabe's' or 'twinkies' all wanna be claiming either Cherokee or Lakota
heritage. Nobody ever wants to claim to have Oneida, Seneca (me), or Shoshone, etc, blood. Why is that, by the way?

Anyway - use the phrase 'Tsalagi' when you refer to your Grandmother - you will be taken more seriously and given at least a chance to make your case - because it shows that at least you have made yourself familiar with and dug into, at least a bit, your heritage.
And most of all - you are who you are - be proud of it. And if you run into ignorant idiots (yes, they exist on both sides) take it for what it is - ignorance and prejudice and don't let it get you down.

Mitakuye Oyasin

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sagetea Donating Member (471 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-30-08 10:57 AM
Response to Reply #22
24. LOL!!
This just made me laugh!!! "Princess" LOL
I didn't even know I was of Native descent, until I was in my teens, my mother was ashamed... go figure that one. After learning that I was, Siksikwa of the Blackfeet, it very much appealed to me, I went and stayed with my Great Grandmother in Browning, Mt. I felt home and sad that my own mother denied her birthright, but still cashed her checks every year.
In my own form of rebellion, I refused to put ingenious on applications and will not look up to see if I am on the registers, I am only 1/8 anyway,so no big deal, I never lived on the res. so I never wanted to take away from someone more deserving than I, but I do send anonymous donations, as I do hope that it goes to some Elder that is in need.
Why would people want to claim relations and not help them?
I asked a friend of mine once (he's Chippewa/Cree) what a "twinkie" was, he laughed and said "Just like the cake, it is fake" is that what it means? Anyway, I have been hear almost a year, and this i my first visit in this forum.
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Waya Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-30-08 11:37 AM
Response to Reply #24
25. Welcome to the Forum.....
Twinkie, Wannabe - yep, it means fake so to speak.....someone who decided that the 'Red Road' is romantic, mysterious - but doesn't really try to understand the Native American Culture and Life as a whole but only picks what they find exciting and stimulating like certain aspects of Spiritual matters, Ceremonies and such.

Don't be too hard on your mother - denying ones heritage and feeling ashamed of it used to be common. It comes from the days when 'being Indian' was bad, very bad. From the days when speaking ones Native Language was forbidden, when ones Spiritual and Traditional beliefs were outlawed, when stereotyping (that still happens today, unfortunately) put being Indian on the same level as being murderous, thieving, drunk and lazy - in short: the dregs of subhumanity.

Be proud of your heritage!

Mitakuye Oyasin,

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FirstLight Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-12-09 01:25 AM
Response to Original message
26. wow! I am so glad I stumbled over here!
I could have been considered a wannabe/twinkie too... I have embraced the Native Spirituality, but mostly because I knew my grandmother's grandather was full blood and wanted to be closer to her somehow by connecting spiritually with the people of my matter how far removed.
I got a copy of the Dawes Rolls and did some research, and found Solomon Terrell, my GreatGreatGrandfather, born approx 1858, Full blood Choctaw, from Missisippi.(the family is from Amite County, now in Vicksburg) My Maternal side of the family is still very thick back there (we went to visit as a teen, and I swear, I was related to EVERYONE!) Though the family is very white now, my grandma had the high cheekbones and the easily tanned her youth, her hair was "black as midnight" as my mom would say, and her eyes were always the depest darkest brown I had ever seen. I loved her so much, and she passed when I was 13...So in finding this side of the family and figuring out who was married at young, who was born and who died in the same county over 100 years is a way of connecting to her again

Good for you LC, for delving into your heritage, don't get discouraged, I had looked several times before I got the right "hit" and knew the family name of Solomon was the right person...(I wonder what his native name was... I know solomon is biblical, but I wonder if he was a "solo-man" a loner... the imagination is all I hvae to fill in the blanks)
and so many others here are right on when they say how diluted the blood has become. Whatever mn they killed, they took the women & children and bred them or maried them off to someone else, the purpose WAS to dilute the blood, and make the tribe extinct.
Thank goodnes for those of us in the Seventh Generation who are looking back to find our Grandmothers and Grandfthers and give them the honor and recognition they have been waiting for...

*talking stick is now passed...*
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lildreamer316 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Feb-05-09 09:04 AM
Response to Reply #26
27. LOL!! Me Too!
I just found out that my great-grandmother was Cherokee. My uncle said full-blood, but I doubt that's possible. I'm going to have to start doing some digging myself. I don't have many physical characteristics except for my face shape.
This should be an interesting journey, yes?
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mikekohr Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Feb-24-09 11:02 AM
Response to Original message
28. The Cherokee (Tsalagi) have a long history of intermarriage with non-native people
Edited on Tue Feb-24-09 11:04 AM by mikekohr
Located in the southeast, the Cherokee Nation had one of the longest periods of contact with the dominate society of any other of America's First Nations. Before their forced removal in the 1820's the Cherokee lived side by side with European immigrants and their descendants for over 250 years. According to the 2000 census there are 729,533 Cherokee People in the US, by far the largest tribal group in North America.

Native Americans consist of just less than 1% of our population, but approx 7% of Americans have some degree of Native ancestry in their makeup. Given these facts it is inevitable that many of the 7% of Americans with Native blood get that blood quantum from the Cherokee Nation. Unfortunately many "wannabes" and part-native people long removed from their culture and traditions pop up as authorities, self appointed spokespeople, etc., and many times Cherokee descent is claimed. Some of these claims are legitimate, others bogus. Thus the inside joke in Native circles about "wannabees" that claim they are descended from a "Cherokee Princess," (there was no royalty among the Tsalagi).

Unfortunately those with legitimate claims of Cherokee ancestry are smeared with the stain of the false claims of charlatans and pretenders.

mike kohr
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