Red over Black: Black Slavery among the Cherokee Indians

By R. Halliburton Jr. | Go to book overview
Save to active project

It is easily understood why Cherokee owners were indulgent in giving their slaves time to attend religious services. Moreover, some slaves attended church to interpret for masters who did not speak English.

Some Cherokees, even slaveowners, resisted the efforts of the missionaries, however. One was Drowning Bear (Yonaguska), a chief who resisted every persuasion to emigrate west and was suspicious of Christianity. He refused to allow the Scriptures to be read to his people until he had first heard them. After hearing one or two chapters of the Book of Matthew, the chief remarked, "Well, it, seems to be a good book--strange that the white people are not better, after having had it so long."41

The Methodists made the last large-scale mission effort among the Cherokees and they experienced the quickest success. In one year's time they converted 189 Indians and 63 black slaves.42 John Ross was one of that number.

James Mooney, "Myths of the Cherokees," Nineteenth Annual Report of the Bureau of Ethnology ( Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1900), p. 214.
F. A. Michaux, "Travels to the West of the Allegheny Mountains in the States of Ohio, Kentucky and Tennessee," in Ruben Gold Thwaites, Early Western Travels ( Cleveland: The Arthur H. Clark Company, 1904- 1907), vol. 18, p. 28.
Henry Thompson Malone, Cherokees of the Old South: A People in Transition ( Athens: University of Georgia Press, 1956), p. 138.
Thurman Wilkins, Cherokee Tragedy: The Story of the Ridge Family and the Decimation of a People ( London: The Macmillan Company, 1970), p. 30.
Ibid., p. 181.
Ibid., p. 182.
Ibid., pp. 182-183.
National Archives, Paul Smith to Henry Dearborn, Secretary of War Files, Indian Division, No. 1484 ( 1805).
Lillian Delly, "Episode at Cornwall," Chronicles of Oklahoma 51, no. 4 (Winter 1973-74), pp. 444-445.
"The Foreign Mission School at Cornwall, Connecticut," Chronicles of Oklahoma 7, no. 3 ( September 1929), p. 247.
Edward Everett Dale and Gaston Litton, Cherokee Cavaliers ( Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 1939), p. 7.


Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Cite this page

Cited page

Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Red over Black: Black Slavery among the Cherokee Indians


Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen
/ 222

matching results for page

Cited passage

Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?