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Studies in Cherokee History

OUR LONG LOST PAST - The Mystery of Our Forgotten Fore-Fathers

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Well, originally, we titled this A BRIEF HISTORY OF THE OLD CHEROKEE. And brief it is, for almost nothing is known about them. At least from historical records, that is, for the Old Cherokee had no written language. So, what we do have (and can find), is gleaned from other sources. Yeah, Old Cherokee history? Scant! OKAY, then let us see what can be found, elsewhere.

Let's back up a bit. From Our Bronzemen History (in other Articles), we know that the Old Cherokee Period ran from about the 1000s A.D. (or so) to around 1730s A.D. DeSoto made a brief visit to them in the 1530s and the British "discovered" them in 1640s and rapidly developed a booming trade with the Nation (by 1670s). But, then they were nearly wiped out in the Great Plagues of the 1730s--the Colonial Cherokee emerging from their ashes. (nd it is this Colonial Cherokee that most people know about. For the former Era of the Old Cherokee was forgotten (or burried).

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Since the Old Cherokee kept no written records, we have to turn to digs, to see what kind of artifacts can be turned up on them.

Archeology shows only scattered camps in Applachia before about 1000 A.D. The other Tribes had settled most of America long before that. But, the inhospitable climate of the area (compared with the better, warmer climates, nearby) caused Appalachia to go unsettled for some time.

Then, by around the 1300s, settlements (and some form of "civilization") began to turn up in Appalachia--and in increasing numbers. Consequently, it appears that the Old Cherokee arrived in Appalachia somewhere between 1000 and 1300 A.D. (Coincidently, the time period when the Vikings were exploring the East Coast of America!) Archeologists call this the Pisgah Period.

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Or, modern Medieval Cherokee

As we noted above (and in Our Cherokee History), DeSoto made a brief trip to the Cherokee in the 1530s. And this serves as a good divider between the Early Old Cherokee Period and the Later Old Cherokee Period--or what we have come to call the Mediavel Cherokee.

Moreover, Archeologists note that there was a change in the settlement patterns around 1500, indicating the rise of a lot more TRADE among the inhabitants. Consequently, it would seem that DeSoto helped the Old Cherokee to "discover" their neighbors, which, in turn, set off this big trading frenzy. (Perhaps even a few horses were left behind, to facilitate this commerce, much in the same way that the Plains Indians acquired horses?) The Archeologists refer to this latter time as the Qualla Period.

Then, when the British Colonists arrive to "discover" the Cherokee in the 1640s, this inter-tribal trade was already in full swing. So, the British developed a trade with this established network, and by the 1670s. Thus, in the 1600s the Mediavel Cherokee had quite a business empire. (And, apparently, quite a civilization, too!)

Moreover, it was the British who first coined the phrase "Mediavel Cherokee" to cover this Later Phase of the Old Cherokee, as the People reminded them of earlier European countries in the Middle Ages (hence Our use of the Old English spelling for the modern Medieval term).

So, just what did this early contact of the British find?

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Well, unfortunately, not much was written about that early contact. (Or, if it was, it was destroyed or hidden.)

However, from the records, we can assess that the Old Cherokee had an extensive Empire in America. It apparently stretch from the Potomac River (in the East) all the way to the Mississippi River (in the West). And while they did not appear to have crossed the Ohio River, they had spread from there (in the North), all the way down to Georgia (in the South). This meant that their Empire covered the modern day States of (Northern) Virginia and West Virginia, Kentucky, and Tennesee, as well as the Western portions of North and South Carolina, and Georgia! That is 7 major States of the U.S.! (No small chunk of land!)

And, it was from this Era, that the Myths and Legands of Chekota, the Mediavel Cherokee Capital or "Camelot" emerged. And considering the size of the Old Cherokee Empire, perhaps those tales are not as fanciful as some might try to say! (More on that in the Article on CHEKOTA. )

Then, when the British finally did get around to writing about the Mediavel Cherokee, it was the early Colonial authors who began to make written records about them, in the 1700s, when they interviewed elders who could remember back into the 1600s. And from the facts that they gathered from these eye witnesses, ALL the authors (Payne, Adair, Butrick, and Haywood) maintained that this Tribe or Nation was some kind of Semitic Group or Jewish Sect!

What??? Could this be possible?

Well, take a look at what we have turned up, in Our Article on the MEDIAVEL CHEROKEE.


Compounding this problem of lack of information about the Old Cherokee is that they had a unique language of their own. But, it was mostly forgotten in the Plagues, and with the coming of the Iroquois Migration, and Sequoyah's development of the new alphabet--a Colonial Cherokee Language emerged among the Cherokee. Now, apparently there are some terms that carried over (like some terms of Old English are still used in Modern English). However, most Cherokee who can speak Colonial Cherokee can't speak Old Cherokee! (What a shame that this precious cultural treasure has been lost!!!)

Instead, mostly what we have are words, transliterated, here and there, among the writings of the Colonial Authors. (So, who knows how those were really supposed to be spelled and pronounced!!!)

However, there is one piece of Old Cherokee that is still farily well preserved. It is the Yoh-Way-auH Hymn. And while some can pronounce its "wprds" (and perhaps even sing it a bit) today, no one has a clue as to what it actually says (except that it is some kind of Hymn or Praise to God--another strong indicator of their earlier Judeo-Christians Culture!).


In Our search for the Old Cherokee (and its allied Mediavel Cherokee), we have turned up with a few odd words, here and there. And as we are often asked for a list of these, I thought I print a few of them here, for you to get an insight into what the CULTURE of the Old Cherokee was like.

E-Do-DauH . . . . . . . Generic for God
EL-o-HeyM . . . . . . . "Above Beings" (Hebrew for Gods)
U-HaL-o-Tay-Qau . . . . "Head of All Power", Almighty
Au-Do-NiV-Du. . . . . . Lord God
U-Ne-HaL-Nau-Hy . . . . "Maker of All Things", Creator
AuV or AuV-VaH. . . . . God, the Father (Hebrew)
Au-Tau-Nev-Ty . . . . . God, the Son "Place of Uniting"
U-Sqau-Hu-Lau . . . . . God, the Holy Ghost "Great Spirit"
YoH-Way-auH . . . . . . Sacred Name of God (Hebrew: YHVH)
Tsey-SauH . . . . . . . Jesus (Hebrew: Y'Shua)

Ga-LuV-Lad-Dy . . . . Heaven

U-Ku. . . . . . . . . . Great High-Priest (also Cherokee Monarch)
U-Do-Nes-Gey. . . . . . High-Priest, Bishop
Au-Do-Nes-Gey . . . . . Cherokee Priest
KuV-Ney-auK-a-Ty. . . . Healing Priest, Doctor

TSa-Go-Ley. . . . . . . Cherokee People (apparently, "Temple-goers")
Au-Ney YuM-Wey-ay . . . Cherokee ("Principle People") Jewish: Chosen People

No-Qua-Do or NoKaDo . . Mediavel Cherokee Noble ("Star-Lord")
No-Qua-Tsey-Yut . . . . apparently "Starship"

Consequently, from the terms we have been collecting (and as you see here), it should be OBVIOUS that the Old Cherokee (or Mediavel Cherokee) had a very STRONG Judeo-Christian Culture.

So, why have the branches of the Tribe forgotten and ingored their roots???


1. Much of the information on the Early or Mediavel Cherokee comes from the book THE CHEROKEE PEOPLE--The Story of the cherokee People, from Earlest Origins to Contemporary Times; by Thomas Mails, published by the Council Oak Books of Tulsa, Oklahoma, 1992 (where Payne, Adair, Butrick, and Haywood are extensively quoted).

2. Supplemental information supporting Mail's work may be found in HISTORY OF THE CHEROKEE INDIANS and Their Legends and Folk Lore; by Emmet Starr which was orginally published in Oklahoma City in 1921 but was reprinted by the Genealogical Publishing Co, Inc. of Baltimore, Maryland in 2004.

3. Several other modern books on the Cherokee give mysterious hints and clues to this hidden Hebrew-Viking-Cherokee origination.


For more information on this controversial Messianic Culture (and the Hebrew-Cherokee Heritage), see also Our EMUSPATEL Section.

For more information on this hidden Viking Culture (and the Viking-Cherokee Heritage), see also Our VIKING REVIVAL Section.


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Copyright 2007 by Daniel Shaddox
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Filed 04-05-07