Indian Tribes of the United States Letter A-C

From the Index of the Presidential Messages and Papers 1789-1897
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Abnaki or Tarrateen Indians

A confederacy of tribes of the Algonquian stock of Indians, who originally inhabited the northeastern part of the United States, Including the present State of Maine and Parts of adjoining States, and a portion of Canada. The Abnaki included the Penobscot, the Passamaquoddy, and the Amalicite tribes. They assisted the French in their wars with the English and were expatriated by the latter. The name is interpreted as meaning "the whitening sky at daybreak"__i.e. Eastern people.

Algonquin Indians

A tribe of the Algonquian stock of Indians. At the time of the advent of white settlers into America the Algonquian linguistic division occupied by far the largest area of any of the Indian nations. The name means "those on the other side of the river" that is, the river St. Lawrence. They were spread over the territory from Labrador to the Rocky Mountains and from Hudson Bay to Pamlico Sound. Though this territory was not exclusively peopled by Algonquian Indians, some of their tribes had wandered to the west and south through hostile nations and established their family beyond the limits of the present stock. The Cheyenne's and Arapahos had strayed westward to the Black Hills and finally into Colorado, and the Shawnees had penetrated into South Carolina and Tennessee. There were hundreds of divisions of these Indians into tribes and confederacies, the principal of which were the Abnaki, Illinois, Pennacook, Powhatan, and Siksika confederacies and the Cheyenne, Arapaho, Sac, Fox, Conoy, Cree, Delaware, Kickapoo, Mohican, Massachuset, Menominee, Miami, Micmac, Misisaga, Mohegan, Montagnais, Montauk, Munsee, Nanticoke, Narraganset, Nauset, Nipmuc, Ojibwa, Ottawa, Pamlico, Pequot, Piankishaw, Pottawotomi, Shawano, Wampanoag, Wappinger, and Algonquin tribes. The latter tribe, from which the stock takes its name, occupied the basin of the St. Lawrence and its northern tributaries in Canada. They allied themselves with the French in the early wars. About 5,000 of this tribe are now located in the Provinces of Quebec and Ontario. The Algonquian stock numbers about 95,000 at this time, of whom some 60,000 are in Canada and the remainder in the United States.

Apache Indians

A confederation of the Athapascan stock of North American Indians, consisting of a dozen or more tribes. In 1598 they inhabited northwestern New Mexico, and later spread over the valley of the Gila River. By 1800 their range extended from the Colorado River eastward to central Texas, and later they made incursions into Mexico as far south as Durango. They were the terror of the early Spanish settlers, and since the annexation of their territory to the United States they have given the Government much trouble under the leadership of such famous braves as Cochise, Mangus, Colorado, and Geronimo (III, 514). White settlers opposed the plan of the Government to remove the Apaches to a reservation in New Mexico, and on Apr. 30, 1871, over 100 of the Indians were massacred at Fort Grant, Ariz. The Apaches, numbering some 6,200 are now confined to reservations in Arizona, New Mexico, and Oklahoma.

Arapaho Indians

A tribe of the Algonquian stock of Indians living on the head waters of the Platte and Arkansas rivers, but also ranging from the Yellowstone to the Rio Grande. The name is said to signify "tattooed people." They are at present (1899) divided between two reservations, one (the Arapaho) in Indian Territory and the other (the Shoshone) in Wyoming.


Blackfeet Indians

A savage and warlike tribe of the Siksika Confederation of the Algonquian stock of Indians, now confined to their reservation in the State of Montana. When not fighting among themselves they are generally at war with their neighbors. They formerly belonged to the Kena tribe, but separated from them and wandered up the Missouri River. The Sihasapa, an independent tribe under the leadership of John Grass, was also known as the Blackfoot or Blackfeet Indians.


Cayuga Indians

A small tribe of the Iroquois Confederacy of Indians (also called the Six Nations). They originally inhabited the district in the vicinity of Cayuga Lake, N.Y. During the Revolution they joined the British in making war on the colonists. They annoyed Gen. Clinton on his march to join Sullivan in 1779 and their villages were destroyed. After the war they ceded most of their lands to the State of New York, and the tribe became scattered and almost totally disappeared. There are remnants of them in the Indian Territory, Wisconsin, and Ontario, Canada. Their number is now insignificant.

Cheyenne Indians

A tribe of the Algonquian stock of Indians. The word means "enemies." About 1800 they inhabited a region in and about the Black Hills and along the Platte River in Nebraska and the Cheyenne River in Dakota. In 1825 Gen. Atkinson made a treaty of peace with them. After this the tribe separated, and while the northern band located on the Tongue River Reservation, in eastern Montana, and remained peaceable, numerous encounters occurred between the settlers and soldiers and the southern section of the tribe. Failure to fulfill their treaty obligations led to war in 1861. While negotiations for peace were being conducted in 1864 Col. Chevington attacked the Sandy Creek village and massacred 100 Cheyennes. A Bloody campaign followed. In 1865 the Indians agreed to go on a reservation, but the Dog Soldiers, whose village was burned by Gen. Hancock in 1867, kept up the warfare until defeated by Gen. Custer at Washita. A band of Cheyenne's now live at the Pine Ridge Agency, in South Dakota. There are now about 3,000 of them in all.

Chickasaw Indians

A tribe of the Muskhogean stock of Indians, originally inhabiting the southern portion of the United States, mostly in the present States of Mississippi and Tennessee. In the eighteenth century, their villages were about Pontotoc County, Miss., and their principal landing place Memphis. The treaty of 1786 fixed their northern boundary at the Ohio River, and as early as 1800 a part of the tribe migrated to Arkansas. In the early colonial wars they took the part of the English against the French, and in 1739 entered into friendly relations with Gen. Oglethorpe. In 1765 they met the Choctaws and whites at Mobile and entered into friendly trade relations. During the Indian wars generally they continued peaceful, aiding the whites against the Creeks in 1793. By treaties of 1805, 1816, and 1818 they ceded all their lands east of the Mississippi. In 1832 and 1834 they ceded the remainder of their lands and went to live with the Choctaws, with whom they dwelt harmoniously until 1855, when they were separated. During the early days of the Civil War they sided with the South. They now number about 3,500.

Chippewa Indians

A tribe of the Algonquian stock of Indians, also known as the Ojibwa. They lived on the shores of Lakes Huron and Superior and extended westward into North Dakota. They allied themselves with the British during the Revolution, but made peace in 1785 and 1789. The confederacy formed by the Ojibwas, the Ottawas, and Pottawottomis was called the Three Fires. Having joined in the Miami uprising and been subjugated by Gen. Wayne, they again made peace in 1795. They renewed hostilities in 1812, but again came to terms in 1816, relinquishing all their lands in Ohio. Other treaties ceding lands were made, and by 1851 most of the tribe had moved beyond the Mississippi River. They number more than 30,000 about equally divided between the United States and Canada.

Creek Indians

A powerful confederacy of the Muskhogean stock of Indians, which in the early days of American history inhabited Alabama, Georgia, and part of Florida. At the instigation of Spaniards the Yamasi tribe made several attacks upon the settlers during the eighteenth century. They aided the British in the War of the Revolution, attacking Gen. Wayne in 1782. In 1790 they signed a treaty of friendship, but broke it 2 years later. In 1802 and 1805 they ceded lands to the whites. They joined the British in the War of 1812, and Aug. 30, 1813, they attacked Fort Mims and massacred 400 people. Mar. 27, 1814, they were completely subjugated by Gen. Jackson and ceded the greater part of their land to the whites. The Seminoles, a renegade body of Creeks, made war upon the United States from 1835 to 1843. Part of the Creeks moved to Louisiana and part to Texas. Later Gen. Scott Subjugated them, and they were removed to a reservation between the Canadian and Arkansas rivers. In 1866 they ceded a large tract of land to the Government. The Creeks now occupy lands in Indian Territory, are well organized, and have a population, including mixed bloods, of about 15,000.


Website: The History
Article Name: Indian Tribes of the United States Letter A-C
Researcher/Preparer/Transcriber Miriam Medina


BIBLIOGRAPHY: From my Collection of Books: "A Compilation of the Messages and Papers of the Presidents 1789-1897". By James D. Richardson--a Representative from the State of Tennessee. Publisher: by Authority of Congress--1899. Ten volumes total. Copyright: 1897 by James D. Richardson.
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