Native American tiesgreenspun.com : LUSENET : Indians in Stanly County, NC : One Thread
I really appreciate your thoughtful response to all the Indian queries that pop up from time to time and I have to admit a certain scepticism myself - especially when I read the posts about characteristics, Indian names, etc.... but....
I've been reading the 3 volume set published by the SC Department of Archives and History regarding the Indian Trade in SC during the Colonial period. It's transcribed correspondence between the Indian Trade commissioners, SC Colonial Governors, various traders, military/militia leaders,etc.and others. Many years are missing but it generally covers the period 1711 up to 1765.
It was eye-opening. The tribes that were powerful in 1711 no longer exist -such as the Santee and the Yemassee. The tribes that remain are just shadows of who they were. At one point about 1750, Catawba chief informs the Governor of SC that he has invited the remainder of the Peedee tribe to join with the Catawbas for their safety and survival. The Northern relatives (Iroquian tribes)of the Cherokees were regularly coming down and raiding, killing, taking captives among white settlers and other Native American tribes.
One entry from one of the invading tribes basically says that the white settlers were at risk because their enemies were living in the settlement. Other entries detail how white settlers just took Indian girls/women to be wives. One man threatened the girls mother if she didn't leave. This is recorded because Indians complained to the Colonial government. Some Indian women's names are recorded but not the men with whom they lived. Some are. But there was a lot more than I ever thought. And there was a lot more mobility of tribes than I thought. Did you know there was a Chickasaw camp near present day Augusta, GA - far away from the tribal center in Mississippi because they wanted trade with the English and the English didn't want to send goods that far from Charleston and that close to French-controlled Mississippi.
I think the problem remains that we will never know the truth of the rumors of Indian ancestors. The family stories that were handed down may go back to unrecorded history during the early Colonial days.
By the way, one of the earliest traders, interpreters, was an Eleazar Wiggins who appears in the correspondence ca. 1711- 1715. Wonder if he is in anyway connected to the family in Stanly County for whom Old Wiggins cemetery is named?
-- Nancy Crayton (firstname.lastname@example.org), October 30, 2002