Cherokee Indians Research Paper

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Anais Diaz Ms. Logas U.S. History March 31, 2015 Cherokee Indians Cherokee Indians are a tribe of Native Americans that originated in the Southeast territory of North America. There is no specific time when Cherokee Indians were first said to be established. Certain Cherokee artifacts cause researchers to believe that these Indians date back to times of the Ice Age, while others speculate that this tribe began about 10,000 years ago. Cherokee activity was seen more frequently around the 15th century when Europeans first came to North America. It is fair to say that Cherokee Indians have made an imprint on American history and have contributed to the ways we live everyday as Americans. These influences can be majorly seen in early…show more content…
Agriculture was the Native’s primary specialty. Unlike other Native American tribes who were hunters, and lived off of large animals such as buffalo, Cherokee Indians were farmers and gatherers. However, Cherokees did eat meat from animals such as rabbits, fish, and deer, despite their lack of hunting skills. The three major crops that they grew were squash, corn, and beans; these crops were known as “The Three Sisters” because of their importance to the Cherokee nation. Growing corn in the Cherokee community was a large deal, not just for feeding the tribe’s people, but growing the yellow crop was a large part of their spiritual beliefs. The word for corn in Cherokee is “Selu,” which is also the name of a woman in Cherokee creation stories. Selu had such a strong influence on the Cherokee people, that the women were the primary farmers for the…show more content…
The upper layer exemplifies the afterlife, almost like Heaven to Christians, the lower layer represents the bad place where all ill spirits go, and the center serves as the world and current life. The final major part involving the Cherokee religion involves animals, two in specific: the owl and the cougar. These two nocturnal animals are honored because they are said to be the only two animals that stayed awake during the great creation. Many people view the owl as a symbol of wisdom and intelligence and the same thoughts can be seen in the Cherokee religion as well. Owls were the spirits of the upper world who watched down on the tribes with their large eyes. These birds were prayed to by Cherokee people when someone was ill or dying. It is also said in Cherokee myth that if one saw an owl while sick, meant that they were going to die soon. The cougar is revered because it resembles a female goddess figure with a loud shrieking cry and its ability to work unpredictably in secret. With all of these different unique aspects, one can conclude that religion was the most important virtue practiced in the Cherokee

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