Something to think about
Some of the Indian tribes in West Tennessee that used the Hatchie River to travel to the Mississippi River or the Tennessee River.
The river and creeks were the highways of the time. Can you imagine the Big Black Creek and Cane Creek how wide they were at the time being major routes for the Indians to get to the Hatchie River.
- Catawba Indians
For a brief period in their later history the Catawba lived among the Cherokee and they may have occupied lands in Tennessee at that time. There are indications that they may have been in eastern Tennessee at a more remote epoch.
- Cherokee Indians we will cover the Cherokee in detail later . The Cherokee shared the area of the Hatchie River as trapping and food gathering. They would trade hides with the European Traders.
- Chiaha Indians
A part of this tribe was encountered by De Soto in 1540, in the territory now forming this State, probably, as shown by Mr. J. Y. Brame, on what is now Burns Island. They are also mentioned in connection with the explorations of Juan Pardo in 1567.
- Chickasaw Indians
In historic times the Chickasaw claimed the greater part of western Tennessee, and twice drove Shawnee Indians from the Cumberland Valley, the first time with the assistance of the Cherokee, according to the claim of the latter. At an early date they had a settlement on the lower Tennessee River but it is doubtful whether this was in Tennessee or Kentucky. The Cherokee and the Chickasaw Indians had a odd relationship . The Chickasaw were fighters and would get mad and run the Cherokee off their hunting land. Other times they would fight together living in peace.
- Mosopelia Indians
This tribe probably established themselves on Cumberland River and at one or two points on the Tennessee shore of the Mississippi on their way from Ohio to Mississippi.
- Muskogee Indians
Although we do not have records of any settlement in Tennessee by the true Muskogee, it is probable that some of them occupied part of its territory in prehistoric times, and at a later date their war parties constantly visited it.
- Natchez Indians
After being driven from Mississippi and Louisiana, one band of Natchez lived among the Cherokee.
- Shawnee Indians
- Tali Indians
A tribe met by De Soto near the great bend of the Tennessee and found in the same region by the earliest English and French explorers, living in what is now northern Alabama and perhaps also in Tennessee. It is probable that they were a part of the Creek.
- Tuskegee Indians
One band of Tuskegee formed a settlement or settlements in the Cherokee Nation.
- Yuchi Indians
The greater part of the Yuchi probably lived at one period in and near the mountains of eastern Tennessee though one band of them was on the Tennessee River just above Muscle Shoals and there is evidence for an early occupation of the Hiwassee Valley. Some remained with the Cherokee until a very late date.*
- Another tribe we will talk about later…
- The Choctaws are original people of the American southeast, particularly Mississippi,Alabama,Louisiana and Florida
- Some Choctaws hunted and traded along the Mississippi River and even came up the Hatchie River but we will get back to the Choctaws later
One the stories I was told many years ago
The Cherokee and the Chickasaw hunted in an area of West Tn. It was said at that time they were not friendly. It was decided that they would split a certain area close to the Big Bear’s den. (Yes there were bears in Hatchie bottom) As time passed the area was known as Den Mark as the den marks the hunting line…was that how Denmark got it’s name maybe maybe not but it makes a great story…