Chickasaw Indians

Background historical account of the Chickasaw Indians in the U.S.

Chickasaw Indians

The Chickasaw Indians are a tribal group that consists of hunters and fighters. Years ago, this tribe inhabited a small town near the Tombigbee River in Mississippi. Since Indians migrated frequently, a few tribal members eventually inhabited nearby towns in the southern part of the United States. Unfortunately, as more and more settlers arrived to North America, the Chickasaw Indians, along with several other tribes, were forced to relocate to designate Indian Territory in the state of Oklahoma. Today, the majority of pure breed Native Americans live on reservations located throughout the country. Compared to other Indian groups, the Chickasaw's were a small group.

In the 1600's, the tribe consisted of approximately 5,000. Other groups saw populations of more than 20,000. The Chickasaw Indians community was extremely orderly, and everything necessary was located within close proximity. Ancient Indian tribes dwelled in tents and upheld a primitive life. Progressively, several towns and villages inhabited by the Chickasaw's incorporated modern elements. For example, it was common for the community to have a town meeting center, which held ceremonies and civil meetings. Sports events became a favorite pastime, and many persons maintained two houses. The second home was primarily used for storing corn and other materials.

The Chickasaw Indians are very religious, and rely on faith for healing. This Indian group worships the deity Ababinili. This god represents the things above such as the sun, clouds, and sky. In addition, worship of other deities was incorporated into the religion. Each god or deity has a different purpose. For example, some deities protect against wicked spirits and evil forces

During Indian removal of the 1830s, the United States government first assigned the Chickasaw to a part of Indian Territory west of the Mississippi River controlled by the Choctaw Nation; their area in the western area of the nation was called the Chickasaw District. It consisted of Panola, Wichita, Caddo, and Perry counties.

A large number of Chickasaw Indians continue to inhabit areas of North America. In the 1970's, this tribe experienced a heavy assimilated into American culture. Some members left the Indian Territory. Approximately 7,000 remained. Today, a large population resides in Oklahoma on tribal-owned land.

Under the Dawes Act, the Chickasaw nation was dissolved, with government functions transferred to the federal government before statehood, by agreement negotiated with the Dawes Commission. Following the breakup of the nation, the Chickasaw became citizens of the United States. The US allotted the communal land in plots for individual households of registered members. Land left over was declared "surplus" and made available for sale to non-Indians, so they lost much of their tribal lands.

In the second half of the 20th century, the Chickasaw reorganized their tribal government. They adopted a new constitution on August 27, 1983 to manage their business affairs.

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