In the early 1800s, dozens of Siouan-speaking Cheraw families, including Catawbas and Lumbees, fled war and oppression in the Carolinas and migrated to Florida, just as native Apalachicola Creeks were migrating away. Being neither Black nor White, the Cheraw descendants were persecuted by the harsh “racial” dichotomy of the Jim Crow era and almost forgot their proud heritage. Today they have rediscovered their past. This is their story.
The Authors, both descendants of the Hill family, have worked together on research projects for twenty years documenting the history, culture and identity of North Florida’s Indian people.
S. Pony Hill was born in Jackson County, Florida. He holds a degree in Criminal Justice from Keiser University, Deans List, and Phi Theta Kappa Honors Society member. He was previously a contract researcher for federal acknowledgement grants through the Administration for Native Americans and several tribes including the United Keetoowah Band of Cherokee in Oklahoma, the Cherokee Nation, and the Sumter Band of Cheraw Indians (SC). He specializes in southeastern Indian archival research and ethno history. He is the author of Patriot Chiefs and Loyal Braves, available online and the recently released book Strangers in their Own Land: South Carolinas State Indian Tribes. He currently lives with his family in San Antonio TX.
Christopher Scott Sewell was born in New Bern, North Carolina. He holds a degree in Sociology from Rogers State University in Claremore, Oklahoma. He has worked extensively as a contract researcher in the field of Southeastern populations, and has been involved in Native American rights issues for twenty years. He currently lives with his family in Bristol, Florida.
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