Sunday, March 31, 2013

Carlson Part I; Trouble with Neighboring Tribes

Excerpts from “Who’s Your People”
Dr. Richard Allen Carlson wrote a PhD dissertation about his family. He, like me, had Indian blood that he couldn’t prove. So in a sense, he and I are on similar quests. He speaks of his family’s Guion Miller Application being rejected back at the beginning of the 20th century. I hope to quote bist and pieces of this work. Carlson ties the Melungeons to the Saponi Indians. He never mentions they were part “Portuguese”.
On page 6 Carlson says; “Today the Salyersville Indians persists a small but distinct population of people living around the old Michigan and Ohio “muckfields” and parts of Oklahoma and the Kentucky Mountains. Their families came from Appalachia to the ‘muck’, a folk term referring to the vast peat bogs that once dotted the Midwest n the early to mid1900s in order to find seasonal work in the onion fields that thrive there. For nearly two centuries prior to that time the people’s ancestors had maintained their Indian identity while living in a distinct Indian community deep in the heart of Kentucky’s Appalachia. . . . During that time, a few expatriate Cherokee families attached themselves to the families of a band of Christian Saponi. . . . By the early 1800s, these citizen Indian families left their homes off the New River in the Mountains of the Virginia-North Carolina border region and ultimately formed the Grasy Rock, Stone Mountain, and Salyersville Indian Communities.”
Carlson speaks of “refugee Indian families” (p 7-8). He speaks of three Indian populations, i.] Greasy Rock, ii.] Stone Mountain, and iii.] Salyersville, then says “Just prior to the period when the prominent anthropologists, like James Mooney and Frank Speck, were speculating on the identity and fate of ‘Eastern Indian Survivals’, other outside observers were characterizing these three interrelated Indian populations as “Melungeon” and this trend continues to this day No confirmed etymology of this regionally specific label has been developed, but most contend the word stems from the French mélange, meaning “mixed [6]”. . . .
 Primarily a result of a few particularly influential publications that emerged from 1889 to 1891, the imposed Melungeon lable is used in attempts to explain ‘Melungeon origins’. These explanations are based on various conjectural histories supported by popular myths and legends regarding, in part, shipwrecked Phoenician sailors, the lost Colony of Roanoke, Turkish mercenaries, the Welsh chief Modoc, Pardo’s lost sailors, and/or the Lost Tribes of Israel, all of whom were said to have ‘took up’ with Indian women to contemporary ‘Melungeon’ populations. These theories segregate ‘Melungeon’ identity from Indian identity, and instead hold the Stone Mountain, Greasy Rock, and Salyersville Indian population to be representative of many mislabeled ‘marginal groups’, or ‘racial isolates’, ‘racial survivor’ or ‘racial enclaves’ scattered throughout the American Southeast. Implicit in these labels are sociological assumptions regarding the ‘culture of poverty’ and 'miscegenation’.
From Pages 21-22;
 Most popular and professional writers still accept the premise, generated in the 1800s, that Melungeon History and heritage – biological and social – is forever lost to contemporary researchers. Such outsiders have thus downplayed the people’s own assertions of being Indians in favor of emphacizing the possibilities of White, Black, Portuguese, Phoenecian, Jewish, Moorish, Turkish, and/or Lost Colony ancestry among them (even though all mention that these potential old world ancestors must have taken up with the Indians to bring forth the present population). . . . A poignant example is apparent in a 1947 Saturday Evening Post article focusing on the Greasy Rock population. Showing a photo of elder Asa Gibson, the author wrote “were his ancestors Welsh warriors, Phoenecians, or Survivors of Roanoke? . . . [Asa] say’s he’s 75 years old and an Indian [39].”
  From Chapter 1, The Saponi and their Relations; Crisis to Christ, and Back Again, p 41.
          With the consent of the ex-Governor of Virginia, Alexander Spotswood, a small band of Christian Saponi Indians had been residing on Spotswoods private land holdings at Fox’s Neck on the Rapidan River. They had lived there on the western fringes of Old Virginia at least since 1738. But not long after Spotswood’s death in the Summer of 1740, this band of Christian Indians had become having troubles with the local settlers. In the Spring of 1742, 26 of the Saponi men residing at the Fox’s Neck village were in court defending themselves from the vague accusations of “doing mischief”. Now, less that one year later, Saponi men again found themselves arrested and brought before the court of Orange County held near Somerville Ford “for stealing hogs and burning the woods”. Names are preserved in court records show Saponi men named John Collins, Alex Machartion, John Bowling, Maniassa, Craft Tom, Blind Tom, Foolish Jack, Isaac and harry as being among those arrested and brought in to face the charges. Having had their guns seized, the men were taken before the court for trial “by precept under the hands and seals of William Russell and Ed Spencer, gentleman under the charges of not only stealing hogs and burning the woods, but also “terrifying one Lawrence Strothers”, who claimed he had been shot and chased by the Saponi. The Saponi men were ordered held until bonded, after which they were ordered to leave the county. . . .[67]
          Following the identity of the Saponi from documents recorded before this 1743 incident, it becomes clear that this band was previously a part of the composite Indian community that, some twenty-five years earlier, had flourished at Fort CHristanna Reservation down on the Meherrin River. . . . The Christian Band of the Saponi were also living legacy of the Saponi signers of the infamous Treaty of Middle Plantation of 1677.
          (p 52) In 1732 William Byrd III recalled the configuration of these Siouan tribes consolidating at the Fort Christanna Reservation. He described how “. . . each of these was formerly a distinct Nation, or rather several clans or canton’s of the same Nation, speaking the same language, and using the same Customs.”
Starting p. 59, Carlson says; Governor Spotswood had long proposed to educate Indians in their own towns . . . The governor argued elsewhere that, by educating the Indians in their own villages, Virginia could go far to “banage [sic] savage customs in a generation or two” among the tribes where they could be made more “. . . useful as neighbors” . . . As Spotswood perceived it, the Colony’s military and economic interests directly related to his long-standing conviction of wanting to “Christianize and civilize the Tributarys” [115, 116, 117].The Indians living in the colony of Virginia wre called in those days “tributary” Indians.
Carlson mentions in 1716, a trip made to Fort Christanna, a place where the Saponi were settled been by Spotswood. The governor visited the fort with a clergyman named Rev. John Fontaine. Fontaine mentioned the fort was located on the Meherren River, and about 200 Sapony Indians resided near the fort. Fontaine says he was surprised that some of them could speak good English.
Carlson then says (p 64); Fontaine spent a considerable amount of time conversing with the instructor of the Sapni Indian school, Rev. Charles Griffin. Frustrated at the repeated denials from the Virginia Council to fund a missionary schoolteacher for the Saponi, Spotswood still personally employed the English Clergyman. Fountaine found Griffin enthusiastically carrying out his mission “to teach the Indian children and bring them to Christianity”. Besides running the Fort’s church, Reverend Griffin’s work among the Saponi involved teaching their children to read the Bible and rpeat “common prayers”. He was also teaching broader skills in speaking, reading, and writing English, and Fontaine noted he “hath had goog success amongst them.” One evening Fontaine attended a common prayer reading and noted that the eight Indian boys participating “answered very well to their prayers and understand what is read.” [133]
. . . In 1716 Spotswood was reporting to the Bishop of London on the continued success of the school in operation for the Saponi, but desperately requested more funding. And the governor frequently made trips to the Saponi Reservation and the law officially “directing the Indian Company to take over the fort later in December” was passed.[136, 137]
Carlson speaks of several attacks from the Five Nations Indians and others, upon the Saponi and mentions the killing of some Catawba’a, whom it says are allies of the Saponi. He says (p 69) despite the peace made in 1718, the Iroquois attacked again in 1722. [150]
More about Rev. John Fontaine
Rev. John Fontaine wrote a memoir entitled “Journal of John Fontaine: An Irish Huguenot Son in Spain and Virginia, 1710-1719”. At there is a section on the Huguenots. Several paragraphs ane dedicated to this Rev. John Fontaine. Quoting from it, we have;
John Fontaine's father and grandfather were Huguenots who suffered official persecution by the Catholics in France. In 1693 John was born in England, to which his father had fled as a refugee. His father then migrated to Ireland, and succeeded in getting John a commission in an Irish regiment in 1710. John Fontaine served briefly in Spain, then investigated Virginia in 1715-19 before returning to England.
Learn more about Virginia’s Huguenot peoples at the link above.
So we have a Saponi Indian surnamed Griffin in 1743 living on Governor Spotswood’s lands, and a teacher at the Saponi School near Fort Christanna surnamed Griffin. We have a French Huguenot Reverend visiting the Saponi at Fort Christanna, and the word “Melungeon” comes from the French “mélange” meaning “to mix”. There is also a “Collins” Saponi in 1743 and we know there were Collins Melungeons in the 1790s. We have evidence connecting the Melungeons to the Saponi. I am looking foreward to more evidence that will emerge in the next 500-plus pages.
Troubles with Neighboring Tribes
Pages 70 to 95 of Carlson’s Dissertation discuss fom about1718-1728. The author talks about the Indians at Fort Christanna, sayingthat although they went under the name of Saponi, they were a Occoneechi, Stengenocks, Meipotskis, and Tutelo. The author includes the Outaponis as well.
          There is a story of an Indian named “Sawney” who had recently returned to Virginia from Canada. He had been captured by the “French Indians”. Somehow he escaped about 1724 and returned to Virginia. Once in Virginia, he was arrested and was accused of threatening the inhabitants with incursions from his former allies, the “French Indians” from Canada. He denied bringing messages to the Saponis. I mention this because I knw dad had an uncle named “Uncle Swaney”, so the story of this “Sawney” caught my attention. The similarity of these names is probably just a coincidence, though.
Well, the Northern Indians did continue their attacks in Virginia. Carlson says; “More Virginia settlers were killed by Iroquois in the winter of 1725-1726 . . . the sachems of the Five Nations replied . . . it was some of their warriors operating without authority in conjunction with some French Indians and Tuscaroras who committed the killings.”[151] The sachems of the Iroquois defended their warriors, saying the killing of the Virginians was a mistake, and that they were really after “enemy Indians”. It was recorded that about this time, seven Saponi were killed or captured by some Tuscarora warriors.
In 1727 the Saponi came to the Virginia Assembly in Williamsburg and asked for satisfaction. The Saponi said in the Virginians took no action on the Tuscarora, they would take the matter into their own hands. Well, Virginia did nothing, so the Saponi went to the Catawba, who did take action.
There was an attack on the Meherrin Indians, who complained to the same Virginia Assembly the Saponis had complained to the pevious year. They blaimed the Occoneechi’s and Saponis. And the Nottaways complained the Meherrins had attacked them. The Saponis with the Catawba attacked the Tuscarora, of King Blount’s Town. North Carolina officials meanwhile, blamed the Catawba and the primary instigator of these feuds, also holding the Saponi and Occoneechi responsible.
Governor Spotswood had retired and was replaced by Governor Gooch, and he was not as friendly towards the Saponi as his predecessor. The Virginians had done nothing to help the Saponi when they asked for help after seven of their men were killed, while the Catawba did come to their aid. To add to this mistrust, three Saponi men were accused of killing two Nottaway’s. Three Saponi chiefs were held in jail until those guilty of the killings were brought forward. The killing of the son of the Tutelo chief also added fuel to the fire. A report came in (page 76) that John Sauna (Sawnie) and a fellow named Ben Harrison (apparently an Indian named after the White trader), went south to bring up one hundred Catawba warriors to protest the incarceration of the three Saponi men . . . the Saponi said that if Captain Tom was hung, they would take their wives and children over the Roanoke, and then return to drive the Whites and Negroes to the James River, and go to war. [181]
The Tutelo king, grieving over the death of his son, threatened the life of the governor, saying then he’d go off to some foreign Indians. The old Tutelo king was ordered to be arrested, but Carlson says he found no evidence that this ever happened.
This takes us to the end of 1728, and the end of Carlson’s first chapter. From 1714 to 1728 the Saponis, Tutelos, Occoneechis, and others came together. War with the Iroquois, and pressure from the colonists forced this option upon them. However pressures from the colonists to make them conform to colonial laws also alienated them. They did obtain satisfaction from the Catawba, their allies.
Acording to Carlson, Byrd stated (p 93) that the executions by the colonists of three Saponi caused the Saponi to remove to the Catawba’s.
There are some interesting comments about the Indians way of life. First is the mention of corn. Carlson is paraphrasing Byrd. When talking of the colonists he calls “borderers, meaning the people that lived on the Virginia/North Carolina border (P. 82), Byrd also decries the “borderers” means of economy and subsistence; especially in North Carolina where he contemptuously nted they raised Indian corn instead of tobacco and fruit orchards which he blamed on laziness. Indian corn, he noted; “. . . is of so great increase that a little pains will subsist a very large family with bread . . .”
Concerning sex between races, Carlson again turns to Byrd, saying; Byrd and a few other ex-traders of the survey team would make a sidetrip into Virginia in hopes of finding some “entertainment” in the Nottaway Indian Town. The entertainment the surveyers sought out among the Nottaway turns out to have been sexual in nature. After mentioning two “pretty English women, the narrative continues; . . . we could find it in our hearts to change these fair beauties for the copper coloured ones of Nottaway Town.” Continuing to quote Byrd, Carlson writes of Byrd; He wrote in that evenings journal entry that the Nottaway “offered us no bed fellows, according to the good Indian fashion, which we had reason to take unkindly.”
          Continuing on this theme, Carlson writes (P. 85), still quoting Byrd, “. . .one way of converting these poor infidels, and reclaiming them from barbarity and that is, charitably intermarry with them according with the modern policy of the most Christian King in Canada and Louisiana.” He continues saying that had the English done as the French, the country would be swarming with more people than it has insects, and . . . even their copper coloured complexion would admit of bleaching, if not in the first, at the farthest in the second generation . . . it is strange, therefore, that any good Christian should have refused a wholesome, straight bed-fellow, when he might have so fair a portion with her, as the merit of saving her soul.[210]
          Byrd had a Saponi guide, Ned Bearskin. It was said this was his hunting name. Ned it was said, was a great hunter and kept them fed. It was said that Ned spoke English very well. Mention was made of seeing the smoke of Northern Indians, enemies of the Eastern Siouan Indians, as they were “firing the woods”, as was the Indian custom.
          This takes us to the next section of chapter two, the Saponi Diaspora, 1728-1743.

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Reference Books

          Reference Books
          I have a lot of reference books. They are about the Cherokee, the Catawba, the Melungeons, and others simply because they are History Books about places and eras that are related to my family. The following books have been valuable to me. These are but a portion. I will add more as I am able. If you’d like any references from any of them, email me and I’ll see what I can do. This list will be growing over time.

          I. Cherokee  
          A. History
          1. “The Cherokee Nation, a History” by Robert J. Conley
          “History of the Cherokee Indians: Old Families and their Genealogy” by Emmitt Starr
          2. “The Journal of Rev. Daniel S. Butrick, May 19, 1838-Apr. 1, 1839; Trail of Tears Association, Oklahoma Chapter.
           3. “Footsteps of the Cherokees”, by Vicki Rozema, John. F. Blair Publishers, Winston-Salem, North Carolina
          4. “Colonel Return Jonathan Meigs Day Book Number 2” transcribed by James L. Doughat; Institute of Historic Research, Signal Mountain, Tennessee
           B. Genealogy
          1. “Guion Miller Roll “Plus of Eastern Cherokee East and West of Mississippi 1909” by Bob Blankenship; A Cherokee Roots Publication
          2. “Cherokee Proud” by Tony McClure, Pub. by Chunannee Books, Somerville, Tennessee
          3. Cherokee Roots, Vol. 1 and 2; by Bob Blankenship, Cherokee, North Carolina.
          4. “Cherokee Emigration Rolls 1817-1835” transcribed by Jack D. Baker; Baker Publishing Co., Oklahoma City.
5. “Cherokee Old Settlers; The 1896 Old Settler Payroll and the 1851 Old Settler Payroll transcribed and edited by David Keith Hampton; © David Keith Hampton 1993
          C. Sequoyah
          1. “The Mysteries of Sequoyah” by C. W. “Dub” West, bicentennial Edition, Muscogee Publishing Company, Muscogee, Oklahoma.
          2. “Sequoyah”, by Grant Foreman, University of Oklahoma Press
          3. “Se-Quo-Yah, The American Cadmus and Modern Moses: A Complete Biography of the greatest of Redmen (1885)” by George Everett Foster

           II. Eastern Siouan       
           A. Catawba
          1. “The Catawba Indian Nation of the Carolinas” by Thomas Blumer, Arcadia Publishing
          2. “Catawba Nation, Treasures in History” by Dr. Thomas J. Blumer; Pub. by The History Press
          3. “The Catawba Indians, People of the River”, by Douglas Summers Brown, University of South Carolina Press
          4. “The Indian’s New World; Catawba’s and Their Neighbors From European Contact Through the Era of Removal” by James H. Merrell; W. W. Norton and Company
           5. “History and Condition of the Catawba Indians of South Carolina” by Hazel Lewis Scaife
          B. Other Bands of the Catawba
          1. “Monacans and Miners” by Samuel R. Cook; University of Nebraska Press
          2. “Red Carolinians” by Chapman Milling, University of South Carolina Press
          3. “History of the Old Cheraws” by Alexander Gregg; Book Renaissance
          4. “Tutelo, Saponi, Nahyssan,Monacan, aka Piedmont Catawba Tribe of the OhioValley, Virginia,Carolina, New York, Pennsylvania, and Six Nations/Ontario, Canada”; compiled by Richard Haithcock, self published
          C. Melungeon
          1. “Melungeons, Examening an Appalachian Legend” by Pat Spurlock Elder; Continuity Press, 2004
          2. “Melungeons and Other Pioneer Families” by Jack Goins
          3. "Who’s Your People? Cumulative Identity Among the Salyersville Indian Population of Kentucky’s Appalachia and the Midwest Muckfields, 1677-2000, Vol. 1”, by Richard Allen Carlson, Jr.; a Dissertation submitted to Michigan State University in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy, Department of Anthropology, 2003.
          III. History
          A. Oklahoma/Indian Territory, Arkansas and Texas
          1. "A Study in Tolerance with Genealogy", by William Lee McCormick; pub. by The Book Craft, Dallas, Texas
          2. “Jesse Chisholm, Ambassador of the Plains”, by Stan Hoig; University of Oklahoma Press, Norman, Oklahoma
          3. “The Last Trek of the Indians” by Grant Foreman; University of Chicago University
          4. “The Five Civilized Tribes” by Grant Foreman, University of Oklahoma Press
          5. “A Guide to the Indian Tribes of Oklahoma” by Muriel H. Wright, University of Oklahoma Press
          6. “A Tour on the Prairies” by Washington Irving; University of Oklahoma Press
          7. “Hanging Judge” by Fred Harrington, University of Oklahoma Press
          B. Tennessee, Alabama, Kentucky, the Virginia’s and the Carolina’s
          1. “Land of the Lake” by Dr. G. L. Ridenour, Campbell County Historical Society
          2. “South Fork Country”, by Samuel D. Perry, First Books
          3. “Records of the Moravians in North Carolina, Vol. 2”, edited by Adelaide L. Fries; A Publication of the North Carolina Historical Commission
          4. “Records of the Moravians Among the Cherokee, Vol. 1 1752-1802”, “Vol. 2 1802-1805” and “Vol. 3, 1805-1810”, edited by C. Daniel Crews and Richard W. Starbuck, pub. by Cherokee National Press
          5. “The Moravians in Georgia, 1735-1740”, edited by Adelaide L. Fries
          6. “Lethal Encounters, Englishmen and Indians in Colonial Virginia” by Alfred A. Cave; Praeger
          7. “Doublehead, the Last Chickamauga Cherokee Chief” by Rickey Butch Walker, Blue Water Publications
          8. “Warrior Mountain Folklore” by Ricky “Butch” Walker; funded by the United States Department of Education; Printed by Lawrence County Schools Indian Education Program, Moulton, Alabama
          9. “Chickasaw Chief George Colbert, His Family and His Country” by Ricky “Butch” Walker, Blue Water Publishing
          10. “Davey Crockett, His Own Story” by Davey Crockett; Applewood Books

          IV. Other Genealogy Books
          1. “Wayland File”, by Frances Davey
          2. “Christopher Gist of Maryland and Some of his Descendants 1679-1957” by Jean Meir Dorsey and Maxwell Jay Dorsey, John S. Swift Co., Chicago, Illinois

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Indian Communities, East; per Smithsonian; 1948

Indian Communities East of the Mississippi, 1948;
per a Report by the Smithsonian Institute
We had just about dispelled the lies that the Melungeons had only claimed Portuguese ancestry for fear of the Jim Crow Laws. The y-chromosomal DNA testing had also said the major component was Caucasian with a little sub-Sahara African, but only the Sizemore’s had a y-chromosomeal DNA result saying they were American Indian. I was yelping for joy, as I knew this was the exact result you would expect if the original Melungeons were a small band of American Indian, who were dying out. This small remnant community married with Caucasians and Africans, to produce the present population of mixed blood people.           
But these results have been twisted somehow. They had assumed the straight male line or straight female line would tell them about the Melungeons. However it tells them only of the ancestry of the LAST male and female of the genealogical line. Since ALL of those tested had Eurpoean surnames, it told of the original Caucasian branch of these families. Surnames tell us of our male line as well.
Some are saying that these "Portuguese" were really Angolan, and that there was NO Indian component. If this is your opinion, show me your evidence and I'll publish it here, unedited.
Let me remind you about what the Smithsonian  Indtitute said 65 years ago.
            I will quote those passages about the Eastern Siouan and some other remnant tribes found in the East, especially in Virginia and the Carolinas. The entire report can be found here --
Annual Report, Smithsonian Institute, 1948; Surviving Indian Groups, Gilbert
This tribe is divided into two section, i.] The Upper Chickahominy who rpeside principally in Charles City, County. At White Oak Swamp n the Chickahominy River near Roxbury, Virginia and number about 357 . . . ii.] The Lower Chickahominy who live on the lower Chickahominy River on the Chesapeake and Ohio Railroad between Newport News and Richmond in the neighborhood of Boulevard, Virginia. The latter group is about 55 miles from Newport News and 40 miles from Richmond. They number about 100 persons and are situated in James City County. Both of these groups have intermarried with the Pamunkey Indians, their near neighbors to the North. The main Chickahominy family names are Adkins, Bradby, Colman, Holmes, Jefferson, Jones, Miles, Stewart, Swett, Thompson, Wynne.
This group resides on a state reservation of about 800 acres in King Williams County at a bend of the Pamunkey River. They are hardly 20 miles due east of Richmond, the state capital. There are about 150 Pamunkey on the reservation with about 150 more scattered elsewhere. . . . The Reservation has been in existence since 1677. . . . The main family names current among these people are Bradby, Collins, Cook, Dennis, Hawkes, Holmes, Langston, Miles, Page, Sampson, Swett.
The next tribe to the north of the Pamunkey is the Mattapony. Like the Chickahominy the Matapony are divided into two groups, both in King William County. i.] The Lower Mattapony group is located on a reservation of 50 acres in situated on a bend of the Mattapony River not over ten miles North of the Pamunkey. Ii.] The Upper Mattapony or Adamstown Indians live about twenty miles west of the first group and about 38 miles Northeast of Richmond (near Central Garage). The Lower Mattapony number about 150 persons, the upper group about 170. The chief family nmaes of the loer group are Allmond, Collins, Costello, Langston, Major, Reid, and Turpin. In the upper group Adams and Holmes. The lower [ P. 418] group has been organized as a reservation since 1658, whereas the Upper Mattipony have only been organized since 1923.
            To the north of the Mattapony are the Rappahannock who are rather widely scattered in the area of the Rappahannock River in Caroline, Essex, and Upper King and Queen Counties. They are centered especially around Indian Neck, Virginia, and are estimated to number from 400 to 500 persons. This group was incorporated under state law as the Rappahannock Indian Association in 1919. A band in Upper Essex County has Nelson as the most common family name.
            Miscellaneous Tidewater Tribes
            . . . There are a number of other Indian Remnants in the Tidewater of Virginia.
            The Potomac Indians for example, are a small band of 150 to 200 persons situated in Stafford County about 8 miles due north of Fredericksburg, Virginia on a small branch of the Potomac River.
            There are also Indian groups in Northumberland County at the mouth of the Potomac River estimated to number around 300 persons. These are thought to be the remnant of the Wicomico Tribe in Colonial times.
            Across the Chessapeake Bay on Virginia’s eastern shore there are still to be found the remnants of the Accohannock Tribe among the Colored population of Accomack and Northampton Counties. The numbr of these mixed folks is unknown, but they are said to  be located in Accomack County Court House (Drummondtown) and near Fishers Inlet in southern Northampton County. In the latter place they bear the family name of Miles.
            A band in York County, on the south shore of the river to the northwest of Hampton, have the family name of Wise.
            On the opposite shore of the York River are certain small groups centering in Allmondsville and Gloucester Point in Gloucester Point. The Gloucester groups are said to number about 100 persons. AT Allmondsville the family names are Allmond, Norris and Langston, while those at Gloucester Point are Sampsons. The Gloucester County groups are thought to me remnants of the Werowocomoco Tribe of colonial times.
            Crossing the James River to the southern shore one finds remnants of the Nondsemond Tribe in Norfolk and Nondsemond Counties. Their chief center is at Deep Creek in in Norfolk County not far to the Southwest of Norfolk, Virginia. Located on the Northern and Eastern edges of the Great Dismal Swamp they number about 200 souls . . . The principle names were originally Boss and Weaver. . . . The Nansemond Tribe have been reorganized as a tribe since 1923.
            The Nansemond, along with the [P. 419] Chickahominy, Pamunkey, Mattapony, Rappahannock, and Nottaway of Delaware, have for some years been organized as the revived Powhattan Confederacy of Indians.
            West of the Nansemond in Southampton County between Sebrell and Courtland there are asserted to be still remaining remnants of the Nottaway Tribe.
            Eastern Siouans of Virginia
            The next tribes are the Siouan Tribes of Virginia. They are the ones we are more interested in as relations of the Melungeons.
            Amherst County Issues
            This group of about 500 or 600 mixed blood is located in the central part of Amherst County about 4 or 5 miles west of the county seat. The principle settlements are on Bear Mountain and Tobacco Row Mountain in the Blue Ridge. At the extreme western end of the county is another mixed group of similar origin derived from Indian, White, and in some localities, Negro blood.
            Rockbridge County Brown People
            To the northwest of Amherst County I Rockbridge County is a small group located on Irish Creek, not more than twelve miles east of Lexington, Virginia, and called Brown People. Their number is estimated at 300, and they show a mixture of White, Indian, and occasionally Negro blood. Like the Issues of Amherst County, they are a group apart from both Whites and Negroes.
            Melungeons or Ramps
            . . .
The Virginia Melungeons are found on the mountain ridges such as Copper Ridge, Clinch Ridge and Powell Valley in Lee and Scott Counties, in the vicinity of Coeburn and Norton in Wise County, near Damascas in Washington County, and in the western Dismal area of Giles County. No estimate of their numbers is available but they probably amount to several thousand. They show dark skin with straight or curly black hair and high cheek bones. The chief family names of Melungeons in the area are Bolen, Collins, Gibson or Gipson, Freeman, Goins, and Sexton.
North Carolina
            . . . [P. 420] . . .
. . . There is apparently very little Negro blood in this group. Most of the Cherokees are in Swain County where they have five towns, Big Cove, Yellow Hill, Bird Town, Wolf Town, and Paint Town. Other groups are found in Graham and Cherokee Counties nearby and in Jackson County.
The Eastern Cherokee Band was incorporated under state law in 1889. . . They still employ the native tongue . . .
Siouans or Croatans
            This group is said to number upwards of 16,000 persons . . . Physical measurements indicate the presence of Indian, White, and Negro types. There is said to be a tendency for the lighter individuals and families to hold aloof from the darker ones just as in the case of the Nanticokes or Narangassettes. They are found in greatest concentration in Robison County, but occur in considerable numbers in the nearby counties of Bladen, Columbus, Cumberland, Harnet, Sampson, and Scotland. Across the border in South Carolina they occur in Marlboro, Dillon, Marion, and Horry Counties.
            The family names of these people are Allen, Bennet, Berry, Bridger, Brooks, Brown, Bulter, Chapman, Chaves, Coleman, Cooper, Cumbo, Dare, Graham, Harris, Harvie, Howe, Johnson, Jones, Lassie, Little, Locklear, Lowrie, Lucas, Martin, Oxendine, Paine, Patterson, Powell, Sampson, Scott, Smith, Stevens, Taylor, Vickers, White, Willes, Wilkenson, Wood, and Wright. . . .
            The state [North Carolina] has recognized their special status and they are endowed with a special school system from both Whites and Negroes.
             . . . There are two factions today, one calling itself Lumbee Indians . . . the other . . . is located east and North [p. 421]  of the Lumbee River . . .
            Miscellaneous Indians of North Carolina
            In northeastern Person County on the Virginia border in locaed a group . . . who number about 400 persons. They also occur just across the state line in Halifax County, Virginia, around Christie and Virginiliana. The chief family names are Coleman, Epps, Martin, Shephard, Steewart and Talley. The state of North Carolina maintains an Indian School for these people . . .
            The Person County Indians may be descendants of a small band of Saponi who, according to early census reports, inhabited Granville County, North Carolina (from which Person County was later set off.).
            In northeastern North Carolina, in Dare and Hyde Counties, and in Roanoke Island are to be found a few Indian remnants of the Machapunga Tribe mixed with White and Negro blood. Their family nmaes are Pugh, Daniels, Berry and Prescott.
            Somewhat west of Person County in Rockingham County, the census record of 1930 reports a considerable number of Indians. The identity of this group is not known.
            South Carolina
[p. 422] Four major geographical groups may be distinguished, namely i.] Catawba, on the northern border; ii.] Croatans, also on the northern border; iii.] Red Bones and other groups on the capital; and iv.] Brass ankles in coastal areas. Altogether these groups may total over 10,000 persons. . . . They have lost almost everything that would distinguish them as Indian except their physical appearance. The latter is of course greatly modified by mixture with White and Negro blood, yet these people are recognized locally as being distinct from both White’s and Negroes. They have their own mixed blood schools . . .
The chief family names among these mixed-bloods are Boone, Braveboy, Bunch, Chavis, Creek, Driggers, Goins, Harmon, Russell, Scott, Swett and Williams.
            The remnants of this tribe are located at a small settlement on the banks of the Catawba River in York County, about 9 miles southeast of Rockhill, the county seat. . . . The 1930 census returns 159 Indians in York County. Their blood seems to be mostly a mixture of White and Indian.
            In most of the counties along the northern border of this state are to be found many hundreds of people of part Cherokee descent . . .
            . . . It is reliably reported that a small group of 100 or more Cherokees and Creeks are at present in a settlement near Shellbluff Landing in Burke County, about 10 miles south of Augusta, and almost on the Savannah River. The family names are Clark, Woods, Shafer and Deal. Their settlement is sometimes known as “Shafertown” or “Shafersville”. . . . In earlier days Yuchi, Shawnee, Appalachee and Chickasaw Indians clustered in the vicinity of Augusta where the Savannah River crossed the fall line.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

The Waylands, the Melungeons, and a Saponi Band of the Catawba Nation

The Waylands, the Melungeons, and a Saponi Band of Catawbas

My research has morphed from a study of the Gist’s to the Wayland’s. The Wayland’s lived in the first known Melungeon Community at Stony Creek Primitive Baptist Church in Scott County, Virginia. They lived on Copper Creek per early records. I believe the connection to the Melungeons is through the Gibson surname. Two known Melungeon-Gibson families were their closest neighbors  in Southwestern Virginia.
LAND ENTRY BOOK 2 [20]; RUSSELL CO. VA; PAGE 101; entry dated Oct 4 1805; Nevil Wayland Jun-r enters fifty acres of land by virtue of part of a Land Office Treasury warrant No 1855 dated March 18th 1796 lying in Russell County on both sides of Copper Creek, beginning at a conditional line between John McClelan and James Gibson then running up the Creek on both sides for quantity entry dated Oct 23. He purchased 50 aces in what became Scott County, Virginia, in 1796.
Next door to my William Wayland in Lawrence County, Arkansas, 30 years later, there was a James Gibson family. There was a Humphrey Gibson in Virginia, associated with a man whose daughter according to his will was “Cusiah” Gibson, and Keziah was the wife of my Nevil Wayland Sr.  Thirty years later, in Arkansas there was a Humphrey Gibson living near my Wayland’s, also in Lawrence County, Arkansas. There we other Gibson families in the area right next to my Wayland families.
Early Lawrence County, Arkansas Records
William Wayland [note: my direct ancestor], 1/2 appraised value
P 5 -- Tuesday, November 23, 1819 -- Thomas Griffith is authorized to keep a ferry at White River where James Akins now lives . . . He is allowed to charge the same rates . . .
Friday, November 26, 1819 -- William Wayland is appointed overseer of the second road of said township [Spring River Township]
P 10 -- Wednesday, third day of term, June 6, 1821 -- Jacob Flannery is appointed overseer of the first division in the place of William Wayland
Before Tuesday, January 15th, 1822 -- P 13 -- Samuel Crow is appointed overseer of the road leading from Davidsonville to White River, in the first road division of Strawberry Township in the place of William Wayland
P 21 -- Tuesday, the second day of term, 5 July 1825 -- Ordered that the following named persons be commissioned judges at the ensuing August election, to wit: Jesse Jeffrey, Henry Wayland, and Samuel D Gibson for Strawberry Township, and that the election, and that the election be held in the house of Jesse Jeffrey.
William Wayland, the youngest male of that generation of Wayland’s, mentioned above, was my direct ancestor. Notice the mention of White River. White River was the dividing line between Arkansas Territory and Indian Territory at that time, 1819. Henry Wayland (William’s eldest brother), Samuel D. Gibson, and Jesse Jeffrey are all mentioned in the same sentence. Jeffrey is a well-known Catawba surname associated with the Saponi, and Gibson is also associated with the same Saponi Band of the Catawba, as well as with the Melungeons of SW Virginia and NE Tennessee.
Stony Creek Primitive Baptist Church, Scott County, Virginia
In “Melungeons and Other Pioneer Families” by Jack Goins he says, on page 9; The word Melungin first appeared on a written record in the minutes of Stony Creek Church in 1813. Mr. Goins, who has researched the Melungeons longer than almost anyone, also states on the same page; The fathers of some of the Stony Creek Church Melungeons originally lived on the Pamunkey River in Virginia. Their ancient Indian Tribe must have been located in that neck of the woods, and it may have been the Saponia who was a Siouan tribe. Of all the Siouan tribes, the only one remaining today as federally recognized is the Catawba. There are several Siouan tribes that are state recognized.
Goins also mentions the minutes of the Stoney Creek Primitive Baptist Church. Those minutes can be found here --
In introducing these minutes;
Fort Blackmore, Scott County Virginia
This copy of what is perhaps the first book of the Stony Creek Primitive Baptist Church, located on Stony creek, near Fort Blackmore, Scott County, Virginia, was in the possession of Mr. Scott Beatright of Colburn, Virginia, whose grandfather was once a Minister of this church. The book is written on paper and bound between covers made of home spun cloth.  The handwriting is very good and the ink has lasted well. Copied August, 1966, by Emory L. Hamilton, Wise, Virginia, with a copy filed in the Archives of the Southwest Virginia Historical Society, at Clinch Valley College, Wise, Virginia and a copy sent to the Virginia State Library, Richmond, Virginia.
The church minutes begin with these words; A CHURCH BOOK FOR STONY CREEK CHURCH; NEVEL WAYLAND, CLERK FOR THE CHURCH. Church meeting held at Stony Creek. February the 21 day 1803  (Should be 1801). This is actually Nevil Wayland Jr. He is later found after 1815, in Lawrence County, Arkansas living with his brothers William and Henry. A fourth brother Francis arrived after 1820. I have a photo of Nevil’s son Jonathan in the previous blog entry. Also recall earlier blog posts mentioning Coeburn, Virginia and Fort Blackmore, wrt my Gist family. The above appears to imply that Nevil Jr was the writer of these mnutes. It also says; April the 24 day 1802; Church meeting held on Stony Creek.  Motion made by Brother Cocks for to petition Brother Flannary's church for him to attend us part of his time.  By consent of the church Brother Wayland is to get a quire of paper for the use of the church. . . .
            August the ____ (1806) . . . Henry Cock (also spelled Cocke in the church minutes) and Nevil Wayland is appointed by this church as clerk.
I had remembered it as saying they bought ink and paper for Nevil’s usage. It actually says Nevi was asked to purchase “a squire of paper” for the usage of the church. See how unreliable our memories or our own recollections can be?  Anyhow, I have wondered if it was MY Nevil Wayland that wrote the word “melungins” in these minutes. Below, from the same website cited above, we have;
September the 26, 1813; Church sat in love.  Brother Kilgore, Moderator.  Then came forward Sister Kitchen and complained to the church against Susanna Stallard for saying she harbored them Melungins (Melungeons).  Sister Sook said she was hurt with her for believing her child and not believing her, and she won't talk to her to get satisfaction, and both is "pigedish", one against the other.
Remember at the beginning of this report it said of the handwriting; The handwriting is very good and the ink has lasted well. It says Nevil Jr was clerk in 1801 and again in 1806. Was he still church clerk by 1813? Also note the usage of a word “pigedish” that has no meaning. Maybe it is “pig-[he]adish”? SO maybe this is a different person, as this handwriting is not as good as was earlier mentioned. The only way to know for sure is to look at the original document and see if the hand writing is the same.
The word “Wayland” is mentioned in these minutes 31 times! Obviously my direct family was members of this church. To compare, the surname “Gibson” is used 42 times. So our two surnames are very closely associated with this church, the first known Melungeon community documented in history. Evidence exists saying Nevil Wayland Sr’s. wife was a Gibson.
I’d like to report one more thing. When Nevil Wayland Senior died about the end of 1806, a list of his belongings was made, and that list still exists. One item was “tomahawk”. I did a little research and both the words “hatchet” and “axe” were in common usage. So these people knew the difference between a hatchet made by the English and a tomahawk in the possession of the American Indian. Nevil Sr. owned a tomahawk.
The origin of the term “Melungeon”
There are several theories today as to the origin of the name “Melungeon”. One theory states it comes from some ancient Turkish word. Another group of researchers believe it came from a Portuguese word. Some say there is an Angolan origin based out of Africa. But there is no record of Turkish, or Portuguese people emigrating to colonial Virginia or the Carolinas. Maybe few Portuguese ships did land in this region, but they also left on those ships. If a ship went aground, the most likely scenario is that a later ship came by to cart the surviving sailors back home. No early record exists of Portuguese sailors being left on American shores.
The Angolans is a different story. They have a VERY GOOD REASON to hide their identity. These Angolans would have undoubtedly been sold into slavery, once discovered. Their best option would have been to move in with the local Indians. However the people who later became Melungeons were tri-racial. Some of them were forced to say they had no Negro blood, before a court of law. Why would there be a memory of one Angolan word, Melungo (hard “g” sound), amongst them, that they change to “Melungeon” (soft “g”, sounds like “j”)? Why change the word ending from "go" to something sounding like "jeon"?
            The best explanation for the origin of the word comes from the French verb “melanger” meaning “to mix” and “malungeon” which is first person plural of that verb, and it means “we mix”. This is an EXACT spelling, not an approximation or something a little similar – it is exact. And there were French Huguenots living in the area ( where it states; Prior to the Revocation, there were about eight hundred thousand Huguenots in France.  In the face of horrible persecution, approximately five hundred and fifty thousand of them recanted their faith.  During the next twenty years, it is estimated that about a quarter of a million Huguenots left France.  Many fled to friendly neighboring countries such as Switzerland, Germany, the Netherlands and parts of Belgium.  Others escaped to England and Ireland from where they embarked for the West Indies and British North America, especially to the Carolinas, Virginia, New York and New England.  Some eventually migrated as far as South Africa. . . .
The Huguenot Society of South Carolina was founded in 1885 by their descendants in order to honor and perpetuate the memory of these French Protestant men, women and children.
Please note that the Siouan tribes lived in the Carolinas and Virginia, the same states mentioned as locations where the French Huguenots (Protestants) settled in America.  So we can document French speakers to the regions where these mixed-race families came from, and Melungeon is a French word meaning “we mix”. There is no Turkish, or Angolan word meaning “we mix” that is similar to the French word. And since the Portuguese and French languages are both of Latin origin, they have many words that are very similar. But we have no corresponding Portuguese Society of South Carolina that can document Portuguese settlers back to the time of the original Melungeon forebears, as is the case with the French Huguenots.
I hope my family photos help dispel the lies that the Melungeons contained no American Indian element. At least some of us did. I can’t speak for other families, but I know mine had American Indian blood, proven by an autosomal DNA test. We have rumors of Indian blood down three lines (Brown, Gist, and Wayland), well, these things are supporting evidence. 
 In the future, I hope to quote from a Ph. D. dissertation, some of the writngs that helped get a band of the Saponi state recognized, recent reports related to the y-chromosome DNA testing,  others who have written about the Melungeons, records of the Eastern Siouan tribes, and others I have probably forgotten about. When I look at my computer, I suspect I'll find a few things and say, "Oh yeah, I forgot about that!" It happens all the time.