By Celia E. Naylor
Forcibly faraway from their houses within the overdue 1830s, Cherokee, Creek, Choctaw, and Chickasaw Indians introduced their African-descended slaves with them alongside the path of Tears and resettled in Indian Territory, present-day Oklahoma. Celia E. Naylor vividly charts the studies of enslaved and loose African Cherokees from the path of Tears to Oklahoma's access into the Union in 1907. rigorously extracting the voices of former slaves from interviews and mining a variety of resources in Oklahoma, she creates a fascinating narrative of the composite lives of African Cherokees. Naylor explores how slaves attached with Indian groups not just via Indian customs--language, garments, and food--but additionally via bonds of kinship.
Examining this elaborate and emotionally charged background, Naylor demonstrates that the "red over black" courting was once not more benign than "white over black." She provides new angles to conventional understandings of slave resistance and counters past romanticized rules of slavery within the Cherokee kingdom. She additionally demanding situations modern racial and cultural conceptions of African-descended humans within the usa. Naylor unearths how black Cherokee identities developed reflecting advanced notions approximately race, tradition, "blood," kinship, and nationality. certainly, Cherokee freedpeople's fight for acceptance and equivalent rights that started within the 19th century keeps even this present day in Oklahoma.
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Extra info for African Cherokees in Indian Territory: From Chattel to Citizens
Enslaved African Cherokees in the Cherokee Nation employed various manifestations of resistance while living in nineteenth-century Indian Territory. Instead of reiterating a mythology presenting benign slavery in Indian nations, I break this cycle of silence and denial by recounting how some enslaved African Cherokees resisted the harsh and inhumane conditions of bondage on an individual and collective basis in the Cherokee Nation, Indian Territory. The connections and exigencies between enslaved and free people within the boundaries of Indian Territory reached a crescendo with the coming of the Civil War.
It is not surprising that the council decided to enact an overall law regarding arms in the Nation. The disorderly nature of the times often involved murder with a variety of weapons. Although the establishment of patrol companies and the control of weaponry within the reach of those enslaved and free undeniably reﬂected a heightened sensitivity to the violence of the postremoval pe29 On the Run riod, such laws also reinforced the link between the presence of Cherokee blood and related liberties within the Cherokee Nation.
Many who made this journey had been forced to leave family members and friends behind. They grieved about being separated and wondered if they would ever reconnect with those living in the old country. Some had traveled to Indian Territory with expectations of gradual emancipation in a new land. Collective su√ering of African Cherokees and Cherokees along the trail, however, had not generated enough of a sense of humanity, equality, and freedom; those enslaved before removal, who had survived the horror of the passage to the West, remained in bondage after arrival in Indian Territory.