Handbook of North American Indians: Northeast

1978

Handbook of North American Indians: Northeast

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History, 2: English traders could not furnish adequate protection against attacks by French and allies; in self-defense Shawnees joined French; active anti-English after Braddock's defeat in 1755. English dominant again after 1758 fall of Ft. Duquesne. Ca 1760 Logstown Shawnee joined others at mouth of Scioto. Dissatisfaction with postwar English policies led to participation in Pontiac's movement; peace in 1765. Treaty of Ft. Stanwix (1768) deprived Shawnee of main hunting lands in KY; Lord Dunmore's War the result; Shawnee accepted Ohio as southern boundary. During Revolution moved to Miami drainage. 1777 part of the tribe joined Mingo in attacking American settlements; murder of Cornstalk brought the peace party as well into the war. Shawnee devastated KY, but their own towns repeated destroyed, and they were forced north into the Auglaize area. Advance guard of peace party had left for MO in 1774; large contingent followed in 3/1779 or 1780 after the first American invasion of Shawnee territory [Bowman campaign]. Shawnee remaining in Ohio centered at Wapakoneta on Auglaize and Hog Creek on the Ottawa; others with Seneca at Lewiston; another group, opposed to 1795 treaty, on Wabash, established village at Tippecanoe under Tecumseh and brother Tenskwatawa; Tecumseh qualified to be tribal war chief, but was not followed by Ohio Shawnee [nor MO groups]; most of his followers from Kickapoo, Potawatomi, Miami. Charles Callender in HANDBOOK:631-632

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    ID: 27-40-20955-28717
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1978

Handbook of North American Indians: Northeast

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History, 3: Final dispersions. Absentee Shawnee originated as the peace faction that left Ohio in 1774-1780; settled in southeast MO near Cape Girardeau where granted land by Spanish in 1793; joined after 1797 by Shawnee from Creek confederacy, and other migrants from Ohio. Moved to TX under Spanish; expelled after revolt; resettled in Oklahoma. 1854 officially designated Absentee Shawnee (i.e., those not on reservation in Kansas). Cherokee Shawnee descended from groups that remained in Ohio; moved to KS in 1830s; to OK where joined Cherokee Nation in 1869. Mixed band of Shawnee and Seneca moved to OK from Ohio; separated from Seneca in 1867 took name Eastern Shawnee. 1950: Cherokee Shawnee 1100; Absentee Shawnee 712; Eastern Shawnee 440. Absentee group most culturally conservative. Charles Callender in HANDBOOK:632-634

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1978

Handbook of North American Indians: Northeast

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History, 1: Precontact homeland probably upper Ohio valley. Most likely associated with Fort Ancient prehistoric people although clear evidence of such linkage not demonstrable. Alternate homeland on Cumberland river, but perhaps a later migration. Iroquois attacks gained in intensity, ultimately drove the Shawnee from the Ohio valley. Split into a number of fragments that moved in different directions. Several hundred went to LaSalle's post at Starved Rock in IL (1683-1689); other groups to southeast, Savannah river (1674); band to Maryland near mouth of Susquehanna (1692), probably from Starved Rock, accompanied by Martin Chartier, a deserter from that post; Aernot Viele brough another band to PA (1694) directly from Ohio valley. Much clearer distribution by early 18th century: Chartier's band moved up Susquhanna into PA, which became major center for the tribe, among the Delawares and Susquehannocks. By 1720 PA Shawnees moving westward, <impelled by depletion of game and sales of land by the Delaware and Iroquois, . . . friction with the Iroquois, and a favorable response to overtures the Shawnee had made to the French.> 1731 some 1200 Shawnees on the headwaters of the Ohio, others on Juniata and Susquehanns, others in Wyoming valley. Ca 1739 OAWIKILA group founded Lower Shawnee Town at mouth of Scioto; this foreshadowed a new period of dispersal: <Its ultimate causes were abuses in the fur trade, particularly the activities of unlicensed traders who used rum to obtain furs cheaply, leaving the Shawnees impoverished and in debt to the licensed traders who had provided good on credit.> Joined by band with Peter Chartier, a half-Shawnee trader, in 1745; these founded new settlement in Kentucky; most returned to Lower Shawnee Town by 1752. This was the tribal center in mid-eighteenth century. Charles Callender in HANDBOOK:630-631


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1978

Handbook of North American Indians: Northeast

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Warfare: After tribal council voted for war, red-painted tomahawk circulated through the towns as invitation to join the war party. War party included shaman whose functions included divination as well as treatment of wounded. War dance preceded the raiders departure. As they approched the enemy, young men went hunting to obtain 12 deer; served as a feast during which leader made exhortatory speech. Returning from battle, sent messenger ahead to notify town chief; female counterpart then prepared a feast. Approaching the town, raiders gave the war cry; boys and young men came out to meet them and would beat prisioners until they reached the council house. Female war chief examined the prisoners and thanked warriors for their gift. Prisoners painted black destined for death unless claimed by female peace chief before entering town. Other captives distributed anibg residents according to economic need or to replace dead relatives. Peace chief began war song in council house, where warriors danced until dawn, stripping themselves naked; each warrior recited his honors while striking post; raiders remained in council house 4 days, drinking herbal infusions and fasting. Charles Callender in HANDBOOK:628

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1978

Handbook of North American Indians: Northeast

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Political division between war and peace organizations. Each of five divisions had own peace chief. Tribal chief belonged to either OAWIKILA or CALAKA division. Chiefdomship normally hereditary. War chief from KISPOKO division; war chief acquired position by leading four raids, returning each time with at least one scalp, not losing any men; after 12 raids allowed to resign if desired. Tribal council consisted of chiefs belonging to both peace and war organizations, assisted by non-voting elderly men. In addition to tribal council, there were town councils. System of women chiefs, usually the mothers or other close relatives of male chiefs; town rather than tribal; divided between peace and war functions; most important political role of female peace chief was her right to ask a war chief to abandon a planned raid, which was usually successful. Could also spare captives, even those already marked for death. Women chiefs directed the planting of crops, supervised feasts where female war chief handled cooking of meat, female peace chief the corn and vegetables. Charles Callender in HANDBOOK:627-628

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1978

Handbook of North American Indians: Northeast

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Towns -- semipermanent settlements inhabited in summer; bark-covered lodges resembling longhouses, or the houses used by Kickapoo. By late eighteenth century included one room log cabins roofed with bark, and buildings made with boards or shingles. <Bushnell [see bib] quotes a contemporary description of Old Chillicothe that represents this town as similar to the American forts in Kentucky.> Nucleus of the town a large wooden structure used for council meetings, for ritual and secular celeebrations, and for the seclusion of warriors after battle. At Old Chillicothe the council house was about 60 feet square. At Lower Shawnee Town in 1751 Gist saw one about 90 feet long. These were used as forts in case of attack by Americans. <In 1779 the Shawnee of Old Chillicothe who took refuge in this structure successfully stood off an American army of 265 men, although their own fighting force included only 25 warriors and 15 boys, not all of whom had rifles. Lower Shawnee Town contained about 300 men in 1751, according to Gist; thus total population ca. 1200; 140 lodges on both sides of the Ohio at the mouth of the Scioto. Old Chilicothe in 1779 had resident population of 300 -- but represents a drastic reduction from an earlier size that may have totaled 1200. Both these towns were unusually large, and apparently functioned as capitals of the Shawnee tribe. Charles Callender in HANDBOOK:625-626

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    ID: 27-40-20955-28722
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1978

Handbook of North American Indians: Northeast

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Death: burial; possessions divided among surviving kin; no grave goods; extended position with head towards west; friends and kin circle grave, sprinkling small amounts of tobacco over body, asking soul not to look back or think about those remaining behind; 12 days prescribed mourning, ending with feast; spouses mourn for a year without changing clothing or wearing paint, jewelry; death of distinguished person commemorated after year by a "turning dance," lasting four days, including feast and dances, distribution of goods. Charles Callender in HANDBOOK:626

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1978

Handbook of North American Indians: Northeast

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Patrilineal clans or name groups; 12 eponyms: Snake, Turtle, Raccoon, Turkey, Hawk, Deer, Bear, Wolf, Great Lynx, Elk, Buffalo, Tree. These had responsibility for naming and the qualities individuals were supposed to share with their eponyms; boasting of own clan, teasing and joking about limitations of others. Charles Callender in HANDBOOK:626-627

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1978

Handbook of North American Indians: Northeast

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Fields grouped together, but owned individually. Women planted collectively, but owned their own crops. Planting associated with important rituals carried out by female officials of town government. Charles Callender in HANDBOOK:624

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1978

Handbook of North American Indians: Northeast

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The OAWIKILA were the first division to permanently split as a group, taling up residence among the Creeks during the eighteenth century. During the Revolution dissention split the tribe: the peace party consisted mostly of the KISPOKO and PEKOWI divisions; the CALAKA and MEKOCE remained in Ohio. The Absentee Shawnee are mostly KISPOKO, PEKOWI, and OAWIKILA; Eastern Shawnee are MEKOCE; the Cherokee Shawnee, MEKOCE and CALAKA. Charles Callander in HANDBOOK:624 SHAWNEES Subsistence: hunting with horticulture, some gathering, and a strong commitment to the fur trade, in PA and OH, focusing on deerskins. Annual cycle began at the end of September when they left their towns to winter camps in sheltered valleys. Older persons and children stayed in camp while active men and women undertook long hunting trips lasting 2-3 months. Most important game animals deer, buffalo, bear, mountain lion (panther), and turkey. Hunts usually ended in December. January and February men trapped smaller fur-bearing animals. March returned to their towns. Fields prepared, planted in April. Summer women tended crops and gathered wild foods, men fished or hunted deer. Final maze harvest in August completed annual round. Charles Callender in HANDBOOK:624

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    ID: 27-40-20955-28726
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1978

Handbook of North American Indians: Northeast

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Tribe divided into descent groups ("divisions") whose members patrilineally inherited their affiliation. Each division was a distinct territorial unit centering on a town that bore its name. It also constituted a political and ritual unit. These divisions were linked into a tribal system through specific responsibilities toward tribal welfare assigned to each: CALAKA, OAWIKILA (these two responsible for political affairs), KISPOKO (war), MEKOCE (medicine and health), PEKOWI (tribal ritual). This system developed during the precontact period of tribal unity. In the contact period member of several divisions might live in a common town, but it took its leadership and name from the group that predominated numerically. When the name of a town shifted, it reflected its shifting demographics. Charles Callender in HANDBOOK:624

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    ID: 27-40-20955-28727
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1978

Handbook of North American Indians: Northeast

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In addition to "divisions," divided into geographically defined groups into which the tribe split. These varied in number and size, and often merged and then broke apart again. Often separated by great distances. To a certain extent, "divisions" acted as the origination of these different geographic groups. Eventually this system got frozen in the late nineteenth century into the groups known as Eastern Shawnee, Cherokee Shawnee, and Absentee Shawnee. Charles Callender in HANDBOOK:624

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    ID: 27-40-20955-28728
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1978

Handbook of North American Indians: Northeast

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Contact with European culture considerably transformed them; Kroeber characterized the resulting product as <a partly new, assimilated, hybrid-Caucasian culture.> Charles Callender in HANDBOOK:623

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    ID: 27-40-20955-28729
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1978

Handbook of North American Indians: Northeast

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<Their consistent opposition to trans-Appalachian settlement [of Anglo-Americans] led them to join Pontiac's uprising and fight Lord Dunmore's War largely without allies. They were probably the main force in the Indian coalition that resisted American expansion during and after the Revolution. . . . Continual warfare ultimately split the Shawnee and apparently exhausted them. Although resistance to American expansion continued under Shawnee leadership in the persons of Tecumseh and Tenskwatawa (The Prophet), most of the tribe did not follow them.> Charles Callender in HANDBOOK:623

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    ID: 27-40-20955-28730
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1978

Handbook of North American Indians: Northeast

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<An exceptionally fragmented people, the Shawnee during their recorded history were never united into a single society, . . . [but] as far as they can be associated with a particular region this was southern Ohio, where most of the tribe lived during the second half of the eighteenth century, and which was probably their precontact home.> Widely scattered in the seventeenth century -- Illinois, on the Ohio, in Maryland, along the Savannah River. In the late seventeenth century most reassembled in eastern PA and from there gradually worked westward into the upper Ohio drainage; in the mid-eighteenth century they concentrated again in southern Ohio. A third period of dispersal occurred during the Revolution and its aftermath whenm bands becgan moving westward across the Mississippi. Eventually they all settled in Oklahoma where they form three separate groups. Charles Callender in HANDBOOK:622

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    ID: 27-40-20955-28731
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1978

Handbook of North American Indians: Northeast

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<The name Shawnee ("southerner") is unquestionably Algonquian and may refer to a group of peoples rather than to a single tribe.> William Hunter in HANDBOOK:589

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1978

Handbook of North American Indians: Northeast

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Jacques Marquette, 1673: The Wabash <flows from the lands of the East, where dwell the people called Chaouanons [Shawnee] in so great numbers that in one district there are as many as 23 villages, and 15 in another, quite near one another. The are not at all warlike, and are the nations whom the Iroquois go so far to seek, and war against without any reason.> This comment dates from before the final destruction and dispersion of the old Ohio valley populations. William Hunter in HANDBOOK:589

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    ID: 27-40-20955-28733
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1978

Handbook of North American Indians: Northeast

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<Most students trying to identify the tribal affliiations of Fort Ancient have concluded that the Shawnee are the most likely tribe known in the early historic period to have occupied the area. This association has not been, and may never be, firmly established. It is possible, perhaps even probable, that some Fort Ancient sites wer occupied by Shawnee.> James Griffin in HANDBOOK:557

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    ID: 27-40-20955-28734
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1978

Handbook of North American Indians: Northeast

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The Shawnee and the Delaware have been closely related ever since Shawnees settled in Minisink territory on the upper Delaware in 1694, and at Paxtang in 1697. HANDBOOK:222

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1978

Handbook of North American Indians: Northeast

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By 1824 marriage consisted of open cohabitation without preliminary negotiations or gift exchange; divorce equally casual and initiated by either party. Charles Callender in HANDBOOK:626

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    ID: 27-40-20955-28736
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1978

Handbook of North American Indians: Northeast

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Large number of deities, most controlled by Our Grandmother creator; her "witnesses" or intermediaries included tobacco, fire, water, eagles. 12 Shawnee laws: first set forth their origin story and purpose, their benefits and consequences of failing to observe them, modes of sexual conduct and gender behavior; others detail on services of animals and manner in which they should be treated. Annual ceremonial dances: most important Spring Bread Dance, praying for abundant harvest, and Fall Bread Dance, expressing thanksgiving. Each included feast of game brought in by 12 men, prepared by 12 women. Green Corn Dance in August marked first maize harvest; here people absolved of misconduct. War Dance in August held by KISPOKO. False-face festival, or Doll Dance, held in each division. Sacred packs -- about which little known, very secretive. Charles Callender in HANDBOOK:628-629

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1978

Handbook of North American Indians: Northeast

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SHAWNEES along with other central Algonquian cultures (viz., Potawatomi, Sauk, Fox, Kickapoo, Miami, Illinois) variants of a common pattern with its roots in the culture of the upper Mississippi valley. Develop during the period 1400-1600. Bruce G. Trigger in HANDBOOK:802

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1978

Handbook of North American Indians: Northeast

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Appear to have had early contact with the Spanish, and consequently <It must be assumed that these Indians also were affected by European diseases that, spreading along the routes of native communication, far outran the Europeans themselves; and epidemics may have played a part in depopulating the [Ohio valley] region.> William Hunter in HANDBOOK:588

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1978

Handbook of North American Indians: Northeast

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A complex of traits -- linguistics, cultural terms, ritual concepts -- suggests prehistoric relationships with the Sauk, Fox, and Kickapoo. Another set of traits -- town organization, the central council house -- probably stems from their Upper Mississippian background. Charles Callender in HANDBOOK:622

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1978

Handbook of North American Indians: Northeast

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SHAWNEE names Self designation SAWANWA, "person from the south." French form CHAOUANONS. Various English forms: SHANWANS (1694), SHAWANESE (1701) SHAWANAH (1704), SHAWNESE (1750), SHAWANOS (1756) SAHAWNOES (1777); <eventually superseded by SHAWNEE, which arose from Shawnese being interpreted as a plural Shawnees.> Division names 1) English CHILLICOTHE an anglization of CALAKAOA, "member of the CALAKA division." 2) KISPOKO varients KISCOPOKES and KISKAPOCOKE. 3) MEKOCE varients MACHACHEE, MAGUCK, MEQUACHAKE. 4) PEKOWI variants PECKAWEE, PECOWICK, PICKAWAY, PIQUA. 5) OAWIKILA variants ASSWEKALAES, SAWAKILA, SEQICKLEYS. Charles Callender in HANDBOOK:634

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