Summary of Native American Tribes – C

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Chactoo –  A band of Indians, possibly related to the Atakapa, who were documented in 1753 as living in Louisiana. In 1805 they were living on Bayou Boeuf, about ten miles south of Bayou Rapide, toward Opelousas, and numbered 30 men. They were not Choctaw, and in addition to their own language, they they also spoke the Mobilian trade language.

 

Chakchiuma – A tribe speaking a ChoctawChickasaw dialect, that formerly lived on the Yazoo River in Mississippi. At that time they were probably the most populous of the Yazoo tribes. During Hernando de Soto’s Expedition in 1540-41, they lived in a walled town. During the 18th century they were included in the Chickasaw confederacy, and had a reputation of being warlike. Later, they moved to the east side of the Mississippi River with the Choctaw and Chickasaw and settled on the Tallahatchie River.

 

Chakankni – A Molala band formerly settled in the Cascade Range, northwest of upper Klamath lake, on the headwaters of Rogue River in Oregon. By the 1880’s, they were rapidly becoming absorbed by the neighboring tribes and had practically given up their own language for that of the Klamath.

 

Chatot –  Related to the Choctaw, this band was living south of Fort St. Louis in Mobile Bay, Alabama in 1709 when French colonizer, Sieur de Bienville wanted to establish a settlement in the area. The Chatot spoke both the  French and Choctaw languages.

Another band by the same name also lived in the upper Apalachicola River and Chipola River basins in Florida. This group a Muskogean language, which may have been the same as that of the Pensacola tribe. By 1675, the Spanish had established several missions for the Chatot.

 

Chaui –  A tribe of the Pawnee Confederacy, they held a a prominent place in the Council of the Confederacy, their head chiefs outranking all others. In 1833 they ceded to the United States their lands south of Platte River, Nebraska, and in 1857 all lands on the north side of of the river when the Pawnee Reservation on Loup River in mid-central Nebraska was established. After the state of Nebraska was admitted into the Union, the state government extinguished the tribe’s rights to their land. It soon sold the land and used the proceeds to defray expenses to obtain lands in Indian Territory for a new reservation in 1876. The tribe was then relocated to Oklahoma. In 1892, their land was again taken in severalty and tribal members became citizens of the United States. Later, in 1964, the Pawnee Nation was $7,316,096.55 for undervalued ceded land from the previous century.

 

Chaushila – A Yokut tribe that formerly lived in central California, north of Fresno River, probably on lower Chowchilla River,. Their neighbors on the north were of Moquelumnan stock. Extinct today, they are often confused with, but are distinct from, the Chowchilla tribe.

 

Chawasha – An Indian tribe of Louisiana, the formerly lived on the Bayou La Fourche and eastward to the Gulf of Mexico and across the Mississippi River. Today, they are part of the federally recognized tribe of the Chitimacha, along with the Washa and Yagenachito tribes, the confederation once occupied about fifteen villages. The name Chawasha is a Choctaw term meaning “Raccoon Place.” When Columbus first came to America, the combined strength of the four groups was estimated to be about 20,000. However, as more and more European settlers came to the area, the tribes suffered greatly from infectious diseases which reduced their number in half by 1700. At that time, the Chawasha had about 700 people.

In 1712 a they were moved to the west side of the Mississippi River by French colonizer, Sieur de Bienville. A few years later, the Chawasha were attacked by a party of Chickasaw, Yazoo, and Natchez, who killed the head chief and many of his family, and carried off 11 prisoners. Sometime before 1722, they resettled on the east side of the Mississippi River. In 1730, in order to allay the panic in New Orleans following the Natchez Uprising of 1729 which resulted in the massacre of white setters, Governor Etienne Boucher de Perrier allowed a band of black slaves to attack the Chawasha, after which, it was widely reported that they were then destroyed. This; however was grossly exaggerated. By 1739, they were living with the Washa tribe on the west side of the Mississippi River above New Orleans. By 1784 the combined numbers of the Chitimacha tribes had fallen to just 180 and in the early part of the 19th century, they were absorbed by the Houma. In the early 20th century; however, the Chitimacha began to re-establish their tribal identity. From just six families in 1880, the numbers have grown to reach a present figure of about 900. In 1917, the Chitimacha Tribe was officially recognized by the United States government. For more information see the Chitmacha Nation.

 

Chehalis – A collective name for several Salishan tribes who lived on the Chehalis River and its affluents, and on Grays Harbor in Washington. There were five principal villages on the river, seven on the north side of the bay and eight on the south side. There were also a few villages on the north end of Shoalwater Bay. Many historians divied them into the Upper Chehalis or Kwaiailk, dwelling above Satsop River, and the Lower Chehalis from that point down. The Satsop speak a dialect distinct from the others. In 1806 Lewis and Clark estimated their population at 700.

These two groups thrived until settlers forced them to give up their ancestral lands. Rejecting the unacceptable terms of the treaties offered by the US Government, the Chehalis were regarded as a “non-treaty” tribe. This meant financial aid from the government would be limited and unpredictable.

The tribe finally settled on their current reservation along the Chehalis River in 1860. The reservation encompasses seven square miles southeastern Grays Harbor and southwestern Thurston Counties in Washington. Estimated at about 700 people today, the major communities within the reservation are Chehalis Village and part of the city of Oakville. The tribe operates several thriving enterprises including the Lucky Eagle Casino and Eagles Landing Hotel, and has recently built new community and wellness centers. For more information see the Chehalis Tribe.

 

Chelamela – A small division of the Kalapooian family formerly living on Long Tom Creek, a western tributary of Willamette River in Oregon. They were included in the Dayton treaty of 1855. Nothing is known of their customs, and they are now extinct.

 

Chelan – The Chelan Indians were an interior Salish people, speaking the Wenatchi dialect, who originally lived on the the outlet of Lake Chelan in Washington. They are now one of the twelve bands or tribes that make up the federally recognized Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation.

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