Subordinate Group Member

Journal Entry of a Subordinate Group Member

I am a Native American Indian from the Cherokee tribe, have been here since pre-historic times. There are a number of Native American Indians living in West Virginia. One group that lived here was the Mound Builders, or Adena people, lived in an area along what in now the Ohio River. The Mound Builders were agriculture people, skilled in clay and copper working. They also knew how to weave plant and animal fibers into cloth. The Native American in West Virginia shared a common hunting ground and was peaceful. The area was rich in deer, wild turkey, buffalo, and other wild game. “How the Adena people got the name “Mound Builders” is because they buried their dead in mounds. After the cremating a body, the ashes were buried in log tombs with items that would be important to the spirit in afterlife. The logs were then covered with dirt in small mounds; mounds grew after several burials in one area. Two of the most visited mounds are the Grave Creek Mounds and the South Charleston Mound (in still located in Charleston). The town near Grave Creek was named Moundsville in honor of the buried mound.” (Native Americans of West Virginia, February 2004)

When the first settlers came to West Virginia, they found different tribes in certain areas. The Tuscarora along the Potomac River, Shawnees at the mouth of the Kanawha, Cherokee in the East near the Ohio River, and Delaware in the Northern Panhandle. Most of the natives were friendly and helpful. The Shawnee were a hostile tribe and often at war with the Iroquois of Virginia who caused problems for the new settlers.

The Indians fought alongside the British against the frontiers during the Revolutionary War. The Treaty that was agreed and signed was taken from us on May 26, 1838. The soldiers came and took us by force; some of us did manage to escape to the mountains but not many. We were put in stockades so we could not escape by the army’s soldiers, the army gave us...