Native American Studies

Download African Cherokees in Indian Territory: From Chattel to by Celia E. Naylor PDF

By Celia E. Naylor

ISBN-10: 0807832030

ISBN-13: 9780807832035

Forcibly faraway from their houses within the overdue 1830s, Cherokee, Creek, Choctaw, and Chickasaw Indians introduced their African-descended slaves with them alongside the path of Tears and resettled in Indian Territory, present-day Oklahoma. Celia E. Naylor vividly charts the studies of enslaved and unfastened African Cherokees from the path of Tears to Oklahoma's access into the Union in 1907. rigorously extracting the voices of former slaves from interviews and mining more than a few assets in Oklahoma, she creates an interesting narrative of the composite lives of African Cherokees. Naylor explores how slaves hooked up with Indian groups not just via Indian customs--language, garments, and food--but additionally via bonds of kinship.

Examining this tricky and emotionally charged historical past, Naylor demonstrates that the "red over black" dating was once not more benign than "white over black." She offers new angles to conventional understandings of slave resistance and counters past romanticized principles of slavery within the Cherokee state. She additionally demanding situations modern racial and cultural conceptions of African-descended humans within the usa. Naylor unearths how black Cherokee identities advanced reflecting complicated notions approximately race, tradition, "blood," kinship, and nationality. certainly, Cherokee freedpeople's fight for reputation and equivalent rights that all started within the 19th century maintains even this present day in Oklahoma.

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Additional resources for African Cherokees in Indian Territory: From Chattel to Citizens

Sample text

One notice in the Cherokee Advocate simply stated: ‘‘Two runaway negro men belonging to Mr. Willison of the Creek Nation were killed recently in an attempt to arrest them. We learn that they threatened the life of Mr. ’’≤∫ The murder of these unnamed enslaved people and others not only demonstrated the extent to which runaway slaves fought for their liberation but also reinforced, for those runaways who were not murdered, the limited value of their lives—at the very least that their lives could well be terminated before they attained freedom in Cherokee country.

In order to encourage and organize Indian removal, the United States crafted more treaties with representatives from Indian nations. President Andrew Jackson became one of the most prominent American supporters of the removal of southeastern Indians. During Jackson’s administration, on 28 May 1830, Congress passed the Indian Removal Act, which authorized the president of the United States to negotiate removal treaties with Indian nations living in regions east of the Mississippi River. On 14 July 1832, in his fourth year in o≈ce, President Jackson appointed a special commission to report on conditions in Indian Territory—the Stokes Commission.

Collective su√ering of African Cherokees and Cherokees along the trail, however, had not generated enough of a sense of humanity, equality, and freedom; those enslaved before removal, who had survived the horror of the passage to the West, remained in bondage after arrival in Indian Territory. As the enslaved arrivals became more aware of their duties in the new Indian country and their ongoing state of bondage, some also detected the intensity of discord permeating the Cherokee Nation in their new territory.

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